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International Current Affairs 2016

Current Affairs[February 2016]
  • TPP - it stands for Trans Pacific Partnership is the mega trade agreement forum from which America withdrew itself on the first day of office of new President, Donald Trump. TPP started by Barack Obama comprised 12 Pacific Rim countries including the three North American states, Australia and New Zealand, Japan, four members of Asean and two Latin American countries. Its goal was to write the rules of economic engagement covering trade, investment protection, governance, dispute settlement, environment, labour standards.
  • Metallic hydrogen - the new most valuable material on the planet. Nearly a century after it was theorised, Harvard scientists claim to have succeeded in creating the rarest and potentially one of the most valuable materials on the planet -- atomic metallic hydrogen. In addition to helping scientists answer fundamental questions about the nature of matter, the material is theorised to have a wide range of applications, including as a room-temperature superconductor. To create it, researchers squeezed a tiny hydrogen sample at 495 gigapascal, or more than 71.7 million pounds-per-square inch -- greater than the pressure at the centre of the Earth. At those extreme pressures, solid molecular hydrogen breaks down and the tightly bound molecules dissociate to transform into atomic hydrogen, which is a metal. While the research offers an important new window into understanding the general properties of hydrogen, it also offers tantalising hints at potentially revolutionary new materials. The material could also provide major improvements in energy production and storage - because superconductors have zero resistance energy could be stored by maintaining currents in superconducting coils, and then be used when needed. Though it has the potential to transform life on Earth, metallic hydrogen could also play a key role in helping humans explore the far reaches of space, as the most powerful rocket propellant yet discovered, researchers said. The research was published in the journal Science.
  • SARA - it stands for Socially-Aware Robot Assistant is a computer screen that interacts with someone with a camera in front and asks the questions. It can look at the persons face, eyebrows and from his smile detect his mood and have conservation with him. It was used at the World Economic Forum in Switzerland where it surprised the participants by understanding their words and non-verbal behavior to build a relationship.
  • Qatar Airways - the recently launched the world's longest scheduled commercial services with its inaugural flight from Doha to Auckland. The Boeing 777 flight will take 16 hours and 20 minutes, pass over 10 time zones, five countries and travel 14,535 km before reaching Auckland in New Zealand.
  • Erithacus - the name of new species of new shark with rabbit-like buckteeth and a bulky head which was discovered recently. It is the 50th 'ghost' shark species known to science reported in 'Live Science' magazine. At nearly one metre in length, the new creature is the second-largest species of ghost shark ever discovered.
  • TPS - it stands for The Micra Transcatheter, recently approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA),is a new type of heart device that provides patients with the most advanced pacing technology at one-tenth the size of a traditional pacemaker and is the only leadless approved for use in the US. This world's smallest pacemaker, which is about as big as a large vitamin capsule and provides the most advanced pacing technology, has been successfully implanted for the first time in a patient in the US.
Current Affairs[January 2016]
  • Doomsday Clock - the symbolic instrument designed by scientists informing the public when the Earth is facing imminent disaster. It was in the news recently after scientists moved its minute hand from three to two-and-a-half minutes before the final hour, the closest it has been since 1953. The Chicago-based Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists reset the clock to its closest time to midnight in 64 years recently, citing threats such as nuclear weapons, climate change and Donald Trump's election as US president. The bulletin was founded by scientists who helped develop the United States' first atomic weapons. It's Science and Security Board, which includes Nobel laureates, nuclear and climate experts, meets biannually to discuss where the clock's hands should fall in light of world events. The clock was last set this close to midnight in 1953, when the USSR tested the hydrogen bomb, marking the start of the nuclear arms race between the United States and the Soviet Union. The clock had then read two minutes to midnight.
  • Bumblebee - the first bee species in the US to be declared endangered after suffering a dramatic population decline over the past 20 years. Bumblebees are social insects that form colonies with a single queen. The colonies are smaller than those of honeybees, growing to as few as 50 individuals in a nest. Bumblebees have round bodies covered in soft hair (long branched setae) called pile, making them appears and feel fuzzy.
  • Xiao Nan - the robot who recently made its debut as a journalist. The robot journalist made its debut in a Chinese daily recently with a 300-characters-long article written in just a second. The article, published in the Guangzhou-based Southern Metropolis Daily, focused on the Spring Festival travel rush. Its author took only a second to finish writing the piece and is able to write both short stories and longer reports, according to Wan Xiaojun, a professor at Peking University who leads the team studying and developing such robots.
  • Republican Party - the party to one which Donald Trump belongs to who took over as the 45th President of America. He was administered oath by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts.
  • Mesentery - the name of the new organ which has been discovered hiding in plain sight inside the human body. It was previously thought to be just a few fragmented structures in the digestive system. It has been discovered by J Calvin Coffey, a researcher at the University Hospital Limerick, Ireland.
  • La La Land' -film which swept away the Golden Globe Awards 2017, which was held in Beverly Hills on January 8 this year. The Damien Chazelle-directed film won the top honours and created Golden Globe history with seven wins. 'La La Land' won the Best Motion Picture (Comedy or Musical). The film's leading actor Ryan Gosling won the award for Best Actor in a Motion Picture (Comedy or Musical) for his act as a jazz pianist. Emma Stone walked away with the Best Actress in a Motion Picture (Comedy or Musical) for her portrayal of an aspiring actress in 'La La Land'. Damien Chazelle too bagged the Best Director and Best Screenplay Award for the love story. The film also won in the Original Score Department with the award going to Justin Hurwitz. The film's song 'City Of Stars' won the award for Original Song.
  • Tintin - the fictional detective character which was in the news recently after it completed 88 years. Tintin created by renowned Belgian cartoonist Georges Remi, better known as Herge, appeared for the first time on January 10,1929 in the comic strip called Le Petit Vingtieme.
  • Amazon - the E-commerce giant which was in the news recently after it pulled off from its site the sale of doormats with Indian flag. They also expressed regret for hurting Indian sensibilities, a day after Sushma Swaraj, India's foreign minister threatened to deny visas to its officials if it didn't take doormats depicting the Indian flag off its site.
  • Qatar Airways - the recently launched the world's longest scheduled commercial services with its inaugural flight from Doha to Auckland. The Boeing 777 flight will take 16 hours and 20 minutes, pass over 10 time zones, five countries and travel 14,535 km before reaching Auckland in New Zealand.
  • Erithacus - the name of new species of new shark with rabbit-like buckteeth and a bulky head which was discovered recently. It is the 50th 'ghost' shark species known to science reported in 'Live Science' magazine. At nearly one metre in length, the new creature is the second-largest species of ghost shark ever discovered.
  • TPS - it stands for The Micra Transcatheter, recently approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA),is a new type of heart device that provides patients with the most advanced pacing technology at one-tenth the size of a traditional pacemaker and is the only leadless approved for use in the US. This world's smallest pacemaker, which is about as big as a large vitamin capsule and provides the most advanced pacing technology, has been successfully implanted for the first time in a patient in the US.
Current Affairs[December 2016]
  • Cucumber - the plant whose seedlings were germinated under microgravity conditions of the International Space Station (ISS) by scientists to understand how plants sense gravity and stimulate their own growth. Cucumbers features specialized protuberances, or pegs, whose formation is regulated by gravity. These pegs form during the pant's early growth stage to help the seedlings emerge from their hard seed coat and anchor the developing plant in the soil while its roots form. In August last year, NASA astronauts harvested their own 'outredgeous' lettuce aboard the ISS. In January this year, astronauts grew the first flower in space, a zinnia. Growing tomato plants on the space station is planned by NASA in 2017.
