Science & Technology - General awareness questions on current affairs

1)   ISRO has realigned which mission's orbit to prevent impact of long duration eclipse?
- Published on 20 Jan 17

a. Mangalyaan
b. Chandrayaan
c. Mars Orbiter Mission
d. Both a and c are the same
e. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Both a and c are the same

Explanation:
Indian Space Research Organisation has successfully realigned the orbit of its Mars Orbiter Mission 'Mangalyaan.'

The aim is to ensure that the study is not affected by long-duration eclipse.

The duration of the eclipse was so long that the Mangalyaan's battery capacity would have got exhausted due to lack of sun rays.

ISRO therefore, manoeuvred to change the orbit of Mangalyaan and reduced the duration of eclipse.

MOM still has 30kg fuel left, and with realignment it will work longer.

The correction in the trajectory of Mangalyaan was required to keep the power supply strong during the eclipse.

It is caused by shadow of Mars falling on it for 7-8 hours so that it could continue to function longer.

This is because Mangalyaan's battery cannot support long-duration eclipse.

Know More About Mangalyaan

  • Name: Mangalyaan
  • Mission type: Mars orbiter
  • Operator: ISRO
  • Website: www.isro.gov.in/pslv-c25-mars-orbiter-mission
  • Manufacturer: ISAC
  • Launch mass: 1,337.2 kg
  • BOL mass: ˜550 kg
  • Dry mass: 482.5 kg
  • Payload mass: 13.4 kg
  • Dimensions: 1.5 m (4.9 ft) cube
  • Power: 840 watt


2)   Robot journalist ______ debuted on 18 Jan 2017, writing an article in a second.
- Published on 20 Jan 17

a. Xiao Nan
b. Miao Nan
c. Ciao Nan
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Xiao Nan

Explanation:
For the first time, a robot journalist made its debut. The robot wrote a 300 characters long article in just under a second, in a Chinese daily.

The article was published in Guangzhou-based Southern Metropolis Daily. It was focused on the Spring Festival travel rush.

Author Xiao Nan took a single second to complete writing the peace and wrote both long and short stories.

The robot journalist developed by Peking University has stronger capacity for data analysis. It is quicker in writing stories.

Robot journalists will be able to supplement the role of editors and reporters in newspapers and related media however.


3)   Which of these diseases are the next potential emergency threat?
- Published on 20 Jan 17

a. Lassa fever
b. Nipah virus
c. MERS
d. All of the above
e. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: All of the above

Explanation:
Scientists have named three relatively little-known diseases, MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome), Lassa fever and Nipah virus the next potential global health emergency threat.

In this regard, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) has committed 460 million dollars to speed up vaccine development for the diseases.

CEPI aims to have 2 new experimental vaccines ready for each disease within 5 years in order to be prepared incase of their global outbreaks.

CEPI is a public-private coalition that aims to derail outbreaks of epidemics by speeding development of vaccines.

It is funded by the Wellcome Trust, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, World Economic Forum (WEF).

Other funders are Government of Norway and Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of S&T, Government of India.

What is MERS?

  • Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) is a viral respiratory disease.
  • It is caused by a novel coronavirus (MERS-CoV).
  • It was first identified in Saudi Arabia in 2012.
  • Typical MERS symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath.
  • Pneumonia is common, but not always present.
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms, including diarrhoea, have also been reported.
  • Approximately 36% of reported patients with MERS have died (WHO, 2017).


4)   What is the name of the BNHS AI online platform that identifies Indian bird species?
- Published on 19 Jan 17

a. Internet of Birds
b. Encyclopedia of Birds
c. Webpedia of Birds
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Internet of Birds

Explanation:
Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) has recently launched a one-of-its-kind , AI online platform that identifies Indian bird species.

NGO has collaborated with Bangalore based tech firm Accenture to create online database of 300 species of avifauna in the nation.

This cloud-based platform, titled Internet of Birds, requires any amateur bird watcher to just upload picture of the bird.

It runs an analysis on the picture, compares it to the species in the database and informs the person of the bird species.

It also has an image recognition and deep learning mechanism.

This helps in identifying key species of birds.

