- Krishna-Godavari (KG) basin and Methane
- Web-based COVID predictor
- Hindi Diwas -2020
- Himalayan Atmospheric Turbulence
Focus: GS-III Environment and Ecology
- The methane hydrate deposit in the Krishna-Godavari (KG) basin is a rich source that will ensure adequate supplies of methane, a natural gas.
- Methane hydrate is formed when hydrogen-bonded water and methane gas come into contact at high pressures and low temperatures in oceans.
- It is estimated that one cubic meter of methane hydrate contains 160-180 cubic meters of methane.
- Even the lowest estimate of methane present in the methane hydrates in KG Basin is twice that of all fossil fuel reserves available worldwide.
- A recent study conducted has found that the methane hydrate deposits are located in the Krishna-Godavari (KG) basin are of biogenic origin.
- The massive methane hydrate deposits of biogenic origin in the Krishna-Godavari (KG) basin and near the coast of Andaman and Mahanadi make it necessary to study the associated methanogenic community.
- This study has shown that methanogens under these elevated pressure and temperature conditions are well adapted to these conditions and are different in methane-producing activities.
Methane as a fuel
- Methane is used as a fuel for ovens, homes, water heaters, kilns, automobiles, turbines, and other things.
- Refined liquid methane is used as a rocket fuel, when combined with liquid oxygen.
- As the major constituent of natural gas, methane is important for electricity generation by burning it as a fuel in a gas turbine or steam generator.
- Compared to other hydrocarbon fuels, methane produces less carbon dioxide for each unit of heat released.
- However, it produces more heat per mass than any other organic molecule due to its relatively large content of hydrogen.
- Krishna Godavari Basin is a peri-cratonic passive margin basin in India.
- It is spread across more than 50,000 square kilometres in the Krishna River and Godavari River basins in Andhra Pradesh.
- Krishna-Godavari inland and offshore basins have good prospects of tight oil and tight gas reserves from the conducted field studies.
- Most of the conventional wells drilled and operated have a shorter lifespan than envisaged life and with erratic production.
- This may be due to drilling of conventional wells in tight oil and gas fields without horizontal drilling in the shale rock formations and hydraulic fracturing.
Focus: GS-III Science and Technology
Why in news?
A group of scientists in India is working on genomic sequences of SARS-CoV-2 around the World, including India, to identify genetic variability and potential molecular targets in virus and human to find the best possible answer to combat the COVID 19 virus.
- A professor and his team have developed a web-based COVID- Predictor to predict the sequence of viruses online on the basis of machine learning and analysed Indian SARS-CoV-2 genomes to find the genetic variability in terms of point mutation and Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP).
- They have extended this research for more than 10 thousand sequences around the globe, including India.
- The scientists are on the track to identify the genetic variability in SARS-CoV-2 genomes around the globe including India, find the number of virus strains using Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP), spot the potential target proteins of the virus and human host based on Protein-Protein Interactions.
- They also carried out integrating the knowledge of genetic variability, recognise candidates of synthetic vaccine based on conserved genomic regions that is highly immunogenic and antigenic and detect the virus miRNAs that are also involved in regulating human mRNA.
Focus: GS-II Governance
Why in news?
Streaming of well-researched documentaries leading to the historic occasion of adoption of Hindi as an official language of the Union of India on 14th September, 1949, mock enactment of the meeting of the Constituent Assembly by children and travelogues showing growth and popularity of Hindi in different States will mark the celebration of ‘Hindi Diwas’ by Films Division on 14th September, 2020.
- The pioneering efforts of Beohar Rajendra Simha, a well-known Hindi scholar-writer who rallied and lobbied in favour of Hindi along with other stalwarts like Hazari Prasad Dwivedi, Maithili Sharan Gupta and Kaka Kalelkar came to fruition on Simha’s 50th birth day on 14th September,1949 when the Constituent Assembly adopted Hindi as one of the official languages of the Union of India which was ratified by the Constitution of India that came into effect on the 26th of January 1950.
- Under the Article 343 of the Indian Constitution, Hindi written in Devanagari script was adopted as the official language.
Focus: GS-III Environment and Ecology
Why in news?
Weather predictions becoming more certain and help in preventing air traffic disasters may now be easier and, especially in the Himalayas region because of atmospheric turbulence parameters specific to the Himalayas region.
- Scientists have estimated turbulence parameters in the lower troposphere over the central Himalayan region for the first time.
- The researchers have calculated the magnitude of refractive index structure (Cn2), a constant that represents the strength of the atmospheric turbulence using observation from their Stratosphere Troposphere Radar (S T Radar).
- Proper and timely information of the higher values of the atmospheric turbulence parameters and understanding of time and space distribution of turbulence structure in the troposphere could help improve performance of numerical weather prediction and climate models.
- Precise knowledge on turbulence over this region will help in safe air traffic movements.
- It is also important to model clear-air turbulence as that would aid in limiting the air traffic disasters, particularly over the complex mountainous regions.
- Low levels of cloud are generated in a mountainous region with complex topography. Because of this, stable air in this region is set into oscillations known as mountain waves and lee waves.
- Characterization of turbulence in the mountainous region is vital to understand the dynamics of mountain induced wave disturbances and other related phenomena, which has crucial role in modulating the general circulation wind patterns.