Thursday, May 30, 2024

Current Affairs April 15-04-2024 to 21-04-2024.

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1.Fresh port restrictions on exports of essential goods to the Maldives

India has imposed new restrictions on exports of essential goods to the Maldives, allowing exports through only four designated customs points. Previously, restrictions on certain quantities were lifted for nine products, including potatoes, onions, eggs, rice, wheat flour and sugar.

The approved quantities are the highest since the two countries established bilateral relations in 1981. Despite the export ban, India continued to export rice, sugar and onions to the Maldives, reaffirming its commitment to bilateral development. Maldives is an island nation in the Indian Ocean of India and Maldives is divided by the Eight Degree Channel.

Key Updates:

1) According to the new guidelines, exports of essential commodities will now be carried out only through four common commodities. stations.

2) India imposed an export ban on wheat in May 2022, non-basmati rice in July 2023 and onions in December.

3) India has selectively supplied these goods to neighbouring countries like Bangladesh and major partners like Indonesia and UAE on a case-by-case basis, prioritizing domestic needs.

2. World Quantum Day is celebrated on April 14

India is celebrating World Quantum Day 2024 with the aim of pioneering quantum science and technology. World Quantum Day was established in 2022 to raise public awareness. Adopted in 2023, the National Quantum Mission (NQM) aims to invest in research and development to make India a pioneer in quantum technology. Under the leadership of the Department of Science and Technology (DST), the mission will establish four centers focused on quantum computing, communications, sensors and materials.

Key Updates:

1) This capability underscores the country’s commitment to the use of quantum mechanics. transformative advances in various fields.

2) Quantum mechanics, the branch of physics that studies the behaviour of atoms and subatomic particles, has made remarkable progress from theory to design.

3) This transition has led to countless practical applications of light. – Light emitting diodes (LED) and lasers for the very precise atomic clocks essential for the Global Positioning System (GPS).

3. Dragon’s Egg Nebula

Astronomers have solved the mystery of the nebula NGC 6164/6165, also known as the Dragon’s Egg. The nebula puzzled astronomers because one star had a magnetic field and its companion did not, as did the merging of stars in nebulae. The Dragon’s Egg is a cloud of gas and dust surrounding a pair of stars called HD 148937, formed by strong stellar winds from a massive, hot central star. The two stars NGC 6164/6165 are located in our Milky Way galaxy about 3,700 light years from Earth in the constellation Norma.

Key Updates:

1) The data underlying the hypothesis came from the PIONIER and GRAVITY instruments on board the Very Large Telescope Interferometer in the Atacama Desert, as well as data from ESO’s La Silla FEROS instrument archive. Observatory.

2) The Dragon’s Egg Nebula is a catchy name and its fiery origin is fitting, but this star system is unlikely to hatch again, barring Frost’s new theory of magnetism forming massive stars.

4. Khavda Renewable Energy Park

Adani Green Energy Ltd. (AGEL) has established the largest renewable energy park in the world in the Khavda area of ​​Gujarat. The plant has a capacity of 45 GW and is mainly fueled by solar energy. The Khavda region has the second best sunshine in the country after Ladakh. The factory covers an area of ​​538 square kilometers, which is about five times the size of Paris.

Key Updates:

1) This area, which initially lacked infrastructure beyond a portable toilet and a temporary office, gained the attention of Adani in December 2022 when he was rated as the second richest person in the world.

2) Despite basic amenities like PIN and vast desert land, Adani saw its potential.

3) Adani Green Energy Ltd, India’s largest renewable energy company, plans to invest around 1.5 billion rupees to generate 30 megawatts of clean energy. energy electricity at Khavda in Kutch, Gujarat.

5. Israel’s air defence system intercepted 99% of the Iranian missiles

The Israel Defence Forces recently claimed that their air defence system, which included Exo atmospheric interceptors, destroyed 99% of incoming missiles from the Islamic Republic of Iran. These are ballistic surface-to-ground missiles equipped with infrared sensors and radar systems. It uses a three-stage solid rocket booster to travel through the Earth’s atmosphere at near-supersonic speeds.

