The Survey of India is planning to remeasure the height of Mount Everest, the world’s tallest peak.
The project is being undertaken to determine whether the peak as per the doubts of some sections of the scientific community has indeed shrunk following the devastating earthquake that hit Nepal two years ago.
• The Survey of India would be sending an expedition to Nepal in two months to conduct the exercise.
• Some scientists have expressed doubts regarding the current height of the towering peak. They feel that it has shrunk post the Nepal earthquake.
• Officially, according to the available data, the Mount Everest currently stands at a height of 8,848 metres (29,028 feet) above the sea level.
• According to Surveyor General of India, Swarna Subba Rao, the exercise is also being conducted to help scientific studies and plate movements.
• The peak has been measured several times by different countries but the height established by the 1955 Indian survey is taken as the correct height even today.
• All necessary approvals for the expedition have already been taken.
The survey of India would be measuring the height of the peak through two methods for better accuracy:
Global Positioning System (GPS)
• It is a survey instrument that looks similar to a transistor.
• The instrument will record the correct height after it is placed on the summit for at least 10 minutes.
• This method is based on an observation process called triangulation, where tracing and measurement of a series of triangles determines the distances and relative positions of points spread over an area.
• The height can be calculated from ground.
Overall, the total time estimated to complete the entire exercise is around two months including a month for observation and 15 days for computation and then finally the declaration of data.