1. Prime Minister to launch FAME India II on Sept 7
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch on September 7 the second phase of the FAME India.
- In this phase, the government is targeting a fully (100%) electric fleet for public transport, including buses, taxis and auto-rickshaws.
- The panel decided to offer the subsidy to all categories of electric vehicles, including two-wheelers, three-wheelers and four-wheelers.
FAME India Scheme (Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid &) Electric Vehicles in India)
- FAME was launched in 2015.
- The objective of the scheme is to support the hybrid / electric vehicles market development and Manufacturing eco-system.
- The Scheme is aimed at incentivising all vehicle segments i.e. 2 Wheeler, 3 Wheeler Auto, Passenger 4 Wheeler Vehicle, Light Commercial Vehicles and Buses.
- It has 4 focus areas i.e.
(a) Technology development
(b) Demand Creation
(c) Pilot Projects and
(d) Charging Infrastructure.
- The phase I of the scheme expired on March 31, 2018.
- The scheme is a part of the National Electric Mobility Mission Plan by Government of India.
Source- Economic Times
2. BNHS to open its first regional centre
- The Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS), will start operating its regional centre on the campus of Wetland Research and Training Centre near Chilika Lake.
The Bombay Natural History Society
- Founded on 15 September 1883.
- It is one of the largest non-governmental organisations in India engaged in conservation and biodiversity research.
- It is one of India’s premier avian research institutes.
- BNHS is the partner of BirdLife International in India.
- Headquarters in Mumbai.
- Formerly the International Council for Bird Preservation.
- Founded in 1922.
- Headquarters in Cambridge, United Kingdom.
- India is a partner of Birdlife International.
- It is the world’s largest partnership of conservation organizations.
- BirdLife International is the official Red List authority for birds, for the International Union for Conservation of Nature.
- Chilika Lake is a brackish water lagoon.
- Spread over Odisha, at the mouth of the Daya River, flowing into the Bay of Bengal.
It is the largest coastal lagoon in India and the second largest coastal lagoon in the world after The New Caledonian barrier reef in New Caledonia.
It is the largest wintering ground for migratory birds on the Indian sub-continent.
In 1981, Chilika Lake has designated the first Indian wetland of international importance under the Ramsar Convention.
It was put under Montreux Record but later removed.
Source- The Hindu
3. India’s first biofuel flight
- SpiceJet Q-400 will operate a demonstration flight powered by biofuel from Dehradun to Delhi.
- The biofuel has been developed by Indian Institute of Petroleum, Dehradun.
- India will be the first developing nation to experiment biofuel test flight.
- The first-ever flight using biofuel was flown ten years ago by the Virgin Atlantic airlines between London and Amsterdam.
- Biofuels are combustible fuels created from biomass
- In other words, fuels created from recently living plant matter as opposed to ancient plant matter in hydrocarbons.
- Biofuels are produced from Vegetable oils, Recycled grease, Algae and Animal fat.
Source- Business Standards
4. NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft catches the first glimpse of its target Bennu asteroid
- OSIRIS-REx obtained the image of the asteroid from a distance of 2.1 million kilometres using its PolyCam camera.
- OSIRIS-REx is NASA’s first mission to visit a near-Earth asteroid, survey the surface, collect a sample and deliver it safely back to Earth.
- The spacecraft has travelled approximately 1.8 billion kilometres and is scheduled to arrive at Bennu on December 3 this year.
The Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx)
- Launched on 8 September 2016, its mission is to study asteroid 101955 Bennu.
- If successful, OSIRIS-REx will be the first U.S. spacecraft to return samples from an asteroid.
- It is the third planetary science mission, after Juno and New Horizons.
- Juno- Mission to study Jupiter.
- New Horizon – Mission to study Pluto.
- Near Earth, carbonaceous asteroid.
- Discovered in 1999.
- It is the potentially hazardous asteroid.
- There is a very slight chance it could strike into Earth in the late 22nd century.
- The European Space Agency (ESA) has launched wind-sensing satellite “Aeolus” from French Guiana.
- It is the first satellite in the world to perform global wind-component-profile observation on a daily basis in near real-time.
- Name derived from Greek mythology.
- Built by Airbus.
- Rocket: Vega rocket launcher.
- Altitude of 320 km.
- Equipped with Doppler wind lidar known as Aladin.
- It is part of the Copernicus project, a joint initiative of European Union (EU) and European Space Agency (ESA).
- It is the fifth of ESA’s planned Earth Explorer missions.
Source- Economic times
6. SCO Peace Mission Exercise
- The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Peace Mission exercise started in Chebarkul, Russia.
- It involved military contingents of all eight member nations.
- First time ever, India, Pak soldiers set to participate together in a military exercise.
SCO(Shanghai Cooperation Organisation or Shanghai Pact)
- It is a Eurasian political, economic, and security alliance.
