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Astrosat satellite spots 'dinosaurs of the universe' globular star cluster: Dept of Sci-tech - Firstpost
The team of scientists found about 34 UV-bright stars were found to be members of the globular cluster.
Press Trust of IndiaJan 22, 2021 09:22:32 IST Astronomers, with the help of India's first multi-wavelength space satellite Astrosat, have spotted a massive intriguing globular cluster in the Milky Way galaxy with rare hot UV-bright stars in it, the Department of Science and Technology said on Thursday. These stars whose inner core is almost exposed, making them very hot, exist in the late stages of evolution of a Sun-like star. It is not clear how these stars end their lives as not many of them are detected in these fast-evolving phases, making their study crucial. The old globular clusters referred to as dinosaurs of the universe, present excellent laboratories where astronomers can understand how stars evolve through various phases between their birth and death with spectacular ultraviolet images of the cluster from Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope (UVIT) on board. The old globular clusters present excellent laboratories where astronomers can understand how stars evolve through various phases between their birth and death. Image credit: Wikipedia/Richard Hook, ESO With AstroSat, astronomers from the Indian Institute of Astrophysics, an institute of the Department of Science and Technology, distinguished the hot UV-bright stars from the relatively cooler red giant and main-sequence stars which appear dim in these images. The findings of this study have been accepted for publication in 'The Astrophysical Journal'. The team of scientists comprising Deepthi S Prabhu, Annapurni Subramaniam and Snehalata Sahu from IIA combined the UVIT data with observations made using other space missions such as the Hubble space telescope and the Gaia telescope along with ground-based optical observations were also used. About 34 UV-bright stars were found to be members of the globular cluster. From the data, the team derived the properties of these stars such as their surface temperatures, luminosities and radii. "One of the UV-bright stars was found to be about 3,000 times brighter than the Sun with a surface temperature of about 1,00,000 kelvin," Subramaniam said. The properties of these stars were then used to place them on what astronomers call the Hertzsprung-Russel (HR) diagram along with theoretical models to throw light on the characteristics of their parent stars and to predict their future evolution. Most of the stars were found to have evolved from a solar stage called the horizontal branch stars with hardly any outer envelope. Thus they were bound to skip the last major phase of life called the asymptotic giant phase and directly become dead remnants or white dwarfs. "Such UV-bright stars are speculated to be the reason for the ultraviolet radiation coming from old stellar systems such as elliptical galaxies which are devoid of young blue stars. So, it is all the more important to observe more such stars to understand their properties, the DST said. Launched in September 2020, Astrosat has helped unravel mysteries of the universe. It has carried out more than 1,166 observations of 800 unique celestial sources proposed by scientists both from India and abroad.
JEE, NEET board exams 2021 will be set based on reduced syllabus, says Ramesh Pokhriyal - Firstpost
During a webinar, the Union education minister said CBSE students will also only have to study the revised syllabus. The syllabus was revised due to disruptions caused by COVID-19 pandemic
During a webinar, the Union education minister said CBSE students will also only have to study the revised syllabus. The syllabus was revised due to disruptions caused by COVID-19 pandemic Union education minister Ramesh Pokhriyal announced that students will be asked questions based on a revised syllabus in the upcoming board exams 2021, during a webinar with teachers and students of Kendriya Vidyalaya on Monday. Pokhriyal also announced that JEE Main 2021, held as an engineering entrance test and medical entrance test NEET 2021 will also be held on basis of a reduced syllabus. During the webinar, he said that students will only have to study the revised syllabus for the CBSE board exams as well as other exams based on CBSE board syllabus 2021 and that questions will only be asked from that particular portion. During the course of the live interaction, Pokhriyal said that the Kendriya Vidyalays will reopen in a phased manner soon and that offline classes will resume in the schools along with online classes across the country. He also replied to concerns regarding travelling to exam centres for Board Exams 2021 amid the COVID-19 pandemic. He told students that the NEET, JEE exams in 2020 was conducted amid the pandemic and all the competitive exams were conducted successfully across the country by the government and students should not be afraid about travelling to exam centres amid COVID-19 . Recently, Pokhriyal announced that the JEE Advanced 2021 exam will be held on 3 July, and that it will be conducted by the IIT Kharagpur. "I wish all the students the very best, all candidates have enough time to prepare for the exam," he added. The Education Minister further stated that the entre has decided to do away with the criteria of a minimum of 75 percent marks in view of the COVID-19 pandemic. Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.
