Facts in News

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    Facts in News

    Bose Einstein Condensation (BEC) (S&T)

    Recently, scientists have come up with an understanding of the emergence of order in chaotic systems by drawing an analogy with Bose-Einstein Condensation.

    • In 1924 the Indian physicist Satyendra Nath Bose sent Albert Einstein a paper in which he derived the Planck law for black-body radiation by treating the photons as a gas of identical particles.
      • Planck’s radiation law explains the spectral-energy distribution of radiation emitted by a blackbody (a hypothetical body that completely absorbs all radiant energy falling upon it, reaches some equilibrium temperature, and then re-emits that energy as quickly as it absorbs it).
    • Einstein generalized Bose’s theory to an ideal gas of identical atoms or molecules for which the number of particles is conserved and, in the same year, predicted that at sufficiently low temperatures the particles would become locked together in the lowest quantum state of the system.
    • The phenomenon only happens for Bosons, which are elementary particles having spins that take integer values, such as 0, 1 or 2.
    • In simpler words, Bosons condense to the lowest energy level when the temperature is taken to very low values, in BEC.
    • The exotic quantum phenomenon was observed in dilute atomic gases for the first time in 1995.
    • The emergence of Order in Chaotic Systems
      • It is an important phenomenon studied in aerospace engineering that leads to detrimental large amplitude fluctuations. 
      • Examples of this include aeroelastic flutter as observed in the wings of aircraft and thermoacoustic instabilities in rocket combustors, both of which can lead to the breaking down of the system.
        • Thermoacoustic instability, which comprises self-sustained large-amplitude periodic oscillations, can overwhelm the thermal protection system in combustion chambers, cause damage to structural parts such as turbine blades, or even affect the guidance and control system of rockets and lead to mission failures.

    (Image Courtesy: PW)

    Kinnaur Hydroelectric Project (Geography)

    Recently, the people of Kinnaur (Himachal Pradesh) have started protesting against the Jangi Thopan Powari hydroelectricity project (JTP HEP).

    • The proposed 804-megawatt run-of-the-river (ROR) project will be located on the Satluj river.
    • It envisages the construction of a concrete gravity dam near Jangi village, an underground powerhouse on the right bank and a 12-km-long tunnel for water diversion.
    • The tentative land requirement for the project is 295.93 hectares, out of which 270.43 ha is forest land and 25.5 ha is private.
    • It lies in the Scheduled Areas and tenders the Provisions of the Panchayats (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act, 1996.
      • Under it, a pre-environmental clearance and no objection certificate are mandatory for any such project from all concerned Gram Panchayats.
    • Concerns
      • Multiple aspects of the tunnel will impact the Jangi, Akpa, Khadura, Thopan and Rarang villages in the Jangram Valley.
        • An integral part of the old Hindustan-Tibetan Route, Jangram Valley, lies on the right bank of the Satluj river in the district.
      • Kinnaur is part of India’s cold desert being a rain shadow and the only reliable source for usable water is mountain springs fed by glaciers.
      • The project falls in seismic zone 4 so there is the danger of earthquakes and resultant landslides and flash floods.
      • Submergence of about 143.2093 ha forest land and threat to farms, orchards and Chilgoza pine forests.
        • Chilgoza pine has a patchy distribution across arid mountain valleys in Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.
        • Kinnaur has the largest Chilgoza forests, covering an area of around 2,000 hectares.
        • Chilgoza pine is well-known for its edible seeds and is rich in carbohydrates, proteins, and other medicinal values.
        • It is a rare tree species and is classified as ‘Near Threatened’ in the IUCN Red List.

    Maritime Services Cluster at GIFT City (Indian Economy)

    Recently, the Gujarat Maritime Board (GMB) will set up India’s first international maritime services cluster at Gujarat International Finance Tec (GIFT) City.

    • It aims to provide a one-stop solution for the entire maritime fraternity.
    • It will be developed as a dedicated ecosystem comprising ports, shipping, logistics services providers and pertinent government regulators, all present in the vicinity of GIFT City.
    • This will be a first-of-its-kind commercial maritime services cluster in India, which has been conceptualised to enhance the competitiveness and self-sufficiency of India in the maritime sector.
    • It will host maritime industry players including regulators, government agencies, maritime/shipping industry associations and businesses, intermediate service providers, such as shipping finance, marine insurance, maritime arbitrators, maritime law firms, among others, and support services providers, such as maritime education institutes.
    • It will also have an Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR) Centre, focused on maritime/shipping.
    • It will ensure economic benefits and ease of doing business for the maritime fraternity.

    National Financial Reporting Authority (Indian Economy)

    • The National Financial Reporting Authority (NFRA) has set up a Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) to provide NFRA with inputs from the perspective of various key stakeholders. 
      • The TAC has undertaken a consultative exercise to review NFRA’s engagement with its stakeholders, and has, in its report of March 2021.
    • It was constituted in 2018 by the Government of India under Sub Section (1) of section 132 of the Companies Act, 2013.
    • It aims to drive systemic change in the Indian Financial Reporting System for Public Interest Entities (PIEs). 
    • NFRA has identified engagement with various categories of stakeholders as central in its strategy to deliver on its public interest mandate.

    Functions and Duties

    • Recommend accounting and auditing policies and standards to be adopted by companies for approval by the Central Government.
    • Monitor and enforce compliance with accounting standards and auditing standards.
    • Oversee the quality of service of the professions associated with ensuring compliance with such standards and suggest measures for improvement in the quality of service.
    • Perform such other functions and duties as may be necessary or incidental to the aforesaid functions and duties.

    UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) (International Bodies)

    • India has been elected to the Economic and Social Council, one of the six main organs of the United Nations, for the 2022-24 term.
    • The Economic and Social Council is at the heart of the United Nations system to advance the three dimensions of sustainable development – economic, social and environmental. 
      • The UN Charter established ECOSOC in 1945 as one of the six main organs of the United Nations.
    • It is the central platform for fostering debate and innovative thinking, forging consensus on ways forward, and coordinating efforts to achieve internationally agreed goals. 
    • It is also responsible for the follow-up to major UN conferences and summits.
    • ECOSOC links a diverse family of UN entities  (Organigram) dedicated to sustainable development, providing overall guidance and coordination.
      • The entities include regional economic and social commissions, functional commissions facilitating intergovernmental discussions of major global issues, and specialized agencies, programmes and funds at work around the world to translate development commitments into real changes in people’s lives.

    MH-60 Romeo helicopters (Defence)

    • The Indian Navy is set to receive its first set of multi-role helicopters as America is set to hand over three MH-60 Romeo helicopters to the force in the United States in July.
    • India and the US had signed over ?16,000 crore deal to buy 24 MH-60 Romeo helicopters from Lockheed Martin in 2020 under fast track procedures on a government-to-government deal to hasten the process.
    • The 24 MH-60 Romeos would be equipped with multi-mode radars and night-vision devices as well as armed with Hellfire missiles, torpedoes and precision-guided weaponry.
    • The MH-60 would be replacing Sea Kings which would be on their way out of the force very soon.
    • The helicopters are designed to operate from frigates, destroyers, cruisers and aircraft carriers.
    • The choppers are designed for hunting submarines as well as knocking out ships and conducting search-and-rescue operations at sea.
    • This will be a significant capability jump for the Navy in detecting and destroying enemy submarines prowling in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR).