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How China Stopped the Rain for the Beijing Olympics

Updated on November 21, 2011

My Visit to Beijing

Construction of The Bird's Nest Stadium - June 2007
Construction of The Bird's Nest Stadium - June 2007 | Source
A visit to the Square
A visit to the Square
View from my hotel window
View from my hotel window
The amazing slanted buildings under construction - 2007
The amazing slanted buildings under construction - 2007
The olympic sign on the face of the Great Wall
The olympic sign on the face of the Great Wall

China Controlled the Weather for the Olympics

There would be no rain falling on the Bird's Nest Stadium (see photos below)* during the opening ceremony of the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. China used advanced weather modification technology to stop the rain.

The Rainy Season

August is the rainy season in Beijing but not a drop of rain fell. The "Beijing Weather Modification Office" prepared for seven years to be sure that not a single drop of rain would fall on the stadium during the opening ceremony.

Also prepared was the "Beijing Haidian District Weather Modification Test Base" located in the famed Fragrant Hills north of Beijing. This was just one of 26 fixed rocket launching bases located across the perimeter of the city - prepared to shoot rockets into the clouds to seed them thereby forcing the rain to fall or to disperse the clouds - thus preventing the rain from reaching Beijing.

China now has the largest weather modification program in the world. In nearly every province and city there are offices with weather modification programs. More than 32,000 people are trained to handle the necessary anti-aircraft guns, rocket launchers, artillery guns and more than 30 aircraft.

Countries Controlling Weather

There is some controversy about the use of nitrogen and silver oxide for seeding. Yet more than 30 countries, including the US, are conducting weather modification research and are engaging in weather modification activities.

The Most Auspicious Day

When the ceremony opened on the most auspicious day of August 8, 2008 (we are in the 20 year good luck cycle of the number 8 - from 2004 to 2024) or 8/8/8, there was not a drop of rain in the sky. (see link below for why the number 8 is lucky in China)

*In the photo of the Bird's Nest Stadium you will see to the left of it, in the distance, the famous "Bubble Stadium" - for the olympic swimming pool.

For more suggested reading, see links below:


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    • BkCreative profile image

      BkCreative 5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      I'm glad you pointed that out Ben Zoltak because I do remember OMNI (I think I even had a subscription) and Ben Bova. My favorite sci-fi writer, Octavia Butler, was published in OMNI.

      Good to see you again!


    • Ben Zoltak profile image

      Ben Zoltak 5 years ago from Lake Mills, Jefferson County, Wisconsin USA

      Amazing, great topic and well thought out BK. I first got interested in weather modification with the scifi author and former OMNI magazine (remember OMNI?) editor Ben Bova. He wrote a short novella about it that vaguely lingers in my mind. Strange that it's a reality now.


    • BkCreative profile image

      BkCreative 6 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      So true quuenieproac. I appreciate how China works with both the ancient and modern in present day society. It works. I spent time in Beijing and I was awed. A trip to a traditional Chinese doctor (I wrote a hub about this and more) was also amazing and perfectly accurate - but this is from 5,000 years of study - so why not.

      The money spent to welcome the Olympics was staggering - but it is as if Beijing was totally rebuilt. New York City wanted the Olympics - there is no way we could have competed which is why we embarrassed ourselves asking for it in Singapore.

      Thanks for commenting!

    • quuenieproac profile image

      quuenieproac 6 years ago from Malaysia

      China is advanced in science and technology! They really spend on research and improvement and is a super power today. Look at the way they produce so many excellent sportsmen with their rigorous training.

    • BkCreative profile image

      BkCreative 7 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      You're welcome cristina327 - I had the best time and would love to go and explore more of the continent. There is so much to see! Thanks for commenting!

    • cristina327 profile image

      cristina327 7 years ago from Manila

      Nice hub. China is amazing no wonder that it is fast becoming a great nation. Thank you for sharing this at HUbpages.

    • BkCreative profile image

      BkCreative 7 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Beijing was amazing Maita! I also had the pleasure of visiting a doctor - I was so curious about how they can diagnose you without invasive tests. There were 10 of us and we saw 4 different doctors - all on point just buy looking at our tongue and feeling our pulse. Wow! I'm impressed by the accomplishments of the ancients - we can learn so much.

      Thanks for writing!

    • prettydarkhorse profile image

      prettydarkhorse 7 years ago from US

      wonderful Beijing is isn't it BK, thanks dear friend,

      I mean they will do everything for rituals and for their pride, ii is their time, 8-8-08


    • BkCreative profile image

      BkCreative 8 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      I think we can safely say that many nations have destroyed the environment - the USA is deemed the biggest culprit - and the whole world suffers. We can't beat nature - we can only destroy it and ourselves.

      Thanks for writing einron.

    • einron profile image

      einron 8 years ago from Toronto, Ontario, CANADA

      China is trying to be like God and it isn't right! Stopping the rain a feat, that's for sure, but is it necessary for the sake of appearance? Tampering with Nature? What will China do next?

    • BkCreative profile image

      BkCreative 8 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Hi justmesuzanne - I suspect modifying the weather is a common happening but I don't know why it should happen so often. Interesting comment from your students. I must invistigate further.

    • justmesuzanne profile image

      justmesuzanne 8 years ago from Texas

      How interesting! My students have told me that this is a very strange year with no rain. They have not mentioned weather modification! Pretty scary stuff.