Maharashtra Panchayat Election Results 2021 Live Upd.. Shiv Sena leads in 323 seats; BJP ahead in 261 places - Firstpost
Maharashtra Panchayat Election Results 2021 Live Updates: As per trends available at 10:30 am, Shiv Sena-backed candidates were ahead in a total of 323 seats, and the BJP was ahead in 261 Watch LIVE News, Latest Updates, Live blog, Highlights and Live cover…
Maharashtra Panchayat Election Results 2021 Live Updates: As per trends available at 10:30 am, Shiv Sena-backed candidates were ahead in a total of 323 seats, and the BJP was ahead in 261 Maharashtra Panchayat Election Results 2021 Live Updates: As per trends available at 10:30 am, Shiv Sena-backed candidates were ahead in a total of 323 seats, and the BJP was ahead in 261, As per the intial figures, Shiv Sena has taken the lead in 278 seats and BJP in 257 Counting of votes for the Maharashtra gram panchayat polls is slated to begin today (18 January) at 8 am. The elections to 12,711 gram panchayats spread across 34 districts in Maharashtra saw on average 79 percent voting on Friday, State Election Commissioner UPS Madan said. Elections to 14,234 gram panchayats were announced on 11 December last year, but in some local governing bodies elections were held completely or partially unopposed. The gram panchayats are considered the third tier of governance. Elections for them are not held on party lines, using party symbols. Candidates are allotted election symbols from a list of free symbols. The poll panel had earlier this week canceled the election process in Umrane and Khondamali gram panchayats in Nashik and Nandurbar districts, respectively, after it received evidence of auctioning of posts of sarpanchs and other members. The commission also said that voting for 162 gram panchayats in six talukas of Gadchiroli, a Naxal-hit district, will be held on 20 January. "Due to several such reasons, voting was held for 12,711 gram panchayats on Friday. In Gadchiroli, votes will be counted on 22 January. In the remaining districts, counting will take place on 18 January ," the SEC's statement said. On Friday, polling was held for 1,25,709 seats, for which nominations had been received from 3,56,221 candidates. A total of 2,41,598 candidates were in the race post scrutiny and withdrawal of nominations. As many as 26,718 of these candidates faced no rivals, so they would be declared elected unopposed, the statement said. In all 2,14,880 candidates were in the fray actually for the polls held on Friday. The voting took place between 7:30 am to 5:30 pm, except for four talukas in Gadchiroli and Gondia where polling ended at 3 pm. The districts and the district-wise number of gram panchayats where polling was held are as follows: Thane (143), Palghar (3), Raigad (78), Ratnagiri (360), Sindhudurg (66), Nashik (565), Dhule (182), Jalgaon (687), Ahmednagar (705), Nandurbar (64), Pune (649), Solapur (593), Satara (652), Sangli (142), Kolhapur (386), Aurangabad (579), Beed (111), Nanded (1,013), Osmanabad (382), Parbhani (498), Jalna (446),Latur (383), Hingoli (421), Amravati (537), Akola (214), Yavatmal (925), Washim (152), Buldhana (498), Nagpur (127), Wardha (50), Chandrapur (604), Bhandara (145), Gondia (181) and Gadchiroli (170). The Commission allowed those suffering from coronavirus infection or those in quarantine to cast their vote half-an-hour before the polling ended. The gram panchayat polls were held in the wake of the ruling Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress alliance's victory in the graduates' and teachers' constituencies in the Legislative Council elections that took place last year. The alliance won four out of six seats, while an Independent candidate and the BJP won one each. With inputs from PTI Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.
