Science and Tech Weekly Brief: Important Updates from January 2-8, 2021

Take a look at the detailed list of major events in Science and Technology that have occurred in the past one week that is from January 2-8, 2021. Know all details here
Created On: Jan 8, 2021 18:32 IST
Modified On: Jan 8, 2021 19:11 IST
Science and Tech Brief 2021
Science and Tech Brief 2021

Check out what the area of Science and Technology has been upto this week. From COVID 19 Vaccine Dry Run to Flue Gas Desulphurisation- take a look at the detailed list of major events that have occurred in the past one week that is from January 2- 8, 2021. 

What is Flue Gas Desulphurisation?

Key Points:

  1. Power Ministry of India wants to dismiss or push back the deadlines for adoption of new emission norms by coal-fired power plants to avoid increased power tariffs. 
  2. It is the removal of Sulphur Dioxide. The plant of flue gas desulphurisation removes sulphur dioxides from the flue gas produced by boilers, furnaces, and other sources. 
  3. 300 Flue Gas Desulphurisation plants have been supplied worldwide and have acquired larger market shares. 
  4. They have the following features:
  • -High SO2 removal efficiencies meet the required emission standards for various types of fossil fuels
  • -Many pollution controlling agents are associated with environmental control equipment
  • -They have a high reliability
  • -These have energy and utility savings associated with them.

The process used for FGD

    1. Wet Scrubbing: Usage of a slurry of alkaline sorbents like limestone or lime or seawater to scrub gases.
    2. Spray-dry scrubbing
    3. Wet Sulphuric acid process: It is used to recover sulphur in the form of commercial quality sulphuric acid.
    4. Sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and particulates are removed by the SNOX Flue gas desulphurisation from flue gases.
    5. Powdered hydrated lime is introduced by the Dry sorbent injection in exhaust ducts to remove SO2 and SO3 from emission.

What is Dry Run of Vaccine?

A dry run is basically a drill or a mock test of the vaccines before introducing the original vaccine product in public. The government aims to assess the operational feasibility and linkages between planning and implementation of the process. They also wish to identify the challenges that may fall and be prepared with the solutions before the actual implementation.

A dry run ahead of the actual rollout of the COVID vaccines has begun in India from January 2, 2021.  On January 8, 2021, the second run of the COVID 19 vaccine was conducted in India.

Who administered the vaccine in India?

  1. Medical officers
  2. ASHA workers
  3. Cold Chain handlers
  4. Data Managers
  5. Vaccinators
  6. IEC officers etc.

What is Covishield Vaccine?

Covishield vaccine against Coronavirus has been developed by AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford. It is being manufactured by the Pune-based Serum Institute of India(SII) through a license from AstraZeneca and Oxford. 

It is the Indian variant of AZD1222. It is a Recombinant Chimpanzee Adenovirus vector vaccine (Covishield), encoding the SARS-CoV-2 Spike (S) glycoprotein with technology transfer from AstraZeneca/Oxford University.

All about Covaxin Vaccine:

Covaxin vaccine has been developed by Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech in collaboration with the National Institute of Virology and uses a different platform.

  1. Covaxin is an "inactivated" vaccine incorporating the SARS-CoV-2 virus and has no potential to infect or replicate once it is injected while just uplifting an immunised response. 
  2. It is expected to target more than just the spike protein. 
  3. It also aims to develop an immune response towards the nucleocapsid protein which is the cell of the virus that encloses its genetic material.

All about Plant Nutrition:

It is a process of taking in food and converting it into energy and other important nutrients that are required for life. Nutrition is a process by which animal or plant takes in and utilizes food substances. 

What is Autrotrophic Nutrition?

In this type of nutrition, organisms make their own food with the help of simple organic materials like carbon dioxide and water in the presence of sunlight. Green plants have an autotrophic mode of nutrition and such organisms are known as autotrophs. 

What is the Heterotrophic mode of nutrition?

From the simple organic material like carbon dioxide and water, animals are not able to make their own food and so are dependent on other organisms for food. This is known as the heterotrophic mode of nutrition. Therefore, organisms that depend on other organisms for food are known as heterotrophs.

All about Floating Solar Power Plant in Madhya Pradesh:

A floating solar plant is an installation of solar power production that is mounted on a structure floating on a body of water. It may typically be on an artificial basin or a lake. There are two major solar power plants.

  1. FPV or Floating photovoltaic plant which uses photovoltaic panels mounted on the platform
  2. The concentrated solar power plant which uses mirrors to redirect the solar power to a tower.

Key Features:

  1. It would be a 600 MW plant based on utilising solar energy. The location is on Omkareshwar dam in Khandwa district of Madhya Pradesh. The panels would adjust their position automatically when the water level lowers.
  2. The project requires an investment of 410 million dollars which is equivalent to INR 3000 crores. International Finance Corporation, World Bank and Power Grid would be providing aid for the project.

Science and Tech Brief Summarised

Take a look at the table below to know all about the weekly updates in a gist.

Topic Description
What is Sulphur Dioxide? It is an inorganic compound, heavy, colourless, and poisonous gas. It is produced in large quantities in intermediate steps of sulphuric acid manufacture. It has a pungent, irritating odour, similar to the smell of a just-struck match.
Low-Density Lipoprotein Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or "bad" cholesterol can build up in the walls of arteries and make them hard and narrow.
High-Density Lipoprotein High-density lipoprotein (HDL) or "good" cholesterol that pics up excess cholesterol and takes it back to the liver.
Why are pigs called GalSafe pigs? They are known as GaleSafe pigs because they lack a sugar molecule called alpha-gal. It is normally found in the tissue of some mammals like pigs, cows, and sheep. It is also said that people with a meat allergy called alpha-gal syndrome can develop serious, life-threatening reactions if they are exposed to these molecules. Although people develop this meat allergy after being bitten by certain ticks that have alpha-gal in their saliva.
Nendran Bananas Changalikodan Nendran Banana is also called as Changalikodan. It is a banana variety that originated in Chengazhikodu village of Thrissur District in Kerala.
What is Starch Starch, also known as amylum, is a polymeric carbohydrate built up from numerous glucose molecules attached via glycosidic bonds.

Also go through the detailed science and tech weekly brief 2020

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