Current Affairs for OAS Prelims 2020: Science and Technology

November 2020

  • Indian astronomers have collaborated with the 2020 Physics Nobel Laureate Prof. Andrea Ghez for the design of back-end instruments and possible science prospects of the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) project. The Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) is a proposed extremely large telescope (ELT) which is planned to be installed at Maunakea on the island of Hawaii.
  • SpaceX has launched Four Astronauts (3 Americans, 1 Japanese) to the International Space Station on the first full-fledged taxi flight for NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) by a private company. They were launched by Falcon Rocket from the Kennedy Space Center.The capsule has been named as “Resilience”. The crew was led by Commander Mike Hopkins, Shannon Walker, Victor Glover (First Black Astronaut on a long-term space station) mission and Japan’s Soichi Noguchi (First person in 40 years to launch on three types of spacecraft).
  • China has sent into space the world’s first 6G experiment satellite. The 6G satellite was among three Chinese satellites successfully launched into orbit, along with 10 commercial remote sensing satellites developed by Argentinian company Satellogic. This was the 351st rocket of China’s Long March series.
  • The US space agency NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) successfully launched ‘Copernicus Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich satellite’, to monitor the rising global sea level. The joint US-European satellite lifted off on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 4E at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
  • The Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) has been recognised by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) as a part of the World Wide Radio Navigation System (WWRNS) for operation in the Indian Ocean Region. India has become the fourth country in the world to have its independent regional navigation satellite system recognised by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO). The other three countries that have its navigation systems recognised by the IMO are the US, Russia and China.