  • SolarStratos - the name of the solar powered two-seater aircraft with a mission to fly some 78,000 feet above the earth in 2018, which was recently unveiled in Payerne in Switzerland. The team behind the SolarStratos plans to breach the stratosphere and if successful it will fly higher than any plane before it and shows that renewable energy can not only match fossil fuels but surpass them. The pilot will be subjected to frigid temperatures and extremely low pressures during the flight.
  • The World Bank - they recently cancelled a $100 million loan to Pakistan for a natural gas efficiency project due to no progress in achieving the development objectives and a lack of interest on the part of the gas distribution company. The project, which was to be carried out by Sui Southern Gas Company (SSGC) in its distribution areas in Karachi, interior Sindh and Balochistan, was aimed at enhancing the supply of natural gas by reducing physical and commercial losses of gas in the pipeline system. A World Bank report said the failure of the project led to its closure and, as a result, the levels of unaccounted-for gas (UFG) remained high while continuing to drain the precious natural resource. The project was aimed at enhancing the supply of natural gas by reducing physical and commercial losses of gas in the pipeline system.
  • Apple - the company which recently announced its decision to partner with Goldwind, the world's largest wind turbine maker, in projects in china that will provide 285MW of wind power. This marks Apple's foray into wind power and is its largest clean-energy project to date.
  • Giraffe - the tallest land animal, which as now at risk of extinction according to biologists. According to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in 1985 the number of giraffes was anywhere between 1, 51,000-1, 63,000 which has declined to 97,562 in 2015. Because the giraffe population has shrunk nearly 40% in just 30 years, scientists have put it on the official watch list of threatened and endangered species worldwide calling it "vulnerable".
  • Gotthard Base Tunnel of Switzerland - the world's longest and deepest rail tunnel which was officially opened recently after almost two decades of construction work, carrying passengers deep under the Swiss Alps from Zurich to Luganao.57.5km is the length of the Gotthard Base Tunnel which was built in 17 years with an estimated expenditure of Rs.12bn Swiss Francs (Rs795 billion).
  • The World Bank - they recently asked India and Pakistan to explore options to settle their dispute over two hydroelectric projects in the Indus river basin, after New Delhi questioned its neutrality. This follows the bank's decision to proceed with two parallel mechanisms-Pakistan's demand for a Court of Arbitration and India's request for neutral experts. The bank 'paused' the process, saying two countries should consider resolving their dispute in an 'amicable manner and in line with the spirit' of the Indus Water Treaty of 1990.
Current Affairs[November 2016]
  • 'Sumway Taihulight' - this computer won the fastest supercomputer title in the recently released 48th edition of Top500 list of supercomputers. With this, Chinese supercomputer has retained the top spot in the list of the world's fastest supercomputers for the eighth consecutive year.TaihuLight is built entirely using processors designed and made in China. It had made its first public appearance in June 2016. It was developed by the China's National Research Centre of Parallel Computer Engineering and Technology (NRCPC). It can perform 93 quadrillions calculations per second (petaflop/s) almost three times as fast as Tianhe-2.
  • 'Toilets and jobs' - the theme of the World Toilet Day celebrated on 19 November 2016 to raise awareness and inspire action to tackle the global sanitation crisis. It seeks to draw attention of people around the world to raise global awareness of the daily struggle for proper sanitation which in fact is a human right along with clean water. It focuses on how sanitation or the lack of it, can impact on livelihoods. It also highlights the importance of crucial role played by Toilets in creating a strong economy, as well as improving health and protecting people's safety and dignity, particularly women's and girls'. The observance of this day is coordinated by United Nations-Water in collaboration with Governments of member countries and relevant stakeholders. In India, the observance of the day highlights the importance of Swacch Bharat Mission which to make India clean and open defecation free (ODF) by 2019. So far under Swacch Bharat Mission-Gramin 2.7 crore toilets are built, 1.2 lakhs villages are declared ODF, 60 districts declared ODF, 3 states (Sikkim, Himachal Pradesh and Kerala) are declared ODF.
  • NASA - they successfully launched highly advanced geostationary weather satellite Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite-R (GOES-R). The satellite will boost the US's weather observation capabilities, leading to more accurate and timely forecasts, watches and warnings. Key Facts GOES-R is the first of four new advanced weather satellites of the GOES-R program managed by US's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). It will become operational within a year after undergoing a testing and validation of its six new instruments, including the first operational lightning mapper in geostationary orbit. GOES-R is also first satellite to carry a lightning mapper instrument to geostationary orbit. It will photograph lightning activity throughout Western Hemisphere about 200 times every second. It also will be part of the Search and Rescue Satellite Aided Tracking (SARSAT) System, an international satellite-based search and rescue network operated by NOAA.
  • 25 November 2016 - this day was observed as International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women across the world. The theme for the day is "Orange the World - raise funds to end violence against women". The colour orange in the theme symbolizes a better future without the pervasive human rights violation that affects 1 in 3 women and girls all over the globe. The International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women is observed to raise awareness about violence against women and discuss solutions that would work for women community.
  • Puan - the orangutan residing in Perth Zoo has recently been named the world's oldest Sumatran orangutan in captivity by the Guinness Book of World Records. She celebrated her 60th birthday recently with her birthday breakfast from her childhood home in Malaysia. She was gifted to the zoo in 1968 by the Sultan of Johor. Female orangutans in the wild do not generally live past 50.
  • FIM - it stands for Flight Deck Interval Management is the new system developed by NASA which increases the number of airplanes that can land on the same runway which will help to keep the flights on time. Cockpit based FIM is connected to the aircraft's on-board information and navigation systems.
  • 67 - it is the percent by which the global wildlife population could fall by an average between 1970 and 2020 as a result of human activities, according to World Wildlife Fund's Living Planet Report 2016.The report indicated that the global populations of fish, birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles have already declined by 58 per cent between 1970 and 2012.The report also highlights the magnitude of human impact on the planet and highlights the changes needed in the way society is fed and fuelled. According to the report, the top threats to species were directly linked to human activities including habitat loss, degradation and over exploitation of wildlife.
  • Living Torah - the name of the world's oldest known stone tablet inscribed with Ten Commandments-dating back about 1,500 to 1,700 years- which was recently put up for auction. The slab was discovered in 1913 in Israel and based on the shape and content of the text, scholars concluded that it was an ancient form of Samaritan, an archaic mixture of Aramaic and Hebrew that dated to between 300 and 500 AD.
  • World Science Day - this day is celebrated on 10 November every year all over world which was started by UNESCO in 2001 to demonstrate the importance of science in normal life.
  • 5th November 2016 - this day was recently celebrated as World's First Tsunami Awareness Day. Tsunamis are rare. But they can be extremely deadly. In the past 100 years, more than 260,000 people have perished in 58 separate tsunamis. At an average of 4,600 deaths per disaster, the toll has surpassed any other natural hazard. Such a stark impact isn't inevitable, however. Early warning systems can save lives. Equally important is community and individual understanding about how and where to evacuate before a wave strikes. Tsunamis know no borders, making international cooperation key for deeper political and public understanding of risk reduction measures. As a result, the UN General Assembly has made 5 November into World Tsunami Awareness Day, with the first edition being held this year.
  • 14 November - this day is observed as World Diabetes Day every year. World Diabetes Day was launched in 1991 by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and the World Health Organization (WHO) in response to the rapid rise of diabetes around the world. It focuses on a theme related to diabetes. This year the theme is 'EYES ON DIABETES'.
  • 12 November - this day is celebrated as The World Pneumonia Day globally to generate awareness about the 'pneumonia' disease. The day aims to highlight the severity of pneumonia and bring together the people from all over the world to promote the prevention and treatment of the disease. The Theme for 2016 "Keep the Promise, Stop Pneumonia Now".