Coronavirus News Updates: Less than 50% of beneficia..rn up for COVID-19 vaccination in Andhra Pradesh today - Firstpost
Coronavirus News Updates: According to data released by the health department, only 13,041 healthcare workers got the COVID-19 vaccine across the state against the target of 27,233 for the day Watch LIVE News, Latest Updates, Live blog, Highlights and Li…
Coronavirus News Updates: According to data released by the health department, only 13,041 healthcare workers got the COVID-19 vaccine across the state against the target of 27,233 for the day Coronavirus News LATEST Updates: Less than 50 per cent of the targeted beneficiaries turned up for coronavirus vaccination in Andhra Pradesh on the second day on Sunday, but that was the highest in the country. According to data released by the Health Department, only 13,041 healthcare workers got the COVID-19 vaccine administered across the state against the targeted 27,233 for the day. The Union health ministry said that 2,07,229 people were vaccinated on day one- the highest day one vaccination number in the world. This figure is higher than the US, UK and France on day one, it said. The ministry's Additional Secretary ManohaAgnani also said a meeting was held with all states and Union Territories on Sunday to review the progress of the drive, identify bottlenecks and plan corrective actions. In a press briefing on Sunday, the Union health ministry informed that a total of 447 Adverse Events After Immunisation (AEFIs) were reported on the first two days of India's COVID-19 vaccination drive and of these, only three required hospitalisation. The Union Health Ministry informed that COVID-19 vaccination was conducted only in six states on Sunday.A total of 553 sessions were held on Sunday and as many as 17,072 have been vaccinated, as per provisional figures. A total of 2,24,301 beneficiaries vaccinated across the country so far, the ministry said. There have been no reports of adverse reaction or side-effects of COVID-19 vaccine in Maharashtra so far, state Health Minister Rajesh Tope said on Sunday, a day after the inoculation drive was undertaken across the country. "There has absolutely been no report of any adverse reaction or side-effects of the vaccine following the drive on Saturday. Everything was safe, it will be safe," Tope told news agency PTI. Delhi registered 246 new coronavirus cases, the lowest in around eight months, and eight more deaths, as the positivity rate dipped to 0.36 percent on Sunday, the Health Department said. The infection tally rose to 6.32 lakh and the toll mounted to 10,746, according to a health bulletin. "The positivity rate has remained below 0.5 percent for the last few days," Health Minister Satyendar Jain said on Sunday. "We can comfortably say that the third wave is on the wane." The health minister noted that cases have decreased but appealed to people to take precautions and use masks. The Mizoram government has decided to allow reopening of schools for students of Class 10 and 12 from 22 January and places of worship from February. According to the new unlock guidelines issued on Saturday schools and hostels will reopen from 22 January for students of class 10 and 12. The guidelines said churches will be allowed to open with 50 percent sitting capacity or 200 attendees on every Saturday and Sunday at noon from first February. The share of India's active COVID-19 cases, which stand at 2,08,826, has fallen below 2 per cent of the total caseload for the first time, the Union health ministry said on Sunday. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation postpones the coronavirus vaccination drive in the city, after technical glitches were reported in the governments Covid Vaccine Intelligence Network, or CoWin app on Saturday, reports The Indian Express. The Mumbai civic body said that efforts were underway to fix the problem. Of the 1.91 lakh beneficiaries administered COVID-19 vaccine shots on the first day of the countrywide vaccination drive, the highest number of inoculations were carried out in Uttar Pradesh with 21291 people taking the jab, reports PTI. The total number of Adverse events following immunisation (AEFI) post- COVID-19 vaccine in Delhi stands at 52 out of which only one is severe, said the Delhi Government on Saturday. A total of 1,91,181 beneficiaries were vaccinated on the first day of Indias coronavirus vaccination drive as the country kickstarted its inoculation campaign with two locally manufactured shots, the Union health ministry said on Saturday. The first dose was administered to a sanitation worker at the All Indian Institute of Medical Sciences in Delhi, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the campaign with a nationally televised speech India on Sunday reported 15,144 fresh COVID-19 infections with 181 fatalities pushing the country's caseload to 1,05,57,985, toll now at 1,52,274. Loud applause and cheers rang out as the first jabs were administered to frontline workers at hospitals and healthcare centres across the country on Saturday at the start of the gargantuan COVID-19 vaccination exercise, hailed as a momentous occasion in India's fight against the pandemic. "This is the beginning of the final war," said Dr Naveen Thacker, a paediatrician and member of the Gujarat government's task force on coronavirus , after receiving the first vaccine in the state. Vaccination rooms were decorated with flowers and balloons, the first beneficiaries were welcomed with 'aarti', garlands and sweets, and people posed with victory signs after receiving the shots as a sense of hope prevailed over the months of anxiety and uncertainty as well as any apprehensions about the vaccines. Doctors, nurses, sanitation workers and eminent functionaries were among the nearly two lakh people who received the shots on the first day of the biggest COVID-19 vaccination drive in the world at 3,351 session sites, which were visited by chief ministers, ministers and senior officials. For many health workers like Jalpa Gandhi, a nurse at the Ahmedabad civil hospital, there was finally some comfort as they recalled the difficult months spent during the coronavirus pandemic with gnawing fears that they may catch the virus while at work. "I feel relieved after the vaccination. I wore PPE kits when attending to patients, but there was always this apprehension that I might get infected, said Gandhi who has been on COVID- 19 duty' from March 22, 2020, when the first coronavirus patient in the state was admitted to the civil hospital. Political leaders, experts and prominent people from all walks of life urged the people not to believe in any misleading claims. