Israel Current Affairs

Israel launches first environmental research satellite Venus

Israel has launched its first environmental research satellite named as Venus (Vegetation and Environment Monitoring New Micro-Satellite). It is a joint venture between the Israel Space Agency (ISA) and its French counterpart CNES.

It was launched on board of Arianespace Vega launcher from the European spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana.

Key facts

The Venus satellite is an earth-observation micro-satellite. It is considered the smallest satellite of its kind in the world. It weighs only 265 kilogram. It will be placed in sun-synchronized orbit at an altitude of 720 kilometers.

It will circle the earth 29 times in each 48-hour period and will stay in commission for 4.5 years. The mini-satellite is equipped with a special camera that can visualize details on Earth that are not visible to the naked eye.

Venus Satellite has a dual mission-scientific and technological. The scientific mission will monitor Earth’s vegetation using a camera capable of recording 12 narrow spectral bands. The technological mission will test the operation of an innovative electric propulsion system based on the Israeli-designed Hall Effect Thrusters (HET). HET is a relatively low power device used to propel a spacecraft after entering orbit or farther out into space.

Applications: Venus satellite will be used to survey and monitor large areas to study soil, vegetation, forests, agriculture, water and air quality and other aspects of the environment. It will help to obtain high-resolution photographs of specific sites to track environmental issues such as erosion, desertification, pollution, natural disasters, and other phenomena linked to climate change.

Tags:

Israeli scientists create world’s first water-wave laser

Scientists from Israel have created the world’s first ‘water-wave laser’ that emits a beam through the interaction of light and water waves.

The study conducted by team of researchers from Technion-Israel Institute of Technology led by Professor Tal Carmon.

Significance of this research

A typical laser can be created when the electrons in atoms become “excited” by energy absorbed from an outside source causing them to emit radiation in the form of laser light. However, the water-wave laser for the first time showed that water wave oscillations within a liquid device can also generate laser radiation. It also successfully demonstrated nonlinear optics and water waves, two areas of research that were previously considered unrelated to one another.

How it works?
  • In this case, researchers had created a device in which an optical fibre delivers light into a tiny droplet of octane and water.
  • The energy is emitted by the droplet when light waves and water waves pass through each other many times (about one million times) inside the droplet
  • The interaction between the fibre optic light and the miniscule vibrations on surface of the droplet creates an echo i.e. interaction of sound waves causing it to emit radiation.
  • Event when minute pressure is applied by light it can cause droplet deformation that is a million times greater than in a typical optomechanical device. It may offer greater control of the laser’s emissions.
  • In order to increase this echo effect in the device, highly transparent, runny liquids was used to encourage light and droplet interactions.
Potential Applications

The ‘water-wave laser’ may be used in ‘lab-on-a-chip’ devices to study cell biology and test new drug therapies. It can be used in tiny sensors that combine light waves, sound and water waves. It also offers scientists a playground for studying the interaction of light and fluid at a scale smaller than the width of a human hair.

Tags:

12345...10...19