  • Digital India - the theme adopted for the 36th edition of India International Trade Fair (IITF), started at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi. 150 companies from 27 countries are taking part in the fair. The 2016 IITF has been organised by the India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO), under aegis of Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry. This year's partner country is South Korea and focus country is Belarus. Besides, Madhya Pradesh and Jharkhand are partner states and Haryana is focus state. This year's theme highlights country's persistent efforts to alleviate poverty through meaningful convergence of digital technologies and e-governance.
  • Asian Development Bank (ADB) - they have inked a $500-million loan agreement to build a 9.8 km long road bridge across the Ganga River in Bihar. It will be country's longest river bridge and shall provide better connectivity between North and South Bihar and also Patna and its surrounding areas. In addition to the loan, ADB will $900,000 in technical assistance. The state government will provide $215 million for the project. It is expected to be completed by end of December 2020.
  • 16 November - The International Day for Tolerance is observed globally on 16 November to generate public awareness of the dangers of intolerance. The observance of the day seeks to educate masses about the need for tolerance in society and help them understand the negative effects of intolerance. The International Day for Tolerance was instituted by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) by passing resolution 51/95 in 1996.
  • 'Sumway Taihulight' - it won the fastest supercomputer title in the recently released 48th edition of Top500 list of supercomputers. With this, Chinese supercomputer has retained the top spot in the list of the world's fastest supercomputers for the eighth consecutive year. TaihuLight is built entirely using processors designed and made in China. It had made its first public appearance in June 2016. It was developed by the China's National Research Centre of Parallel Computer Engineering and Technology (NRCPC). It can perform 93 quadrillions calculations per second (petaflop/s) almost three times as fast as Tianhe-2.
Current Affairs[October 2016]
  • Astroturfing - the new method developed by scientists for spotting people who post false reviews, comments or tweets from multiple social media accounts to espouse opinions. Researchers from the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) in the US, describe a statistical method that analyses multiple writing samples - a practice known as 'astroturfing'. They found that it is challenging for authors to completely conceal their writing style in their text. Based on word choice, punctuation and context, the method is able to detect whether one person or multiple people are responsible for the samples.
  • Carbon Monoxide - one of the 100 toxic gases released by 'lithium-ion' battery commonly used in smartphones and tablets as per the new study by researchers from the institute of NBC Defence in the US and the Tsinghua University in China. It was also found that a fully charged battery will release more toxic gases than a battery with 50% charge.
  • Wade - the new species of titanosaur, a long necked behemoth recently confirmed, that roamed in Australia about 95 million years ago. The fossil remains of the dinosaur, dubbed Savannasaurus Elliottorum, commonly called wade was discovered in Queensland in 2005. It is believed that these massive animals migrated from present day South America into present day Australia and Antartica, back at the time when the three were connected as a part of the landmass Gondwana. The results were recently published in a journal Scientific Reports.
  • Haima - the name of typhoon which recently hit many parts of Hong Kong and Philippines effecting normal life and damaging properties and some life were also due to the wrath of this typhoon.
  • Carbon Dioxide (CO2) - the gas for which the scientists have developed a way of reverse combustion process in which CO2 can be turned back into a fuel. Researchers at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in the US recently used complex nanotechnology techniques to turn the dissolved pollutant gas into ethanol.
  • Lettuce - the leafy green plant which has been planted by NASA on the International Space Station to learn how to grow fresh food in space-which may help astronauts on manned mission to Mars.
  • JiaJia - the name of the world's oldest giant panda which died at Hong Kong theme park recently at the age of 38, the equivalent of 114 human years. JiaJia whose name meant 'good' was a gift from the Chinese government to Hong Kong in 1999, on the occasion of the second anniversary of the former British colony handover to the mainland.
Current Affairs[September 2016]
  • Titan - the name of Saturn's moon, which is believed to be the only celestial body other than Earth with liquid lakes and seas on its surfaces. It was in the news recently after NASA has unveiled plans to send a submarine to scour depth of Titan's largest ocean, Kraken More, for signs of life. Kraken More is the largest known body of liquid on the surface of Titan. It was discovered by the space probe Cassini and named in 2008 after the Kraken, a legendary sea monster. Kraken More may be hydrologically connected to the second-largest sea on Titan, Ligeia Mare.
  • Juno - the NASA's spacecraft sent to study the secrets of planet Jupiter. It was in the news recently as it executed its first flyby of Jupiter, passing 4200km above the gas giant's clouds-the closest contact ever achieved by a man-made probe with the planet. Juno entered its aimed-for orbit around Jupiter on July4, 2016 and passed closest on August 27, 2016. Juno will study the origins of Jupiter, its internal structure, its magnetosphere and its atmosphere.
  • Mars - the planet for which NASA mock mission ended successfully recently after the six people team ended their one year isolation at the barren northern slope of the Mauna Loa volcano in Hawaii. The crew included a French astrobiologist, a German physicist and four Americans-a pilot, an architect, a doctor/journalist and a soil scientist spent their time inside a dome 36 feet(11m) in diameter and 20 feet tall.
  • Lionrock - the typhoon which rocked Japan recently especially the northern portions of the country. The typhoon with wind speed of over 160kmph landed on Japan's northern Pacific coast and tore through the region dumping torrential rain over a wide area, stranding communities, with roads and bridges destroyed or blocked.
  • 5th September - this day is celebrated every year as the International Day of Charity by United Nations to commemorate the anniversary of the passing away of Mother Teresa who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979 "for work undertaken in the struggle to overcome poverty and distress, which also constitute a threat to peace". With a single-minded mission of serving the poorest of the poor, Teresa worked for the poor, sick, orphaned and dying on the streets of Kolkata before her death on this day in 1997 at the age of 87. Recently, her canonisation by Pope Francis in the Vatican City mass was attended by 1, 00,000 pilgrims, including 13 heads of state or government and hundreds of sari-clad nuns from the Missionaries of Charity.
Current Affairs[August 2016]
  • Delta - it is the name of the world's lightest paraglider tride that can take off and land with wheels while carrying an adult pilot. It has two rear-mounted propellers, horizontally arranged, each driven by a motor and is powered by lithium polymer batteries. The Delta has been built for the National Geographic Channel.
  • Raven Whale - the new species of Whale which has been reported from the northern Pacific Ocean. It is a black-beaked whale only rarely seen alive by Japanese fisherman which they call 'karasu', the Japanese word for raven. They have beaks like dolphins, dive several feet to feed on squid and bottom fish. The whales are elusive and can only be seen if the water is perfectly calm.
  • Uber - the US cab-hailing firm recently winded up its business in China to put its India expansion plan in top gear. Uber will be the third American technology behemoth after Amazon and Apple to double down on India, after having failed to make a breakthrough in China.
  • Moon Express - the private firm which has received a license from the US's Federal Aviation Administration to launch a spacecraft and land on the moon in 2017. So far, there been no private space missions beyond the Earth's orbit. The farthest commercial venture have so far gone up to 22,236 miles, the geosynchronous orbit to place the telecommunication satellites that fly above the earth.
  • The Google Lunar X Prize - the $20 million reward, is to incentivize space entrepreneurs to create an era of affordable access to space. The competition's prize goes to the first team to land a privately funded rover on the moon, travel 500m and transmit HD videos and images.
  • Nida - the name of typhoon which recently swept across many parts of southern China and Hong Kong. It was the strongest typhoon to hit the Pearl River delta in 30 years.
