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Current Affairs 09 June 2023


  1. Onset of monsoon
  2. State Food Safety Index
  3. Introduction of New College Degree Names by UGC
  4. Tracking SDG7: The Energy Progress Report 2023
  5. Surplus Liquidity
  6. Ground-level ozone
  7. Kilauea Volcano
  8. Fattah Missile

Onset of Monsoon


The southwest monsoon arrived in Kerala, four days later than the original forecast date of June 4 and a week after its “normal” onset date of June 1.


GS I- Indian Geography

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. What does the “onset of monsoon” mean?
  2. What is Monsoon?
  3. Causes of Monsoon
  4. Importance of Monsoon for India
  5. Issues with Prediction of monsoon in India
  6. Two models for monsoon prediction

What does the “onset of monsoon” mean?

  • The onset of the monsoon over Kerala marks the beginning of the four-month — June-September — southwest monsoon season over India, which brings more than 70 per cent of the country’s annual rainfall. According to the IMD, the onset of the monsoon marks a significant transition in the large-scale atmospheric and ocean circulations in the Indo-Pacific region, and the IMD announces it only after certain newly defined and measurable parameters, adopted in 2016, are met.
  • Broadly, the IMD checks for the consistency of rainfall over a defined geography, its intensity, and wind speed.
  • Neither early nor late onset of the monsoon is unusual.
  • The IMD declares the onset of the monsoon if at least 60% of 14 designated meteorological stations in Kerala and Lakshadweep.
  • The 14 enlisted stations are: Minicoy, Amini, Thiruvananthapuram, Punalur, Kollam, Alappuzha, Kottayam, Kochi, Thrissur, Kozhikode, Thalassery, Kannur, Kasaragod, and Mangaluru.
  • It records at least 2.5 mm of rain for two consecutive days at any time after May 10.
  • In such a situation, the onset over Kerala is declared on the second day, provided specific wind and temperature criteria are also fulfilled.
Wind field
  • The depth of westerlies should be up to 600 hectopascal (1 hPa is equal to 1 millibar of pressure) in the area bound by the equator to 10ºN latitude, and from longitude 55ºE to 80ºE.
  • The zonal wind speed over the area bound by 5-10ºN latitude and 70-80ºE longitude should be of the order of 15-20 knots (28-37 kph) at 925 hPa.
  • According to IMD, the INSAT-derived Outgoing Longwave Radiation (OLR) value (a measure of the energy emitted to space by the Earth’s surface, oceans, and atmosphere) should be below 200 watt per sq m (wm2).
  • This is measured in the box confined by 5-10ºN latitude and 70-75ºE latitude.

What is Monsoon?

  • Monsoon connotes the climate associated with a seasonal reversal in the direction of winds. India has a hot monsoonal climate which is the prevalent climate in the south and southeast Asia.
  • The Indian summer monsoon typically lasts from June-September with large areas of western and central India receiving more than 90% of their total annual precipitation during the period, and southern and northwestern India receiving 50%-75% of their total annual rainfall.
  • Overall, monthly totals average 200-300 mm over the country as a whole, with the largest values observed during the heart of the monsoon season in July and August.

Causes of Monsoon

  • During the summer months, sunlight heats the surfaces of both lands and oceans, but land temperatures rise more quickly due to a lower heat capacity.
  • As the land’s surface becomes warmer, the air above it expands and an area of low pressure develops.
  • Meanwhile, the ocean remains at a lower temperature than the land and so the air above it retains a higher pressure.
  • Since winds flow from areas of the high-pressure area to low, this deficit in pressure over the continent causes winds to blow in an ocean-to-land circulation (a sea breeze).
  • As winds blow from the ocean to the land, moist air is brought inland. This is why summer monsoons cause so much rain.

Importance of Monsoon for India

The Monsoon is one of the most important single variables in the Indian economy as a good monsoon can reduce the burden on the government, while a bad one can make it spend more.

Positive effects of Monsoon

  • The agricultural prosperity of India depends very much on time and adequately distributed rainfall. If it fails, agriculture is adversely affected particularly in those regions where means of irrigation are not developed.
  • Regional variations in monsoon climate help in growing various types of crops.
  • Regional monsoon variation in India is reflected in the vast variety of food, clothes and house types.
  • Monsoon rain helps recharge dams and reservoirs, which is further used for the generation of hydroelectric power.
  • Winter rainfall by temperate cyclones in north India is highly beneficial for Rabi crops.

