Science & Technology - 2017 September

September 1

Europe unveils world's most powerful X-ray laser
The world’s largest and powerful X-ray laser- European X-ray Free Electron Laser (XFEL) was unveiled in Hamburg, Germany.
The XEFL is series of 3.4-kilometer tunnels up to 38 meters underground near the city of Hamburg. It took 8 years to build 1.5-billion-euro ($1.7 billion) facility.
The machine acts as a high-speed camera that can capture images of individual atoms in a few millionths of a billionth of a second. Unlike a conventional camera, though, everything imaged by the X-ray laser is obliterated – its beam is 100 times more intense than if all the sunlight hitting the Earth’s surface were focused onto a single thumbnail.
The facility near Hamburg, housed in a series of tunnels up to 38 metres underground, will allow scientists to explore the architecture of viruses and cells, create jittery films of chemical reactions as they unfold and replicate conditions deep within stars and planets.

September 2

AMD launches Ryzen Pro processors for business PCs
California (US)-based Advanced Micro Devices or AMD continues to be a distant second in terms of processor business. Though a normal PC or laptop buyer doesn’t care much about what’s inside the CPU, discerning users take a look at the performance of the processor as it determines the computing power.
HP, Dell and Lenovo will ship the products with the new processor globally in the next few weeks. While Dell came out with Optiplex 5055 desktop PC, HP showcased EliteDesk705 PC and Lenovo ThinkCentreM715 at the unveiling recently.
The Ryzen Pro desktop processor is an 8 core and 16 thread CPU and much faster than the rival Intel’s ‘Core i7’ which is of 4 core and 8 thread.
The company has launched high-performance chips Ryzen 3, 5 and 7 for consumer PCs, a chip named Epyc for corporate servers and also a revamped graphics chip called Vega.

September 3

FDA approves First gene-altering leukemai treatment
The Food and Drug Administration approved the first-ever treatment that genetically alters a patient’s own cells to fight cancer, a milestone that is expected to transform treatment in the coming years.
It will be used in patients under the age of 25 with acute lymphoblastic leukemia who were unresponsive to initial treatment.
Kymriah is a cell-based gene therapy. The therapy is a genetically-modified autologous T-cell immunotherapy.
The new therapy turns a patient’s cells into a “living drug,” and trains them to recognize and attack the disease. It is part of the rapidly growing field of immunotherapy that bolsters the immune system through drugs and other therapies and has, in some cases, led to long remissions and possibly even cures.

Intel unveils AI-focused ‘Movidius Myriad X’ processing unit
Intel unveiled a new vision processing unit (VPU) called Movidius Myriad X. The new Intel VPU is aimed at providing end-to-end artificial intelligence (AI) solutions to a wide range of product categories such as smart cameras, virtual reality (VR) devices, robotics and even drones.
Myriad X is the world’s first system-on-chip (SOC) shipping with a dedicated neural compute engine for accelerating deep learning inferences at the edge. The neural compute engine is an on-chip hardware block specifically designed to run deep neural networks at high speed and low power without compromising accuracy, enabling devices to see, understand and respond to their environments in real time.
With the introduction of this, the Myriad X architecture is capable of 1 Trillion operations per second (TOPS) of compute performance on deep neural network inferences.
It is capable of delivering more than 4 TOPS of total performance, its tiny form factor and on-board processing are ideal for autonomous device solutions.

September 4

TRAPPIST-1 planets likely to have water
The Earth-sized planets orbiting the ultracool TRAPPIST-1 dwarf star 40 light-years away may have substantial amounts of water and could be habitable.
An international team of astronomers used the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope to estimate whether there might be water on the seven planets orbiting in the nearby TRAPPIST-1 planetary. The results suggest that the outer planets of the system might still harbour substantial amounts of water.
This includes the three planets within the habitable zone of the star, lending further weight to the possibility that they may indeed be habitable. Astronomers had announced the discovery of seven Earth-sized planets orbiting the ultracool dwarf star TRAPPIST-1, 40 light-years away.
Following up on the discovery, scientists used the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) on the Hubble telescope to study the amount of ultraviolet radiation received by the individual planets of the system.

