Precipitation monitoring

Precipitation monitoring includes rain and snow. The most common form of precipitation monitoring is measuring and recording rainfall, but in many locations researchers and resource managers also need data concerning snow precipitation or the water content of snow fall."


Intermountain Environmental Inc. n.d. “Precipitation Monitoring.” Accessed April 15, 2021.

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JAXA Climate Rainfall Watch

A need to monitor precipitation extremes from space is widely recognized, especially for regions where ground-based observations are limited or unavailable. The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has developed the Global Satellite Mapping of Precipitation (GSMaP) in the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission. The JAXA participated in the Space-based Weather and Climate Extremes Monitoring (SWCEM) of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) by providing the GSMaP Near-real-time Rainfall Product.

Space-based Solution

Collaborating actors (stakeholders, professionals, young professionals or Indigenous voices)
Suggested solution

Why is the approach suggested

  • Not as time-consuming as a borehole drilling

  • Cheaper 

  • January is a very dry month in Kenya: time to build reserves 

  • In July, it should be ready for the harvesting


  • Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI)
  • Climate Hazards Group InfraRed Precipitation with Station data (CHIRPS)
  • Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI)

Outline of the Solution

  1. Map available rainfall with CHIRPS with Kenya Space Agency data 
  2. Determine if enough water can be stored during the rainy season to last the dry season
  3. Combine with meteorological data (SPI values)
  4. NDVI to get stationality of the water cycle
Decadal Precipitation in Kenya
Figure 1: Decadal Precipitation in Kenya
Decadal rainfall data
Figure 2: Dekadal rainfall in mm from July 2020 to July 2023
NDVI in the Samburu County
Figure 3: NDVI in the Samburu County


Relevant publications
Related space-based solutions
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Climate Zone (addressed by the solution)
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