"Winter is coming": a Military Meteorologist explains how Weather Affects Military Service

Only abnormal temperature values could impact flights.

06/12/2023 - 15:25
Source: MoD of RK Press
Source: MoD of RK Press

According to meteorologists, this winter in Kazakhstan is expected to be warm and practically snowless, which will undoubtedly influence many processes typical for this time of the year. Sarbaz.kz reached out to a military meteorologist, Senior Lieutenant Rustam Kuatov, to find out how weather conditions affect the military and their service.

What role does meteorology play in military affairs?

As technology becomes more complex with enhanced technological capabilities, the significance of weather increases. Currently, there isn't an all-weather aviation system, so meteorological forecasts remain crucial. Aviation and weaponry are, in some way, dependent on weather conditions. With the rise in weapon technologies, the demand for meteorological support also increases.

Should we trust online weather forecasts?

It depends on the source you use. If relying on verified sources, such forecasts are relatively accurate. Supercomputers are used to compile weather forecasts, analyse a vast amount of data, and employ complex mathematical models of atmospheric phenomena with many variables that are not easy to compute.

Analysing weather forecasts online requires the ability to compare various sources based on personal experience. This helps determine the most likely forecast.

What changes in the weather are based on long-term observations?

There's a concept called "temperature balance," meaning if a warm winter is expected, consequently, a cold summer is anticipated because the average yearly temperature remains constant. There's a natural balance—if there's an excess somewhere, there will be a shortage somewhere else.

What does a warm winter mean for the military?

It all depends on the initial data. For instance, in combat situations, a warm winter is undoubtedly an advantage for warfare. In extreme frost, as you can understand, there won't be much combat. In peacetime, a warm winter doesn't significantly affect our day-to-day activities because all technical and regulatory work is carried out regardless of temperature. Only abnormal temperature values might affect flights. However, a warm winter significantly eases the lives of servicemen on duty, patrols, or guard duty.

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