Current Affairs – January, 2018

Latest Current Affairs January, 2018 with Current Affairs, news summary on current events of National and International importance of January, 2018 for Banking, SSC, CLAT, UPSC, State PCS, IBPS, Railways and other Competitive Examinations.

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Mihir: High performance computing facility inaugurated at Noida

Ministry of Earth Science (MoES) has inaugurated high performance computer system (HPC) or supercomputer Mihir (meaning sun) at National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting (NCMRWF), Noida.

The HCP will provide facility for improving weather/climate forecasts. It is country’s largest HPC facility in terms of peak capacity and performance. It also propelled India’s ranking to Top 30 in the list of HPC facilities in world.

Key Facts

With this, MoES has acquired HPC facility total of 6.8 Peta Flops (PF) which has been installed at two of its constituent units: 4.0 PF HPC facility named ‘Pratyush’ at Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM), Pune and 2.8 Peta Flops facility at NCMRWF, Noida. It also improved India rank to 4th position after Japan, UK and US interms of dedicated HPC resources for weather/climate forecasts.

Mihir HPC facility will improve following services

  • Weather forecasts at block level over India which can predict extreme weather events.
  • High resolution seasonal and extended range forecasts of active and break spells of Monsoon.
  • Very high resolution coupled models for prediction of cyclones with more accuracy and lead time.
  • Ocean state forecasts including marine water quality forecasts at very high resolution.
  • Tsunami forecasts with greater lead time.
  • Air quality forecasts for various cities.
  • Climate projections at very high resolution.

Significance of new HPC facility

  • Help in meeting operational requirements of MoES and also support research and development activities on various problems related to Earth Science.
  • Help MoES in developing several services for societal benefits catering by building state-of-the-art systems for multi-hazard risk reduction from floods/droughts, cyclones, heat/cold waves, earthquakes and tsunamis.

Month: Categories: Science and Technology Current Affairs - 2018

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Government inks $250 Million Loan Agreement with ADB to Improve Rural Connectivity in 5 States

The Union Government has inked $250 Million Loan Agreement with Asian Development Bank (ADB) to Improve Rural Connectivity in 5 States viz. Assam, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha and West Bengal under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY). The loan proceeds will be used to finance the construction of 6,254 kilometres all-weather rural roads in these 5 States under the PMGS).

Key Facts

It is first tranche Loan of the $500 million Second Rural Connectivity Investment Program for India approved by the ADB Board in December 2017. The program is aimed to improve rural connectivity, facilitate safer and more efficient access to livelihood and socio-economic opportunities for rural communities through improvements to about 12,000 kms Rural Roads across 5 States.

Significance of ADB-funded investment program

  • Provide continued assistance to PMGSY and support the Government’s long-term goal for rural development.
  • It will have transformative impact in terms of rural economy and will bring greater efficiency in terms of access and connectivity for rural people in 5 States.
  • Under it about 2,000 technical personnel will be imparted training on road safety and maintenance.
  • It will also support Government’s drive for innovative approaches to reduce costs, conserve non-renewable natural resources and promote use of waste materials in rural road construction.
  • It builds upon $800 million ADB-financed first Rural Connectivity Investment Program in 2012 that added about 9,000 kms of all-weather rural roads in the same States.
  • The road designs under it take into account climate risks (such as increased rainfall and storm surges) with measures such as greater elevation of road embankments, slope protection, and better drainage.

Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY)

PMGSY was launched in year 2000 as a Centrally Sponsored Scheme with an objective to provide single all-weather road connectivity to all eligible unconnected rural villages (habitations). The Union Ministry of Rural Development is nodal implementing authority. It was fully funded scheme by the central government.

Month: Categories: India Current Affairs 2018

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