  • 1007 - the number of robots which simultaneously participated together in a dancing event in China to make a new Guinness World Record. Each of the 43.8 cm tall dancing were controlled by just one mobile and the event was organised by the Chinese company, Ever Win Company. The earlier record was set by Chinese company UBTECH Robotics Cor with 540 dancing robots earlier this year.
  • 13th August - this day every year is celebrated as Organ Donation Day in India by the people, government organizations and other related professions in order to motivate normal human beings to donate the organs as well as to understand the value of organ donation in the life of an individual. The organ donor can be anyone of which the organ can be transplanted to the patient urgently require. The organ donated by the normal human being is saved properly to transplant into the patient whenever he or she require. One can get the new life through the organ transplantation donated by someone.
  • 41.8 million tones - it is the amount of global E-waste generated in 2014 as per the Global E-waste Monitor 2014. In the last five years global e-waste generation has gone up by 23% from 33.8 million tonnes in 2010 to 41.8 million tonnes in 2014. E-waste is a term used to cover all discarded electrical and electronic equipment and their parts.
  • Greenland sharks - they are the Earth's longest living creatures with a spine according to the first study on its lifespan. 392 years is the age of the oldest of the Greenland sharks examined after it was caught around four years ago. Greenland sharks are found in the North Atlantic.
  • July 2016 - this month has been recorded as the Earth's hottest month in modern times setting a new high mark for global heat in 137 years of record-keeping as per the report of United States government scientists released recently. July 2016 was 1.57 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th-century average, breaking last year's record for the warmest July on record by 0.11 degrees. Scientists say the heating trend is being driven by fossil-fuel burning, and is made worse by the ocean warming phenomenon known as El Nino, which came to an end last month. July's global average of temperatures taken over land and ocean surfaces was the highest for any month in the NOAA global temperature dataset record, which dates back to 1880.The report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration came just two days after the US space agency National Aeronautics and Space Administration released its climate data, which also found July was a record-breaking month.
  • August 19 - this day is observed as World Photography Day, which aims to inspire photographers across the planet to share a single photo with a simple purpose: to share their world with the world. World Photo Day originates from the invention of the Daguerreotype, a photographic process developed by Frenchmen Louis Daguerre and Joseph Nicephore Niepce in 1837. On January 9, 1839, The French Academy of Sciences announced the daguerreotype process. A few months later, on August 19, 1839, the French government purchased the patent and announced the invention as a gift "Free to the World".
  • Airlander 10 - the name of the helium-filled airship, considered the world's largest aircraft which flew for the first time in Bedford, UK recently. The Airlander 10 is a hybrid of blimp, helicopter and airplane and has been nicknamed the 'flying bum' because of its bulbous front end. The Airlander is designed to use less fuel than a plane but carry heavier loads than conventional airships.
  • Micius - the name of the world's first quantum satellite launched by China recently in an effort to harness the power of particle physics to build an 'unhackable' encrypted communication systems. The nickname is after a 5th century BC Chinese philosopher-scientist, the satellite will be used in experiments to prove the viability of quantum technology to communicate over long distances.
  • Iran - the country whose airbase was used for the first time by Russian bombers to strike over Syria. Russia recently launched Tu-22M3 long range bombers & Su-34 frontline bombers on Syria from the Hamedan air base, 280 km southwest of Tehran. Earlier Russia's long range bombers had to be launched from 1900km away, now bombers need to fly only 640km from Iran to Syria.
  • Great Auk - the penguin sized extinct flightless birds which disappeared in the 19th century after the last known bird was killed in 1844 on an Iceland island. Until the species extinction in the 19th century Great Auk ranged across Atlantic from northern Europe to Iceland. It was in the news recently after the scientists are planning to bring back the extinct bird. Researchers recently met at the International centre for Life in Newcastle to discuss reintroducing the flightless marine birds onto the Farne islands in England.
  • SwagBot - the world' s first robot designed to round up livestock being developed by Australian scientists to help the country' s farmers. SwagBot is a box of electronics supported by four independently moving legs on wheels. It is omnidirectional and can navigate obstacles across water and be remotely controlled by farmers as it herds cattles. The cattle stations in Australia average about 400,000 hectares of land where rearing livestock is becoming very difficult with growing producer' s becoming older.
Current Affairs[July 2016]
  • The Grimsel - the name of the electric racing car built by Swiss student engineers that recently broke the world record for acceleration by battery-powered vehicles when it took only 1.513 seconds to reach 100kph.The record-breaking electric car was developed and built in less than a year by a team of 30 students at the ETH Zurich and Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts in Switzerland. The previous record of 1.779 seconds was set last year by a team at the University of Stuttgart in Germany.
  • 6.5 million - the number of premature deaths which takes place in the world due to air pollution as per the special report released recently by International Energy Agency (IEA). China and India accounts for more than half of the deaths. India alone contributes 1.59 million deaths due to air pollution. The report also warned that the global number will increase significantly touching 7.5 million in 2040 unless the energy sector that emits majority of air pollution takes greater action to curb emission.
  • China - the country where the first indigenous commercial jet made its debut flight recently, was carrying 70 passengers. The jet ARJ21 took to maiden flight from Chengdu city in southwestern China's Sichuan Province to Shanghai, marking a landmark success. The jet manufactured by Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC), completed the maiden flight with a total of 70 passengers mostly journalists and television crews. The plane is China's first regional jet to be manufactured according to international standards and it is expected to compete with France's Airbus 320 and America's Boeing 737.It was put through six years of grueling tests before being awarded airworthiness certificates from the Civil Aviation Administration of China, and the US Federal Aviation Agency.
  • 2018 - the year in which NASA will launch the world's most powerful rocket Space Launch System (SLS) with Orion spacecraft, known as Exploration Mission-1(EM-1). It will also carry 13 small satellites secondary payloads or 'Cube Sats' to carry out science and technology investigations to help pave the way for future human exploration in deep space, including the journey to Mars. It was in the news recently as NASA for the last time tested the booster in a test environment at Orbital ATK Propulsions System's test facilities at Promontory, Utah.
  • Juno - the name of space craft which successfully entered into the orbit around Jupiter on a mission to probe the origins of the solar system. It will investigate Jupiter's origin, interior structure, deep atmosphere and magnetosphere. It will be the first solar array-powered spacecraft to go this deep into space and it is named after the goddess-sister-wife of the Roman god Jupiter.
  • Nepartak - the name of typhoon, the first of the year, which recently hit many parts of Taiwan and China.
  • 11th July - this day was recently celebrated as World Population day. This is an annual event, observed on July 11 every year, which seeks to raise awareness of global population issues. The event was established by the Governing Council of the United Nations Development Programme in 1989. It was inspired by the public interest in Five Billion Day on July 11, 1987-approximately the date on which the world's population reached five billion people. It encourages the activities, events and information to help make this right a reality throughout the world. World Population Day aims at increase people's awareness on various population issues such as the importance of family planning, gender equality, poverty, maternal health and human rights.
  • Dadaab Camp - the refugee camp in Kenya which is the world's largest refugee camp. It is the site of a UNHCR base hosting 329,811 refugees in five camps as of October 2015, making it the largest such complex in the world. The center is run by the UNHCR, and its operations are financed by foreign donors. It was in the news recently after Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai spent her 19th birthday there to draw attention to the global refugee crisis.
  • Leap Second - the extra second which is added to the official clocks to keep clocks in sync with Earth's rotation. It was in the news recently as the timekeepers will add an extra second to 2016 on December 31,2016.Earth takes a little over 24 hours for full rotation-86,400.002 seconds and not 86,4000. First leap second was added in 1972 and the last one on June30, 2015. The leap second can only be added on June30 & Dec 31 at 23:59:60.
