Science & Technology Current
August 1st week 2015 current affairs
Category : Science & Technology Current
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1) India`s first Harbour Defence System commissioned in Kochi.

  • India`s first Integrated Underwater Harbour Defence and Surveillance System (IUHDSS) was commissioned in Kochi, Kerala.
  • First of its kind system in the country is part of initiatives to strengthen and beef up coastal security in the western coastline.
  • Designed by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI). Consists of advance sensors, coastal surveillance radars and sound navigation and ranging systems (SONAR).
  • Capable of detecting, tracking, identifying and generating warning for all types of underwater and surface threats to harbour security.
  • The integrated system can detect presence of divers and under water threats with the help of this automatic system.
Indian Defense:
  1. Navy chief: Admiral R.K. Dhowan.
  2. Air force chief: Marshal Raha.
  3. Army chief: General Bikram Singh.
2) Cyclone Komen makes landfall in Bangladesh.
  • Cyclone Komen made landfall in Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh.
  • Under the influence of cyclone, several coastal districts of low-lying areas and their offshore islands are likely to be inundated with high tides.
  • It was formed due to generation of depression over the Northern Bay of Bengal, which later turned into a cyclonic storm. It is had attained the wind speed of from 65 to 75 kmph.
  • Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has forecasted that this cyclone will bring very heavy rainfall along with it in the Gangetic West Bengal and Odisha of India. After making landfall in Bangladesh it will further move west-north-westwards and weaken gradually.
  • Minister of Earth Sciences: Dr. Harsh Vardhan 

3) FAST being constructed in China.

  • The World`s Largest Radio Telescope, Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical Telescope (FAST), is being constructed in Guizhou province of south west China, whose dish size will be equivalent to 30 football fields.
Constructions Place:
  1. FAST is being built in the Dawodang depression in Guizhou Province. The natural landscape provides perfect size and shape for the construction of telescope. The ground also provides enough support for the gigantic telescope. The porous soil forms an underground drainage system to protect the telescope.
  2. The gigantic radio telescope will cost approximately 1.2 billion Yuan.
  3. Current largest Telescope: Puerto Rico`s Arecibo Observatory.
4) SALt, a lamp that runs eight hours on water and salt, developed.
  • A start-up in Philippines developed a lamp named SALt (Sustainable Alternative Lighting) that runs on a glass of water and two tablespoons of salt. The lamp is named after the company SALt that was founded by Aisa Mijeno and Raphael Mijeno.
  • This cost effective lamp burns for eight hours at a time to lighten a room and will also be able to generate enough energy to charge a smart-phone through a USB cable.
  • The lamp can also be lit by using ocean water and would be of great help for people living along the coastline.
  • The lamp works with a galvanic cell battery, which consists of an electrolyte solution - the salt and water - and two electrodes. The electrodes, after being placed in the electrolyte, generated energy that can lit an LED light.
  • The battery will work for eight hours a day for six months, which is a considerable upgrade from the constant refills required by paraffin lantern.
  • The team says that the lamp is safe as there are no materials and components inside the lamp that may cause fire accidents.
  • The start-up hopes that the lamp will be in the market by 2016.
  • The idea to develop such a lamp was conceived during their stay with the natives of the Butbut tribe of Philippines for days that relied only on kerosene lamps and moonlight to do evening chores.


5) Asia’s biggest telescope MAST inaugurated at Udaipur Solar Observatory in Rajasthan.

