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Daily Prelims Test – 04_July 2021

Consider the following statements regarding Gamma-ray bursts:

  • They are the brightest and most energetic electromagnetic events known to occur in the universe.
  • All observed GRBs have originated within the Milky Way galaxy only.
  • GRBs were first detected in 1967 by the Vela satellites.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 and 3 only

b) 2 only

c) 1 and 2 only

d) 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (a) 1 and 3 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: Rebel behaviour of highest energy afterglow of a Gamma-Ray Burst detected in space may help probe stellar evolution

  • The emission from the most notable Gamma Ray Burst (GRB) explosion so far traced — the afterglow from a galaxy 4.5 billion light years away was found to be complex in nature and did not follow the evolution expected in standard afterglow models.
  • The detection of high energy photons (TeV Photons) from this GRB provides new insights and important clues to unravel the underlying physical processes at work which result in such explosions.
  • The GRB with ultra-high energy photons called GRB 190114C was detected for the first time on 14-January-2019. 

About Gamma-ray bursts (GRBs)

  • Gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) are immensely energetic explosions that have been observed in distant galaxies.
  • They are the brightest and most energetic electromagnetic events known to occur in the universe. Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • Bursts can last from ten milliseconds to several hours.
  • After an initial flash of gamma rays, a longer-lived “afterglow” is usually emitted at longer wavelengths (X-ray, ultraviolet, optical, infrared, microwave and radio)
  • The intense radiation of most observed GRBs is released during processes like creation or merging of neutron stars or black holes.
  • All observed GRBs have originated from outside the Milky Way galaxy. Hence statement (2) is correct.
  • GRBs were first detected in 1967 by the Vela satellites. Hence statement (3) is correct.

Source: https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1731447

Consider the following statements regarding Black Carbon:

  • It is formed through the incomplete combustion of fossil fuels, biofuel, and biomass.
  • It stays in the atmosphere for several days.
  • Reducing black carbon helps to slow down short term global warming.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 and 3 only

b) 2 only

c) 1 and 2 only

d) 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (d) 1, 2 and 3

Explanation:

In NEWS: Black carbon could lead to premature mortality: study

  • Black Carbon has a significant adverse effect on human health and leads to premature mortality, says a new study. The study could help in the estimation of future burden of mortality associated with air pollutants more accurately.
  • The Indo-Gangetic plain is exposed to black carbon (BC) with serious implications on regional climate and human health.
  • Most of the pollution-based epidemiological studies essentially relate exposure to particulate mass concentration (PM 10 and/-or PM 2.5) that invariably generalize all particulates with equal toxicity without distinguishing individuals by its source and composition, which genuinely have different health consequences.
  • The effect of pollutants was more prominent for males, age group 5-44 and, in winter.
  • The adverse effect of air pollutants was not limited to current day of exposure but can extend as high as up to 5 days (Lag effect).

Black Carbon

  • Chemically, black carbon (BC) is a component of fine particulate matter (PM ≤ 2.5 µm).
  • It is formed through the incomplete combustion of fossil fuels, biofuel, and biomass. Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • Black carbon is a climate forcing agent contributing to global warming.
  • It warms the Earth by absorbing sunlight and heating the atmosphere and by reducing albedo when deposited on snow and ice (direct effects) and indirectly by interaction with clouds.
  • Black carbon stays in the atmosphere for only several days to weeks. Hence statement (2) is correct.
  • The IPCC have posited that reducing black carbon is one of the easiest ways to slow down short term global warming. Hence statement (3) is correct.

Source: https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1731444

Consider the following statements regarding Deep Space Atomic Clock:

  • It is a miniaturized, ultra-precise mercury-ion atomic clock for precise radio navigation in deep space.
  • It is managed by ISRO’s Physical laboratory in Ahmedabad.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (c) Both 1 and 2

Explanation:

In NEWS: Explained: What is Deep Space Atomic Clock that can boost future space travel

  • Atomic Clocks are used to track the distance and trajectory of spacecraft and are therefore needed to be extremely stable so that it can measure billionths of a second.
  • In a bid to improve navigation for robotic explorers and GPS satellite operations, the work on a Deep Space Atomic Clock has reached a crucial milestone. Scientists have now managed to stabilise the clock in space, reaching more than 10 times the stability of current space-based atomic clocks being used on GPS satellites.