  • MeerKAT - the radio telescope of South Africa which was recently in the news for revealing 1300 galaxies in a tiny corner of the universe where only 70 were known before. The image released recently was the first from MeerKAT, where 16 dishes were formally commissioned the same day. MeerKAT's full contingent of 64 receptors will be integrated next year into a multi-nation Square Kilometre Array (SKA) which is set to become the world's most powerful radio telescope.
  • DURUS - the name of new robot-with human sized feet laced up in a pair of sneakers which has been developed by scientists of the Georgia Institute of Technology. The bipedal robot steps with a heel-toe motion that copies human locomotion more closely than flat-footed robot walkers can and to enhance the similarity the researchers also gave it pair of sneakers.
  • Perlan 2 - it is the name of engineless space glider that departed for a record-breaking attempt to glide at 90,000 feet over Argentina, which, if successful, could pave the way for hypersonic travel and aircraft on Mars.
  • 13.4% - this is the decadal rate at which Artic Sea Ice is melting. The extent of Artic sea ice at the peak of the summer also covers 40% less area than it did in the late 1970s.The six-month period from January to June 2016 was the planet's warmest half-year on record, and also had the lowest Artic Sea extent since satellite records began in 1979, according to NASA.
  • TRAPPIST-1c - the name of the exoplanet which is believed to be within the star's habitable zone. This is one of the exoplanet in addition to TRAPPIST-1b which has been discovered by the astronomers recently using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. The planets orbit a red dwarf star at least 500 million years old, in the constellation of Aquarius. 1.5 days and 2.4 days is the time taken by TRAPPIST-1b and TRAPPIST-1c respectively to complete a circuit around red dwarf star. The planets are between 20 and 100 times closer to their star than the Earth is to the Sun.
  • Solar Impulse 2 - the solar-powered aircraft which successfully completed the first fuel-free flight around the world recently, returning to Abu Dhabi after an epic 16-month voyage and demonstrating the potential of renewable energy. It first took off from Abu Dhabi on March 9, 2015, beginning a landmark journey of about 40,000 km (24,500 miles) around the globe and nearly 500 hours of flying. Swiss explorers Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg, Solar Impulse founders and pilots, took turns piloting the aircraft with a wingspan larger than a Boeing 747 and weighing only as much as a family car.
  • 28th July 2016 - this day was recently celebrated as World Hepatitis Day. The theme for this year's World Hepatitis Day is 'Know Hepatitis-Act Now'. World Health Organisation (WHO) observes July 28 as World Hepatitis Day each year and the theme for 2016 is elimination. 400mn people are affected globally by water-borne A & E and blood-borne B & C Hepatitis.
  • Luca - it stands for Last Universal Common Ancestor is the single-cell, bacterium like organism which is believed to be the common ancestor of all life on Earth. Luca arrived about 3.8 billion years ago, and would eventually give rise to two different kinds of simple cells-bacteria and archaea.
  • Sleep Spindles - the waves which oscillates or alternates during sleep and looks like waves on an electroencephalogram. The scientists have suspected their involvement in cataloguing and storing memories as we sleep. The scientists now hope to target these spindles to treat memory impairment and cognitive deficits.
Current Affairs[June 2016]
  • Robot Taxi - the Japanese technology company unveiled its driverless taxis on the sidelines of the G-7 summit held recently at Ise-Shima in Japan. Robot Taxi is a joint venture between ZMP that develops automated vehicle technology and mobile portal and e-commerce websites provider De Na Co.
  • Harambe - the 17-year-old endangered gorilla which was shot dead by the Cincinnati Zoo authorities in the United States after a four-year-old entered the enclosure, sparking a furious debate on animal rights. The male western lowland gorilla named Harambe was killed on Saturday by a special zoo response team that feared the boy's life was in danger. Video taken by zoo visitors showed the gorilla at times appeared to be protective of the boy but also dragged him through the shallow moat.
  • 5th June 2016 - the date on which the World Environment Day was celebrated recently.
  • QF-16 -the unmanned world's, most lethal drone which was recently tested by US Air Force over Florida and Gulf of Mexico. It is a new version of the F-16 fighter plane. A fully loaded F-16 has a six barrel M61 gun, along with 11 other places to mount weapons including nuclear missile.
  • The World Bank-they slashed its 2016 global growth forecast on Wednesday to 2.4 per cent from the 2.9 per cent estimated in January due to stubbornly low commodity prices, sluggish demand in advanced economies, weak trade and diminishing capital flows. The downgraded World Bank forecast follows a similar move by the International Monetary Fund, which cut its growth forecasts two months ago.
  • Jupiter - the largest planet of the solar system, is the planet which will be approached by American space agency NASA's Juno spacecraft within less than a month. The Juno mission was launched on August 5, 2011 with the primary aim of improving our understanding of the solar system's beginnings by revealing the origin and evolution of Jupiter.
  • The Carbfix project-the project at Iceland's Hellisheide plant, the world' largest geothermal facility which recently made a breakthrough of turning carbon dioxide into stone in matters of months by pumping it deep under- ground, offering a revolutionary new way of storing the greenhouse gas to tackle climate change. The pioneering experiment in Iceland mixed CO2 emissions with water and pumped it hundreds of feet underground into volcanic basalt rock- where it rapidly turned into a solids.
  • Microsoft Corp - the company which recently announced its proposal to buy LinkedIn Corp for $26.2 billion in it's biggest-ever deal, combining the software giant's business-productivity tools with an online network of 433 million professionals. For Microsoft, the deal will help it in its mission of trying to keep services like Outlook email relevant enough that customers won't want to leave it for competitors such as Google's Gmail. For LinkedIn, the opportunity to tap Microsoft's customers, including the 1.2 billion users of its Office suite of business software, could help it jump start growth, which has slowed in recent quarters.
  • Kepler - 1647 b -the name of the largest planet discovered recently by Astronomers which is outside our solar system. Astronomers have discovered the largest planet outside our solar system orbiting two stars, at a distance that would make it potentially habitable for people. A team of NASA astronomers that made the discovery using the Kepler space telescope revealed the findings at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society in San Diego, California recently. The gaseous planet -- dubbed -- is the size of Jupiter and has a wide orbit, revolving around its two stars in 1,107 days, or around three years. The discovery is the eleventh of its kind since 2005.Planets that orbit two stars -- known as circumbinary planets -- are sometimes called "Tatooines," after the similar fictional planet in the movie Star Wars where Luke Skywalker was raised.
  • June 14 - this day is commemorated as World Blood Donor's Day to celebrate Karl Landsteiner's birthday .Professor Landsteiner, the Nobel Prize-winning biologist is the first who classified blood into groups.
  • ExoMars - the name of the joint mission to the Red Planet by Europe and Russia which captured its first images of Mars this week as part of its preparation for arriving at the planet in October 2016. The mission was launched on March 14, 2016 and has already flown half of its nearly 500 million km journey.
  • Tianhe-3 - it will be the name of new super computer to be launched by China in 2020. It will be capable of doing at least a billion calculations per second and will be launched during the 13th five year plan period (2016-2020). In 2010 China's first petaflop supercomputer Tianhe-1, capable of at least a million calculations per second came into service in the supercomputing centre.
  • K2-33b - it is the youngest fully formed planet which has been discovered by scientists recently. It is slightly larger than the Neptune and whips tightly around its star every five years. The discovery was made using NASA's Kepler Space Telescope and its extended K2 mission, as well as the W M Keck Observatory on Mauna Kea in Hawaii.