Negative effects of Monsoon

  • Variability of rainfall brings droughts or floods every year in some parts of the country.
  • Sudden monsoon burst creates a problem of soil erosion over large areas in India.
  • In hilly areas, sudden rainfall brings landslide which damages natural and physical infrastructure subsequently disrupting human life economically as well as socially.

Issues with Prediction of monsoon in India

Prediction of the exact behaviour of monsoon is very difficult and this makes it a problem for the Indian Metrological Department (IMD) as every year millions of Indians are dependent on its forecast.

  • The topography of the Indian subcontinent makes the monsoon system very complex. Tropical weather is difficult to predict because weather systems in the tropics aren’t understood very well.
  • The weather systems destabilise faster in the tropics than they do in the extra-tropics, where they persist for longer durations.
  • Since it is difficult to predict the exact amount of rainfall, IMD relies just on a probabilistic forecast.
  • A major problem has been to identify a small set of stable and independent parameters that influences the monsoon rainfall and the bulk of its variance. Many of the once strongly influencing parameters have declined in their correlations over the years – Hence, the search for a minimal set of stable and strongly enforcing parameters thus remains a constant one.
  • Presently, the lack of enough and quality data (the IMD collects weather data like temperature, humidity, wind and precipitation through automatic weather stations, surface observatories, radiosonde or weather balloons, radars and three satellites) is one of the biggest challenges. There are also major data gaps, like those involving dust, aerosols, soil moisture and maritime conditions.
  • Further, the automatic weather stations are of sub-standard quality. The upkeep of instruments is a major problem.
  • Another issue is that dynamical models require a huge number of computations, for which supercomputers are required. As such, the need for an increased number of supercomputers remains a challenge for India.
  • The correlation between El-Nino and Indian monsoon is still under research. And it is difficult to forecast exactly how much the El-Nino will affect.
  • In addition to this, Global warming has also emerged as a factor that affects the monsoon forecast.
Two models for monsoon prediction
  1. Statistical model: This is specific to the monsoon and is based on 16 parameters determined by IMD, for which data is collected and fed into models. These models calculate the numbers based on mathematical equations. ‘Statistical models’ try to match prevailing conditions with historical records to see how the monsoon had behaved in years when similar conditions had prevailed.
  2. General circulation method/Dynamic model: This model makes continuous observation of some selected physical phenomena, and notes how the conditions for monsoon behave over a period of time. It then follows those changes to extrapolate for the future, and comes up with a forecast. IMD has recently started using this model for weather forecasts. However, this model has its own limitations.

-Source: Indian Express

State Food Safety Index


Recently, the union Health Minister released the fifth State Food Safety Index in New Delhi.


GS-II: Social Justice (Issues related to Health, Government Policies and Interventions)

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. About the State Food Safety Index (SFSI)
  2. Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI)
  3. State and Union Territory Rankings in 2022-23 Report:

About the State Food Safety Index (SFSI)

  • The index is developed by FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) to measure the performance of states on five significant parameters of Food Safety.
  • The parameters include Human Resources and Institutional Data, Compliance, Food Testing – Infrastructure and Surveillance, Training & Capacity Building and Consumer Empowerment.
  • The Index is a dynamic quantitative and qualitative benchmarking model that provides an objective framework for evaluating food safety across all States/UTs.
  • The first State Food Safety Index for the year 2018-19 was announced on the first-ever World Food Safety Day on 7th June 2019.

Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI)

  • FSSAI is an autonomous body established under the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India.
  • The FSSAI has been established under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 which is a consolidating statute related to food safety and regulation in India.
  • Hence, FSSAI is a Statutory Body.
  • FSSAI is responsible for protecting and promoting public health through the regulation and supervision of food safety.
  • The main aim of FSSAI is to
    • Lay down science-based standards for articles of food
    • To regulate manufacture, storage, distribution, import and sale of food
    • To facilitate safety of food
  • Standards framed by FSSAI are prescribed under:
    • Food Safety and Standards (Food Product Standards and Food Additives) Regulation, 2011,
    • Food Safety and Standards (Packaging and Labelling) Regulation, 2011
    • Food Safety and Standards (Contaminants, Toxins, and Residues) Regulations, 2011.