Key Updates:

1) Atmospheric missiles, also known as anti-ballistic missiles (ABMs), are surface-to-air missiles designed to repel incoming ballistic missiles.

2) They are designed to intercept and destroy what any type of threat ballistic in the middle or final phase of its trajectory.

3) However, they are specifically designed to counter intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs).

6. New Vaccine for Meningitis Men5CV

The nation of Central Africa Nigeria launched the “Men5CV” meningitis vaccine, making it the first nation in the world to do so. The vaccine is supported by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, and provides protection against five strains of Meningococcus bacteria. Among the 26 nations in Africa with a high prevalence of meningitis is Nigeria.
Key Updates:

1) Because the Men5CV vaccine offers broader protection than earlier versions, its introduction represents a major advancement in the fight against meningitis.
2) It provides one-shot protection against meningococcal strains A, C, W, Y, and X.
3) In response, a vaccination campaign targeting over a million people between the ages of one and 29 was launched in March 2024.


7.Trump is the first former US president to be charged with a crime

Donald Trump, the former president of the United States, is the first former president in American history to be charged with a crime. The trial concerns the USD 130,000 paid to Stormy Daniels, a former adult film star, in the closing weeks of the 2016 presidential campaign. The “Hush Money Payment Case” is the moniker given to the trial.

Key Updates:

1) The allegations against Trump include sabotaging the 2020 election in an attempt to prevent Joe Biden from becoming president, and the “hush money affair” is only one of four criminal cases hanging over him.
2) Although years in prison may follow a conviction in the hush money case, legal experts believe this conclusion is unlikely.

3) In this case, the other crimes include violation of election law, “under the theory that the payout served as a donation to Mr Trump’s campaign because it silenced Ms Daniels and shut down a potential sex scandal in the final stretch of the campaign,”

8. IMD Predicts India likely to Receive above normal Rainfall this Monsoon

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) announced its first long-range forecast for the monsoon season, stating that India is expected to receive “above normal” rainfall. The country as a whole is projected to receive 106 percent of the long period average (LPA) rainfall. With the exception of some areas in the northwest, east, and northeast, the majority of the country is anticipated to experience good rainfall.

This is a significant development as it marks the first time in ten years that the IMD has predicted above normal rainfall at this early stage, nearly 45 days before the start of the monsoon season. Typically, the IMD is more cautious in its initial predictions. India, on the whole, typically experiences 870 mm of rainfall throughout the monsoon season. This is known as LPA, or “normal” (currently, the average of 1971-2020 period). As per the IMD, rainfall ranging between 96 per cent and 104 per cent of this 50-year average is categorized as “normal”; anything below 90 per cent is considered “deficient”; 90-95 per cent is labelled as “below normal”; and 105-110 per cent is termed as “above normal”.

“The nation can anticipate favourable monsoon precipitation during the southwest monsoon season this year. The seasonal rainfall is projected to be 106 per cent of the LPA,” stated Mrutyunjay Mohapatra, IMD Director General.

Mohapatra stated that this year, several factors were indicating a higher than average amount of rainfall. The main factor was the shift from a weakening El Nino in the Pacific Ocean to a neutral condition before the start of the monsoon season. Additionally, there was a possibility of La Nina developing in the latter part of the season.

9. Hall with Trojan War decorations were found in Pompeii

The Pompeii Archaeological Park announced the recent discovery of a dining hall with black walls adorned with 2,000-year-old paintings depicting scenes from the Trojan War. Measuring approximately 15 meters in length and six meters in width, the room’s exquisite frescoes and mosaics dating back to the era of Emperor Augustus, along with the choice of characters depicted, indicate that it was likely used for banquets.

According to Gabriel Zuchtriegel, the head of the park, the walls were painted black to conceal the smoke produced by oil lamps. It is believed that people gathered in this hall for dining events after sunset, where the flickering light of the lamps created an illusion of animated images, especially when accompanied by a few glasses of fine Campanian wine.

