Facts Corner-Part-138

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Smallest optical gyroscope 

  • Scientists have developed the world’s smallest optical gyroscope device.
  • This device helps vehicles, drones, and wearable and handheld electronic devices know their orientation in three-dimensional space.
  • It is 500 times smaller than the current state-of-the-art device described in the journal Nature Photonics.
  • The new gyroscope achieves improved performance by using a new technique called “reciprocal sensitivity enhancement.
  • “In this case, “reciprocal” means that it affects both beams of the light inside the gyroscope in the same way.
  • A fibre optic gyroscope (FOG) senses changes in orientation using the Sagnac effect, thus performing the function of a mechanical gyroscope.
  • Its principle of operation is instead based on the interference of light which has passed through a coil of optical fibre which can be as long as 5 km.
  • FOGs are used in Fibre optic gyrocompasses.
  • FOGs are used in the inertial navigation systems of some guided missiles.
  • FOGs can be a navigation aid in remotely operated vehicles and autonomous underwater vehicles.
  • FOGs are used in surveying.

CSIR-National Environmental Engineering Research Institute

  • The CSIR-National Environmental Engineering Research Institute is a research institute created and funded by Government of India under the Ministry of Science and Technology.
  • NEERI is a pioneer laboratory in the field of environmental science and engineering and part of Council of Scientific and Industrial Research.
  • It was established in Nagpur in 1958 with a focus on water supply, sewage disposal, communicable diseases and to some extent on industrial pollution and occupational diseases found common in post-independent India.

SWAS, SAFAL and STAR

  • CSIR scientists have developed Less Polluting Firecrackers which are not only environment friendly but 15-20 % cheaper than the conventional ones.
  • These crackers have been named as safe water releaser (SWAS), safe minimal aluminium (SAFAL) and safe thermite cracker (STAR).
  • SWAS crackers eliminate usage of (KNO3) Potassium nitrate and Sulphur with the consequent reduction in particulate matter (30-35%) SO2 and NOx.
  • STAR eliminates usage of KNO3 and Sulphur with the consequent reduction in particulate matter (35-40%), SO2 and NOx.
  • SAFAL has minimal usage of aluminium (only in flash powder for initiation) with the consequent significant reduction in particulate matter(35-40 %) compared to commercial crackers.
  • Researchers decided to replace aluminium with magnesium on the understanding that it would reduce ignition temperature and subsequently minimise particulate matter coming from the cracker.

Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA)

  • Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA) is a statutory body of Ministry of Women & Child Development, Government of India.
  • It functions as the nodal body for adoption of Indian children and is mandated to monitor and regulate in-country and inter-country adoptions.
  • CARA is designated as the Central Authority to deal with inter-country adoptions in accordance with the provisions of the Hague Convention on Inter-country Adoption, 1993, ratified by Government of India in 2003.
  • CARA primarily deals with adoption of orphan, abandoned and surrendered children through its associated /recognised adoption agencies.

India’s largest dry dock

  • It is India’s largest dry dock for the construction, repair and maintenance of ships at the Cochin Shipyard.
  • The dry dock will give an impetus to ‘Make in India’ initiative under Sagarmala (Programme for building and modernizing ports) and raise India’s share in global shipbuilding to 2%.
  • The dock will be able to build specialised and technologically advanced large vessels like LNG Carriers, drill ships, jack-up rigs, large dredgers, aircraft carriers for the Indian Navy and high-end research vessels.
  • India currently occupies 0.66% share in the global shipbuilding market.

Swachh Nyayalaya Project

  • Swachh Nyayalaya project aims at constructing and maintaining washrooms and take care of general cleanliness in courtrooms.
  • It also deals with the mechanism needs to be devised with garbage and also to weed out old case files.
  • It will also provide user-friendly toilets for male, female and differently abled users.
  • The project which is ostensibly on the lines of the Centre’s flagship scheme Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.
  • The Project would be undertaken by NITI Aayog and the Union Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation along with the Department of Justice.
  • The ambitious project would cover all the Supreme Court, all the high courts and 3,388 subordinate courts.

Train 18

  • India’s first engine-less semi-high speed train – “Train 18” – was rolled out by the Integral Coach Factory (ICF).
  • It will eventually replace the Shatabdi Express for inter-city travel.
  • The 16-coach semi-high speed ‘trainset’ has been designed for a maximum operating speed of 160 kmph.
  • This is the first long-distance train sans separate locomotive (engine).
  • All the coaches are connected by fully sealed gangways with integrated bridge plates, where the passenger can walk across freely.
  • The railways will now turn its focus on another project – Train 20 – the next generation aluminium-bodied sleeper class trains that will replace the Rajdhani Express trains on the network and is expected to be rolled out by 2020.

Central Vigilance Commission

  • The Central Vigilance Commission aims to promote integrity, transparency and accountability in public life. As part of its efforts to promote probity in public life and to achieve a corruption free society, CVC observes Vigilance Awareness Week every year.
  • The observation of Vigilance Awareness Week creates greater awareness among public and encourages all the stakeholders to collectively participate in prevention of and fight against Corruption.
  • It is the apex vigilance institution.
  • It was created via executive resolution (based on the recommendations of Santhanam committee) in 1964 but was conferred with statutory status in 2003.
  • It submits its report to the President of India.
  • Presently, the body consists of central vigilance commissioner along with 2 vigilance commissioners.
  • They are appointed by the President of India on the recommendations of a committee consisting of Prime Minister, Union Home Minister and Leader of the Opposition in Lok Sabha (if there is no LoP then the leader of the single largest Opposition party in the Lok Sabha).
  • Their term is 4 years or 65 years, whichever is earlier.
  • The Central Vigilance Commissioner or any Vigilance Commissioner can be removed from his office only by order of the President on the ground of proved misbehavior or incapacity after the Supreme Court, on a reference made to it by the President, has, on inquiry, reported that the Central Vigilance Commissioner or any Vigilance Commissioner, as the case may be, ought to be removed.