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other leaders hailed the corona warriors and remembered those who lost their lives in the pandemic since January last year. Striking an emotional chord, Modi spoke of the disruption the pandemic had caused to people's lives, isolating victims of the coronavirus and denying the dead traditional last rites. The country has so far reported 1.05 crore COVID-19 cases and 1,52,093 deaths. In a choked voice, the prime minister also referred to sacrifices made by healthcare and frontline workers, hundreds of whom lost their lives to the viral infection. "Our vaccination programme is driven by humanitarian concerns, those exposed to maximum risk will get priority," the prime minister said, while noting that young and old in every household have had the same question for some time as to when will the coronavirus vaccine arrive. Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said it was an epoch-making moment for India that will take us closer to ending this pandemic. Manish Kumar, a sanitation worker, became the first person in the national capital to be administered a COVID-19 vaccine during the launch of the drive at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in the presence of Vardhan. As people around applauded, AIIMS Director Randeep Guleria also received a shot of the vaccine followed by NITI Aayog member V K Paul. Kumar, who works at the AIIMS along with his mother Laxmi Rani, said he was not at all nervous and was "proud of getting the vaccine". Vardhan said the two vaccines were a 'sanjivani', life infusing, in the fight against the pandemic. "We have won the battle against polio and now we have reached the decisive phase of winning the war against COVID. I want to congratulate all frontline workers on this day," he told reporters shortly after the vaccine shots were administered. Volunteers were given chocolates, cakes and juices after the shots at the Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality hospital (RGSSH) in Delhi. At Mumbai's Cooper Hospital, dozens of health workers clapped and cheered the "vaccine carrier" staff who were given a traditional welcome with aarti'. Cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar compared the fight against COVID-19 to the last Test match against Australia, saying there were "lots of ups and downs" but the frontline warriors took many blows and ensured that the team wouldn't collapse. Taking to Twitter, Bollywood celebrities applauded the scientists and doctors for their achievement. "#LargestVaccineDrive Thanks to all the scientists and Doctors and Health care workers Thanks @narendramodi," veteran actor-politician Paresh Rawal tweeted. "Bravo India! Congratulations to Indian authorities, medical & health teams for starting off the massive Covid vaccination drive. Forever grateful to our frontline heroes who have been risking their lives this past year to save others," actor Priyanka Chopra said. The two vaccines being administered are Covishield, developed by Oxford University and British-Swedish company AstraZeneca and manufactured by the Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII), and Covaxin, developed by Bharat Biotech, Hyderabad. SII CEO Adar Poonawalla shared on Twitter a video of receiving the jab. Raja Chowdhury, a Group D staff at the state-run SSKM Hospital in Kolkata, was given the first dose of Covishield in West Bengal as the inoculation exercise started in the presence of Urban Development Minister Firhad Hakim, an official said. "Today I feel so relieved after receiving the vaccine. It's a lifetime experience and I will tell everyone about it. All these months, I have seen what this disease can do to a family, how dreams have been shattered," Chowdhury told PTI. Asha Pawar (55), who receives the vaccine at Maharaja Yeshwantrao (MY) Hospital in Indore, Madhya Pradesh, said she had no apprehensions about the safety of the vaccine and hoped that it will prove helpful in saving lives. "There was an atmosphere of fear during the outbreak of the epidemic in Indore. But now, after getting this vaccine, I have no fear and I feel very good," said Pawar and flashed the victory sign.
Scientists witness the death of a galaxy 9 million light-years away unfold, in a remarkable first - Firstpost
The rare and recent discovery also shows that galaxies could shut down as a result of mergers.
FP TrendingJan 14, 2021 14:21:49 IST Even though galaxies are known to die out, scientists never could witness the process of a galaxy dying out, until now. Using a high tech telescope, scientists saw the galaxy, ID2299, ejecting out the star forming gases and losing its fuel. As per a press statement, the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) spotted the galaxy ejecting nearly half of its star-forming gas. Also, the speed of this ejection was equivalent to 10,000 Suns-worth of gas a year. The European Southern Observatory (ESO) was a partner in the observation and the team thinks that this celestial event has been triggered by a collision with another galaxy. As per the statement, galaxies begin to 'die' when they stop forming stars. Now they are getting to actually see how the process takes place. The galaxy is nine billion years away. Hence, what we are seeing now is when the Universe was just 4.5 billion years old. This is the first time we have observed a typical massive star-forming galaxy in the distant Universe about to die because of a massive cold gas ejection, said lead researcher Annagrazia Puglisi, who is associated with the Durham University, UK, and the Saclay Nuclear Research Centre, France. Galaxy mergers could inhibit star formation. This artist's impression of ID2299 shows the galaxy, the product of a galactic collision, and some of its gas being ejected by a "tidal tail" as a result of the merger. Image credit: ESO/M Kornmesser Apart from ejecting out material, the galaxy is also forming stars. The rate of creating stars is very rapid, almost hundreds of times faster than our galaxy, the Milky Way. The result of this fast creation will be that the remaining gas in ID2299 will be consumed gradually, over a few tens of millions of years. Earlier, it was believed that winds caused by star formation and the activity of black holes at the centres of giant galaxies caused the ejection of star-forming material into space. But the recent case shows that mergers of galaxies can also lead to the shutting down of a galaxy. ALMA has shed new light on the mechanisms that can halt the formation of stars in distant galaxies. Witnessing such a massive disruption event adds an important piece to the complex puzzle of galaxy evolution," said Chiara Circosta, a researcher at the University College London who was part of the research. The study has been published in the journal Nature Astronomy.