The city of Pompeii and its surroundings were buried under volcanic ash during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD 79, resulting in the tragic deaths of thousands of unsuspecting Romans who were unaware of the looming threat posed by one of Europe’s largest volcanoes.

The archaeological site has experienced a surge in excavation efforts to combat the effects of decay and neglect, primarily due to a €105-million ($112 million) project funded by the European Union. The main focus of the recently uncovered paintings revolves around themes of heroism and destiny.

10. China’s GDP Grew by 5.3% in 1st Quarter 2024

China’s economy experienced a robust start to the year, surpassing expectations with a growth rate of 5.3 percent in the first quarter. Despite the ongoing challenges faced by its property market and subdued domestic demand, the country’s GDP reached 29.63 trillion yuan (approximately USD 4.17 trillion) during the first three months of 2024, as reported by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Tuesday.

Sheng Laiyun, the Deputy Head of the NBS, highlighted the recent accomplishments in China’s high-quality development during the first quarter. He emphasized the sustained recovery momentum of the national economy, which has set a promising tone for the year ahead.

Sheng also pointed out key factors contributing to this positive trend, including increasing production demand, stable employment rates, consistent prices, and a boost in market confidence. He expressed optimism that these factors will continue to build up and fortify, ultimately paving the way for robust growth throughout the year.

11. Astronomers Spot Massive Black Hole in the Milky Way

According to a recent study, astronomers have made a significant discovery in the Milky Way by identifying the largest stellar black hole ever found. This black hole, known as Gaia BH3, has a mass 33 times greater than that of the Sun. The discovery of Gaia BH3 was unexpected and came about through the analysis of data collected by the Gaia mission of the European Space Agency.

The Gaia mission, which aims to map the Milky Way galaxy, located Gaia BH3 approximately 2,000 light years away from Earth in the Aquila constellation. By utilizing Gaia’s telescope, astronomers were able to accurately determine the positions and orbits of stars, enabling them to measure the mass of Gaia BH3, which is 33 times that of the Sun.

Further observations made by ground-based telescopes have confirmed the presence of a black hole with a mass significantly larger than the stellar black holes already present in the Milky Way. Mr. Panuzzo expressed surprise at the discovery of a high-mass black hole that had gone undetected until now, stating that such a finding is rare in one’s research career.

The stellar black hole was initially detected when scientists noticed a “wobbling” motion in the companion star that orbited around it. Mr. Panuzzo described the star as slightly smaller than the Sun, around 75% of its mass, and brighter, revolving around an unseen companion.

Stellar black holes are formed from the collapse of massive stars at the end of their life cycles and are smaller than supermassive black holes, the origins of which remain unknown. While supermassive black holes have been identified in distant galaxies through gravitational waves, Mr. Panuzzo noted that they had never been found in our galaxy. BH3, an inactive black hole, is located too far from its companion star to strip it of matter, resulting in no X-ray emissions and making it challenging to detect.

12. META Launched New AI Assistant Powered by Llama 3 Model

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg has revealed the launch of Meta AI, the company’s advanced AI assistant, which is powered by the cutting-edge language model Llama 3. The latest AI innovation aims to improve the user experience across Meta’s popular apps like WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook, and Messenger, as well as being accessible through a dedicated website, meta.ai.

In a significant development, Meta AI is now extending its services to more than a dozen countries, including Australia, Canada, Ghana, Jamaica, and South Africa, after initially being limited to the United States. The AI assistant has been seamlessly integrated into key Meta apps, enabling users to utilize its features without the need to switch between different platforms.

Furthermore, Meta has collaborated with tech giants Google and Bing to offer real-time information via Meta AI, ensuring users have access to the most up-to-date and accurate data. Meta AI is committed to providing quicker and more precise assistance to users, assisting them in various tasks such as discovering restaurants, planning trips, preparing for exams, and seeking design inspiration. A notable feature is the introduction of “Imagine,” which allows users to generate images in real-time based on text descriptions.