Breakthrough Mission Project detects 15 radio bursts from dwarf galaxy
Breakthrough Listen project has detected 15 fast radio bursts (FRBs) coming from a dwarf galaxy about 3 million light years away from earth.
The new detection was made with help of Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia. It was emitted from FRB 121102, a mysterious source associated with galaxy in the distant universe. This detection brings the total of known FRBs from this strange object to more than 150.
The first known radio burst from FRB 121102 was detected in 2012 (hence the object’s name). Two more bursts were detected in May 2015 and eight more in June 2015. It is being speculated, among other things, that this detected FRB is an energy source used by extra-terrestrial (ET) civilisations to power spacecraft.
FRB is brief, bright pulse of radio emission from distant galaxies. It was first detected in 2007 with help of Parkes Telescope in Australia. It is a high-energy astrophysical phenomenon of unknown origin manifested as transient radio pulse lasting only a few milliseconds.

September 5

Joint India-Nepal army exercise begins in Saljhandi, Nepal
The 12th edition of India-Nepal joint military exercise- Surya Kiran XII was held at Nepal Army Battle School (NABS) in Saljhandi, Nepal.
The 14 day exercise focused on skills required counter-terrorism and counter-terror, forest fighting and natural disaster management operations.
In this edition of exercise, Indian Army was represented by troops of Kumaon Scouts and Narayan Dal Battalion participated on behalf of Nepal Army.
Both troops focused on the various counter insurgency operations. They also focused on important aspects such as humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR) operations and environmental conservation.
The exercise mutually benefited both armies by gaining varied experiences and also strengthened friendly relation between India and Nepal.

September 6

Whatsapp launches new tool for business-‘whatsapp business’
WhatsApp stated that it is building and testing new tools via a free WhatsApp Business app for small companies and an enterprise solution for bigger companies operating at a large scale with a global base of customers, like airlines, e-commerce sites, and banks.
WhatsApp stated these businesses will be able to use its solutions to provide customers with useful notifications like flight times, delivery confirmations, and other updates.
In the coming months, the messaging app, which boasts 1 billion daily users, will also test new features that aim to make it easier for people to communicate with the businesses they want to reach on WhatsApp.

APEDA develops mobile app for farm registration, certification
Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) has developed a mobile app for farmers to facilitate registration, testing and certification of certain fruits and vegetables.
The app "Hortinet" is an integrated traceability system developed by APEDA for providing internet-based services to the stakeholders.
The app will facilitate "farm registration, testing and certification of grape, pomegranate and vegetables for export from India to the European Union in compliance with standards".
This initiative is expected to increase the accessibility and reach of the traceability software system among farmers and other stakeholders.
The app would also assist state horticulture and agriculture departments to capture real time details of farmers, farm location, products and details of inspection.
APEDA should make efforts in enrolling larger number of farmers and exporters through the new technology tool.

September 7

Second-Fastest-Spinning Pulsar Discovered by Astronomers
Astronomers have discovered a pulsar spinning at more than 42,000 revolutions per minute. It is thesecond-fastest Spinning Pulsar identified so far.
The new object, named PSR J0952-0607 – or J0952 for short is classified as a millisecond pulsar and is located between 3,200 and 5,700 light-years away in the constellation Sextans.
A pulsar is the core of a massive star that exploded as a supernova.
The pulsar contains about 1.4 times the Sun’s mass and is orbited every 6.4 hours by a companion star.
The rotating magnetic field powers beams of radio waves, visible light, X-rays and gamma rays.
If a beam happens to sweep across Earth, astronomers observe regular pulses of emission and classify the object as a pulsar.

India and Sri Lanka begin Joint Naval Exercise SLINEX 2017 at Visakhapatnam
Indian Navy and Sri Lankan Navy began the 2017 Sri Lanka-India Exercise (SLINEX) at Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh.
SLINEX 17 aims at reinforce strong neighbourly ties between both countries underscored by extensive maritime interaction and improved understanding.
SLINEX 2017 focuses on fleet work, seamanship, communication, replenishment at sea, Visit Board Search and Seize (VBSS) operations as well as helicopter operations.
The exercise will commence with a Harbour Phase, during which, the participants will engage in professional, cultural and social interactions.
The Harbour Phase will be followed by the Sea Phase, which will include complex operations including anti-piracy exercises, gun rings, cross-deck helicopter operations and anti-surface exercises.

September 8

Indian Army to induct women in military police
The Indian Army has finalised plan to induct women in military police. The plan is seen as major step towards breaking gender barriers in force.
Under this plan 800 women will be inducted initially with yearly intake of 52. The decision to induct women in Corps of Military Police will help in investigating allegations of gender specific crimes. Currently, women are allowed in select areas such as medical, educational, legal, signals and engineering wings of Indian Army.
The role of military police includes policing cantonments and army establishments, preventing breach of rules and regulations by soldiers, maintaining movement of soldiers. It also provides logisticial support during peace and war, handle prisoners of war and extend aid to civil police whenever required.