State and Union Territory Rankings in 2022-23 Report:

Large State Category:

  • Kerala secured the top rank among the large states.
  • Punjab and Tamil Nadu followed as the second and third top-ranking states in this category.

Small States Category:

  • Goa attained the highest rank among the small states.
  • Manipur and Sikkim were the second and third top-ranking states in the small states category.

Union Territories Category:

  • Jammu and Kashmir, Chandigarh, and Delhi were the top-ranking Union Territories.

-Source: The Hindu, PIB

Introduction of New College Degree Names by UGC


The University Grants Commission (UGC) is set to introduce updated degree names that align with global norms and the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020. These revised degree names will encompass a Bachelor of Science in various disciplines, including arts, humanities, management, and commerce.


GS II: Government Policies and Interventions

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. About Introduction of New College Degree Names by UGC
  2. About University Grants Commission (UGC)

About Introduction of New College Degree Names by UGC

The University Grants Commission (UGC) is planning to introduce a new range of college degree names, including a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree in disciplines like arts, humanities, management, and commerce. This move aligns with the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 and global norms. The aim is to restructure undergraduate and postgraduate degrees and provide more flexibility to students.

Redefining Degree Nomenclatures

Current Scenario:

  • UGC currently permits universities to offer a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in arts, humanities, and social sciences, while Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree is typically given for science subjects.

Committee Recommendations:

  • A committee was formed by the UGC to review degree nomenclatures in accordance with the NEP 2020.
  • The committee recommends that the new four-year undergraduate honours degree programme can be offered as a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree regardless of the discipline.
  • The Master of Science (MS) nomenclature can be adopted for postgraduate programmes, even for disciplines like arts, humanities, management, and commerce.

Practice Abroad:

  • Many universities abroad offer both BA and BS degrees in the same subject, differentiating the curriculum.
  • A BS degree provides specialized education, while a BA degree offers more flexibility.
  • For example, Harvard University offers both BA and BS degrees in engineering sciences.

Other Committee Recommendations

  • Four-Year Undergraduate Honours Degree Programme:
  • The degree will include ‘Hons’ in brackets, such as BA (Hons), BCom (Hons), or BS (Hons).

Discontinuation of ‘MPhil’ Degree:

  • The committee recommends discontinuing the ‘MPhil’ degree as per the NEP 2020’s recommendation to scrap the MPhil programme.

Award of Qualification:

  • Students who have earned all the required credits for a programme can be considered for the award of a qualification (certificate, diploma, or degree) before completing the programme’s duration.

Public Feedback:

  • The UGC will share the committee’s recommendations in the public domain for feedback.
  • After considering the feedback, the UGC will notify the fresh set of degree nomenclatures.

About University Grants Commission (UGC)

  • The University Grants Commission of India is a statutory body established under the UGC Act, 1956.
  • Its primary role is to coordinate, determine, and maintain the standards of higher education in India.
  • The UGC grants recognition to universities and provides financial support to recognized universities and colleges. • It operates under the Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Education.
Mandate of UGC:
  • Promoting and Coordinating University Education: The UGC works towards the promotion and coordination of university education across India.
  • Determining and Maintaining Standards: It is responsible for setting and maintaining standards of teaching, examination, and research in universities.
  • Framing Regulations on Education Standards: The UGC formulates regulations to establish minimum standards of education in universities and colleges.
  • Monitoring Developments in Education: The UGC keeps track of developments in collegiate and university education and takes necessary actions.
  • Disbursing Grants: It disburses grants to universities and colleges for their development and improvement.
  • Serving as a Link and Advisor: The UGC acts as a crucial link between the Union and State governments and institutions of higher learning. It provides advice to the Central and State governments on measures for enhancing university education.

-Source: Indian Express

Tracking SDG7: The Energy Progress Report 2023


A recent report, titled “Tracking SDG7: The Energy Progress Report 2023,” was released through collaboration between the International Energy Agency (IEA), International Renewable Energy Agency, United Nations Statistics Division, World Bank, and the WHO.


GS III: Indian Economy

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Sustainable Development Goal 7
  2. Major Highlights of the Report

Sustainable Development Goal 7

  • In 2015, all United Nations Member States adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
  • The agenda includes 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aimed at achieving a harmonious and prosperous future for humanity and the planet.
  • Agenda 21 was adopted in 1992 at the Earth Summit, outlining a global partnership for sustainable development.
  • The Millennium Declaration in 2000 led to the establishment of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to reduce extreme poverty.
Current Status:
  • The annual High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development serves as the central UN platform for SDG follow-up and review.
  • The Division for Sustainable Development Goals (DSDG) in the UN provides support for the SDGs and related issues.
Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7):

SDG7 aims to ensure “affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all” by 2030.

