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Aug 29

The Western Ghats in India has been a hotspot for many a diverse and unique forms of life. The dense rainforests and tropical climate have assisted in the diversification of species, many of which are yet to be found. The latest addition to this growing list is Nasikabatrachus bhupathi, an underground dwelling frog that surface only for a few days every year, to mate. The species was found along the eastern slopes of the Western Ghats, which receives rainfall during the northeast monsoon unlike the other parts of the ghats, and could be a primary reason for the differences in the species found in the different places. 

General, Science, Ecology
Aug 29

Thrips is the common name given to insects belonging to the order Thysanoptera. These tiny insects are seen in aggregates on various plant parts. They have unique asymmetrical mouthparts which they use to feed on plant matter. Most species are herbivorous, but some predatory species have been recorded as well. Out of the 6102 species of thrips described globally 1% act as pollinators, predators and vectors for viruses.

General, Science, Technology
Aug 28

The Indian Institute of Technology’s (IIT) are autonomous public institutions of higher education, offering undergraduate, postgraduate and doctoral courses in engineering and related domains. IIT Kharagpur was the first institute to be set up, followed by in Bombay, Madras, Kanpur and Delhi. Today, there are a total of 23 IIT’s across the country and many of these premier institutions are placed high up in institutional rankings in the country.

Science, Technology, Engineering
Aug 26

Picture this- you’re being grilled at an extremely important interview. You’re a bag of nerves but you’re holding it together and actually doing pretty well when suddenly you feel that dreaded feeling inside you. It’s something you cannot suppress but you try and exercise damage control by ensuring you keep your mouth closed. As a result, your nostrils flare, your lips appear distorted, and your watery eyes are a dead giveaway. Your yawn gets the better of you.

General, Science, SciQs
Aug 24

What is common between albumin, gelatin and casein? They are all proteins! And not just that, they are proteins used for the synthesis of nanoparticles. Proteins are large biomolecules that are composed of long chains of amino acids. The chemical groups that the amino acid are composed of lead to the protein having polar (water soluble) and nonpolar (water insoluble) regions. Hence when introduced into water, proteins tend to bury their nonpolar region by folding into different 3D shapes.

General, Science, Health
Aug 23

Compliance-Scope, a Virtual EMI/EMC laboratory

SimYog, a spin-off from the Indian Institute of Science and a private start-up providing electromagnetic diagnostics and services along with developing design and sign-off tools for automotive electronics. Their latest offering is Compliance scope - a virtual 3D laboratory that allows the user to immerse themselves in a virtual world and explore the electrical components and connections and went on to win the coolest demo prize at this edition of IEEE EMC conference

General, Science, Technology
Aug 22

Chlorella pyrenoidosa is a type of freshwater algae found around the world. It has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for a long time, and in recent times, emerged as a leading candidate for the production of biodiesels. Toxic algal blooms, can be seen covering ponds and lakes, and happens due to a rapid growth of algae in the waterbody. Since some of these algae produce toxins harmful to humans and other animals, toxic algal blooms generally lead to a decrease in the amount of fish in the water and amount of life surrounding it.

General, Science, Technology, Ecology, Society
Aug 22

The Andaman and Nicobar Islands are a group of islands and a Indian union territory situated 1200 kms from the easternmost boundary of the Indian peninsula. Although some distance from the mainland, scientists have now found evidence for the effects the islands and the surrounding Andaman sea have on the climate on the mainland. Using satellite data and computer simulations, the scientists have established the area as an important contributor to the Indian Monsoon and as one which requires further study. 

General, Science, Technology, Society
Aug 21

Captivity and confinement has had devastating effects on humans and the same can be true in the case of wild animals, especially the big cats. In this new study, scientists observe the hormones produced by captive big cats, like the Bengal Tiger or Leopard, to measure the amount of stress they endure during captivity. The study also throws light on stereotypy -  a coping mechanism developed by captive animals, and its relation to the amount of stress they experience. 

General, Science, Ecology, Health
Aug 21

When on a beach or by a large water body, many of us would have seen a handful of crab species. It is an absolute delight to see these decapod (ten-footed) crustaceans dart across open patches of sand side ways, then stop abruptly only to dash away again! While many might associate crabs with the marine environment, there are approximately 13,000 known species of freshwater crabs in the world. In India, the state of Kerala boasts of the highest number of freshwater crab species, providing a home to 28 of the 94 known freshwater crab species.

General, Science, Ecology