  • Mars - the planet on which minerals were recently discovered by NASA's Curiosity Rover. It has been exploring the sedimentary rocks within Gale Crater since landing in August 2012 from where significant amount of a silica mineral called 'Tridymite' has been discovered. On Earth, tridymite is formed at high temperatures in an explosive process called silicic volcanism. Mount St.Helens, the active volcano in Washington State and the Satsuma-Iwojima volcano in Japan are examples of such volcanoes.
Current Affairs[May 2016]
  • Sea Hunter - the world's largest unmanned surface vessel, a self-driving 132-foot ship which can travel up to 10,000 nautical miles on its own to hunt for stealth submarines and underwater mines. The US military's research arm, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency or DARPA, in conjunction with the navy will be testing the ship off San Diego coast over the next two years.
  • Mars -the planet on which scientists have detected atomic oxygen in the atmosphere for the first time in 40 years. These atoms were found in the upper layers of the Martian atmosphere known as the mesosphere by an instrument on board the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA).The oxygen we breathe is called O2 as it comprises of two atoms of oxygen and O (one atom) is atomic oxygen. Atomic oxygen affects how other gases escape Mars and therefore has a significant impact on the planet's atmosphere.
  • Mercury - the planet whose transit was visible in India recently. It is the phenomenon which occurs when the Sun, Mercury and earth are lined in one plane. Unlike solar eclipses, Transit of Mercury are rare. In a century, there are about 13-14 events. They happen in pairs separated by about three years. The next one will be on November 11, 2019. But this will be visible only in some parts, including South America and Africa and not in India. The following one, to occur on November 13, 2032 will be viewed in India.
  • HoloFlex - the name of the world's first holographic flexible smartphone that lets users interacts with 3D videos and images without any headgear or glasses. It allows for glasses free interactions with 3D video and images in a way that does not encumber the user. HoloFlex features a 1920x1080 full high definition Flexible Organic Light Emitting Diode (FOLED) touch screen display.
  • Sea Harrier - the iconic aircraft of Indian Navy as recently phased out after 33 years of service. This maritime fighter was inducted in 1983 and was built by British aerospace. Indian Navy's Sea Harrier squadron was deployed during Operation Vijay in 1999 and embarked on the Viraat during the Operation Parakram in 2001 when standoff with Pakistan was at all time high.
  • 1284 - the number of new planets which have been discovered by astronomers beyond our solar system recently which is believed to be the single largest findings of planet to date. 9 of them are possibly in orbits suitable for surface water which bolsters their prospects of supporting life. The new planets were identified during the Kepler space telescope's four year primary mission and a new analysis technique that applied statistical models to confirm the batch as planets, while ruling out scenarios that could falsely appear to be orbiting planets.
  • Redzikowo - the place in northern Poland is the place where the US has put up missile interceptor stations as part of the NATO's larger shield due to become fully operational by 2018. In addition to it one missile interceptor has also been set up at Deveselu in southern Romania. This has led to war of words between US and Russia. The Redzikowo station is just 250km from the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad and due to this Moscow views this system as security threat on its very doorstep.
  • Harmony of the Seas - the world's biggest cruise ship which sets sail on its maiden voyage to the UK from France recently. The 1 billion euro, 16 deck ship is bigger than the Eiffel tower and holds the record for being the widest cruise ship ever built-boasting a 6,360 passenger capacity. It's been compared to a floating city with more than 2,500 staterooms, 20 dining venues, 23 swimming pools and a park with more than 10,000 plants and 50 trees.
  • ROSS - it is the name of the first artificial intelligence lawyer which has been hired by a US firm, which will use the robot to assist its teams in legal research. The robot is built upon Watson, IBM's cognitive computer.
  • -Unique Pink' - the name of the rare pear-shaped 15.38 carat pink diamond which sold recently for $31.6 million(Rs.211.6 crore approx.) at Sotheby's in Geneva, making it the most expensive fancy vivid pink diamond ever sell at an auction. The previous record was held by -Sweet Josephine', a fancy vivid pink diamond weighing 16.08 carats which sold for $28.5 million (Rs.190.08 crore) at Christie in November 2015.
  • RoboBees - the name of the flying micro robots built by scientists which can perch during flight like birds or butterflies to save energy and stay in the air for longer. Inspired by nature the RoboBees has been pioneered at the Harvard Microbotics Lab which uses an electrode patch and a foam mount that absorbs shock.
  • CNN TV - the channel which will feature Anthony Bourdain, a chef and food critic eating street food with US President Barrack Obama in Hanoi, Vietnam. He ate 'bun cha' in the Bun Cha Huong Lien eatery for the travel show on CNN about the hidden culinary gems.
Current Affairs[April 2016]
  • Suddeutsche Zeitung - the newspaper of Germany which received the documents from the Panamian law firm Mossack Fonseca about illegal investments in tax heavens. Commonly called the 'Panama Papers' is the set of over 11 million leaked documents that reveal how the rich and connected around the world used tax heavens for salting away their wealth. The Indian Government has formed a team comprising the CBDT, FIU, Foreign Tax and Tax Research and RBI to look into the leaks.
  • Ethereum - the name of the newly created virtual currency that has soared in value, climbing 1,0005 over the last three months. Unlike Bitcoin, which was released in 2009 by a mysterious creator known as Santoshi Nakamoto, Ethereum was created in a more transparent fashion by 21-year old Russian-Canadian, Vitalik Buterin.
  • NTT - stands for Nippon Telegraph and Telephone, the former telephone monopoly in Japan, has agreed to buy technology services business from Dell for $3 billion as the company seeks to expand overseas to counter an aging domestic market. The acquisition through unit NTT Data is to strengthen the foot print in North America and enhance cloud service and business-process outsourcing.
  • Earth day - this day was celebrated on 22nd March 2016. Leaders from 160 countries officially signed the Paris Climate Agreement on Earth Day 2016.The deal was thrashed out in Paris last December in order to stem global warming. The signing makes this year's Earth Day one of the most important in years, and the organisers will be attempting to build on the momentum created by last year's Paris Climate Summit.
  • Rio City - the capital of the Rio de Janeiro state which lies in the south eastern region of Brazil. It was in news as the official countdown to Rio 2016 began with the lighting of the Olympic flame at the Temple of Hera, Olympia by Greek actor Katerina Lehou.
  • MK2 - the 100 mile wide moon which was recently spotted by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope orbiting the second brightest icy dwarf planet after Pluto in the Kuiper Belt. The Kuiper Belt is a vast reservoir of left over frozen material from the construction of the solar system 4.5 billion years ago.
  • $5 - note of New Zealand won the Bank Note of the Year Award for 2015 from among a record 20 countries which placed their bank notes on the ballot. The note featuring Sir Edmund Hillary, the first person to summit Mount Everest, was chosen by the International bank Note Society for its artistic merit and security features.
  • 171 - the number of nations which signed the Paris accord on climate change on 22nd April, 2016 as the landmark deal took a key step forward, potentially entering into force years ahead of schedule of 2020. After signing, countries must formally approve the Paris Agreement through their domestic procedures. China, the world's top carbon emitter, announced it will 'finalize domestic procedures' to ratify the Paris Agreement before the G-20 summit in China in September 2016. The US also has said it intends to join the agreement this year.
  • C/2014 S3 -the name of the new comet which has been discovered recently. The new comet is made of rocky materials found on Earth. Researchers believe that it was formed in the inner Solar System, somewhere near earth, but was expelled to the backyard and preserved in the Oort Cloud for billions of years. This comet is nicknamed Manx, after a breed of cats without tails, as this planet is made of rocky material and there is no vaporization or tail.
