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Israeli Expert is Helping Chile to Deal with Its Northern Arid Regions

A Weizmann Institute of Science expert who developed techniques to discover water resources in the Arava desert area in Israel, is presently in Chile applying his methods to tap ground water in that country’s arid northern regions.

Prof. Mordechai Magaritz was sent to Chile by the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency. He is working with a Chilean team headed by Humbert Pena, an engineer, to demonstrate the feasibility of drilling for water as an alternative to piping it from the high Andes, which would pose difficult technological problems and great expense.

The drilling is going on in the Pampa Del Tamarugal lowlands which contain low saline subterranean waters sufficient to support a large population.

Several years ago, another team of Weizmann Institute experts, headed by Prof. Joel Gat, advised the Brazilian government how to solve the water problems in arid northeastern Brazil.