WHAT IS ATOMIC CLOCK?

  • Atomic clocks are used to measure the distance between two objects in space by measuring very stable and precise frequencies of light emitted by specific atoms.
  • These clocks remain ultra-stable for decades, however, their design is too bulky, power-hungry and sensitive to environmental variations.
  • Due to their enormity, they have to be condensed for spaceflight operations and deep space explorations.

DSAC

  • The Deep Space Atomic Clock (DSAC) is a miniaturized, ultra-precise mercury-ion atomic clock for precise radio navigation in deep space. Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • DSAC could simply measure how long it takes a signal from Earth to arrive and calculate its own position.
  • The Deep Space Atomic Clock (DSAC) is as stable as a ground clock.
  • DSAC is so stable because it keeps time using electrically charged atoms, or ions, rather than neutral atoms.
  • It is expected that a DSAC would incur no more than 1 microsecond of error in 10 years of operations.
  • It is expected to improve the precision of deep space navigation, and enable more efficient use of tracking networks. The project is managed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion LaboratoryHence statement (2) is correct.

Source: https://www.indiatoday.in/science/story/explained-what-is-deep-space-atomic-clock-that-can-boost-future-space-travel-1821522-2021-07-01

Consider the following statements regarding Indrajaal:

  • It is India’s first indigenous drone defence dome.
  • It has the capability to autonomously protect an area of 1000-2000 sq km against the aerial threats by assessing and acting on aerial threats.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (c) Both 1 and 2

Explanation:

In NEWS: What makes Indrajaal, India’s first autonomous digital drone system unique

  • Hyderabad-based technology R&D firm Grene Robotics has designed and developed India’s first indigenous drone defence dome called “Indrajaal”. Hence statement (1) is correct.

About Indrajaal:

  • The drone defence dome has the capability to autonomously protect an area of 1000-2000 sq km against the aerial threats by assessing and acting on aerial threats such as Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), loitering munitions, and Low- Radar Cross Section (RCS) targets. Hence statement (2) is correct.
  • The ANTI-UAV systems will not only provide protection to defence bases but it will be beneficial for linear infrastructures like international borders against advanced weaponry.
  • The path-breaking development is imperative because manual weapons and point-based defence systems can’t defend modern warfares, which are operated by Artificial Intelligence (AI) and robotics.
  • The design principles of Indrajaal are based on delivering autonomy to the armed forces.
  • The synergic combination of 9-10 modern technologies helmed by Artificial Intelligence (AI), cybersecurity and robotics.
  • Capable of real-time situational awareness, Indrajaal comprises all current weapons suite and infrastructure along with a honeycombed cell structure to provide a seamlessly built over a combination of 9-10 technologies for 24×7 persistent monitoring, tracking and action.

Salient features of Indrajaal

  • Real-time situational awareness
  • Integrated and Intelligent meshed network
  • Integrated all current weapons suite and infrastructure
  • Honeycombed cell structure for seamlessly built
  • Synergic combination of 9-10 technologies
  • 24×7 persistent and autonomous monitoring, action and tracking

Source: https://www.business-standard.com/article/technology/what-makes-indrajaal-india-s-first-autonomous-digital-drone-system-unique-121062901471_1.html

Recently the term Varadia amboliensis is seen in news, it is related to

a) A genus and species of nocturnal semi slug

b) A new pineapple variety

c) A new species of shrub frogs found in Western Ghats

d) None of the above

Answer: (a) A genus and species of nocturnal semi slug

Explanation:

In NEWS: Western Ghats record a new-to-science semi slug

  • The Western Ghats have yielded a genus and species of nocturnal semi slug new to scienceHence option (a) is correct.
  • The newly described glossy grey or greyish-white Varadia amboliensis with irregular dark mottling measures 6.9 cm long at most, but scientists are enthused by its sensitivity to the slightest of climatic fluctuation.

