UPSC 2017-18: PIB Summary and Analysis Nov 07

CZT Imager of AstroSat measures first phase resolved X-ray polarisation of Crab pulsar 

  • In a paper published in ‘Nature Astronomy’, the team has documented the results of their eighteen-month study of the Crab pulsar in the Taurus Constellation and measured the variations of polarisation as this highly magnetised object spins around 30 times every second.

Crab Pulsar

  • The Crab Pulsar (PSR B0531+21) is a relatively young neutron star.
  • Discovered in 1968, the pulsar was the first to be connected with a supernova remnant


  • ASTROSAT is India’s first dedicated multi wavelength space observatory. This scientific satellite mission endeavors for a more detailed understanding of our universe.
  • ASTROSAT is designed to observe the universe in the Visible, Ultraviolet, low and high energy X-ray regions of the electromagnetic spectrum simultaneously with the help of its five payloads.
  • Astrosat is being described as India’s version of the Hubble telescope that NASA had put in space in 1990.
  • It has a mission life of five years.
  • This mission has put ISRO in a very exclusive club of nations that have space-based observatories. Only the United States, European Space Agency, Japan and Russia have such observatories in space.

Scientific objectives

  • understand high energy processes in binary star systems containing neutron stars and black holes,
  • estimate magnetic fields of neutron stars,
  • study star birth regions and high energy processes in star systems lying beyond our galaxy,
  • detect new briefly bright X-ray sources in the sky and
  • Perform a limited deep field survey of the Universe in the ultraviolet region.



Grahak Sadak Koyla Vitaran App

  • Coal India’s New App “Grahak Sadak Koyla Vitaran App” for the benefit of customers lifting coal through road mode.
  • The main features of the app are that it provides date-wise, truck-wise quantity of coal delivered against the Sale Orders and information related to Scheme-wise, Colliery-wise, Grade-wise, customer-wise details of Sale Orders issued during a period.


  • This app is a step towards transparency in the system of loading programme and despatch.
  • The app also helps in logistics planning for lifting of coal in tune with the loading programmes.
  • The app provides date-wise, truck-wise quantity of coal delivered against the Sale Orders.
  • Acts as a tool to monitor, whether the despatches are made on the fair principle of ‘First in First Out’



 National Optical Fibre Network

  • National Optical Fibre Network (NOFN) is an ambitious initiative to trigger a broadband revolution in rural areas.
  • NOFN was envisaged as an information super-highway through the creation of a robust middle-mile infrastructure for reaching broadband connectivity to Gram Panchayats.
  • The National Optical Fibre Network (NOFN) aims to connect all the 2,50,000 Gram panchayats in the country and provide 100 Mbps connectivity to all gram panchayats (GPs).
  • To achieve this, the existing fibres of PSUs (BSNL, Railtel and Power Grid) were utilised and incremental fibre was laid to connect to Gram Panchayats wherever necessary. Dark fibre network thus created was lit by appropriate technology thus creating sufficient bandwidth at the Gram Panchayats.
  • The NOFN project was funded by the Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF).


  • BharatNet shall be a project of national importance to establish, by 2017, a highly scalable network infrastructure accessible on a non-discriminatory basis, to provide on demand, affordable broadband connectivity of 2 Mbps to 20 Mbps for all households and on demand capacity to all institutions, to realise the vision of Digital India, in partnership with States and the private sector.
  • The objective is to facilitate the delivery of e-governance, e-health, e-education, e-banking, Internet and other services to the rural India.


  • Affordable tariff structure for rural and remote areas to promote Digital India 




  • Nirbhay is an all-weather low-cost long-range subsonic cruise missile with stealth and high accuracy designed and developed in India by the DRDO.
  • The missile has a range of more than 1000 km. It weighs about one tonne and has a length of 6 metres.
  • Its relatively slow flight speed allows it to navigate its way precisely to the target.
  • The Nirbhay cruise missile is an Indian version of the American Tomahawk.
  • The missile is capable of being launched from multiple platforms on land, sea and air.
  • ‘Nirbhay’ missile can travel with a turbofan or turbojet engine and is guided by a highly advanced inertial navigation system indigenously developed by the Research Centre Imarat (RCI),
  • The cruise missile is expected to supplement the Indo-Russian joint venture supersonic cruise missile BrahMos, which can carry warheads up to 290 kilometer.
  • In particular, Nirbhay is being adapted for the Indo/Russian Su-30MKI. The missile is capable of carrying nuclear warheads.
  • With two side wings, the missile is capable of flying at different altitudes ranging from 500 m to 4 km above the ground and can also fly at low altitudes (like low tree level) to avoid detection by enemy radar.


  • DRDO Conducts Successful Flight Trial of ‘NIRBHAY’ Sub-Sonic Cruise Missile 



OHEPEE Project

  • India Signs Loan Agreement with World Bank for US$ 119 Million for “Odisha Higher Education Programme for Excellence and Equity (OHEPEE) Project
  • The Objective of the project is to improve the quality of ‘students’ equitable access to selected institutions and enhance governance of the higher education system in Odisha.


SHe-box portal for sexual harassment complaint

  • It is an online complaint Management System for women working in both public and private organizations to lodge complaints of sexual harassment at workplace.
  • It is in line to ensure the effective implementation of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act (the SH Act), 2013.

How is it different?

  • Users of SHe-Box also have the option of interacting with Ministry of WCD through this portal, with an assured time-bound response.
  • It also has the option for resource persons and institutions willing to contribute to training on this subject in various organisations to submit their applications.

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