STOCK MARKET BSE NSE

Severe turbulence on flights may triple by 2050: Study

According to the first-ever global projections of inflight bumpiness, flights all around the world will be encountering lots more turbulence in future.

Published: 04th October 2017 05:15 PM  |   Last Updated: 04th October 2017 05:15 PM   |  A+A-

Image used for representational purpose only

By PTI

LONDON: Severe mid-flight turbulence on routes around the globe may triple by 2050 due to climate change, increasing the risk of injury to passengers and crew, scientists, including one of Indian origin, warned today.

According to the first-ever global projections of inflight bumpiness, flights all around the world will be encountering lots more turbulence in future.

The study led by the University of Reading in the UK analysed supercomputer simulations of the future atmosphere with a focus on clear-air turbulence, which is particularly hazardous because it is invisible.

The expected turbulence increases are a consequence of global temperature changes, which are strengthening wind instabilities at high altitudes in the jet streams and making pockets of rough air stronger and more frequent, researchers said.

The study, published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, calculated that climate change will significantly increase the amount of severe turbulence worldwide by 2050– 2080.

Severe turbulence involves forces stronger than gravity and is strong enough to throw people and luggage around an aircraft cabin.

"The study is another example of how the impacts of climate change can be felt through the circulation of the atmosphere, not just through increases in surface temperature itself," said Manoj Joshi, a senior lecturer at the University of East Anglia in the UK.

Flights to the most popular international destinations are projected to experience the largest increases, with severe turbulence at a typical cruising altitude of 39,000 feet becoming up to two or three times as common throughout the year over the North Atlantic (180 percent), Europe (160 percent), North America (110 percent), the North Pacific (90 percent), and Asia (60 percent).

"Air turbulence is increasing across the globe, in all seasons, and at multiple cruising altitudes. This problem is only going to worsen as the climate continues to change,"

said Paul Williams, a professor at the University of Reading.

"Our study highlights the need to develop improved turbulence forecasts, which could reduce the risk of injuries to passengers and lower the cost of turbulence to airlines,"

said Williams, who led the research.

The study also makes the first ever turbulence projections for the Southern Hemisphere and the tropical regions of the planet.

The amount of airspace containing severe turbulence is calculated to increase over South America (60 percent), Australia (50 percent), and Africa (50 percent).

"While turbulence does not usually pose a major danger to flights, it is responsible for hundreds of passenger injuries every year," said Luke Storer, a PhD researcher who worked on the study.

"It is also by far the most common cause of serious injuries to flight attendants. Turbulence is thought to cost US air carriers up to USD 200 million annually," said Storer.

A previous study led by Williams revealed climate change will make transatlantic flights from Europe to North America longer in future.



Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

IPL_2020
flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp