Science & Technology Current Affairs - 2020

Science & Technology Current Affairs 2019-2020 category comprises current affairs with all important national / international updates in science and tech and events for the year 2019-2020 for UPSC, States, Civil services, SSC and other competitive examinations of India and States.

Category Wise PDF Compilations available at This Link

Battery safety concerns ground Boeing 787 and the issue with using “Lithium-ion Batteries”

image The US and Japan have grounded their Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircrafts due to concerns over it battery safety. Recently, a battery-fault warning on an All Nippon Airways Dreamliner in Japan forced an emergency landing. A battery overheated and started a fire in an empty 787 operated by Japan Airlines (JAL) at Boston’s Logan International Airport. The aviation authority of the US, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) ordered that 787s in the United States be grounded until their batteries are shown to be safe, the first such action since 1979.  United Airlines reported a problem in one of its six 787s with the wiring in the same area as the battery fire on JAL’s airliner.

The Matter:

  • Why Lithium batteries?
  1. Unusually high energy density
  2. Can be moulded into a variety of shapes

Although all air-planes have batteries, but the Dreamliner requires powerful batteries because Dreamliner’s control systems are driven entirely by electrical signals in place of the hydraulic controls found in traditional generations of jets. So, Boeing depends in part on lithium-ion batteries, which provide quick and powerful charges. Designers needed something which is light in weight and at the same time gives high power output. So, they opted for Lithium-ion technology batteries which have an unusually high energy density, which means the units can be smaller and thus lighter for a given amount of power than traditional batteries.

Lithium-ion technology is the same technology that we see in in the batteries of most modern smartphones and laptop computers, where the demands are rather similar, but on a much smaller scale.

Another big advantage of using Lithium-ion units: These can be moulded into a variety of shapes and thus, provide flexibility to design and fit them in awkward places, which is a key concern when space is at a premium.

Airbus A380 superjumbo also uses the same technology in batteries but in the Drealiners these batteries are used on a much more extensive scale.

Now, with advantages, there is a potential disadvantage of using lithium-ion batteries:

  • Lithium-ion batteries require more careful management than other types of battery due to the ‘Thermal Runaway problem’.

We all remember the reports in Newspapers, TV Channels about batteries in laptops and mobile-phones smoking and catching fire.Thus, Lithium ion batteries can be prone to what is referred to as thermal runaway as a result of the very of chemistry involved. As a battery reaches a specific temperature, it can start self-heating with potentially disastrous consequences.

Also these batteries are Vulnerable to problems and leaks of battery fluid. When the problem of leakage starts, the fuel can in turn ignite automatically.

Get these updates on Current Affairs Today Android App

Month:  Categories: InternationalScience & Technology

India among major victims of ‘Red October’

imageWhat is RED OCTOBER ?

 ‘Red October’ (or ‘Rocra’ for short) = A Cyber spying campaign (a cyber-espionage network) launched in 2007 by unidentified criminals that have been secretly stealing important data from many computer systems used by government agencies, military, nuclear, gas and oil industries, aerospace, private companies, etc. in many countries since 2007.

The cyber-espionage network has been uncovered by experts at Russia’s Kaspersky Lab. As per Kaspersky Lab, Russia’s multinational computer security company, the ‘Red October’ malware called Backdoor.Win32.Sputnik, has been stealing confidential data.

It has infected hundreds of victims around the world in 8 main categories:

  1. Government
  2. Diplomatic / embassies
  3. Research institutions
  4. Trade and commerce
  5. Nuclear / energy research
  6. Oil and gas companies
  7. Aerospace
  8. Military

The majority of infections are actually from the embassies of ex-USSR country members. India is one of the main victims of ‘Red October’ cyber espionage attack along with Russia which is the worst hit and many other countries like Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Belgium and the United States. Russia tops the list of countries with 38 detected infections, India ranks fifth with 14 infections. The United States is also on the list with 6 attacks. The Kaspersky Lab is continuing its investigation in collaboration with international law enforcement agencies and national Computer Emergency Response Teams (CERT).

Based on our Kaspersky Security Network (KSN) a list of countries with most infections (only for those with more than 5 victims):

  • Country-Infections
    ARMENIA    10

Get these updates on Current Affairs Today Android App