UPSC Current Affairs - 2019
Latest Current Affairs 2018-2019 for UPSC IAS / Civil Services Examination. This category comprises the current affairs short notes useful primarily for UPSC preliminary examination and upsc mains as well as state civil services examinations.
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Japanese spacecraft, Hayabusa2 has surveyed the asteroid Ryugu’s surface and landed multiple robotic probes on its rocky terrain. The findings of the probe are:
- Asteroid Ryugu is far drier than expected. Ryugu is quite young (by asteroid standards), at around 100 million years old, this suggests its parent body was much largely devoid of water, too.
- Ryugu has an oblate “spinning top” shape, which suggests that the rocky body may have once spun at twice its current rate.
Hayabusa2 has completed the touchdown manoeuvre to collect samples from Ryugu’s surface, which will be brought back to Earth in a return capsule in late 2020.
Hayabusa2 is an asteroid sample-return mission of the Japanese space agency, JAXA. It is the successor of Hayabusa which had returned asteroid samples in 2010. Hayabusa2 arrived at Ryugu on 27 June 2018 and would survey the asteroid Ryugu for a year and a half during which time it will also collect samples. The mission plan is expected to depart in December 2019 and return the samples to Earth in December 2020.
Asteroid Ryugu is a near-Earth object and a potentially hazardous asteroid of the Apollo group. Asteroid Ryugu is a primitive carbonaceous near-Earth asteroid. Asteroid Ryugu is expected to preserve the most pristine materials in the Solar System, a mixture of minerals, ice, and organic compounds that interact with each other. The studies of Asteroid Ryugu is expected to provide additional knowledge on the origin and evolution of the inner planets and, in particular, the origin of water and organic compounds on Earth and all relevant to the origin of life on Earth.
India Post released a special stamp cover on Ice Stupa in Leh at an event in the presence of Himalayan Institute of Alternatives Ladakh founder Sonam Wangchuk who spearheaded the Ice Stupa initiative.
- Ice Stupas refer to the artificial glaciers which freeze and hold the water that keeps flowing and wasting away down the streams and into the rivers throughout the winter.
- Instead, the water from these artificial glaciers melt in the springtime, just when the fields need
- Leh lies in the cold desert region and most villages in the region face acute water shortage, particularly during the two crucial months of April and May when there is little water in the streams whereas in June there is an excess of water and even flash flooding due to the fast melting of the snow and glaciers in the mountains.
- By September all farming activities end and yet a smaller stream flow throughout the winter steadily but wastefully going into the Indus river without being of use to anybody.
- Hence the idea of ice stupa from artificial glaciers which store this wasting winter water in the form of ice mountains that melt and feed the farms when water is most needed by the farmers was initiated.
Ice Stupas are aimed at reducing water crisis in the region and also to convey a message to the world that how the Mountain people are forced to do such innovative ideas to solve the water crises, Ice Stupas also sends a message to all the people who live in big cities to not use resources in such a way that it creates problem for mountain people.