Dual-tower solar thermal plant

Source: IE Context: China has introduced the world’s first dual-tower solar thermal power plant in Gansu Province, enhancing energy efficiency by 24%. This innovative plant features two 200-meter-tall towers, each surrounded by nearly 30,000 mirrors that concentrate sunlight onto the towers to generate steam and drive turbines for electricity production.   Key Features: Dual-Tower Configuration: …

Telangana Government announced Crop Loan Waiver upto Rs 1 lakh.

Syllabus: Agriculture/ Government Policies and Interventions Source: TH Context: The Telangana government has released ₹31,000 crore for the Crop Loan Waiver Scheme for waiving farmers’ loans. This scheme, aimed at benefiting over 40 lakh farmers by August end, marks the largest loan recovery in the country.   What are Farm loan waivers?  They are government …

Jerdon’s Courser

Source: TOI  Context: Jerdon’s Courser, a nocturnal bird endemic to Andhra Pradesh’s Sri Lankamalleswara wildlife sanctuary in Kadapa, has not been seen in over a decade. This bird, scientifically named Rhinoptilus bitorquatus, was thought extinct until its rediscovery in 1986. It lives in open patches within scrub forests in the Eastern Ghats and is found …

Lunar cave

 Source: CNN  Context: Scientists have confirmed the existence of a large lunar cave connected to a pit in Mare Tranquillitatis, providing potential shelter for astronauts against the moon’s extreme conditions. This cave, was discovered through archival radar measurements from NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. Such caves, formed by volcanic processes, can protect humans from radiation, micrometeorites, …

Chandipura virus

Source: HT  Context: The Chandipura virus (CHPV), a rare and potentially deadly pathogen, has been identified as the cause of recent deaths in Gujarat. The virus is suspected in 13 other recent fatalities. CHPV, first identified in 1965 in Maharashtra, is spread primarily by sandflies, particularly the Phlebotomus genus, which thrive in the dry, tropical …

ADB supports rooftop solar systems in India

Syllabus: Economy: Energy: Renewable Energy/ Government Policies and Interventions Source: ET Context: The ADB has approved a $240.5 million loan for rooftop solar systems in India. Recently Pradhan Mantri Surya Ghar Muft Bijli Yojana was approved with a budget of 75,021 crores and aims to provide 300 units of free electricity monthly to 1 crore households through rooftop solar …

Coalition of Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI)

Source: PIB Context: Asia’s first “Pre-clinical Network Facility” under the Coalition of Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) at the Translational Health Science & Technology Institute (THSTI) was inaugurated recently. This facility, capable of handling BSL3 pathogens, becomes the 9th such lab globally and the first in Asia, enhancing research capabilities for infectious diseases. The Genetically Defined …

LUCA

Source: TH Context: Scientists have developed a detailed genetic profile of the Last Universal Common Ancestor (LUCA), a single-cell, bacterium-like organism that lived around four billion years ago. LUCA is believed to have resided in deep sea vents, supported by evidence from 355 genes linked to extreme environments. LUCA is believed to have lived around …

Inverse ETF

Source: ET Context: Sebi’s new asset class proposal for high-risk investors is expected to provide access to advanced strategies like long-short equity funds and inverse ETFs   What is an ETF?  An Exchange-Traded Fund (ETF) is a type of investment fund that holds a collection of assets like stocks, bonds, or commodities and is traded …

Electroencephalogram (EEG)

Source: TH Context: This year marks the 100th anniversary of the first human electroencephalogram (EEG), pioneered by German physiologist Hans Berger.   What is EEG? EEG stands for electroencephalography, combining “Electro” for electricity, “encephalo” for the brain, and “graphy” for representation. It is an instrument that measures brain electrical activity generated by neurons, essential in …

MV Sea Change

Context: The MV Sea Change, the world’s first commercial passenger ferry powered by 100% zero-emission hydrogen fuel cells, was launched in San Francisco. It can travel 300 nautical miles and operate for 16 hours before refuelling.   What are hydrogen fuel cells?  Hydrogen fuel cells generate electricity through an electrochemical reaction between hydrogen and oxygen, …

Fraud Risk Management

Source: TH Context: The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has revised its rules on fraud risk management for Regulated Entities (REs), including commercial banks, cooperative banks, NBFCs, and housing finance companies.   What are REs? REs, or Regulated Entities, refer to financial institutions that are under the regulatory oversight of the Reserve Bank of India …

Trade in Indian Rupee

Syllabus: Economy: Liberalisation of Economy  Source: TH Context: India and Russia have significantly increased their rupee-rouble transactions in 2024, doubling them since the previous year despite U.S. and EU sanctions.   What does the data show? Trade Volume between India and Russia: Bilateral trade is already at $65 billion in 2023-24, with $60 billion from …