Facts Corner-Part-20

Quantum Dots:

  • Quantum dots can lead to a new generation of high definition technology.
  • It will pave the way for brighter, lighter and more energy efficient TVs and smart devices.
  • The Science Advances journal says, when quantum dots are clustered together they are more fluorescent, providing a wide variety of colours.
  • Quantum dots are tiny particles or nanocrystals of a semiconducting material with diameters in the range of 2-10 nanometres.
  • Quantum dots display unique electronic properties, intermediate between those of bulk semiconductors and discrete molecules.

Global Democracy Index:

  • India has slipped to 42nd place on an annual Global Democracy Index.
  • India has moved down from 32nd place last year and remains classified among “flawed democracies”
  • The index is compiled by the UK based Economic Intelligence Unit(EIU)
  • The index ranks on the basis of five categories: electoral process and pluralism, civil liberties, the functioning of government, political participation and political culture.

World Steel Association:

  • The World Steel Association (worldsteel) was founded as the International Iron and Steel Institute on 10 July 1967. It changed its name to the World Steel Association on 6 October 2008.
  • A non-profit organisation with headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. A second office in Beijing, China, opened in April 2006.
  • As per the latest data released by World Steel Association, India is the world’s third-largest steel producer.
  • India remained the world’s third-largest steel producer for the third year in a row in 2017. India had grabbed the third slot in steel production in 2015 from the US after long been holding the fourth slot.
  • In 2017, China and Japan have occupied top two positions respectively.

Difficult Dialogues Summit:

  • Difficult dialogues is an independent, non-partisan forum for conversations around critical issues concerning our lives in South Asia. To be held as an annual festival of topical ideas and motions, it is premised on the conviction that knowledge sharing is the cornerstone of progressive change in this fastest growing, volatile region of the world.
  • The third edition in the series of Difficult Dialogues Summit wil be held in Goa in the month of February. This year, the forum will be held in partnership with UCL (University College London), Goa University (GU) and the ICG.
  • Difficult Dialogues 2018 will focus on how Indian gender constructs affect fundamental aspects of daily lives and citizenship.

National Solar Mission:

  • National Solar Mission, launched in 2010, aims to establish India as a global leader in solar energy by creating the policy conditions for its diffusion across the country as quickly as possible.
  • The mission is one of the several initiatives that are part of the National Action Plan on Climate Change.
  • Initial target was to achieve 20GW by 2022 which was later increased to 100 GW in the 2015 Union budget of India.
  • The objective of the National Solar Mission is to establish India as a global leader in solar energy, by creating the policy conditions for its diffusion across the country as quickly as possible.
  • India has achieved 20 GW (giga watt) cumulative solar capacity, achieving the milestone four years ahead of the target for 2022 originally set in the National Solar Mission. 
  • For the first time, solar was the top source of new power capacity additions in India during calendar year 2017. Solar installations reached 9.6 GW and accounted for 45% of total capacity additions.
  • The top state for solar installations was Telangana, followed by Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, and Rajasthan.

Explorer 1:

  • Explorer 1, a two-metre long satellite carrying a scientific instrument, was launched from Cape Canaveral in Florida on 31 January 1958. Explorer 1 was around two metres in length.
  • Within that the science instrument took up about 95cm.
  • Explorer 1 was not the first object launched into space, as almost a year earlier the USSR successfully put a small metal satellite, Sputnik 1, into orbit.
  • A month later, they also successfully launched a second, Sputnik 2.
  • Explorer 1 and missions that came after it were responsible for the first space-based discovery – radiation belts around the Earth called the Van Allen Belts.


  • India recently commissioned its High Performance Computer (HPC) system – named ‘Mihir’ (meaning Sun) – at the National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting at Noida, Uttar Pradesh.
  • The new system will be India’s largest HPC facility in terms of peak capacity and performance and will propel India’s ranking from the 368th position to the 30th in the list of top 500 HPC facilities in the world.
  • The country will now also be ranked 4th – after Japan, UK and USA – for dedicated HPC resources for weather/climate community.

Medaram Jatara:

  • Medaram Jatara is a festival of tribal origin in Telangana.
  • It is a festival of honouring the goddesses Sarakka celebrated in the state of Telangana.
  • The festival is held every two years at in Medaram Village in the heart of the thick forests of Jayashankar Bhupalpally district.
  • The festival honors tribal folk goddess Sammakka and Saralamma.
  • It has become a major pilgrimage in the recent decade and is believed to attract the largest number of devotees in the country after Kumbha Mela.

Indus script

  • Scientists at The Institute of Mathematical Sciences have figured out a way to computationally estimate whether a language is written from left to right or otherwise.
  • As a part of the study, the found that the Indus script was written from right to left.
  • However in some long seals the Boustrophedon method of writing was adopted.
  • Boustrophedon writing is the way of writing in the reverse direction in alternate line.

Removal of High Court Judge

  • Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra recommended the impeachment of Justice Shri Narayan Shukla, judge of the Allahabad High Court.
  • The action was taken based on the in-house panel report setup by the CJI.
  • His orders in the cases of blacklisted private medical colleges in Lucknow had come under the scanner.
  • A judge of High court can be removed by the order of the President.
  • The President can issue the removal order only after the Parliament’s address presented to him.
  • The grounds of removal are two- proven misbehavior and incapacity.
  • The Judges Enquiry Act, 1968 regulates the procedure relating to the removal of judge.

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