This beta feature is currently accessible on WhatsApp and the Meta AI website, enabling users to witness their ideas materialize as they type. Additionally, users can customize their content by animating images, changing styles, and converting images into GIFs using Meta AI.

13. Plastic Overshoot Day Report

The Plastic Overshoot Day report by Swiss non-profit EA Earth Action reveals that India has one of the lowest rates of per capita plastic waste production globally. However, there has been a 7.11% increase in global plastic waste generation since 2021, resulting in an estimated 220 million tons of plastic waste being generated this year.

India is categorized as a “low-waste-producing” polluter, but it is projected to have 7.4 million tons of mismanaged waste by 2024, which is considered high. Along with China, the US, Brazil, and other countries, India is responsible for 60% of the world’s mismanaged plastic waste. This poses a significant risk of releasing microplastics and chemical additives into the environment and waterways.

Belgium ranks highest in terms of plastic waste production per person, while Oman leads in mismanaged plastic waste. The report warns that by April 2024, nearly half of the world’s population will be living in areas where plastic waste exceeds the capacity for proper management. To address this plastic pollution crisis, the report emphasizes the urgent need for aggressive reductions in plastic production and improved waste management.

In 2024, the world is expected to reach Plastic Overshoot Day on September 5th, indicating that the amount of plastic waste generated will surpass the global capacity for waste management. It is projected that a total of 220 million tonnes of plastic waste will be produced in 2024, with approximately 70 million tons ending up in the environment due to inadequate waste management infrastructure. This represents a 7.11% increase in plastic waste since 2021.

To effectively tackle the plastic waste crisis, countries are classified into six archetypes, each facing unique challenges and receiving tailored recommendations for managing plastic waste. The estimated Plastic Overshoot Day for India is April 23rd.

14. India Delivers First Batch of BrahMos Missile System to Philippines

India handed over the initial shipment of BrahMos supersonic cruise missiles and launchers to the Philippines on Friday. This delivery comes two years after the signing of a deal valued at nearly $375 million to supply the Philippine Marines with three batteries of these missiles. The transfer was made via an IAF C-17 transport aircraft, according to officials familiar with the situation. The agreement, finalized in January 2022, was considered a significant boost to New Delhi’s aspirations to become a prominent exporter of major defence equipment.

This marks the first overseas sale of the BrahMos missile, a joint development by India and Russia. The dispatch to the Philippines was delayed due to the absence of a non-disclosure agreement between the two countries.

India has established a defence export goal of ₹35,000 crore by the fiscal year 2024-25. The defence ministry disclosed that India’s defence exports surged by 32.5% last fiscal year, surpassing the ₹21,000-crore milestone for the first time. The nation’s focus remains on enhancing the domestic defence manufacturing sector and promoting military exports.

Presently, India is exporting military equipment to approximately 85 nations, with the involvement of about 100 local companies. The range of exports includes missiles, artillery guns, rockets, armoured vehicles, offshore patrol vessels, personal protective equipment, various radars, surveillance systems, and ammunition.

15. Intel Announces Santhosh Viswanathan as Indian Region Head

Intel has recently made some significant changes to its leadership team. Santhosh Viswanathan, who has been with Intel for over two decades, has been appointed as the Managing Director for the India region. This decision comes after Intel recognized the potential for growth and business opportunities in India and decided to establish it as a separate region within its Sales, Marketing, and Communications Group.

In his new role, Viswanathan will be responsible for leading the newly formed India region and utilizing his expertise to drive value and customer-centricity. This move reflects Intel’s commitment to capitalizing on India’s rapid growth and maximizing its potential in the market.

Additionally, Intel has also announced the appointment of Hans Chuang as the General Manager of the SMG Asia Pacific and Japan region. Based in Taiwan, Chuang will oversee Intel’s overall business in the APJ region, focusing on revenue growth, creating new opportunities within the local ecosystem, and strengthening relationships with customers and partners.

These strategic appointments highlight Intel’s dedication to expanding its presence in key markets and leveraging the expertise of its talented leaders to drive success.

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