  • Multi-Application Solar Telescope (MAST), Asia’s biggest telescope was inaugurated at the Udaipur Solar Observatory in Rajasthan. It was inaugurated by Professor U.R Rao, Chairman of Physical Research Laboratory, inaugurated.
  • The telescope was installed under the project undertaken by Union Ministry of Science and Technology and was funded by Department of Space (DoS).
  • MAST has a lens of 50 cm in diameter. These lenses were developed on the basis of optical and mechanical system of Belgium. The rear part of MAS has been developed by the observatory while its front part was developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
  • It will provide 3 Dimensional (3D) images of solar activities such as solar blast and solar flares. It will also in vital studies about other planetary movements even in the day time.
  • MAST has been designed in 2004 and its optical elements were added to it in 2008. In 2013, it was installed at the Udaipur Solar Observatory.
  • Ministry of Department of Space: Narendra Modi. 
6) SHEFROL: An Eco-friendly way of treating water.
  • Scientific technology named SHEFROL (SHEet Flow ROot Level) was in news in the first week of August 2015. It was in news as the SHEFROL-based waste water treatment plant built at Chinna Kalapet fishing hamlet in Puducherry, was found to be successful.
  • The plant uses clean, green and inexpensive technology called SHEFROL method to treat wastewater using two aquatic plants, four leaf clover and water hyacinth.
Highlights of waste water treatment plant:
  1. The plant was designed by Professor SA Abbasi from Pondicherry University. The plant measures around 9 metres and has a capacity of 10000 litres.
  2. This bio-reactor uses the water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes) to absorb nutrients, pathogens and micro organisms from water.
  3. The plant consists of sand bags placed in pits and channels, a sedimentation tank and a non-permeable sheet which ensures wastewater does not seep into the ground.
  4. The treated water is used to irrigate a patch of Casuarina saplings.
  5. This plant takes only six hours to treat wastewater. It also rids it of its turbidity and smell.
7) Global satellite named `GlobalSat for DRR` proposed to be named after Abdul Kalam.
  • A global satellite for earth observation and disaster risk reduction “GlobalSat for DRR” proposed under the UN framework is to be dedicated to A.P.J. Abdul Kalam as a tribute to the vision of the celebrated rocket scientist and former Indian president.
  • This has been stated by Milind Pimprikar, Chairman of CANEUS (CANada-Europe-US-ASia) Organization on Space Technologies for Societal Applications headquartered in Montreal, Canada.
  • Launch of this satellite was mooted at the third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction held at Sendai in Japan this March.
  • The concept was initiated by CANEUS in cooperation with UN agencies including the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs, the UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction, the United Nations Development Programme and the World Bank.

8) ISRO to launch 9 nano/ micro US satellites during 2015-16.
  • Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) will be launching nine nano/ micro satellites for United States during 2015-16 time frame.
  • This will be the first time that ISRO will launch US satellite. These satellites will go as piggyback on PSLV`s (Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle).
  • Antrix Corporation Ltd the commercial arm of ISRO has signed agreement to launch about nine nano/ micro (US) satellites during 2015-2016 time frame.
9) NASA inks US $490 million contract with Russia for ISS travel.
  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has extended a contract worth US $490 million with Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) to carry US astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS).
  • This contract was extended after lack of Congressional funding. Under the new contract Roscosmos will to take astronauts to the orbiting outpost in the space till 2019.
  • NASA has been dependent on Roscosmos for access to ISS after it had ended its space shuttle program in July 2012.
10) `mVisa` Visa`s new mobile payments service app to test in India.
  • The American global payments technology solution firm Visa Inc to test its pilot app-based mobile payments service ‘mVisa’ in India.
  • mVisa app enables users to transfer money and make micro payments for services through mobile. Visa chose India for its pilot app as Indians does the highest e-commerce transactions over mobile in the world.
  • This app will provide service from September and has tied up with about 20,000 merchants in Bengaluru and prime banks of India.
  • Through this app company aims to replace physical points of sales (PoS) with mVisa. In India Visa has over 1.1 million physical points of sales (PoS).
About Visa Inc:
  1. It is California based multinational financial service provider that provides electronic funds transfers throughout the world. It facilitates electronic funds transfers through its credit and debit cards branded as VISA. It doesn’t issue cards or set rates and fees or extend credits for consumer it is done by banks; it only provides a service to access financial transactions.