This project focused on the hydrology and cryosphere of the Himalayas and dealt with the influence of snow cover of the Himalayas and the Tibetan plateau on Asian monsoon dynamics, and the possibility to forecast the strength of the monsoon and the hydrological effects in downstream areas.

This project was a three-year scientific research project supported by the Casimir program of NWO, that aimed at promoting the exchange of researchers between the private and academic sector. The project focused on the hydrology and cryosphere of the Himalayas and dealt with the influence of snow cover of the Himalayas and the Tibetan plateau on Asian monsoon dynamics, and the possibility to forecast the strength of the monsoon and the hydrological effects in downstream areas. This was further detailed though four specific research questions:

  1. What are the spatial and temporal patterns in snow cover in the Himalaya and on the Tibetan plateau?
  2. Are there empirical relationships between snow cover, the El Nino – Southern Oscillation (ENSO), surface temperature and monsoon precipitation?
  3. What is the effect of snow cover on monsoon precipitation, and what are the major underlying processes?
  4. Is it possible to forecast the downstream hydrological effects during the monsoon based on pre-monsoon information of snow cover and ENSO status?

The project was executed in close collaboration with the department of Physical Geography of Utrecht University.

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