CO2 levels in the atmosphere is 50 percent higher than 18th century - Firstpost
This is despite an unprecedented fall in greenhouse gas emissions in 2020 because of the pandemic.
Agence France-PresseJan 12, 2021 16:30:15 IST Carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere will this year reach levels 50 percent higher than before the industrial revolution because of manmade emissions, Britain's Met Office predicted on Friday. It forecasted the annual average CO2 concentration measured at the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii in 2021 will be around 2.29 parts per million (ppm) higher than in 2020. It said CO2 concentrations will exceed 417 ppm at some point between April and June 50 percent higher than the 278 ppm present in the late 18th century when the industrial era kicked off. This is despite an unprecedented fall in greenhouse gas emissions in 2020 because of the pandemic. The United Nations says emissions from energy, food production, transport and industry must fall more than seven percent every year throughout the next decade in order to keep the temperature goals of the Paris climate deal in play. "Since CO2 stays in the atmosphere for a very long time, each year's emissions add to those from previous years and cause the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere to keep increasing," said Richard Betts, lead producer of the Met Office's annual CO2 forecast. "Although the Covid-19 pandemic meant that less CO2 was emitted worldwide in 2020 than in previous years, that still added to the ongoing build up in the atmosphere." Mauna Loa has been continuously monitoring atmospheric CO2 levels which fluctuate according to season but continue to climb annually since 1958. The United Nations says emissions from energy, food production, transport and industry must fall more than seven percent every year throughout the next decade in order to keep the temperature goals of the Paris climate deal in play. The 2015 accord enjoins nations to limiting global warming to "well below" two degrees Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels, and to 1.5C if at all possible. With just over 1C of warming so far, Earth is already beset by extreme weather events such as flooding, droughts and tropical storms supercharged by rising sea-levels. The Met Office said it took around 200 years for CO2 concentrations to increase 25 percent since the industrial era began. "But now just 30 years later we are approaching a 50 percent increase," said Betts. "Reversing this trend and slowing the atmospheric CO2 rise will need global emissions to reduce, and bringing them to a halt will need global emissions to be brought down to net zero."
Insect apocalypse: Climate change, insecticides, inva..e species, agriculture causing Earth to loose insects - Firstpost
Two well-known insects — honeybees and Monarch butterflies — best illustrate insect problems and declines.
The Associated PressJan 12, 2021 13:15:53 IST The worlds vital insect kingdom is undergoing death by a thousand cuts, the worlds top bug experts said. Climate change, insecticides, herbicides, light pollution, invasive species and changes in agriculture and land use are causing Earth to lose probably one percent to two percent of its insects each year, said University of Connecticut entomologist David Wagner, lead author in the special package of 12 studies in Mondays Proceedings of the National Academies of Sciences written by 56 scientists from around the globe. The problem, sometimes called the insect apocalypse, is like a jigsaw puzzle. And scientists say they still dont have all the pieces, so they have trouble grasping its enormity and complexity and getting the world to notice and do something. Climate change-driven drier weather in the US West means less milkweed for butterflies to eat, Wagner said. And changes in American agriculture remove weeds and flowers they need for nectar. Wagner said scientists need to figure out if the rate of the insect loss is bigger than with other species. There is some reason to worry more, he added, because they are the target of attack with insecticides, herbicides and light pollution. Co-author and University of Illinois entomologist May Berenbaum, a National Medal of Science winner, said, Insect decline is kind of comparable to climate change 30 years ago because the methods to assess the extent, the rate (of loss) were difficult. Making matters worse is that in many cases, people hate bugs, even though they pollinate the worlds foods, are crucial to the food chain and get rid of waste, she said. Insects are absolutely the fabric by which Mother Nature and the tree of life are built, Wagner said. Two well-known ones honeybees and Monarch butterflies best illustrate insect problems and declines, he said. Honeybees have been in dramatic decline because of disease, parasites, insecticides, herbicides and lack of food. Climate change-driven drier weather in the US West means less milkweed for butterflies to eat, Wagner said. And changes in American agriculture remove weeds and flowers they need for nectar. Were creating a giant biological desert except for soybeans and corn in a giant area of the Midwest, he said. Mondays scientific papers dont provide new data, yet show a big but incomplete picture of a problem starting to get attention. Scientists have identified 1 million insect species, while probably 4 million more are still to be discovered, Berenbaum said. University of Delaware entomologist Doug Tallamy, who wasnt part of the studies, said they highlight how the world has spent the last 30 years spending billions of dollars finding new ways to kill insects and mere pennies working to preserve them. The good news is, with the exception of climate change, individuals can do much to reverse insect declines, Tallamy said in an email. This is a global problem with a grassroots solution.
