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March 15th 2017 Science and Technology Current Affairs

Floating Solar PV Plant installed in Kerala

  • India’s largest floating solar photovoltaic (PV) plant was installed by NTPC at Rajiv Gandhi Combined Cycle Power Plant (RGCCPP) stationed at Kayamkulam in Kerala.
  • Thishas the capacity to produce 100 kWp (kilowatt peak) and is developed as a part of ‘Make In India’ initiative.
  • This floating platform was developed by NETRA (NTPC Energy Technology Research Alliance), which is the R&D arm of NTPC, in collaboration with the Central Institute of Plastic Engineering & Technology (CIPET), Chennai.
  • This is an indigenously developed technology, and the patent has been applied.
  • This indigenously developed technology has so many advantages such as reduced installation time, can be installed on saline waters, due to this the evaporation of water reduces and in Land intense areas it is a boon.

1.6 Billion-Year-Old Fossil Found in India

  • Fossils of Red algae which are known as earliest plant life forms were unearthed inphosphate-rich sedimentary rocks from Chitrakoot in central India.
  • Till now the oldest-known plant fossils were 1.2-billion-year-old red algae fossils which were unearthed from the Canadian Arctic.
  • Red algae are usually found in coral reefs, and few red algae can also be found in freshwater.
  • They can generallybe found alongside with bacterial mats.
  • The approximate age of the Earth is 4.5 billion years, and the first life on Earth appeared in the form of marine bacteria about 3.7 to 4.2 billion years ago.

A frog that can Glow (Fluorescent frogs) Found in South America

  • The process of absorbing light at shorter wavelengths and re-emitting them at longer wavelengths is called as fluorescence, and this type of behaviour is rare very rare in terrestrial animals.
  • Scientists have discovered fluorescent frog which is called as South American polka dot tree frog (Hypsiboas punctatus) in Argentina, which is first of its kind.
  • The frog sports a muted palette of yellows, greens, and reds under normal light, and gives off a bright green and blue glow in the dark.
  • The trait was never seen in amphibians till now.
  • Scientist found that the frog (Hypsiboas punctatus) has fluorescent molecules which are not found in other animals.
  • Scientist found that the Hyloin molecules are responsible for green fluorescence as these molecules contain ring structures and a chain of hydro carbons which are unique in the animal kingdom.
  • However, many life forms in oceans exhibit fluorescence such assome fishes, corals, sharks cyanobacteria, algae and a species of sea turtle.
  • On land, very few animals exhibit fluorescence such as in some species of scorpions, insects, and parrots.

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