Current Affairs[March 2016]
  • 22nd March - this day was recently celebrated as World Water Day. According to the report 'Water: At what cost?' released by Water Aid on this day, about 7.6 crore people, which is 5% of India's population , are deprived of safe water and country registers around 1.4 lakh child deaths annually due to diarrhea, mainly a water-borne disease. India has the world's largest number of people without access to safe water. India's neighbours -China, Bangladesh and Pakistan-are also among the top 10 countries where maximum number of people are living without uncontaminated drinking water.
  • HD20782 - it is the new extra solar planet spotted by scientists from San Francisco State University, about 117 light years from Earth, that boasts of the most eccentric orbit ever seen, measured at an eccentricity of .96. This means that the planet moves in a nearly flattened ellipse, travelling a long path far from its star and then making a fast and furious slingshot around the star at its closest approach.
  • Airlander 10 - it is the world's longest aircraft which was unveiled recently. It is part plane, part airship and part helicopter, is 92 m long-around 15 longer than the biggest passenger jets. The British firm Hybrid air Vehicles(HAV) have designed the craft to stay airborne for up to three weeks using helium and the vessel is able to travel at a speed of 148kmph.
  • Twitter - the famous social networking site which completed 10 years recently. The micro blogging site has 320 million active monthly users out of which 32 million users are in India. The little Twitter birdie has a name-Larry Bird after Hall of Fame basketball player Larry Bird.
  • February 2016 - the month in which the global temperature in February 2016 smashed monthly records to become the warmest month in more than a century of recordkeeping. According to NASA data, global surface temperature across land and ocean in February were 1.35C warmer than the average for that month measured from 1951-1980 baselines.
  • Mars - the planet for which Europe and Russia recently launched a spacecraft in a joint mission to sniff out life on Mars and bring humans a step closer to flying to Red Planet themselves. The craft, part of the ExoMars programme, blasted from Baikonour spaceport in Kazakhstan on board a Proton rocket, starting a seven-month journey through space.
  • September 4, 2016 - the date on which Mother Teresa would be canonised. Pope Francis recently approved sainthood for Mother Teresa, the missionary nun who became a global symbol of compassion for her care of the sick and destitute. The pontiff set September 4 as the date for her canonization, elevating her to an official icon of the Catholic faith.
  • Amazon - the online retail colossus has applied for US patent on using selfies-instead of passwords- for shopping using smartphones. Amazon reasoned that combining sensor and camera capabilities in smartphones with face and gesture recognizing software's results in higher security than passwords or identification numbers.
  • European Union -they recently concluded a treaty with Turkey intended to halt illegal migration flow to Europe in return for financial and political rewards for Ankara. Under the pact Ankara would take back all illegal migrants who cross to Greece, including Syrians, in return for the EU taking in thousands of Syrian refugees directly from Turkey and rewarding it with more money, early visa-free travel and progress in its EU membership negotiations.
  • Barbie-it is one of the world's best-selling dolls which turned 57 on March 9, 2016. It is inspired by German doll 'Bild Lilly'. Mattel founders Ruth and Elliot Handler introduced Barbie, named after Barbara, in 1959.
  • Alpha Go-the name of the computer program that that recently made waves after winning the ancient strategy game 'Go' from one of the strongest players of the game, Lee Sedol of South Korea in what's seen as a historic breakthrough in the building of artificial intelligence(AI) systems. Alpha Go clinched the series in Seoul. It has been developed by Google Deep Mind, a subsidiary of Google/Alphabet.
Current Affairs[February 2016]
  • SOFIA- stands for Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy which is flying telescope of NASA in a heavily modified Boeing 74SP jetliner. It carries a 100 inch telescope to altitudes between 39,000 and 45,000 feet, giving astronomers the ability to study celestial objects at infrared wavelengths that cannot be seen from observatories on Earth.
  • My Shake- the new app developed by the University of California, Berkley to give early warning of an earthquake.
  • LIGO-stands for Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory facility in Louisiana, USA which captured the first ever glimpse of the gravitational waves. Gravitational waves are ripples in the space-time fabric triggered by colliding black holes or neutron star (that is formed by the explosive death of another star).
Current Affairs[January 2016]
  • 2015- this year was the warmest year since 1880 and it shattered the previous record set in 2014 by the widest margin of 0.16 degree C as per the report by the National Oceanic and atmospheric Administration Administration (NOAA).
  • Houbara- the rare desert bird from which the ban on killing was recently lifted by Pakistan Supreme court. This is found in sandy and stony semi arid regions especially in Baluchistan.
  • Zika- the virus which has brought havoc in Central America, South America, Caribbean and Oceania countries. It can be transmitted by the bite of mosquito or from the mother to the foetus via the placenta. It is believed it causes Microcephaly which is a neurological disorder in newborns.
  • Snowzilla- the monster blizzard that deposited more than two feet of snow and brought Washington, New York and other northeastern US cities to standstill and killed many people.
  • The Martian- the space adventure which won the top movie prize in the best motion picture-musical or comedy category at the 73rd Golden Globes Awards recently.
  • The Revenant- the revenge drama which won the top movie prize in the best motion picture-drama category at the 73rd Golden Globes Awards recently.
  • Juno- the NASA's spacecraft to Jupiter which broke the record for the most distant solar powered mission when it travelled 793mn km from the Sun. Juno will arrive at Jupiter on July 4, 2016 and over the next year the space craft will orbit the Jovian world 33 times, skimming to within 5,000 km of the planet's cloud tops every 14 days. Launched in 2011, Juno is the first solar powered spacecraft designed to operate at such a great distance from the Sun.
  • AIIB- stands for Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank which was recently inaugurated by China's President Xi Jinping to streamline infrastructure across the continent. AIIB with an authorized capital of $100 billion is believed to be China's effort to rival the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank.
  • Hubble Telescope- for the first time ever this telescope captured merging of two galaxies nearly 230 million light-years away from the earth, in the Hercules constellation. NGC 6052 which was originally classified as a single abnormal galaxy collided with another drawn together by gravity.

International Current Affairs 2015

Current Affairs[December 2015]
  • Hubble Telescope- for the first time ever this telescope captured merging of two galaxies nearly 230 million light-years away from the earth, in the Hercules constellation. NGC 6052 which was originally classified as a single abnormal galaxy collided with another drawn together by gravity.
  • Falcon 9- the rocket of Elon Musk which made an upright landing in a giant leap towards making rockets reusable like airplanes, after launching 11 satellites. The rocket reached a height of 200km before heading back to Earth and touching down at a former US Air Force rocket and missile testing range. Musk's Space X is a privately funded space transport firm.
  • 0.25%- The percentage by which the US Federal Reserve raised its benchmark short term interest rates, after keeping it around zero since the start of the 2008 financial crisis. The hike was announced by Fed chairperson Janet Yellen after the meeting of the Fed's top policy making body, the Federal Open Market Committee.
  • Renminbi- also known as Yuan, the currency of China,which was recently included by IMF Board as the fifth currency in its special drawing rights. There are only four other currencies-the dollar, euro, pound and yen, that have the IMF Designation.
  • James Webb- the most powerful space telescope being built by NASA team that will replace the Hubble telescope which will start decaying by 2020. It can detect light from the first galaxies and study every phase of our universe's history.
Current Affairs[November 2015]
  • James Webb- the most powerful space telescope being built by NASA team that will replace the Hubble telescope which will start decaying by 2020. It can detect light from the first galaxies and study every phase of our universeas history.
  • AKP- stands for Justice and Development Party which is the ruling party of Turkey. This party under Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan secured a stunning victory in the snap parliamentary elections held recently.
  • Robo Bee- the insect like robot which has been designed by engineers at Harvard University’s John A Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. It is smaller than a paper clip that can both fly and swim-paving the way for aerial and aquatic robotic vehicles.
