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Prelim Bits 04-04-2023 | UPSC Daily Current Affairs

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April 04, 2023

Einstein Tile

A group of four scientists have discovered an entirely new shape called ‘the hat’ which is an aperiodic monotile.

  • Tiling - Several ways of tiling exists in nature and the real world like bathroom tiles or the hexagons of honeycomb.
  • All of these are periodic and have a translation symmetry, i.e., the size, shape and angle remains the same, only the location changes.
  • Hat - The 13-sided ‘hat’ discovered is also a shape that tiles plane, however, it does not possess translational symmetry.
  • These types of shapes are called aperiodic tile sets.
  • It is the first ‘Einstein’ tile to have been found.

einsteintile

  • The ‘Einstein’ tile is an aperiodic monotile.
  • ‘Einstein’ tile is a shape that can cover a plane without overlapping, leaving gaps, or repeating patterns.
  • ‘Einstein’ is a play on German ein stein or ‘one stone’ and the tile has no connection with Albert Einstein.
  • Application - Aperiodic tiling will help physicists and chemists understand the structure and behaviour of quasicrystals.
  • To understand structures in which the atoms are ordered in a non-repetitive pattern.
  • To open up new ideas for artwork.

In the 1970s, Nobel prize-winning physicist Roger Penrose found a set of only two tiles that could be arranged together in a non-repeating pattern ad infinitum. This is now known as Penrose tiling and has been used in artwork across the world.

References

  1. IE - Explaining geometry’s ‘Einstein problem’
  2. The Hindu - New shape answers a 50-year-old geometry mystery

Fast Blue Optical Transient

An explosion that happened over 180 million light-years away from us is aspherical and is shaped almost like a disc.

  • Stellar explosions in the Universe are almost always spherical in shape, as the stars themselves are spherical.
  • An explosion that happened over 180 million light-years away from us is the flattest explosion ever seen in space.

fbot

  • The explosion has been classified as a Fast Blue Optical Transient (FBOT).
  • FBOT is an extremely rare class of explosion that is much less common than other kinds.
  • They are too bright and they evolve too quickly, much different from other exploding stars.
  • The first bright FBOT was discovered in 2018 in AT 2018cow and was nicknamed the cow.
  • Including the latest discovered explosion, only a total of 5 FBOTs have been discovered so far.

References

  1. IE - Astronomers discover flattest explosion ever seen in space
  2. Science Alert - Extremely flat explosion dubbed 'the Cow'

Chondrostereum purpureum

The first case of a plant fungus called Chondrostereum purpureum infecting human beings has been reported from Kolkata.

  • Chondrostereum purpureum is a plant fungus that causes silver leaf disease in plants, particularly those in the rose family.
  • Silver leaf disease infects their leaves and branches, the fungus can be fatal for the plant if not quickly treated.
  • However, there were no reported instances of this fungus infecting human beings from any part of the world.
  • Fungal Disease - Fungal diseases aren't exactly uncommon in humans, of the millions of known fungal species, only a few cause infections in humans.
  • Ringworm, athlete's foot, and thrush commonly are found in damp areas of our skin, much to our irritation.
  • This is the first instance of a plant fungus causing disease in a human.
  • This may be the start of a new phenomenon when plant fungus is adapting to invade human cells.
  • Process - The plant fungus is infecting human cells by evading the process of phagocytosis’ which means ‘cell eating’.
  • The process happens when a cell uses its plasma membrane to engulf a large particle, giving rise to an internal compartment called the phagosome’.
  • Organisms clean and defend themselves by this process.
  • Reason - Rising temperature due to global warming is one of the major reasons for this new threat to human beings.
  • Most fungi thrive in the range of 12°C to 30°C and many species are thermotolerant.
  • Those fungal species that are able to grow at 35–37 °C can become a human pathogen or commensal flora.
  • Threat - Human beings with a compromised immune system are most vulnerable to fungal infection.
  • Fungal infections are expected to pose a greater threat to humans in future due to rising temperatures, caused by climate change.

References

  1. Down To Earth - Global first plant fungus to infect humans
  2. Science Alert - Plant fungus infects human in first reported case of its kind

Central Bureau of Investigation

The Prime Minister inaugurates diamond jubilee (60 years) celebrations of Central Bureau of Investigation in New Delhi.

  • A Special Police Establishment (SPE) was constituted in 1941 in the British India to enquire into allegations of bribery and corruption which later evolved into Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
  • CBI was established by a resolution of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India dated 1st April 1963.
  • CBI is the premier investigating police agency in India.
  • CBI has grown into a multidisciplinary investigation agency over a period of time and has 3 divisions for investigation of crime
    1. Anti-Corruption Division
    2. Economic Offences Division
    3. Special Crimes Division
  • It is also the nodal police agency in India, which coordinates investigation on behalf of Interpol Member countries.
  • CBI functions under Dept. of Personnel, Ministry of Personnel, Pension & Public Grievances.
  • The superintendence of CBI related only to investigation of offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 lies with the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC).
  • It derives its power to investigate from the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946.
  • CBI can conduct investigation in a state only with the consent of the concerned state government.
  • There are 2 kinds of consent of States - case-specific consent and general consent.
  • However, the Supreme Court and High Courts can order CBI to investigate such a crime anywhere in the country without the consent of the State.

References

  1. PIB - PM to inaugurate Diamond Jubilee Celebrations of CBI
  2. Live Mint -  PM to inaugurate CBI's diamond jubilee celebrations
  3. Central Bureau of Investigation

International Conference on Human-Wildlife Conflict and Coexistence

The International Conference on Human-Wildlife Conflict and Coexistence was held in Oxford, the United Kingdom for three days.

  • The global conference aims to address the human-wildlife conflicts across the world by facilitating collaboration between sectors and disciplines.
  • Organiser -  The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the UN Development Programme and others.
  • Participants - The conference has brought together hundreds of representatives from 70 countries to discuss solutions for human-wildlife conflict.
  • The conference will provide a platform to understand human-wildlife conflict through various viewpoints, learn from each other, and build new links and collaborations.
  • Effective management of human-wildlife interactions to minimise for coexistence across countries will be the fulcrum of the discussions.
  • IUCN Guidelines - The IUCN SSC Guidelines on Human-Wildlife Conflict and Coexistence was also published at the event.
  • The new guidelines provide a clear steer for managing complex situations, and strategies for achieving coexistence with wildlife.

Effective management of human-wildlife conflict was prescribed in Target 4 of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework agreed at the UN Biodiversity Conference in December 2022.

References

  1. Down To Earth - How can humans & animals exist more peacefully?
  2. International Conference on Human-Wildlife Conflict and Coexistence
1 comments
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chirak 1 year

dear sir /mam,

when target 2023 economy and GS booster compilations will be released ?

IAS Parliament 1 year

Target 2023: Economy and Agriculture will be released this week, and GS Booster will be released at the end of April 2023. Keep following.

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