ESA, Thales Alenia Space sign contract to build European module for upcoming Lunar Gateway - Firstpost
The module will have a small, pressurised workspace for the crew and large windows offering 360-degree views.
FP TrendingJan 11, 2021 13:48:54 IST European Space Agency (ESA) signed a contract with Thales Alenia Space to build the European module for the Lunar Gateway that will provide the new human exploration facility with communications and refuelling. According to a statement by ESA, the Gateway is being built by the partners of the International Space Station (ISS) and will enable sustainable exploration around and on the surface of the Moon It will also allow for space research and the demonstration of technologies and processes needed to conduct future missions to Mars. ESA, in the statement, said that the European System Providing Refuelling, Infrastructure and Telecommunications module (ESPRIT) will be a cylindrical module with space for astronauts to work in, much like an International Space Station module. It will offer 360-degree views of the Moon and spacecraft as they dock with the lunar outpost. ESPRIT will consist of two main elements, the Halo Lunar Communication System (HLCS) and the ESPRIT Refuelling Module (ERM). The HCLS will provide the Gateway space station with data, voice and video communications, while the ERM will enable the station to receive propellants from visiting spacecraft to maintain its orbit around the moon and refuel vehicles transiting to the lunar surface. The module will also offer a small, pressurised workspace for the crew, and large windows offering 360-degree views. David Parker, ESAs Director of Human and Robotic Exploration stated that in just a few years they will witness humankind working together in orbit around the Moon and supporting surface exploration.
Crocodiles have remained largely unchanged since the last 200 million years - Firstpost
It seems that crocodiles arrived at a body plan that was very efficient and versatile enough that they did not need to change or evolve in order to survive.
FP TrendingJan 11, 2021 09:46:48 IST New research by UK scientists at the University of Bristol has found evidence that crocodiles have existed largely unchanged for 200 million years, outlasting dinosaurs as well as other flora and fauna that were wiped out by an asteroid that smashed into the Yucatan Peninsula around 66 million years ago. According to a statement released by The University of Bristol, scientists have now explained how crocodiles follow a pattern of evolution known as 'punctuated equilibrium'. Analysis by the lead author of the study Dr Max Stockdale shows that using a machine learning algorithm has found an estimate to rates of evolution. Stockdale stated that evolutionary rate is the amount of change that takes place over a given amount of time. The study found that the limited diversity of crocodilians and their apparent lack of evolution is due to a slower evolutionary rate. For their study, researchers measured body size, important because it shows how fast animals grow, how much food they need, how big their populations are and how likely they will become extinct. As per the study authors, their findings show that the limited diversity of crocodilians and their apparent lack of evolution is due to a slower evolutionary rate. According to them, it seems that crocodiles arrived at a body plan that was very efficient and versatile enough that they did not need to change or evolve in order to survive. Researchers have stated that the versatility could be one explanation of why crocodiles survived the meteor impact at the end of the Cretaceous period. Crocodiles generally thrive better in warmer conditions as they are better able to control their body temperature and require warmth from the environment. Since the climate during the age of dinosaurs was warmer, there were a lot more varieties of a crocodile than now. Dr Stockdale added that it is fascinating to study how intricate a relationship exists between the earth and the living things that live on it. He went on to say that the crocodiles figured out a lifestyle that was versatile enough to adapt to the environmental changes that took place since the time of the dinosaurs.