Core targets:

  • Target 7.1: Universal access to affordable, reliable, and modern energy services.
  • Target 7.2: Substantial increase in the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix.
  • Target 7.3: Double the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency.
  • Target 7.a: Enhance international cooperation for clean energy research, technology, and investment.
  • Target 7.b: Upgrade infrastructure and technology for sustainable energy services in developing countries.

Major Highlights of the Report:

Economic Factors Hindering SDG 7:
  • Factors like high inflation, uncertain macroeconomic outlook, debt distress, and limited financial flows are hindering the achievement of SDG 7.
  • Uncertain macroeconomic outlook and high inflation levels create challenges.
  • Currency fluctuations and debt distress in many countries affect progress.
  • Lack of financing and supply chain bottlenecks pose obstacles.
  • Tighter fiscal circumstances and soaring prices for materials have a negative impact.
Access to Electricity and Clean Cooking:
  • Global access to electricity increased from 84% to 91% between 2010 and 2021, but the growth rate has slowed.
  • The number of people without electricity decreased from 1.1 billion in 2010 to 675 million in 2021.
  • Universal access to electricity by 2030 is still a challenging goal.
  • Access to clean cooking improved from 2.9 billion people in 2010 to 2.3 billion in 2021, but approximately 1.9 billion people may still lack access by 2030.
  • Some people who recently transitioned to clean cooking may revert to traditional biomass usage.
  • Sub-Saharan Africa is projected to have the highest number of people without access to clean cooking by 2030.
Renewable Energy (Target 7.2):
  • Renewable energy uptake has increased since 2010 but needs significant scaling up.
  • The share of renewable energy in total final energy consumption is still low at 19.1% (12.5% excluding traditional biomass).
  • Meeting international climate and energy goals requires substantial investments in renewable electricity generation and infrastructure.
Energy Efficiency (Target 7.3):
  • The current rate of improvement in energy efficiency is not on track to double by 2030.
  • The average annual growth of 1.8% falls short of the targeted increase of 2.6% per year.
International Public Financial Flows (Target 7.a):
  • Financial flows supporting clean energy in developing countries have declined since 2020.
  • Financial resources are more than a third lower than the previous decade’s average (2010-2019).
  • Decreasing financial flows mainly affect a few countries, posing challenges for SDG 7, particularly for least-developed countries, landlocked developing countries, and small island developing states.

-Source: Down To Earth

Surplus Liquidity


Recently, the net liquidity in the banking system in India increased to Rs 2.59 lakh crore on June 4, 2023. However, the surplus liquidity in the banking system is likely to decline to around Rs 1.5 lakh crore over the next few days from the current level of Rs 2.1 lakh crore.


GS III: Indian Economy

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. About Surplus liquidity
  2. Instruments of Monetary Policy

About Surplus liquidity

Surplus liquidity refers to a situation in which the inflow of cash into the banking system consistently exceeds the withdrawal of liquidity by the central bank. This surplus liquidity results in a higher amount of readily available cash in the banking system for short-term needs.

Causes of Increased Liquidity:
  • Advance tax and goods and services tax (GST) payments: Large tax payments made by businesses and individuals increase the liquidity in the banking system.
  • Deposit of withdrawn Rs 2,000 notes: When people deposit high-denomination currency notes that have been withdrawn from circulation, it adds to the liquidity.
  • Redemption of government bonds: When government bonds mature and investors redeem them, it leads to an increase in liquidity.
  • Higher government spending: Increased government spending injects more money into the economy, contributing to surplus liquidity.
  • Sale of dollars by the RBI: The central bank may sell dollars from its reserves to prevent the depreciation of the domestic currency, which increases liquidity in the banking system.
Impact of Increased Liquidity:
  • Increased levels of inflation: Surplus liquidity can potentially lead to higher inflation as there is more money available for spending.
  • Low interest rates: The presence of excess liquidity tends to keep interest rates low as banks have more funds to lend and competition for borrowers intensifies.
RBI’s Measures:
  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) closely monitors liquidity levels and takes appropriate measures if they deviate from its comfort range.
  • The RBI uses its Liquidity Adjustment Facility (LAF) to inject or absorb liquidity from the banking system through repo and reverse repo operations.
  • The RBI may also conduct 14-day variable rate repo and/or reverse repo operations to manage liquidity conditions. These operations involve short-term borrowing or lending of funds to banks at variable interest rates.

