Silvio Corradi - Genio incompreso Silvio Corradi
Silvio Corradi - nuova teoria astronomica Astronomical Theory  
Silvio Corradi - il domatore di fiumi The tamer of rivers  
Agricoltura - un nuovo metodo di semina A new method of seeding
Silvia Corradi - Pioggia Artificiale Artificial Rain  
Silvio Corradi e la fisiologia Silvio Corradi and physiology  
Silvio Corradi - le altre invenzioni Other Inventions  
Silvio Corradi - opera libraria Bibliography  
Il domatore di Fiumi
Probably the most unfortunate among Silvio Corradi’s inventions was his "artificial rain".
The war years were particularly arid in Parma. There was the urgent need, in that moment more than ever, to feed a population experiencing devastation and bombings and the arid climate certainly did not help agriculture.

Silvio Corradi was an extremely sensitive person and when developing his ideas he wanted them to benefit the whole world. The problem to solve was the lack of rain and, therefore, he wondered how rain could be stimulated to fall.

His most brilliant insights always took inspiration from small episodes of everyday life that he, being a keen observer and a very thoughtful person, used as a starting point to develop complex theories.

In this case, he noticed that if you fill a bottle with a liquid at a temperature much lower than that of the surrounding environment, it rapidly forms condensation on the outside .

A phenomenon is easily noticed, in summer, when sipping a cold drink. But Silvio Corradi did not stop at this simple observation. In the hot, dry summer of 1943, he asked: "If we likewise brutally forced a drop in temperature at high altitude, it would cause the same type of liquid condensate, which would materialize in clouds, which in time, would rain."
From 1943 he started steps to put theory into practice. He contacted firms that would be willing to sell enormous quantities of dry ice to be flown up to high-altitude by plane, and then "shot" into the ether to create a forced reduction in temperature, which could cause condensation and, with it, rain.

He contacted various commands of the then Regia Aeronautica , today’s Italian Air Force , but the situation in Italy and throughout Europe and the whole world was dramatic, and the planes were used to carry out missions considered far more pressing. Silvio Corradi turned to Adriano Mantelli, a private pilot and amateur plane builder who had built a small aircraft with the trade name Alaparma. Mantelli was willing to believe in the initiative, but the whole operation had a cost and the difficult national conditions at the time meant that Mantelli and Corradi alone could not implement the plan.
In the meantime the idea of Silvio Corradi, whilst only a theory, was well regarded by the local press, which devoted ample space and positive comments. In 1945 the world situation was returning to normal and the Americans after the war were no longer an enemy but an occupying force. By the hot and dry summer of 1945 Silvio Corradi had not lost heart. He decided that if the Regia Aeronautica could not (or would not) make available its own planes, maybe the USA a rich powerful nation, with an impressive fleet and great confidence in free enterprise could organize the testing. Silvio Corradi went to the American command in Via Cavestro in Parma and illustrated a detailed outline of the project. The response of the military arm of the "Stars and Stripes" was that the idea was brilliant but that they, outside of their national borders did not have permission or means to help foreign inventors.

In November 1946 there was a conclusion to the story that left a bitter taste in Silvio Corradi’s mouth. All the national and international newspapers and magazines gave wide coverage to the news that a little-known meteorologist, Vincent J . Schaefer, from Massachusetts and his technical staff had succeeded in changing the weather to rain by launching dry ice at high altitudes from an aircraft. It is possible that in those same days, in which Silvio Corradi was elaborating his invention, on the other end of the ocean, another inventor considered the same problem and reached the same conclusion and published them three yeras later? Or is it more likely that the U.S. military command in Parma had treasured all the details of the draft submitted by the inventor from Vigatto and had then sent them home for someone else to put the idea into practice?

On that November night - ironically an evening of heavy almost torrential rain, - Silvio Corradi, wounded and bitter, ran up the stairs of the Parma Gazette‘s editorial offices. In one hand the day’s paper with the article on "the invention of Dr. Schaefer," and in the other an issue from three years earlier when the same newspaper devoted ample space "to the invention of Silvio Corradi“. The editors had no choice but to confirm the good faith of Corradi who they knew personally having interviewed him many times. Some Italian scholars, including the engineer Marcello Lelli of the University of Genoa were willing to testify that for years they had met in person Silvio Corradi to discuss his proposed "artificial rain". But despite all these efforts in the end the inventor, who had never chased dreams of wealth but only wanted the proper recognition for his projects and some good to come from them, never had the satisfaction to be awarded the authorship of the idea.