CSIR scientist’s develops artificial leaf creates fuel from sunlight, water
Scientists have developed an ultra-thin artificial leaf that absorbs sunlight to generate hydrogen fuel from water, similar to an actual plant leaf.
The creation of the wireless device is an advance that may provide clean energy for powering eco-friendly cars in the future.
It is known that hydrogen generation from renewable resources will be the ultimate solution to energy and environment problems.
The ultra-thin wireless device mimics plant leaves to produce energy using water and sunlight.
The device consists of semiconductors stacked in a manner to simulate the natural leaf system.
When visible light strikes the semiconductors, electrons move in one direction, producing electric current.
The current almost instantaneously splits water into hydrogen which researchers believe is one of the cleanest forms of fuel as its main byproduct is water.
According to the research, published in the journal Scientific Reports a palm-sized device can produce six litres of hydrogen fuel per hour.

September 9

Scientists make cheap and clean fuel from air
Scientists from Cardiff University, UK have discovered a new way to produce methanol from methane using oxygen from the air. Methanol is an important chemical often used as fuel in vehicles.
The discovery has major implications for cleaner, greener industrial processes worldwide. The new technique uses freely available air, inexpensive chemicals and an energy efficient methanol production process.
Methanol is currently produced by in expensive and energy-intensive processes known as steam reforming and methanol syntheses. In these processes, methanol is produced by breaking down natural gas at high temperatures into hydrogen gas (H2) and carbon monoxide (CO) before reassembling them.
In the new method, scientists produced methanol from methane through simple catalysis i.e. by addition of substance called catalyst which speeds up a chemical reaction. It enables methanol production at low temperatures using oxygen and hydrogen peroxide.
The new process can help to reduce dependence on fossil fuels and its commercialization may take much longer. It seeks to use waste gas flared into the atmosphere during natural gas production, thus saving carbon dioxide emissions.

3rd Generation ATGM NAG successfully test fired
The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully tests fired 3rd generation Anti Tank Guided Missile (ATGM) 'Nag'.
The missile was tested twice against two different targets in the ranges of Rajasthan and it successfully hit both the targets under different conditions with very high accuracy as desired.
With this second missile test, the complete functionality of Nag missile along with launcher system NAMICA has been established. The first successful flight test of NAG missile was carried out in June 2017.
The Nag missile is a third generation “fire and forget” anti-tank missile.
It can be launched from both land and air-based platforms
Its helicopter launched version is known as Helicopter-Launched NAG (HELINA) that can be fired from Dhruv Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) and HAL Rudra attack helicopter.
The land-based version of the missile is at present available for integration on the Nag missile carrier (NAMICA).

September 10

SpaceX launches US Air Force’s super-secret mini-shuttle
SpaceX has launched the US Air Force’s super-secret space shuttle a technology tester capable of spending years in orbit.
According to a SpaceX launch controller The Falcon has safely landed.
An unmanned Falcon rocket blasted off from Florida’s Kennedy Space Center.
It’s the fifth flight for one of these crewless mini shuttles, known as the X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle.
This is the first time SpaceX has provided a lift for the experimental mini-shuttle.
The two Air Force space planes have already logged a combined 5 ½ years in orbit.
It was SpaceX’s 16th successful return of a first-stage booster. Booster rockets are normally discarded at sea.

New species of edible fish named as Labeo filiferus found in Pampa river
The new species of edible freshwater fish has been discovered in Pampa River in Pathanamthitta district of Kerala.
The two researchers, Mathews Plamoottil, Assistant Professor, Government College, Chavara, Kollam, and Primoz Zupancic from the Dinaric Research Institute, Slovenia, Europe, have reported the discovery in the latest issue of research journal Bioscience Discovery.
It is named as Labeo filiferus and it belongs to Labeo genus.
The fishes in the Labeo genus are widely distributed in the inland water bodies of India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Burma, Malaysia, tropical Africa and Syria.
They are medium- sized elongate fishes with rounded abdomen, swollen snout, finged lips and a straight lateral line.
The eyes are coloured with orange tinge. The specimens were 20 to 40 cm long and weighed four to five kg.