Instruments of Monetary Policy

There are several direct and indirect instruments that are used for implementing monetary policy.

  • Repo Rate: The (fixed) interest rate at which the Reserve Bank provides overnight liquidity to banks against the collateral of government and other approved securities under the liquidity adjustment facility (LAF).
  • Reverse Repo Rate: The (fixed) interest rate at which the Reserve Bank absorbs liquidity, on an overnight basis, from banks against the collateral of eligible government securities under the LAF.
  • Liquidity Adjustment Facility (LAF): The LAF consists of overnight as well as term repo auctions. Progressively, the Reserve Bank has increased the proportion of liquidity injected under fine-tuning variable rate repo auctions of range of tenors. The aim of term repo is to help develop the inter-bank term money market, which in turn can set market based benchmarks for pricing of loans and deposits, and hence improve transmission of monetary policy. The Reserve Bank also conducts variable interest rate reverse repo auctions, as necessitated under the market conditions.
  • Marginal Standing Facility (MSF): A facility under which scheduled commercial banks can borrow additional amount of overnight money from the Reserve Bank by dipping into their Statutory Liquidity Ratio (SLR) portfolio up to a limit at a penal rate of interest. This provides a safety valve against unanticipated liquidity shocks to the banking system.
  • Corridor: The MSF rate and reverse repo rate determine the corridor for the daily movement in the weighted average call money rate.
  • Bank Rate: It is the rate at which the Reserve Bank is ready to buy or rediscount bills of exchange or other commercial papers. The Bank Rate is published under Section 49 of the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934. This rate has been aligned to the MSF rate and, therefore, changes automatically as and when the MSF rate changes alongside policy repo rate changes.
  • Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR): The average daily balance that a bank is required to maintain with the Reserve Bank as a share of such per cent of its Net demand and time liabilities (NDTL) that the Reserve Bank may notify from time to time in the Gazette of India.
  • Statutory Liquidity Ratio (SLR): The share of NDTL that a bank is required to maintain in safe and liquid assets, such as, unencumbered government securities, cash and gold. Changes in SLR often influence the availability of resources in the banking system for lending to the private sector.
  • Open Market Operations (OMOs): These include both, outright purchase and sale of government securities, for injection and absorption of durable liquidity, respectively.
  • Market Stabilisation Scheme (MSS): This instrument for monetary management was introduced in 2004. Surplus liquidity of a more enduring nature arising from large capital inflows is absorbed through sale of short-dated government securities and treasury bills. The cash so mobilised is held in a separate government account with the Reserve Bank.

-Source: Indian Express

Ground-level ozone


According to a new analysis by the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), parts of the Delhi-NCR region witnessed ground-level ozone exceeding the national standards on 87 out of 92 days between March and May in 2023.


GS III: Environment and Ecology

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Findings from the report:
  2. Ground-Level Ozone

Findings from the report:

  • Ground-level ozone pollution in Delhi-NCR was lower in 2023 compared to the previous five years, but the duration of its exceedance has increased. This is a cause for concern as elevated ozone levels persist even after sunset, contrary to expectations.
  • Stations reporting exceedance of ozone levels had an average rolling 8-hour average above the standard for 4.9 hours on average this summer, compared to 4.6 hours observed last summer.
  • Ozone pollution is not limited to specific seasons. Even during the winter months when cold and foggy conditions inhibit ground-level ozone formation, Delhi-NCR experienced excess ozone levels on multiple days in January 2023.
  • Ozone levels exceeded the standard at multiple stations for 26 days in January 2023.
  • The areas most affected by ground-level ozone pollution were New Delhi and South Delhi.