Biodiversity in India: Avifauna

  • India is a biodiversity hotspot.
  • It is home to almost 12.5% of the world's avifauna.
  • It is consisting of 1,300 species.
  • This platform can identify over 300 species but will eventually support all species found in India.
  • Birds are excellent indicators of their environment.


5)   Which dedicated portal has been launched for SSA by MHRD?
- Published on 19 Jan 17

a. ShaGun
b. AvGun
c. NirGun
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: ShaGun

Explanation:
Union HRD Ministry Slaunched a dedicated web portal ‘ShaGun’ for the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan.

The portal was launched at New Delhi on 18th Jan 2017.

‘ShaGun’ tracks innovations and progress in Elementary Education sector of India.

Through continuous monitoring of the flagship scheme - Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), it also aims to improve quality of education.

ShaGun, which has been coined from the words ‘Shala’ meaning Schools and ‘Gunvatta’ meaning Quality, has been developed with a twin track approach:

Repository with an engaging interface, positive stories and developments in the field of School Education.

Online monitoring module to measure state-level performance and progress against key educational indicators.

SSA a CSS is providing universal access to education to children in the age group of 6-14 years of age.

SSA ShaGun web portal can be accessed at http://ssashagun.nic.in.


6)   Scientists have developed the world's lightest high performance mechanical watch called ________
- Published on 18 Jan 17

a. RM 50-03
b. RM 50-04
c. RM 50-05
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: RM 50-03

Explanation:
Developing the world’s lightest high-performance mechanical watch RM 50-03, scientists used ‘wonder material’ graphene.

The RM 50-03 watch weighs just 40 gms.

The superlight watch was made using a unique grapheme composite known as Graph TPT.

It is incorporating graphene to manufacture a strong but lightweight new case to house the delicate watch mechanism.

It was jointly developed by the University of Manchester (UK), Richard Mille and McLaren F1.

Graph TPT weighs less than previous similar materials used in watchmaking.

Graphene is the world’s first 2D material at just one-atom thick.

It was first isolated in 2004 and has the potential to revolutionise applications including high-performance composites for the aerospace and automotive industries.

It is also used for flexible, bendable tablets, mobile phones and next-generation energy storage.


7)   Our universe contains 10 times more galaxies than previously thought, equalling how much?
- Published on 18 Jan 17

a. 2 trillion
b. 3 trillion
c. 4 trillion
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: 2 trillion

Explanation:
The universe contains around 2 trillion galaxies, ten times more than previously thought according to a new study.

Astronomers have sought to study how much the number of galaxies are in the observable universe equals.

Scientists have used images from Hubble Space Telescope to estimate that the universe contains 100-200 billion galaxies.

Presently, technology permits just 10 percent of these galaxies to be studied and remaining 90 percent will be seen once bigger and better telescopes are developed.

Pencil beam images of deep space from telescopes around the world, and especially from the Hubble telescope, were converted into 3D maps.

This permits the density of the galaxies as well as volume of one small region of space following another to be studied.

Like an intergalactic archaeological dig, the research has enabled the team to establish how many galaxies have been missed.

Results of the study are based on the measurement of number of observed galaxies at different epochs through the universe history.

The scientists have examined how many galaxies there were at a given epoch they found that were significantly more at earlier times.

When the universe was a few billion years old, there were 10 times as many galaxies in a given volume of space as there were within a similar volume in present times.

Most galaxies are low mass systems with masses similar to those of the satellite galaxies surrounding the Milky Way.

Over 13.7 billion years of cosmic evolution since the Big Bang saw galaxies that have been growing through star formation and merger with other galaxies.

This suggests significant evolution must have occurred to reduce their number through extensive merging of systems.


8)   What is Pinakin?
- Published on 17 Jan 17

a. Mobile app
b. Rocket
c. Missile
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Mobile app

Explanation:
Tamil Nadu government has launched a mobile application Pinakin.

It will seek to provide information of famous tourist destinations in the state.

The app will provide data on other major tourist destinations in Tamil Nadu.

Initially, it will cover world heritage tourist sites like Thanjavur Big Temple, Gangaikonda Cholapuram, Mamallapuram and Darasuram.