September 11

Reliance Energy launched digital assistance robot-ELEKTRA
Reliance Energy has launched a digital assistance robot named ELEKTRA. This system provides automated responses to customers for their queries and requests.
This robot comes into action whenever a customer logs in to Reliance Energy's Facebook page or website. It is powered by Artificial Intelligence.
The introduction of this digital assistance robot has made bill payments, registering complaints and requests for new connections quick and hassle free.
Even during peak hours, consumers will get an immediate response to their queries from ELEKTRA without any waiting time. This ushers in convenient, quick and hassle-free resolution of consumer complaints and requests of different kinds.
Integration of CRM and ERP also facilitates commercial interactions with customers in real-time. This digital assistance robot takes help of SCADA and GIS systems to provide real-time responses to the customers.

3,500-Year-Old Royal Tomb Discovered in Egypt
Egypt announced the discovery of a tomb belonging to a royal goldsmith who lived more than 3,500 years ago, in Luxor, Egypt.
The tomb was discovered by Egyptian archaeologists. The tomb is located on the west bank of the river Nile in Draa Abul-Naga, a cemetery where noblemen and top government officials were buried.
The tomb belongs to a royal goldsmith named Amenemhat. He lived during the 18th dynasty (about 1567 B.C. to 1320 B.C.).
He had dedicated his work to to Amon-Re, an Eqyptian God. The tomb had statues of Amenemhat and his wife seated on chairs.
One statue showed her wearing a long dress and wig. A smaller statue, discovered between the couple, depicted one of their sons.
Mummies of a woman and her two children were found. The woman appeared to have died at the age of 50 and tests showed she had suffered from a bacterial bone disease.

September 12

FSSAI launches online platform “FoSCoRIS” for food inspection & sampling
Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) launched ‘FoSCoRIS’, an online platform to bring in transparency in food safety inspection and sampling.
For using this platform, Food Safety Officers (FSOs) require a hand-held device with internet connectivity. Will help eliminate discrepancy and will make food safety officers Accountable for their inspection.
FoSCoRIS system will help in verifying compliance of food safety and hygiene standards by food businesses as per the government norms.
It will bring together all key stakeholders including food businesses, food safety officers, designated officers, state food safety commissioners.
It will help in sharing data related to inspection, sampling and test result by all officials seamlessly.
It will ease the process of sample collection by making it transparent and traceable and by controlling the quality of compliances.
FSSAI is a nodal agency responsible for protecting and promoting public health in India through regulation and supervision of food safety. It was established under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006

September 13

Mouse deer reintroduced into Amrabad forest
Telangana Forest Department for first time has reintroduced ‘mouse deer’ in the forests of Nallamalla in Amrabad Tiger Reserve (ATR) bred at Nehru Zoological Park, Hyderabad.
Eight mouse deer, two male and six females were released from captivity to semi wild conditions having protected enclosure of 2.14 hectares. Now field biologists and forest staff will closely monitor their adaptability and behaviour in their natural setting, so they can be released from their enclosure into the wild.
Since 2010, Nehru Zoological Park in collaboration with Laboratory for Conservation of Endangered Species (LaCONES) of Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB), and Central Zoo Authority, Delhi were carrying out a breeding programme for conservation of mouse-deer. They have successfully raised total population of mouse deer to 172, which includes 76 females

September 14

India, Russia to Hold Major Tri-Service 'Indra' Combat Exercise
India and Russia have begun discussions to work out modalities for conducting their first tri-service military exercise INDRA 2017 in Russia. It will be India’s first bilateral military exercise with any country involving all three services. The Final Planning Conference (FPC) of exercise will be held in Russia to finalise all logistical issues and modalities.
The 2017 Indra exercise will primarily focus on achieving coordination between forces of two countries in tri- services integrated theatre command scenario. The aim of exercise is to carry out joint exercises for suppression of international terrorist activities under United Nations mandate.
Indian Army will send about 350 soldiers from infantry, artillery and armoured streams. Indian Navy is fielding two ships, stealth frigate, INS Satpura, and antisubmarine warfare (ASW) corvette, INS Kadmatt, along with two on-board helicopters. Indian Air Force (IAF) is likely to share fighter jets of host.
The headquarters of Integrated Defence Staff under Defence Ministry is leading exercises from Indian side. India’s efforts for tri-service integration will provide opportunity to synergise jointness between its services and see how other countries function jointly.

