Floating labs to study Brahmaputra river (can help manage flood-like situation)

assam floods
River Brahmaputra originates in Tibet and flows down to India before entering Bangladesh, unleashing major flood havoc every year in the Northeastern part of India. To minimize this havoc, India is setting up a floating laboratory. This floating laboratory will study the biodiversity and ecosystems along the river’s floodplain. It will also extract the required hydrological data every year before the rainy season.

The project is India’s first such large-scale study, which will guide river and flood management policies. The study will be conducted under the name of Brahmaputra Biodiversity and Biology Boat (B4). Here, Indian scientists will place a barge equipped with laboratories to analyze soil, plants, microbes, and water at different points along the river to generate new knowledge for multiple agencies involved in river management. The B4 will link to all the local research institutions along the river, as well as national and international laboratories.

The first laboratory on a boat is expected by December this year and will move along the river from Pasighat in Arunachal Pradesh to Dibrugarh, Neematighat, Tezpur and Guwahati in Assam. At a later stage, the Government plans to have mobile satellite boat labs, which will run along the tributaries of Brahmaputra to feed in data to the main B4.