The app will provide information in 2 languages Tamil and English, benefiting both domestic and global tourists.

The free audio guide, launched by TN Tourism Department. is first-of-its-kind initiative and other major spots would be covered in a phased manner.

On the Google Playstore, the app has been welcomed and had also been given a good rating as well.

Users have described it as very useful as it provides details which even a guide cannot.

With focus on providing audio content, the application keeps tourists engaged for close to two hours.

App users can listen to interesting stories, facts and trivia about the sites.

Along with this, the application also provides other information such as ticket prices, parking details and dress code.

TN Department of Tourism: Know More

  • Tamil Nadu Tourism comprises Tourism Department in the Secretariat, and a Commissionerate of Tourism.
  • It is functioning to formulate policies and implement programmes for the development of tourism sector in the State.
  • Tamil Nadu Tourism Development Corporation is a state owned PSU.
  • It works to initiate novel ventures and innovate new schemes for providing demonstration effect to the private sector.
  • Tamil Nadu Tourism coordinates the activities of various other Government Departments / agencies and the private sector.


9)   A new weather prediction by MoES has been made operational with what resolution?
- Published on 17 Jan 17

a. 25 km
b. 12 km
c. 10 km
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: 12 km

Explanation:
Ministry of Earth Sciences has made a high resolution (12 km) global deterministic model for forecast generation of weather operational.

New model has now replaced the earlier version which had a horizontal resolution of 25 km.

The operational Ensemble Prediction System will also be upgraded to 12 km to overcome forecast uncertainties.

Multiple forecasts will now be generated with slight variations, helping to generate probabilistic forecasts and quantify the uncertainties.

The ministry provides weather, climate and hydrological services to various users round the year.

Both operational and research aspects for these services are implemented through various organizations namely:

  • India Meteorological Department (IMD),
  • National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting (NCMRWF),
  • Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) and
  • Indian National Centre for Ocean Information System (INCOIS).
Research is on at IITM, NCMRWF and IMD on weather prediction model development and data assimilation methods.

Data from international and Indian satellites are being assimilated in the weather prediction models.

Besides, the IMD has established an effective mechanism for dissemination of weather and climate forecasts to different stakeholders using different communication channels.

About IMD: Know More
  • Formed: 1875
  • Jurisdiction: Government of India
  • Headquarters: Mausam Bhavan, Lodhi Road, New Delhi
  • Annual budget: ₹3.52 billion (US$52 million) (2011)
  • DG: Dr. K.J. Ramesh
  • Department: Ministry of Earth Sciences
  • Website: www.imd.gov.in


10)   What is the name of the mobile app specially developed for SEZs?
- Published on 16 Jan 17

a. SEZ India
b. SEZ Asia
c. SEZ Bharat
d. SEZ Hindustan
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: SEZ India

Explanation:
A Mobile app named “SEZ India” has been launched by the Commerce Secretary, SEZ Division, Department of Commerce under its broader e-Governance initiative.

SEZ Online System, has developed mobile app for Special Economic Zones (SEZs).

Commerce Secretary launched the app and mentioned that the App would help the SEZ Units and Developers to find information easily and track their transactions on SEZ Online System.

SEZ Developers & Units can file all their transactions digitally through SEZ Online system and track the status on the go through the SEZ India mobile app.

The app is available on Android Platform for use by SEZ Developers, Units, officials and others.

Sections of App

The app has four sections

  • SEZ Information: This is a compendium of the SEZ Act, 2005, SEZ Rules, 2006, MOCI Circulars, details of SEZs and Units etc. It gives up to date comprehensive details on all the above aspects.
  • Trade Information: This provision gives access to important information / tools such as Foreign Trade Policy, Hand Book of procedure , Duty Calculator , Customs & Excise Notification and MEIS Rates.
  • Contact Details: See all the contact details of all Development Commissioners Office, DGFT, DG System, DGCI & S and SEZ online.
  • SEZ online Transaction This is a dynamic submenu that tracks the Bill of Entry / Shipping Bill processing status and also does verification.
The app also helps the Importers / Exporters to track the status of 'Bill of Entry / Shipping Bill” integration and processing in the EDI system of the ICEGATE.


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