September 15

Scientists create first global map of water on Moon
Scientists from Brown University have created the first map of water and its chemical building blocks trapped in the uppermost portion of the Moon’s soil. The research was funded by the NASA Lunar Advanced Science and Exploration Research Program. The study was published in Science Advances journal.
It is built on the initial discovery in 2009 of water and a related molecule hydroxyl, which consists of one atom each of hydrogen and oxygen in the lunar soil.
It also used a new calibration of data taken from NASA’s Moon Mineralogy Mapper,which flew abroad India’s Chandrayaan-1 spacecraft.
The signature of water is present nearly everywhere on lunar surface and not limited to Polar Regions as it was previously reported. The distribution of waster on moon is largely uniform rather than splotchy. The way in which it is distributed across Moon gives clues about its source.
The amount of water on moon increases toward poles and does not show significant difference among distinct compositional terrains. It reaches a maximum average of around 500 to 750 parts per million (ppm) in higher latitudes, less than what is found in sands of Earth’s driest deserts.
Sweden hosts huge war games exercise ''Aurora'' with NATO
Sweden hosts huge war games exercise with NATO. It is biggest military exercise in more than 20 years with support from NATO countries.
Sweden is not a member of NATO but the exercise, called ''Aurora'', involves 19,000 troops and will replicate an attack from the east on the Baltic island of Gotland, near the Swedish mainland.
Around 1,500 of the military personnel are from the United States, France, Norway and other NATO allies.

September 16

Astra missile's final development flight trials successful
The Indian Air Force (IAF) successfully conducted developmental trials of indigenously developed Astra beyond visual range air-to-air missile (BVRAAM) over the Bay of Bengal, off the coast of Chandipur in Odisha.
Total of seven trials of Astra BVRAAM were conducted in various missions and two of them were against Pilotless Target Aircrafts (PTA) successfully red from Sukhoi-30 MKI aircraft. They were final development flight trials of the missile, paving way for its early induction into IAF.
Astra is air to air beyond visual range air-to-air indigenously developed by DRDO. It is one of the smallest weapon system developed by DRDO, having length of 3.8- metre and weighing 154kg. It is single stage solid fuelled missile and has payload capacity of 15 kg conventional explosives.
It can be launched from different altitudes and is capable of engaging targets at varying range and altitudes at both short-range targets (up to 20 km) in tail-chase mode and long-range targets (up to 80 km) in head-on mode. It is radar homing supersonic missile having maximum speed of Mach 4 (four times speed of sound).

Indigenous artillery gun ATAGS sets new record in range – 48KM
An indigenous artillery gun, Advanced Towed Artillery Gun System (ATAGS) has set a new world record in range by hitting targets at a distance of 48 km.
It is being jointly developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and the private sector.
During trial firings at Pokhran ranges, it registered the longest ever distance of 48.074 kms.
It surpassed the maximum ranges of 35-40 kms fired by any artillery gun system in this category.
ATAGS is a 155mm, 52 calibre towed artillery gun.
The features include an all-electric drive, high mobility, quick deployability, auxiliary power mode, advanced communication system, automated command and control system.
It has a six round magazine instead of a standard three round magazine.
It weighs slightly more than normal due to the larger chamber.

September 17

Yudh Abhyas 2017: Joint India-US military exercise
Indo-US joint military training 'Exercise Yudh Abhyas - 2017' will be conducted at Joint Base Lewis McChord, Washington, USA as a part of the ongoing defence cooperation between India and the United States (US).
This will be the 13th edition of Exercise Yudh Abhyas that is hosted alternately between the two countries.
Exercise Yudh Abhyas is one of the largest joint military training and defence corporation programme between India and US.
Exercise Yudh Abhyas will provide an opportunity to the armed forces of both countries to train in an integrated manner at Battalion level with joint planning at Brigade level.
Multiple scenarios will be rehearsed during the joint exercise with a view to understand each other’s organisational structure and battle procedures.
The exercise is an ideal platform to learn from each-other’s experiences of planning and execution of operations.
Both the armies will jointly train, plan and execute a series of well-developed operations for neutralisation of threats of varied nature.
NASA’s Cassini spacecraft ends 20-year-long epic journey
NASAs Cassini spacecraft ended its 20-year-long epic journey with a fiery plunge into the Saturns crushing atmosphere, while sending back never- before-seen images of the ringed planet and its moons.
The Cassini–Huygens (commonly called Cassini) mission was collaboration between NASA, the European Space Agency (ESA), and the Italian Space Agency (ASI) to send a probe to study the planet Saturn and its system, including its rings and natural satellites. It is the first spacecraft to enter into the orbit of Saturn and to study its moons, Enceladus in particular.
The craft were named after astronomers Giovanni Cassini and Christiaan Huygens.
It was used to study the subsurface ocean and signs of hydrothermal activity.
The probe discovered seasonal changes on Saturn, a hexagon-shaped pattern on the North Pole and the moon Titans resemblance to a primordial Earth.
It found liquid-filled canyons on Saturns moon Titan for the first time. They also found a global ocean on the moon Enceladus, with ice plumes spouting from its surface.