About Varadia amboliensis

  • The newly described glossy grey or greyish-white Varadia amboliensis with irregular dark mottling measures 6.9 cm long at most, it is highly sensitive to the slightest of climatic fluctuation.
  • The genus of the new land species has been named after Varad Giri in recognition of his transformative contribution to the study and conservation of the Indian herpetofauna, while the species name ‘amboliensis’ refers to the Amboli area of Maharashtra’s Sindhudurg district.
  • Semi-slugs are so-called because their shells are relatively small in comparison to the body, with the shell often partly or almost entirely covered by extensions of the snail’s ‘skin’, the mantle.
  • In the new semi-slug, the parts of the mantle covering the shell lobes are retractable, so that the shell can be completely covered by the mantle or largely exposed.
  • The semi-slug is endemic to the northern and central Western Ghats and primarily found in natural forests.
  • It is most active at night and is known from only a handful of localities in Maharashtra, Goa and Karnataka.
  • The shell of the adult semi-slug is depressed and ranges from glossy golden brown to reddish yellow with rapidly increasing whorls.
  • Land snails are ecological indicators, they are susceptible to slight climatic fluctuations.
  • They feed on leaf litter present on the forest floor and dead insects. They are the natural source of calcium to the wild animals as they recycle nutrients such as potassium, manganese and magnesium.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/energy-and-environment/western-ghats-record-a-new-to-science-semi-slug/article35059940.ece?homepage=true

Consider the following statements regarding AIM-iLEAP Initiative:

  • It is a program under the Atal Innovation Mission.
  • It aims to invite technology start-ups across a broad range of functions.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

 a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (c) Both 1 and 2

Explanation:

In NEWS: Atal Innovation Mission concludes first fintech cohort of ‘AIM-iLEAP’ as major step to accelerate Tech Start-ups across India

AIM-iLEAP, the first fintech cohort of the Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) concluded.

About AIM iLEAP:

  • This is a program under the Atal Innovation Missionto provide AIM-backed start-ups with the much needed access to industry, markets and investors. Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • The fintech cohort was done through a series of thematic virtual demo days organised by AIM in partnership with Startup Réseau and Visa as part of AIM-iLEAP (Innovative leadership for entrepreneurial agility and profitability) initiative.
  • The objective of the AIM-iLEAP program is to invite technology start-ups across a broad range of functions and have them present their solutions to the corporate leadership and innovation team for enabling market access and industry partnerships. Hence statement (2) is correct.
  • The Fintech cohort consisted of start-ups from a wide range of areas such as payments, international money transfers, personal finance, consumer banking, insurance, neo bank, etc.
  • In the bootcamp they got an opportunity to fine-tune their pitches, work on their GTM strategy, understand more about the fintech ecosystem, ask questions to sectoral experts and so on.
  • The program was attended by fintech giants such as Visa, Paytm, etc.
  • As per the AIM’s mission, AIM-iLEAP bootcamp and demo day is the first among the many initiatives to push startups in the country.
  • Future cohorts shall be focussed on different sectors such as Agri-tech, Defence Tech, Smart Mobility, AI and so on.

Source: https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1731689

Consider the following statements regarding Goods and Service Tax:

 

It is a direct tax imposed in India on the supply of goods and services.

It is a comprehensive, multistage, destination-based tax.

Only CGST and SGST are imposed under this tax.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 only

b) 2 and 3 only

c) 1 and 2 only

d) 2 only

Answer: (d) 2 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: 4 years of GST – Hits, misses and expectations

  • For India, a completely new journey commenced on July 1, 2017, with goods and services tax, being touted as one of the biggest economic reforms of independent India.

About Goods and Services Tax

  • Goods and Services Tax is an indirect tax used in India on the supply of goods and services. Hence statement (1) is incorrect.
  • It is a value-added tax levied on most goods and services sold for domestic consumption.
  • It was launched in India on 1 July 2017 as a  comprehensive indirect tax for the entire country.
  • It is a comprehensive, multistage, destination-based tax- comprehensive because it has subsumed almost all the indirect taxes except a few state taxesHence statement (2) is correct.
  • It is paid by the consumers and is remitted to the government by the businesses selling the goods and services.
  • All these taxes are levied at rates mutually agreed upon by the Centre and the States. 
  • The GST Council headed by the Union Finance Minister is the governing and key decision-making body for GST. 

It is of three types i.e. 

  • CGST to be levied by the Centre, 
  • SGST to be levied by the States and 
  • IGST a tax levied on all Inter-State supplies of goods and/or services.   Hence statement (3) is incorrect.