- Created on 15 June 2001 in Shanghai, China.
- By the leaders of China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.
- On 9 June 2017, at Astana summit, India and Pakistan officially joined SCO as full-fledged members.
- 1st SCO -2001-Shanghai, China
- 2018- Qingdao, China.
Source- Times of India
7. International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and its Abolition.
- International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and its Abolition, on August 23 of each year.
- Designated by UNESCO to memorialize the transatlantic slave trade.
- The International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and its Abolition was first celebrated in many countries, in particular in Haiti, on August 23, 1998, and in Senegal on August 23, 1999.
The Haitian revolution:
- During the night of August 22 to August 23, 1791, on the island of Saint Domingue (now known as Haiti), an uprising began which set forth events which were a major factor in the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade.
- The Haitian Revolution which lasted 13 years was a large and well-organized uprising.
- It ended with the independent nation of Haiti.
- Nearly 85 years later, Brazil became the last nation in America to abolish slavery in 1888.
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
- UNESCO is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN).
- Formed on 4th November 1946.
- Headquarters in Place de Fontenoy, Paris, France
- It is the successor of the League of Nations’ International Committee on Intellectual Cooperation.
- UNESCO has 195 member statesand ten associate members
Source- The Hindu
8. Biodiversity Heritage Sites
- Biodiversity Heritage Sites (BHS) are well-defined areas that are unique with ecologically fragile ecosystems.
- It covers terrestrial, coastal and inland waters and, marine ecosystems having rich biodiversity.
- Under the Biological Diversity Act, 2002 (BDA).
- The State Government in consultation with the Central Government may frame rules for the management and conservation of BHS.
- The National Biodiversity Authority (NBA) issues the guidelines for selection and management of the BHS.
- Ameenpur lake in Telangana is the first water body in the country to be declared as a BHS.
Source- The Hindu
9. INS Vikramaditya
- INS Vikramaditya, India’s only aircraft carrier, is going to be fitted with the marine hydraulic system
- For the first time, it will give an edge to the air-capable wing of the ship.
- The systems would be fitted by Russia’s Rostec State Corporation through its subsidiary, Technodinamika.
- The upgradation would take place in India only and would include installation supervision, commissioning and sea trials of the ship.
The GS-1MF and GS-3 marine hydraulic systems
- The GS-1MF and GS-3 marine hydraulic systems are used for refuelling, cleaning and pressurization of hydraulic systems of aircraft and helicopters which form part of the air-capable wing of INS Vikramaditya.
- GS-1MF hydraulic system is used for helicopters while GS-3 are used for aircraft.
- INS Vikramaditya is a modified Kiev-class aircraft carrier which entered into service with the Indian Navy in 2013.
- Originally built as Baku and commissioned in 1987.
- The carrier was purchased by India on 20 January 2004 after years of negotiations.
- On 14 June 2014, she was formally inducted INS Vikramaditya into the Indian Navy.
Source- Hindustan Times
10. Lithium-ion batteries
- Scientists have developed novel lithium-ion batteries with components that harden on impact, preventing them from catching fire and causing injuries to users.
- The researchers solved this by putting the silica in place before adding the electrolyte.
- Lithium-ion batteries are a type of rechargeable battery in which lithium ions move from the negative electrode to the positive electrode during discharge and back when charging.
- They are more reliable than older technologies such as nickel-cadmium.
- It has high energy density i.e. it stores more energy per unit of weight when compared to another kind of batteries.
Source- Indian Express
11. Compulsory genetic screening of pregnant women to curb genetic disorders
- The Centre has prepared a draft policy to prevent inherited disorders such as thalassemia and sickle cell anaemia.
- The policy advocates for the provision of medicines, including iron chelating agents, leukocyte filters and infusion pumps free of cost to the poor patients.
- For sickle cell disease, the policy recommended newborn screening to be initiated in areas of high prevalence.
- Thalassemia and sickle cell diseases are two common genetic disorders that are chronic, life-restricting and require long and specialized treatment.
Source- The Hindu
12. India’s first interstate connected wind power project commissioned in Bhuj
- 126 MW wind power capacity, part of India’s first inter-state transmission system (ISTS) auction, was commissioned in Bhuj, Gujarat.
- State-run Solar Energy Corporation of India Ltd (SECI) had conducted India’s first auction of wind power projects in February 2017.
- It is in line with the Government’s plan of having 175 GW renewable energy by 2022.
Source- Money control
13. A mobile app launched to rate, review your ‘Neta’
- Former President Pranab Mukherjee has launched ‘Neta App’ that allows voters to rate and review their political representatives.
- The objective of the app to foster political accountability and transparency among leaders.
- The App uses a combination of Artificial Intelligence, one-time password and Aadhaar numbers to ensure that the voters who rate leaders are genuine.
Source- Indian Express