September 18

Iron Union 5: Joint military exercise of US and UAE started in Abu Dhabi
The ground forces of the UAE and the U.S will begin a joint military exercise in Abu Dhabi as part of their efforts to consolidate their bilateral relations and exchange their training and military expertise, to raise the combat efficiency and readiness of both armies.
''Iron Union 5,'' the joint military exercise is an extension of a series of ''Iran Claw'' exercises, which fall under the plans and programmes of the UAE ground forces to conduct such exercises with friendly countries, to exchange and develop their skills and enhance the combat readiness of their personnel, according to the latest advanced military systems.
The exercise is also part of the vision of President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan and the monitoring of Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, to upgrade the capabilities and boost the readiness of the UAE armed forces.
The exercise will also allow both armies to promote their international co-operation in joint military operations, to address current global challenges and crises.

Google launches digital payment app ‘Tez’ in India
Internet search giant Google launched its Unified Payments Interface (UPI)-based digital payment service by the name ‘Tez’.
With this move, Google has become the latest international company to enter the fast-growing digital payments industry in India.
Taking Google’s commitment to the Indian market to the next level, the app is powered by UPI, a payments protocol built by the government-backed National Payments Corporation of India.
Tez, which means ‘speed’ in Urdu, was launched by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley at an event in the capital.
The launch will put Google on a collision course with SoftBank- and Alibaba-backed mobile wallet provider Paytm.

September 19

HP unveils secure, enhanced POS system ‘ElitePOS’
HP Inc India unveiled its innovative, all-in-one point-of-sale (POS) system HP ElitePOS with secure and enhanced performance capabilities at the "India Retail Forum 2017"
The POS system will be available at any HP authorised partner at a starting price of Rs 59,999 .
"ElitePOS" features a modular design, supporting several use cases apart from payment and check out such as interactive signage, employee attendance and self-service applications like a customer check-in.
The new HP 'ElitePOS' solution is built for versatility with a sleek and stunning design that can adapt to multiple retail and hospitality environments, while still offering security, performance and long-term durability,"
The system is equipped with Windows 10 OS, fast DDR4 memory and 7th-Gen Intel Core processors with 'vPro' technology.
It will help brick and mortar retailers deliver the best possible customer experience by providing data-driven insights on customer buying behaviour.

September 20

India to conduct the First ‘BIMSTEC Disaster Management Exercise- 2017’
The first BIMSTEC Disaster Management Exercise 2017 (BIMSTEC DMEx-2017) will be conducted by the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) as the lead agency. The Exercise will be conducted in the National Capital Region (NCR).
This Exercise will serve as a platform for sharing best practices on all aspects of Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), strengthening regional response and coordination for Disaster Management among the BIMSTEC member countries.
It was decided at the 17th BIMSTEC Senior Officials Meeting held in Kathmandu, Nepal. That India would organize the first annual Disaster Management Exercise for the region.
Delegates from all seven nations of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) grouping, namely Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Thailand, will participate in the event.
The main focus of the BIMSTEC DMEx-2017 will be on testing the region’s preparedness and resilience towards effective activation of inter-Governmental interaction/dialogue/agreements for The BIMSTEC DMEx-2017 will be conducted in two phases in Delhi and NCR.

Fast spinning star confirms Indian Nobel Laureate’s theory
Scientists for first time have observed Optical polarization phenomenon (polarized light emitted by rapidly rotating stars) after it was predicted by Indian astrophysicist and Nobel laureate Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar.
Optical polarisation phenomenon is a measure of the orientation of the oscillations of a light beam to its direction of travel.
The phenomenon was observed using High Precision Polarimetric Instrument (HIPPI), world’s most sensitive astronomical polarimeter to detect polarized light from Regulus, one of brightest stars in night sky about 79 light years away.
The equipment provided unprecedented insights into star, which is in constellation Leo. It allowed scientists to determine its rate of spinning and orientation in space of star’s spin axis. It was observed that Regulus is rotating so quickly with a spin rate of 96.5% of angular velocity (approximately 320 kilometres per second) for break up.

