Current Affairs for Engineering Service Exam
Video Lectures and Test Series for ESE 2019
- National and International Issues on
- Economic Development
- Social Development
- Industrial Development
- Energy and Environment
- Information and Communication Technology
- The Key Initiatives of Government
- General Knowledge
Topic 1:Economic development
Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC)
The 2018 Apec summit was held recently held in Papua New Guinea.
- It ended with no joint statement from the leaders – a first in Apec history.
- A deep divisions between the United States and China over trade and investment dominated the meeting.
- The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) is a regional economic forum established in 1989 to leverage the growing interdependence of the Asia-Pacific.
- APEC has 21 member economies are Australia; Brunei Darussalam; Canada; Chile; People’s Republic of China; Hong Kong, China; Indonesia; Japan; Republic of Korea; Malaysia; Mexico; New Zealand; Papua New Guinea; Peru; The Philippines; The Russian Federation; Singapore; Chinese Taipei; Thailand; United States of America; Viet Nam.
- It aims to create greater prosperity for the people of the region by promoting balanced, inclusive, sustainable, innovative and secure growth and by accelerating regional economic integration.
Read more at: ET
Topic 1:Social development
World Toilet Day
The Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen) will celebrate the World Toilet Day with mass awareness and mobilization activities across States and districts.
- The focus is on usage of toilets, which is closely linked to the Prime Minister’s call for a Swachh Bharat by October 2019.
- Organizing grassroots activities involving district, block and panchayat level teams, swachhagrahis and swachhata champions.
- The objective is to engage with communities and reaffirm the national resolve to a sustain the Sanitation achievement.
- In recognition to the work done by the Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen), the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, is receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award at the World Toilet Summit.
Read more at: PIB
Topic 3 : ICT
SI Units redefined
- The international system of measurements has been overhauled with new definitions based on universal constants
- The most closely watched change was the revision to the kilo, the measurement of mass.
- The countries unanimously approved updates to three other key units-
- The kelvin for temperature
- The ampere for electrical current
- The mole for the amount of a substance.
- The kilogram, ampere, kelvin and mole will be defined by setting exact numerical values for the Planck constant (h), the elementary electric charge (e), the Boltzmann constant (k), and the Avogadro constant (NA), respectively.
- For more than a decade, metrologists have been working on two different experiments meant to relate mass to a universal concept called Planck’s constant, which links the energy of a photon to its frequency.
- One experiment, dubbed the Avogadro Project aimed to create a perfect silicon crystal to calculate the exact number of atoms of silicon in a sphere equal in weight to Le Grand K — by using a single isotope, silicon-28
- Another effort began with two incredibly precise scales known as Kibble or watt balances. Kibble balances use magnets, a coil of wire and precise electrical monitoring equipment to tease out the relationship between electrical force and physical weight. The experiment is meant to define Planck’s constant to within eight decimal places.
Previous definition: The kilogram is equal to the mass of the international prototype of the kilogram called Grand K.
New Definition of mass
- Define mass in terms of the Planck constant
- It is defined by taking the fixed numerical value of the Planck constant h to be 6.62607015×10−34 when expressed in the unit J⋅s, which is equal to kg⋅m2⋅s−1, where the metre and the second are defined in terms of c and ΔνCs.
Previous definition: The ampere is that constant current which, if maintained in two straight parallel conductors of infinite length, of negligible circular cross-section, and placed 1 m apart in vacuum, would produce between these conductors a force equal to 2×10−7 newton per metre of length.
New definition: It is defined by taking the fixed numerical value of the elementary charge e to be 1.602176634×10−19 when expressed in the unit C, which is equal to A⋅s, where the second is defined in terms of ΔνCs.
Previous definition: The kelvin, unit of thermodynamic temperature, is 1/273.16 of the thermodynamic temperature of the triple point of water.
New definition: It is defined by taking the fixed numerical value of the Boltzmann constant k to be 1.380649×10−23 when expressed in the unit J⋅K−1, which is equal to kg⋅m2⋅s−2⋅K−1, where the kilogram, metre and second are defined in terms of h, c and ΔνCs.
Previous definition: The mole is the amount of substance of a system that contains as many elementary entities as there are atoms in 0.012 kilogram of carbon-12.
New definition: One mole contains exactly 6.02214076×1023 elementary entities. This number is the fixed numerical value of the Avogadro constant, NA, when expressed in the unit mol−1 and is called the Avogadro number.
Le Grand K
The kilogram was defined as equal to the mass of the international prototype of the kilogram called Le Grand K. The mass of a platinum-iridium lump is kept in a secured vault on the outskirts of Paris.
Impact of Changes:
- The change will have no discernible impact for most people.
- The kilos and grams won’t change in supermarkets.
- The formula based measurement will not deteriorate with time – as they are unaffected by dust, decay with time or physical damage.
- It also is expected to be more accurate when measuring very, very small or very, very large masses.
- Accurately calculate an exact kilo without having to measure one lump of metal against another.
Systems of measurements
- The history of system of measurements stretch back across more than 5,000 years of human history, based on common concepts like the length of an arm or the weight of a seed etc.
- Modern measurements strive for more universality.
- All SI measurements are meant to be based in universal constants, like the speed of light or the oscillations of an atom of cesium-133.
- In 1960, the metre was redefined in terms of the wavelength of light from a specified source, making it derivable from universal natural phenomena, leaving the prototype kilogram as the only artefact upon which the SI unit definitions depend.
- With the recent redefinition, the SI is for the first time wholly derivable from natural phenomena.
Read more at: The Hindu
Topic 5: General Knowledge
Trans fatty acids (TFAs)
Kerala Health Department and the Food Safety wing are joining hands to launch an initiative to enforce dietary guidelines, involving the reduction of trans fatty acids (TFAs), salt and sugar in commercially available foods in the State.
- The initiative, with technical support from the World Bank, WHO and the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), is being launched as unhealthy diet is pushing up metabolic syndrome and premature deaths due to non-communicable diseases (NCDs) among Keralites.
- Latest estimates put the prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MS) in Kerala between 24-33%, indicating that one in three or four persons — predominantly women — have this condition.
- Metabolic syndrome (MS) is a cluster of metabolic abnormalities — high blood pressure, high blood sugar, abdominal obesity, abnormal cholesterol or triglyceride levels — that occur together, raising risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes.
About Trans fats:
- Trans fatty acids (TFAs) or Trans fats are the most harmful type of fats which can have much more adverse effects on our body than any other dietary constituent.
- These fats are largely produced artificially but a small amount also occurs naturally. Thus in our diet, these may be present as Artificial TFAs and/ or Natural TFAs.
- TFAs pose a higher risk of heart disease than saturated fats
- It is also associated with a higher risk of developing obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance, infertility, certain types of cancers and can also lead to compromised fetal development causing harm to the yet to be born baby.
- WHO recommends that trans fat intake be limited to less than 1% of total energy intake and has called for the total elimination of TFAs in global food supply by 2023.
- FSSAI has proposed to limit TFA limit in foods to 2% and eliminate trans fats from foods by 2022.
Read more at: The Hindu