Ground-Level Ozone

  • Ground-level ozone, also known as tropospheric ozone, is a colorless and highly irritating gas that forms near the Earth’s surface.
  • It is generated through complex interactions between nitrogen oxides (NOx), volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and carbon monoxide emitted from various sources.
  • Vehicles, power plants, factories, and other combustion sources release these pollutants into the atmosphere.
  • Under sunlight, these compounds undergo cyclic reactions that result in the formation of ground-level ozone.
Impact of Ground-Level Ozone:
  • Ground-level ozone is considered a significant air pollutant.
  • It can have detrimental effects on human health, vegetation, and ecosystems.
  • When nitrogen oxides (NOx) and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) interact in the presence of sunlight, they undergo chemical reactions that lead to the production of ground-level ozone.
  • High levels of ozone can cause respiratory issues, worsen asthma and other respiratory conditions, and contribute to lung diseases in humans.
  • It can also harm crops, forests, and other vegetation, affecting agricultural productivity and ecosystem balance.
Efforts to Address Ground-Level Ozone:
  • Monitoring and controlling ground-level ozone levels are important for mitigating its harmful effects on human and environmental health.
  • Strategies include reducing emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from sources such as vehicles, industries, and power plants.
  • Implementing air quality regulations, adopting cleaner technologies, and promoting sustainable practices can help minimize the formation and impact of ground-level ozone.

-Source: Down To Earth

Kilauea Volcano


The Kilauea volcano on Hawaii’s Big Island erupted recently, according to an advisory from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).


GS I: Geography

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. About Kilauea Volcano
  2. Shield Volcano
  3. About the Ring of Fire

Kilauea Volcano

  • Kilauea is a highly active shield volcano located on the southern part of the Island of Hawai’i, also known as Big Island.
  • It is considered the youngest and most active volcano in the Hawaiian Islands.
  • The volcano experiences near-constant eruptions either from vents on its summit caldera or on the rift zones.
Key Features of Kilauea:
  • Kilauea has a large summit caldera with a central crater called Halemaumau, which holds significance in Hawaiian legends as the dwelling place of the fire goddess Pele.
  • Prior to 1924, Kilauea’s summit caldera contained a lava lake, adding to its geological and cultural significance.

Shield Volcanoes:

  • Shield volcanoes are a specific type of volcano known for their basaltic lava eruptions, which are highly fluid.
  • Unlike composite volcanoes with conical peaks, shield volcanoes have a broad shape with gentle slopes.
  • Shield volcanoes, including Kilauea, are primarily characterized by non-explosive eruptions, unless water enters the vent, leading to low-explosivity fountaining and the formation of cinder cones and spatter cones.
  • The Hawaiian shield volcanoes, including Kilauea, are renowned examples of this volcanic type.

About the Ring of Fire

  • Many volcanoes in the Ring of Fire were created through a process of subduction. And most of the planet’s subduction zones happen to be located in the Ring of Fire
  • It is a string of at least 450 active and dormant volcanoes that form a semi-circle, or horse shoe, around the Philippine Sea plate, the Pacific Plate, Juan de Fuca and Cocos plates, and the Nazca Plate.
  • There is a lot of seismic activity in the area.
  • 90 per cent of all earthquakes strike within the Ring of Fire
Why are there so many volcanoes in the Ring of Fire?
  • The tectonic plates move non-stop over a layer of partly solid and partly molten rock which is called the Earth’s mantle.
  • When the plates collide or move apart, for instance, the Earth moves, literally.
  • Mountains, like the Andes in South America and the Rockies in North America, as well as volcanoes have formed through the collision of tectonic plates.
  • Many volcanoes in the Ring of Fire were created through a process of subduction. And most of the planet’s subduction zones happen to be located in the Ring of Fire

-Source: Indian Express

Fattah Missile


Iran has recently unveiled its first-ever hypersonic missile, Fattah, which it says can penetrate missile defence systems and will give it a military edge


Facts for Prelims

About Fattah Missile:

  • The Fattah Missile is an intermediate-range ballistic missile developed by Iran.
  • It is capable of traveling at hypersonic speeds, reaching up to 15 times the speed of sound.
  • The missile has a range of 1,400 kilometers and utilizes solid propellants, enabling high maneuverability.
  • It is designed to penetrate missile defense systems and has the ability to utilize different warheads for various missions.

What are Hypersonic Missiles?

  • Hypersonic missiles are a type of missile that travel at speeds of at least Mach 5, which is five times the speed of sound.
  • These missiles can maneuver during flight, making them difficult to track and intercept.
  • Unlike conventional ballistic missiles, hypersonic missiles fly at low altitudes in the atmosphere, allowing them to reach their targets more quickly and with a lower chance of being intercepted by modern air defenses.

-Source: The Print

December 2023