Rapid Industrialization and technology development have placed a high demand on fossil fuels and other energy sources. While fossil fuels are still the most efficient of the energy sources, their adverse effects on the climate along with diminishing oil reserves, has prompted scientists to look for other, environmentally friendly options of fuels. While renewable energy alternatives like solar and wind, can be quite expensive, cheaper alternatives have been the quest for many scientists. One of the promising candidates has been Biofuels.
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In 2015, the well-known social media platform Facebook partnered with other companies, like Samsung, Ericsson, and Nokia to introduce internet.org. It was introduced to provide limited internet access to areas with otherwise no connectivity. In many rural and economically weak parts of the country, mobile users could, using internet.org, connect to Facebook and few websites chosen by the social media giant at a minimal cost. On February 11, Facebook withdrew internet.org, which later came to be known as free basics, from India.
Information and communication technologies (ICT) has been revolutionized with the arrival of smart devices and applications. Whether it is taking a video call, working from home, ordering food or arranging transportation, a smart device like our smart phones and computers, along with smart applications like Uber and Swiggy has made many of our daily chores much more efficient and simple.
The rhythmic contraction and relaxation of muscles of the food-pipe or the oesophagus, called peristalsis, pushes the food to the stomach. Researchers from Indian Institute of Technology, Varanasi have developed a mathematical model of the human oesophagus that could explain the pressure variation in the oesophagus. A detailed understanding of how food is pushed to the stomach can help develop an artificial food-pipe or prosthetic oesophagus, a lifesaving treatment for oesophageal cancer and certain oesophageal disorders.
We live in an era of medical advancements where sequencing of the human genome and its subsequent applications in personalised medicine, offer to completely revolutionise the diagnosis, treatment and even prevention of various diseases. Personalised or precision medicine is an approach that strives to move away from the ‘one-size-fits-all’ philosophy of Western medicine. It tries to cater to an individual’s disease condition, genetic predispositions as well as local environmental factors. Surprisingly, the concept of personalised medicine isn’t a brand new one.
Transistors are the backbone of the zillion electronic devices that we use today. While development of these semiconductor devices dates back to four decades, it's applications are ever increasing. Internet of Things is the new application that is transforming the development of transistors. In view of this, scientists at IIT Bombay and SCL ISRO have developed a new kind of Bipolar Junction Transistor that is completely indigenous. The researchers believe a home made technology can see its application in strategic sectors like space and defence.
Medical advancements and modern scientific techniques strive to solve challenges posed to human communities, especially healthcare threats. Viruses are one of the major threats and tend to make themselves resistant to drugs and evolve new mechanisms for survival by making subtle changes in their DNA called as mutations. Today among the many viruses, Dengue virus has been a serious problem causing mortality in widespread areas. Although treatments and drugs have been developed, it is essential to make sure that we’re ready to face worse cases in future.
Human beings, in their brief history, started off as hunter–gatherers hunting animals and birds, or collecting fruits and nuts to eat. They then invented agriculture, a revolutionary transformation from ‘collecting’ food to ‘growing’ it. Suddenly, acquiring food, which was one of the most important task of the early man, became a breeze. Today, in the era of technology, food production has reached new levels and so have our ways of handling the produce.
In July this year, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer on NASA’s Aqua satellite photographed a major chunk of glacial ice shelf (5,800 sq. km) breaking off from one of Antarctica’s floating ice platforms, called Larsen C, shrinking its size by at least 10 percent.
In the present time, with increasing demand for transportation fuels coupled with declining reserves of crude oil, scientific communities are forced to focus on renewable fuels. Although biofuels obtained from energy crops such as food and non-food energy crops act as renewable fuels, various issues such as food versus fuel debate, biodiversity loss and their effect on the land has shifted the idea of energy production towards other alternative biofuel producers like waste materials and microorganisms.