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March 20th 2017 Science and Technology Current Affairs

A New app for Breast Health

  • Ushalakshmi Breast Cancer Foundation was established in 2007.
  • Its main motto is to help people with Breast health concerns or affected by breast cancer.
  • They provide provision of innovative, high quality, responsive services through their campaigns on breast cancer treatment and care.
  • Ushalakshmi Breast Cancer Foundation based in Mumbai.
  • It has released an app to provide information about women’s health in 12 languages.
  • This app is launched by Amitabh Bachchan, Bollywood icon.
  • The app is named as ‘ABC of Breast Health’.

First Domestic Manufacture Train (rake) Started Successful

  • First fully India-made train (rake) was started at Dadar station in Mumbai, which is the capital of Maharashtra.
  • It is named as Medha, and it was flagged off by the Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu through videoconferencing.
  • It was manufactured at Integral Coach Factory (ICF) in Chennai of Tamil Nadu state.
  • It has 12 coaches with 1,168 seats having a seating capacity of 6,050 passengers.
  • It has 12 coaches with 1,168 seats having a seating capacity of 6,050 passengers.
  • This rake can travel at a speed of 110 kmph when compared with the local trains which travel at a speed of 90 or 100 kmph
  • Previously, Bombarder rakes ( a group of coaches) were imported from Germany by the Indian government at the cost of 44.36 crores.
  • But our manufacturing costs only Rs.43.23 crore which is almost Rs. 1 crore less than the rakes imported from Germany.
  • Indian manufacturing will save $50 lakh worth foreign exchange per EMU rake and 25% manufacturing cost.
  • It has automated in-built systems to minimise the breakdowns during travel.
  • It has a fully Made in India, high power 3-phase propulsion system manufactured by Hyderabad-based Medha Servo Drives.
  • It is fitted with LED lighting to reduce energy consumption by 30-35% when compared with the existing rakes.
  • It has GPS-based information system which helps in indicating stations
  • The rake also has a modular roof-mounted forced ventilation system which can supply 16000 cubic m/hr fresh air.

Researchers from IIT-Kharagpur Developed a Superpower Drone

  • A research group at IIT Kharagpur developed a superpower drone and named it as BHIM. Bhim is an epic personality in Mahabharata who is known for his strength and courage.
  • Bhim is the first indigenous superpower drone in India.
  • Bhim’suniqueness lies in its size which is just under a meter, its superior imagery, long battery life and its capability to travel long distances, etc.
  • Even the weight of the drone will be very less when compared with its size.
  • It can create a Wi-Fi zone in 1-km radius and helps in creating a seamless communication network for rescue personnel or security forces in emergency or war or conflict zones.
  • It can drop emergency supplies with the help of parachutes, and it has built-in intelligence and can easily identify an area is crowded or not.
  • This is the first drone in India having built-in intelligence which is developed with indigenous technology.
  • It can be used for rescue operations also especially in hard-to-access areas such as hilly or mountainous areas.
  • This drone was shown to a team of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
  • India’s Longest Road Tunnel, Chenani-Nashiri: completes trial run
  • India’s longest surface tunnel in Udhampur district of Jammu and Kashmir state is complete.
  • After successful completion of trial runs this tunnel will be open for the traffic.
  • The tunnel road is 9-km-long tunnel passes through the lower Himalayan mountain range at Chenani on Jammu- Srinagar National Highway.
  • It is located at an altitude of 1,200 metres at an important part of a four-lane project on the highway which is 286 km long.
  • It is the India’s first tunnel which is equipped with the world-class integrated tunnel control system.
  • Ventilation, fire control, signals, electrical systems and communication will be automatically actuated in this tunnel.
  • This tunnel reduces travel distance by 30 kilometers from 41 km to 10.9 km between Jammu and Srinagar and saves journey time by three to four hours.
  • The construction of Chenani-Nashiri Road Tunnel was during May 2011, and it took nearly six years for the completion of the project.
  • The project cost over Rs. 3,720 crores.
  • The tunnel will not only provide all-weather road connectivity but also avoids landslide-prone stretch while travelling to the Valley.
  • This initiative will boost tourism and trade and commerce in the valley.

Pristine Air-Quality Monitoring Station Established at Palampur

  • In India, air quality parameters are measured mostly in residential and industrial areas, and the data of air quality of pristine atmosphere is not available.
  • For the first time in India, National Physical Laboratory (NPL) has established an atmospheric monitoring station.
  • It is established at an altitude of 1391 m in the campus of Institute of Himalayan Bioresource Technology at Palampur, Himachal Pradesh.
  • It generates the base data for atmospheric trace species and properties.
  • This data will serve as a reference for the comparison of polluted atmosphere in the country.
  • This station continuously takes the measurements of ambient and greenhouse gases such black-carbon, NO2, NH3, CO, NO, SO2, O3, PM2.5, PM10, PM1, hydrocarbons, CO2& CH4, and other weather parameters.
  • Due to its location,Palampur’s environment will have pristine air, and the new monitoring station can detect small amounts of pollutants.
  • This station will also serve as a base station for comparison of air quality monitoring equipments used in India. This improves the quality of monitored data.
  • This new station also carries out the experiments to investigate the cloud-aerosol interactions, which helps in better understanding of the Earth’s climate system.
  • The generated data will be shared with different agencies and pollution control boards in the country which will help in drafting a policy to fight pollution.

279 Technical Institutes and 23 Universities, in India, are Fake – A survey

  • The UGC and AICTE have listed 279 technical institutes and 23 universities as fake on their websites.
  • This is to warn students as the new academic session will start in next month.
  • Delhi topped the list with 66 fake institutes and became the capital of fake educational institutes also.
  • These councils will send the list to the concerned states to take necessary actions on these fake institutes and universities.

ICAR and ICRISAT, Join hands for Crop Improvement

  • International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) and The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and have inked an agreement to on agronomy programmes and crop improvement together for dryland cerealsandgrain legumes. This agreement,in the near futurewill benefit small farmers not only in India but also globally.
  • The agreement has identified some important areas of research such as smart food,climate-smart crops, and digitalisation of the breeding database as some of the core.
  • The other research areas of focus are finger millet genetic and genomic resources and improving the genetic gains for priority traits developing scientific infrastructure for upscaling climate resilient agriculture.
  • These will focus research on pigeonpea and chickpea for developing insect resistance traits.
  • ICRISAT is a non-profit agricultural research organisationwhich is headquartered in Patancheru in Hyderabad capital city of Telangana.
  • Ford and the Rockefeller Foundations together founded it in 1972.
  • Its charter was signed by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO),and it has several regional centres around the globe- Nairobi (Kenya),Niamey (Nigeria), and research stations in Bulawayo (Zimbabwe), Bamako (Mali).
  • Since its inception, Government of India has granted it special status as a UN Organization operating in the Indian Territory.
  • The Indian government has given ICRISAT some specialimmunities and tax privileges.
  • ICAR is an autonomous body of Department of Agricultural Research and Education which is under the Union Ministry of Agriculture of India
  • It is responsible for co-ordinating the agricultural education and research in the country.
  • It is the largest network of agricultural research andeducational institutes in the world.
  • It reports tothe Union Minister of Agriculture serves as its president.

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