BEIJING — It is yet another attempt by man to triumph over nature.Determined not to let anything spoil their party, organizers of the 2008 Summer Olympics said Wednesday that they will take control over the most unpredictable element of all — the weather.While China’s Olympic athletes are getting ready to compete on the fields, its meteorologists are working the skies, attempting the difficult feat of making sure it doesn’t rain on the Aug. 8 opening ceremonies.
“Our team is trained. Our preparations are complete,” declared Wang Jianjie, a spokeswoman from the Beijing Meteorological Bureau, addressing a news conference at the headquarters of the Beijing organizing committee.
The Chinese are among the world’s leaders in what is called “weather modification,” but they have more experience creating rain than preventing it. In fact, the techniques are virtually the same.
Cloud-seeding is a relatively well-known practice that involves shooting various substances into clouds, such as silver iodide, salts and dry ice, that bring on the formation of larger raindrops, triggering a downpour. But Chinese scientists believe they have perfected a technique that reduces the size of the raindrops, delaying the rain until the clouds move on.