Coronavirus News Updates: Bharat Biotech says Bhopal..died 10 days after trial jab was healthy in follow-ups - Firstpost
Coronavirus News LIVE Updates: A 42-year-old volunteer from Bhopal died nearly ten days after he participated in the clinical trial for Covaxin; poisoning is suspected but officials said that the exact cause of the death will be known after viscera test Watch…
Coronavirus News LIVE Updates: A 42-year-old volunteer from Bhopal died nearly ten days after he participated in the clinical trial for Covaxin; poisoning is suspected but officials said that the exact cause of the death will be known after viscera test Coronavirus News LATEST Updates: A 42-year-old volunteer from Bhopal died nearly ten days after he participated in the clinical trial for Covaxin held at a private hospital, its vice chancellor said on Saturday while a government official suspected poisoning but added that the exact cause of the death will be known after viscera test. Addressing reports of the death, Bharat Biotech issued a statement saying that the volunteer had been reported "healthy" during follow-up calls for seven days after the jab. "The volunteer, at the time of enrolment, had fulfilled all the inclusion and exclusion criteria to be accepted as a participant in the Phase III trial and was reported to be healthy in all the site follow up calls post 7 days of his dosing and no AEs were observed or reported," the statement said, Union health minister Harsh Vardhan on Saturday said coronavirus vaccination roll-out will start soon in India, and the country will also work towards making low-cost, safe and effective vaccines available to the entire world. Addressing the 16th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Convention 2021, he said after months of collaborative brainstorming and building upon vaccine distribution expertise, India has streamlined the COVID-19 vaccination process. "India has finally built a state-of-the-art digital platform for COVID-19 vaccine delivery called CoWIN. A critical part of our strategy involves maintaining confidence in the safety of vaccines in the possibility of adverse events following immunisation," he said. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday chaired a high-level meeting to review the status of COVID-19 in the country along with the preparedness of the State/UTs for COVID vaccination. The meeting was attended by Cabinet Secretary, Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister, Health Secretary, and other senior officials concerned. "The Prime Minister took a detailed and comprehensive review of status of COVID management covering various issues. Emergency Use Authorisation or Accelerated Approval has been granted by the National Regulator for two vaccines (Covishield and Covaxin) which have established safety and immunogenicity. The PM was also briefed about the preparedness status of the Centre in close collaboration with the State and UT governments for roll out of the vaccine in the near future," the press release said. The COVID-19 vaccination drive in the country will kick off on 16 January, 2021 after the forthcoming festivals including Lohri, Makar Sankranti, Pongal, Magh Bihu, among others, the Centre said in a press release on Saturday. "The roll-out of COVID-19 vaccine will provide priority to the healthcare workers and the frontline workers who are estimated to be around 3 cr, followed by those above 50 years of age and the under-50 population groups with co-morbidities numbering around 27 crore," the release said. A total of 78.89 percent of the new COVID-19 recoveries were reported in ten states and Union Territories, according to the ministry of health and family welfare (MoHFW) on Saturday. The gap between recovered cases and active cases is steadily increasing and presently stands at 9,832,461, the health ministry said. The prime minister lauded India's fight against COVID-19 and said it was among the countries with the lowest fatality rate and the highest recovery rate. According to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), a total of 18,02,53,315 COVID-19 samples have been tested so far while 9,16,951 of them being tested on Friday alone. After a small rise on Friday, the active number of cases in India declined to 2,24,190 in the past 24 hours. According to the Union health ministry, the active cases comprise 2.16 percent of the total caseload as on Saturday. Narendra Modi on Saturday inaugurated the 16th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) convention, a flagship event of the Ministry of External Affairs to engage and connect with the overseas Indians. India registered 18,222 fresh infections of the novel coronavirus in the past 24 hours taking the overall count to 1,04,31,639, said the Union health ministry on Saturday. With 228 new fatalities due to the novel coronavirus reported in the past 24 hours, the COVID-19 toll in the country climbed to 1,50,798 on Saturday, said the health ministry. According to the Directorate of Press and Information, among the people who have been identified by the EDMC for vaccination in the first phase are safai karamcharis, health workers, public health workers, engineers, property tax department employees, horticulture and community service departments employees. About 23,000 employees of the East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) has been identified in the category of "frontline workers" for vaccination against COVID-19 , officials said on Friday. Several employees of civic bodies in Delhi had contracted the coronavirus infection in 2020. The EDMC has submitted its list of frontline workers in view of the preparations for the vaccination, it said in a statement. About 23,000 employees of the EDMC who have been serving the people since the outbreak of the pandemic have been listed on the government's portal CoWin for vaccination, the statement said. As part of the first phase, about three lakh healthcare workers and nearly six lakh frontline workers, totalling about nine lakh, will be get vaccine against COVID-19 in Delhi.