Mega Food Parks

  • Ministry of Food Processing Industries is implementing Mega Food Park Scheme in the country.
  • The Scheme of Mega Food Park aims at providing a mechanism to link agricultural production to the market by bringing together farmers, processors and retailers so as to ensure maximizing value addition, minimizing wastages, increasing farmers’ income and creating employment opportunities particularly in rural sector.
  • These food parks give a major boost to the food processing sector by adding value and reducing food wastage at each stage of the supply chain with particular focus on perishables.

Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty

  • The treaty was signed in the year 1987 between United States and Soviet Union.
  • It required both countries to eliminate and permanently disown all of their nuclear and conventional ground-launched ballistic and cruise missiles with ranges of 500 to 5,500 kilometers.
  • It did not cover sea-launched missiles.
  • The treaty marked the first time the superpowers had agreed to reduce their nuclear arsenals, eliminate entire category of nuclear weapons.
  • As a result of this treaty, superpowers destroyed a total of 2,692 short, medium and intermediate-range missiles by the treaty’s implementation deadline of June 1, 1991.
  • In 2014, United States has alleged that Russia violated the treaty and it has deployed the non-compliant missile.
  • Recently, US announced that it is withdrawing from the treaty. USA Congress approval for the same is yet to be taken.

Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS)

  • It is a project initiated in June 2009 which aims at creating a comprehensive and integrated system for enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of policing at the Police Station level.
  • This will be done through adoption of principles of e-Governance, and creation of a nationwide networked infrastructure for evolution of IT-enabled state-of-the-art tracking system around “investigation of crime and detection of criminals”.
  • CCTNS is a Mission Mode Project (MMP) under the National e-Governance Plan of Govt. of India.

Pashu Sanjeevni Sewa

  • Recently Haryana Government will introduce “Pashu Sanjeevni Sewa” in the state.
  • It will provide free of cost quality veterinary services and health care facilities for the livestock and made available at the doorstep of livestock farmers through mobile veterinary clinics.
  • This service would be started in all blocks of three districts namely Jind, Yamunanagar and Nuh.
  • The mobile veterinary services would be started in uncovered, staff deficient and remote areas of the State in Public-Private Partnership (PPP) mode.
  • The livestock farmers would be able to avail the service of mobile veterinary clinics 24×7.
  • The scheme would not only help in providing prompt emergency veterinary services to the livestock but also keep a check on the activities of quacks.

Bharat stage emission standards

  • Bharat stage emission standards (BSES) are emission standards instituted by the Government of India to regulate the output of air pollutants from internal combustion engines and Spark-ignition engines equipment, including motor vehicles.
  • The standards and the timeline for implementation are set by the Central Pollution Control Board under the Ministry of Environment & Forests and climate change.
  • The standards, based on European regulations were first introduced in 2000.
  • Bharat Stage IV emission norms have been enforced for entire country since April 2017.
  • In 2016, the Indian government announced that the country would skip the BS-V norms altogether and adopt BS-VI norms by 2020.

BS VI norms

  • The amount of Sulphur in both petrol and diesel in BS-VI fuel is limited to a maximum of 10 parts per million (PPM), similar to that of its Euro counterpart.
  • BS-VI fuel will bring down sulphur by 5 times from the current BS-IV levels—a whopping 80 percent the reduction and would make fuel extremely clean.
  • It will also reduce the emission of nitrogen oxides (NOX).

National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission

  • The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC), India is a quasi-judicial commission in India which was set up in 1988 under the Consumer Protection Act of 1986.
  • The commission is headed by a sitting or retired judge of the Supreme Court of India.
  • Section 21 of Consumer Protection Act, 1986 posits that the National Consumer shall have jurisdiction to entertain a complaint valued more than one crore and also have Appellate and Revisional jurisdiction from the orders of State Commissions or the District fora as the case may be.
  • Section 23 of Consumer Protection Act, 1986, provides that any person aggrieved by an order of NCDRC, may prefer an Appeal against such order to Supreme Court of India within a period of 30 days.

Rashtriya Vayoshri Yojana

  • Rashtriya Vayoshri Yojana Scheme aims at providing Senior Citizens, belonging to BPL category and suffering from any of the age related disability/infirmity Low vision, Hearing impairment, Loss of teeth and Locomotor disability, with such assisted-living devices which can restore near normalcy in their bodily functions, overcoming the disability/infirmity manifested.
  • This is a Central Sector Scheme, fully funded by the Central Government. The expenditure for implementation of the scheme will be met from the “Senior Citizens’ Welfare Fund“.
  • Under the scheme, free of cost distribution of the devices, commensurate with the extent of disability/infirmity that is manifested among the eligible senior citizens will take place.
  • In case of multiple disabilities/infirmities manifested in the same person, the assistive devices will be given in respect of each disability/impairment.
  • Beneficiaries in each district will be identified by the State Governments/UT Administrations through a Committee chaired by the Deputy Commissioner/District Collector.
  • As far as possible, 30% of the beneficiaries in each district shall be women.