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​Weather Factor in Ukraine War: How Military Meteorologists Help the Ukrainian Forces Destroy russians

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Soldiers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine overcome off-road conditions on the M-80A IFV received from Slovenia, January 2023 / Photo credit: General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine
Soldiers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine overcome off-road conditions on the M-80A IFV received from Slovenia, January 2023 / Photo credit: General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine

Data from meteorologists is important not only for aerial drone reconnaissance but also for effective planning of counteroffensive operations

Winter of 2022/2023 in Ukraine has been a rollercoaster of temperatures rising and dropping and thus affecting further actions by the Armed Forces of Ukraine. In these conditions, the Ukrainian military needs to have a reliable weather forecast that will allow it to make plans at least a few days ahead.

That is what makes the interview published the other day by the Ukrainian ArmyInform so interesting: the journalists talked to the Head of Hydrometeorological service of the Support Force Command of the AFU, Colonel Rafil Musin.

Read more: ​How the Winter Will Impact the Ukraine’s War

First of all, we should take note of how the meteorological service in the Armed Forces of Ukraine is organized in general. For example, Ukrainian military meteorologists are closely cooperating with the Ukrainian Hydrometeorological Center which is a department of the State Emergency Service of Ukraine.

They also use data provided by the World Meteorological Organization of the UN and by satellites belonging to Ukraine's allied countries. The Air Force and Navy have their own meteorological services, and the other branches of the Ukrainian military use general forecasts.

Independent Presidential Brigade of the the AFU works out creation of a river crossing for their 2S3
Independent Presidential Brigade of the AFU works out the creation of a river crossing for their 2S3 "Akatsiya" SPG, January 2023. Activities like this also require info from meteorologists / Photo credit: AFU General Staff

A timely delivery of quality weather data helps the AFU in either defending from russian assaults – like now in Bakhmut city – or launching counterattacks to liberate occupied territories.

In particular, Colonel Rafil Musin said good timing on delivered hydrological data helped establish a reliable crossing over Ingulets river. This, in turn, was one of the factors leading to the successful liberation of Kherson city in November 2022.

Information from military meteorologists is needed even for military logistics. After a thaw, some roads become impassable, so the logistical services rely on their advice and warnings.

Ukrainian soldiers work out an offensive covered by a BRDM-2 reconnaissance vehicle
Ukrainian soldiers work out an offensive covered by a BRDM-2 reconnaissance vehicle / Photo credit: AFU General Staff

Weather data has to be considered also when one deploys an unmanned aerial vehicle. All types of UAVs operate at various altitudes and have a different operating range. Therefore, in every case a specific recommendation is in order for a certain type of drone. Especially since unmanned aircraft operate in much harsher conditions than "conventional" manned aviation.

Every sortie of a combat aircraft or a warship requires a weather forecast, special meteorological and hydrological information. References about the weather help not only during preparations for counteroffensive activities but for military medics, for example, to make a plan in case the russians use a chemical weapon.

If the roads are nothing but mud, assessment from military meteorologists will help to determine where a russian column will be moving and destroy it.

A destroyed russian column in Ukraine
A destroyed russian column in Ukraine / Open source illustrative photo

Usually, military meteorologists work like this. On a daily basis, they prepare forecasts for the next day, make adjustments to the previously made two to three-day forecasts and deliver them to their respective headquarters.

At the end of each month, they prepare a climatic breakdown about all border regions, based on many years of monitoring at local meteorological stations there. Other than that, they can provide data on specific districts or cities upon request.

Read more: Russians Build Wagner Line In Luhansk Oblast, Which May Slow Ukraine’s Tanks Down
TAGS War