September 21

Joint Sea-2017: China, Russia joint naval drills in Russian port city, Vladivostok
China and Russia started the second stage of their "Joint Sea-2017" military exercises with the arrival of a Chinese naval fleet in the Russian port city of Vladivostok.
The exercises were scheduled to take place in the Sea of Japan and the Okhotsk Sea, after the first stage was held in the Baltic Sea.
It is the first time that the venue of the drills has extended to the Okhotsk Sea. Naval forces from both sides will, also for the first time, conduct joint submarine rescue exercises and joint anti-submarine exercises.
The Chinese fleet consists of missile destroyer "Shijiazhuang", missile frigate "Daqing", comprehensive supply ship "Dongpinghu", submarine rescue ship "Changdao", a deep submersible rescue vehicle, two ship-borne helicopters and marines.
The Russian fleet includes a large anti-submarine ship, a frigate, a rescue ship, a deep submersible rescue vehicle, two ship-borne helicopters and marines.
The "Joint Sea" drills since 2012 have fully demonstrated the resolution of Chinese and Russian navies to maintain global peace and regional stability.

September 22

Exercise Panda-Kangaroo 2017: Chinese, Australian conducted 1st joint drills in China
Chinese and Australian soldiers have ended a series of military exercises in the mountainous terrain of southwestern China.
According to A defense ministry the small training maneuvers - "Exercise Panda-Kangaroo 2017" - were the first joint drills the two countries have held in China. Ten soldiers from each country's army participated in the exercise, which lasted 10 days.
The training in Yunnan province included mountainous marches, moving through natural obstacles and field survival.
Australia and China do over $100 billion in trade annually, but Australia is also an important U.S. military ally at a time when Beijing expands its global influence.

September 23

Turkey hosts NATO naval drills amid strained alliance ties
Turkey was holding naval exercises with NATO members at a time of crisis in relations with several alliance states and controversy over Ankara’s plan to purchase weapons from Russia.
The NATO exercises focused on submarine rescue operations and called “Dynamic Monarch”.
It will take place in Turkish waters in the Mediterranean Sea off the resort city of Marmaris.
The naval exercises involved 1,000 personnel and nine countries including France, Britain and the United States.
As per the NATO Turkey is essential for the security of Europe and It has NATO’s second largest army and makes an important contribution to the alliance.
It aimed at demonstrating multinational submarine rescue cooperation and interoperability.

September 24

Scientists discover jellyfish to be first brainless animals to sleep
Scientists, including one of Indian origin, have found that jellyfish go into a sleep-like state, making them the first animals without a brain or central nervous system to do so.
The study was published in the journal Current Biology.
Researchers studied Cassiopea, a mostly stationary jellyfish native to mudflats, mangrove swamps, and other warm, shallow waters. The jellfish were kept in tanks with artificial seawater in labs.
As per the researchers Cassiopea do not look like typical jellyfish – they are silver dollar-sized, splotched with black pigment, and rest upside-down on the sea floor.
They pulse like other jellyfish, contracting and relaxing in a steady rhythm.
During the day, Cassiopea will quickly pulse their bells and swim down to rest on the mesh again. However, at night, it takes them about three times longer to start pulsing.
Researchers created an image processing programme to count the pulses of 23 jellies over six consecutive days and nights. They observed, as earlier, that pulsing activity ebbed at night but a little food dropped in the tanks could quickly wake the jellies up again.

September 25

DRUZBA 2017: Pak, Russia holds joint military drill in Minralney Vody, Russia
Pakistan and Russia are holding joint military drill focusing on counter-terrorism operations to enhance military ties between the two countries.
The joint exercise DRUZBA 2017 between Special Forces of Pakistan and Russia Armies started in Minralney Vody, Russia.
The opening ceremony was attended by senior military officials of Special Forces of both countries.
The joint exercise will focus on counter-terrorism operations, hostage and rescue, cordon and search operation. “The joint exercise will enhance and further strengthen military ties between the two countries and share Pakistan Army’s experience in war against terrorism.
Pakistan’s ties with Russia have moved past the bitter Cold War hostilities in recent years and the chill in the relations between Pakistan and the US, especially after President Donald Trump warned Islamabad for providing safe havens to terrorists, has further pushed the country towards Russia and China.