'Risk of further incitement': Twitter's full statemen..n why it permanently suspended Donald Trump's account - Firstpost
Twitter, while announcing its decision to permanently suspend Trump's account, cited plans circulating online for future armed protests around the inauguration of US President-elect Joe Biden
FP StaffJan 09, 2021 09:27:17 IST Twitter on Friday banned United States President Donald Trump's account, citing the risk of further incitement of violence" following the violence at the Capitol on Wednesday. In a detailed explanation posted on its blog, the company said Trump's recent tweets amounted to glorification of violence when read in the context of the Capitol violence. Twitter also cited plans circulating online for future armed protests around the inauguration of US President-elect Joe Biden. Following is the full text of the blog post: *** After close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them specifically how they are being received and interpreted on and off Twitter we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence. In the context of horrific events this week, we made it clear on Wednesday that additional violations of the Twitter Rules would potentially result in this very course of action. Our public interest framework exists to enable the public to hear from elected officials and world leaders directly. It is built on a principle that the people have a right to hold power to account in the open. However, we made it clear going back years that these accounts are not above our rules entirely and cannot use Twitter to incite violence, among other things. We will continue to be transparent around our policies and their enforcement. The below is a comprehensive analysis of our policy enforcement approach in this case. Overview On January 8, 2021, President Donald J. Trump tweeted: The 75,000,000 great American Patriots who voted for me, AMERICA FIRST, and MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, will have a GIANT VOICE long into the future. They will not be disrespected or treated unfairly in any way, shape or form!!! Shortly thereafter, the President tweeted: To all of those who have asked, I will not be going to the Inauguration on January 20th. Due to the ongoing tensions in the United States, and an uptick in the global conversation in regards to the people who violently stormed the Capitol on January 6, 2021, these two Tweets must be read in the context of broader events in the country and the ways in which the Presidents statements can be mobilized by different audiences, including to incite violence, as well as in the context of the pattern of behavior from this account in recent weeks. After assessing the language in these Tweets against our Glorification of Violence policy, we have determined that these Tweets are in violation of the Glorification of Violence Policy and the user @realDonaldTrump should be immediately permanently suspended from the service. Assessment We assessed the two Tweets referenced above under our Glorification of Violence policy, which aims to prevent the glorification of violence that could inspire others to replicate violent acts and determined that they were highly likely to encourage and inspire people to replicate the criminal acts that took place at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. This determination is based on a number of factors, including: -President Trumps statement that he will not be attending the Inauguration is being received by a number of his supporters as further confirmation that the election was not legitimate and is seen as him disavowing his previous claim made via two Tweets (1, 2) by his Deputy Chief of Staff, Dan Scavino, that there would be an orderly transition on January 20th. -The second Tweet may also serve as encouragement to those potentially considering violent acts that the Inauguration would be a safe target, as he will not be attending. -The use of the words American Patriots to describe some of his supporters is also being interpreted as support for those committing violent acts at the US Capitol. -The mention of his supporters having a GIANT VOICE long into the future and that They will not be disrespected or treated unfairly in any way, shape or form!!! is being interpreted as further indication that President Trump does not plan to facilitate an orderly transition and instead that he plans to continue to support, empower, and shield those who believe he won the election. -Plans for future armed protests have already begun proliferating on and off-Twitter, including a proposed secondary attack on the US Capitol and state capitol buildings on January 17, 2021. As such, our determination is that the two Tweets above are likely to inspire others to replicate the violent acts that took place on January 6, 2021, and that there are multiple indicators that they are being received and understood as encouragement to do so.
Scientists consider slashing a leap second from time as Earth spins at its fastest in half a century - Firstpost
Timekeepers around the world are debating whether to add a 'negative leap second' to time, in a would-be historical first.
FP TrendingJan 07, 2021 11:48:51 IST Scientists have now revealed that that Earth is rotating faster than normal and as a result, the length of each day has become slightly shorter than 24 hours. Timekeepers around the world are reportedly debating whether to delete a second from time to account for the change and bring back precision to the timeline with respect to the rotation of the Earth. As per the report, the addition of the 'negative leap second' has never been done before. However, a total of 27 leap seconds have been added since the 1970s in order to keep atomic time in line with solar time. The seconds have been added because, for years now, the Earth has taken slightly longer than 25hours to complete a rotation. However, since last year, the planet has been taking slightly less tine. Earth. Timekeepers have found that for the last 50 years, Earth has taken a fraction less than the whole 24 hours to complete a rotation along its own axis. However, in the middle of 2020, the trend suddenly saw a reverse and days started getting shorter more regularly. For instance, 19 July 2020 fell 1.4602 milliseconds short of a full 24 hours. This record has since been broken 28 times in the last year alone, according to the report, and days are now passing 0.5 seconds short of 24 hours. To keep up, timekeepers at the Paris-based IERS have added leap seconds to 27 days since 1970s. A 2015 study published in Science Advances has stated that global warming could be the reason behind the phenomenon. As glaciers melt, mass redistribution is causing the planet to shift and spin faster on its axis. "It's quite possible that a negative leap second will be needed if the Earth's rotation rate increases further, but it's too early to say if this is likely to happen," physicist Peter Whibberley of the National Physics Laboratory, UK, told The Telegraph . "There are also international discussions taking place about the future of leap seconds, and it's also possible that the need for a negative leap second might push the decision towards ending leap seconds for good."