Source: https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/small-biz/gst/4-years-of-gst-hits-misses-and-expectations/articleshow/84010385.cms?from=mdr

Consider the following statements regarding U-DISE:

  • It is a database about schools in India.
  • It was developed at the Department of School Education and Maintained by the National Informatics Centre.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (c) Both 1 and 2

Explanation:

In NEWS: Union Education Minister releases Report on United District Information System for Education Plus (UDISE+) 2019-20

  • Report shows improvement in GER at all levels of School Education, Pupil Teacher Ratio, Enrolment of Girls
  • As per the UDISE+ report 2019-20, Gross Enrolment Ratio at all levels of school education has improved in 2019-20 compared to 2018-19. Pupil Teacher Ratio (PTR) has improved at all levels of school education.
  • According to the report, in 2019-20, enrolment of girls from primary to higher secondary is more than 12.08 crore. This is a substantial increase by 14.08 lakh compared to 2018-19. Between 2012-13 and 2019-20, the Gender Parity Index (GPI) at both Secondary and Higher Secondary levels have improved.
  • The UDISE+ report shows a remarkable improvement in the number of schools with functional electricity, with functional computers, internet facilities in 2019-20 over the previous year.
  • Another major improvement is seen in the number of schools with hand wash facilities. In the year 2019-20, more than 90% schools in India had hand wash facilities as compared to only 36.3% in 2012-13.

About UDISE

  • U-DISE (Unified District Information System for Education) is a database about schools in India. Hence statement (1) is correct.
  • The database was developed at the Department of School Education, MHRD, Govt. of India and Maintained by the National Informatics Centre, Govt. of India. Hence statement (2) is correct.
  • It records information such as the level of dropouts and the condition of school toilets.

UDISE+

  • It is launched in 2018-2019. 
  • It is the largest Management Information system in school education. 
  • It covers 1.5 million schools, 8.5 million teachers and 250 million children. 
  • It was launched for speeding up data entry, reducing errors, improving data quality and easing its verification. 
  • It is an advanced and improved version of UDISE which was launched in 2012-2013 by integrating DISE for elementary education & SEMIS for secondary education

Source: https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1731860

Consider the following statements regarding Purchasing managers’ index:

  1. It is calculated separately for the manufacturing and services sectors.
    1. It is compiled by the National Statistical Office of India.

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

a) 1 only

b) 2 only

c) Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (a) 1 only

Explanation:

In NEWS: PMI survey shows manufacturing shrank in June

  • The IHS Markit India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) slipped to 48.1 in June from 50.8 in May, moving below the 50-level separating growth from contraction.
  • India’s manufacturing activity contracted in June for the first time in 11 months as the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic and strict containment measures negatively impacted demand and led to renewed contractions in factory orders, production, exports and quantities of purchases.

About Purchasing managers’ index

  • PMI is a survey-based measure that asks the respondents about changes in their perception about key business variables as compared with the previous month.
  • The purpose of the PMI is to provide information about current and future business conditions to company decision makers, analysts, and investors.
  • It is calculated separately for the manufacturing and services sectors and then a composite index is also constructed. Hence statement (1) is correct
  • If the PMI of the previous month is higher than the PMI of the current month, it represents that the economy is contracting.
  • It is usually released at the start of every month. It is, therefore, considered a good leading indicator of economic activity.
  • PMI is compiled by IHS Markit for more than 40 economies worldwide. Hence statement (2) is incorrect.

The PMI is a number from 0 to 100.

  • A print above 50 means expansion, while a score below that denotes contraction.
  • A reading at 50 indicates no change.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/business/Economy/purchasing-managers-index-pmi-slid-to-481-in-june-ihs-markit/article35075138.ece

In which of the following regions of India are shale gas resources found?

  1. Cambay Basin
    1. Cauvery Basin
    1. Krishna-Godavari Basin

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

a) 1 and 2 only

b) 3 only

c) 2 and 3 only

d) 1, 2 and 3

Answer: (d) 1,2 and 3

Explanation:

Shale gas is the natural gas that is trapped within shale formations. ONGC sought permission for drilling 11 exploratory wells for shale oil and shale gas in Cambay basin at Mehsana, Ahmedabad and Bharuch districts of Gujarat, one well in Cauvery basin at Nagapattinam in Tamil Nadu and five wells in KG Basin at East and West Godavari districts of Andhra Pradesh. Other regions in India where shale gas resources are found – Cauvery, Ganga & Assam and Assam – Arakan; Gondwana basin (including Damodar). Hence option (d) is correct.