Asteroid-bound NASA spacecraft swings by Earth
NASA’s asteroid-chasing spacecraft Osiris-Rex successfully swung by Earth to put it on desired trajectory towards near earth asteroid Bennu using Earth’s gravity. It passed within 17,237 kilometers from Earth above Antarctica.
During closest by, Osiris-Rex’s science instruments were tested by scanning Earth and moon as a practice for its operations at Bennu.
The OSIRIS-REx (Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identication, Security, and Regolith Explorer) mission was launched in September 2016 for studying 101955 Bennu, a carbonaceous asteroid. It is NASA’s First asteroid sampling mission. Japan already has visited an asteroid and returned some specks.
The spacecraft will reach small, roundish asteroid in 2018 and return to Earth after collecting some of its gravels by 2023. It will capture 2 ounces of dust on asteroid using its robotic arm without landing i.e. by hovering like a hummingbird stirred up by nitrogen gas thruster and then begun its return trip to earth.

September 26

World’s Smallest Squirrel discovered in Indonesia
Indonesian scientists from the Lambung Mangkurat University have found the world's smallest squirrel in Borneo rain forest in the central parts of the country.
The squirrel has been names as the Bormean pigmy squirrel or exilisciurus exilis.
The squirrel was found in Meratus mountain of South Kalimantan province of Indonesia. There are six subspecies of small squirrels in Asia, of which three are found in Kalimantan. Of these three, two of them are endemic to Kalimantan.
The species was found during an expedition. The species was discovered by the Barito River Expedition Team of the River Community (Melingai) and Rivers Center (BWS) II.
The squirrel is 73 mm long and weighs about 17 grams. Although active during the day, this species is quite difficult to find in a disturbed habitat.

September 27

Intel unveils 8th-Gen processor family for gaming, desktops
Intel announced the roll-out of the 8th generation of the "Intel Core" desktop processor family, which is built for gamers and content creators for heavy duty tasks.
The new processor family introduces the first-ever 6-core "Intel Core i5" desktop processor and 4-core "Intel Core i3" desktop processor.
The top of the stack is "Intel Core i7-8700K" which is touted as the company's best gaming desktop processor ever.
Gamers would gain up to 25 per cent more frames per second on performance-intensive like "Gears of War" 4 when compared 7th-gen Intel Core chip.
The new chipset family would also enable edit 4K 360-degree videos at up to 32 per cent faster when compared with the previous generation.
The 8th-gen "Intel Core" unlocked "K" processors will overclock to higher levels than prior generations.
The new chipsets are supported with Intel "Z370" chipset-based motherboards.

September 28

Western Ghats throw up a new snake
Aquatic Rhabdops, a new species of non-venomous aquatic snake was identified and described as new species from northern Western Ghats in Maharashtra, Goa and North Karnataka.
The snake has been misidentified since 1863. The new species was earlier was considered as a variant of Olive Forest Snake, first described in 1863.
However, a new study has confirmed that Aquatic Rhabdops has different colours and patterns and also vary in other features of size, shape and structure, and also genetic make-up.
The study regarding the discovery was recently published in journal Zootaxa.
Aquatic Rhabdops snakes belong to genus Rhabdops which are endemic to India.
The species has been named after its aquatic nature since the adults are mostly associated with freshwater forest streams and juveniles are seen in water-logged areas.
The three-foot-long nocturnal snake hunts for prey underwater.

September 29

Scientists detect fourth gravitational wave
Scientists have successfully detected gravitational waves for fourth time coming from merger of two massive black holes. It was for first time, these waves were simultaneously detected by US-based Laser Interferometer Gravitational wave Observatory (LIGO) and Italy-based Virgo detectors.
The first two detection were made in quick succession and for third time it was detected in January 2017.
The recently detected gravitational waves were emitted during final moments of merger of two black holes located about 1.8 billion light-years away with masses about 31 and 25 times mass of Sun.
The newly produced spinning black hole has about 53 times mass of our sun i.e. about 3 solar masses were converted into gravitational-wave energy during merger.

September 30

BSNL, Aeris Communications partner for IoT solutions
Aeris Communications entered into a partnership with Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) to provide packaged Internet of Things (IoT) solutions and services to small, medium businesses and public sector undertakings (PSUs) in India.
The company will leverage BSNL's wide network coverage, to provide a comprehensive, end-to-end IoT services platform for enterprises, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and service providers.
The collaboration is aimed at propagating IoT projects across the country as part of the digital transformation drive.
IoT is an enabling technology that bears the potential to take India to a whole new level of development.