  • SPECTRE- stands for Special Executive for Counter-Intelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion (SPECTRE) which is the title of the forthcoming movie of James Bond.
Current Affairs [October 2015]
  • Robo Bee- the insect like robot which has been designed by engineers at Harvard University’s John A Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. It is smaller than a paper clip that can both fly and swim-paving the way for aerial and aquatic robotic vehicles.
  • SPECTRE- stands for Special Executive for Counter-Intelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion (SPECTRE) which is the title of the forthcoming movie of James Bond.
  • Blue- the colour in which the UN headquarters was lit up for the 70th anniversary of the United Nations in New York on 24th October 2015.
  • Kimbetopsalis simmonsae- the plant eating beaver like mammal whose fossil remains were discovered recently. It is believed that they lived just after the mass extinction of life on Earth, 66 million years ago.
  • MARS- the planet from where first proof of flowing waters have been found recently. Scientists analyzing data from a NASA spacecraft have found the first evidence that briny water flowed on the surface of Mars as recently as last summer.
  • Dujuan- the super typhoon which battered Taiwan recently leaving many injured as torrential rain and fierce winds hits many parts of the island’s northeastern tip.
  • October 3,2015- this day marked the 25 years of joyful reunification of Germany and is celebrated as Germany’s national day. The Brandenburg Gate in Berlin is recognized as the symbol of German unity.
Current Affairs [September 2015]
  • MARS- the planet from where first proof of flowing waters have been found recently. Scientists analyzing data from a NASA spacecraft have found the first evidence that briny water flowed on the surface of Mars as recently as last summer.
  • Dujuan- the super typhoon which battered Taiwan recently leaving many injured as torrential rain and fierce winds hits many parts of the island’s northeastern tip.
  • October 3,2015- this day marked the 25 years of joyful reunification of Germany and is celebrated as Germany’s national day. The Brandenburg Gate in Berlin is recognized as the symbol of German unity.
Current Affairs [August 2015]
  • Windows 10- the much awaited new operating system which was launched by Microsoft together in 190 countries. For the first time in Microsoft's history, Windows 10 is a free upgrade to users on Windows 7 and Windows 8- a sign of Microsoft bucking to the modern trend, started by both Apple and Google, of giving operating systems away for free.
  • Tethys- the moon of the planet Saturn on whose surface NASA’s spacecraft Cassini has spotted unexplained arc-shaped, reddish streaks.
  • Aurora- it is a natural light display in the sky, predominantly seen in the high latitude regions. Astronomers recently discovered the first of this outside our solar system, around a brown dwarf star around 18 light years away from Earth, which is up to 10,000 times more powerful than any previously seen.
  • Rocky Fire- the name of the wildfire which recently raged through the northern California destroying many homes and displacing many residents.
  • SDG- stands for Sustainable Development Goals of UN that entail 17 goals and 169 targets applicable from January 1, 2016 which will replace the Millennium Development Goals 2015. These goals are to be met by 2030 by 192 countries and $2.5 trillion is needed to implement SDG.
  • 6th August-this day marked the 70th anniversary of the dropping of the first atomic bomb. It was 1945 on this day American b-29 bomber dropped a bomb, dubbed Little Boy on Hiroshima which instantly killed more than 80,000 people.
  • Pyongyang time- the new time zone announced by North Korea which will be 30 minutes behind those of South Korea and Japan. The change is to go into effect on August 15, 2015, the 70th anniversary of Japan’s defeat in World War II, which liberated a then-unified Korea from decades of Japanese colonial rule.
  • 9th August- this day marked the 70th anniversary of the dropping of the atomic bomb, ‘Fat Man’ on Japan’s Nagasaki which killed more than 74,000 people.
  • 51 Eridani- the name of the new planet found recently by researchers. It is a methane shrouded planet 100 light years away that resembles a young Jupiter and holds water. It is only 20 million years old-a mere infant by astronomy standards. It is the first planet detected by the Gemini Planet Imager, which was designed to discover and analyse faint young planets orbiting bright, nearby stars.
  • Erawan shrine- the Hindu shrine dedicated to Hindu God Brahma located in central Bangkok which was recently rocked by blasts which killed many people.
  • Reboot the Suit- the name of online crowdfunding campaign to restore the spacesuit that astronaut Neil Armstrong wore when he became the first man to walk on the moon in 1969. This is the first time the Smithsonian, the world's largest museum and research complex has turned to crowdfunding to help cover the cost of preserving its most valuable artefacts from the ravages of time.
  • 24th August 2015- the date on which Facebook passed an important milestone-for the first time ever one billion people used Facebook in a single day,the highest ever on a single day according to its CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
  • Grumpy Cat- she will become the first feline to be honored with an animatronic wax statute at the Madame Tussauds museum in San Francisco.3, 00,000 is the number of followers she has on Twitter.
Current Affairs [July 2015]
  • AIIB- stands for Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank which recently came into being at Beijing recently with an authorized capital of $100 billion and articles of agreement between 57 member nations. China, India and Russia are the three largest share holders taking a 30.34%, 8.52 % and 6.66% stakes respectively. The bank is expected to finance infrastructure projects across Asia and will likely become operational by the end of the year.
  • Let's Move- the campaign launched in United States to fight childhood obesity.
  • Mainau Declaration 2015- the declaration signed by Nobel laureates which call for action on climate change-the urgent need do limit global emissions and protect the climate which was signed at meet held at Lindau in Germany.
  • TAPI- stands for Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India pipeline project which has been envisaged to take gas from Turkmenistan, which holds the world's fourth-largest natural gas reserves to India and Pakistan through Afghanistan.
  • Go Set a Watchman- the second novel of Harper Lee was released recently simultaneously in 70 countries by its publisher Harper Collins which published 2 million copies in the first print, the most preordered book in company's history. His earlier Pulitzer winning novel 'To Kill a Mockingbird" was published 50 years ago.
  • Pluto- the planet on which icy mountains have been found recently by NASA's spacecraft New Horizons. NASA has named these peaks as the Norgay Montes after Tenzing Norgay who was the Sherpa guide for Sir Edmund Hillary when they conquered Mount Everest in 1953.
  • Renmibi- the unit in which the first loan will be issued by the BRIC's New Development Bank (NDB) in April next year. One US dollar is worth 6.25 renmibi, one unit of which is worth Rs.10.33. The NDB opened in Shanghai on July 21, 2015 to finance infrastructure projects mainly in BRICS countries-the emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
  • Windows 10- the much awaited new operating system which was launched by Microsoft together in 190 countries. For the first time in Microsoft's history, Windows 10 is a free upgrade to users on Windows 7 and Windows 8- a sign of Microsoft bucking to the modern trend, started by both Apple and Google, of giving operating systems away for free.
  • Tethys- the moon of the planet Saturn on whose surface NASA's spacecraft Cassini has spotted unexplained arc-shaped, reddish streaks.
  • Aurora- it is a natural light display in the sky, predominantly seen in the high latitude regions. Astronomers recently discovered the first of this outside our solar system, around a brown dwarf star around 18 light years away from Earth, which is up to 10,000 times more powerful than any previously seen.
Current Affairs [June 2015]
  • MERS- stands for Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, the virus based disease whose fear of spread created panic in South Korea recently, the largest outbreak fear since the one which happened in Saudi Arabia.
  • The House of Hidden Mothers- the novel focused on late parenthood and surrogacy in the British Asian community written by British Indian writer and actor Meera Syal which was launched in London recently.
  • Apple Music- the new services announced by Apple which will stream music with a new subscription services that will allow users to stream songs, listen to playlists and connect with perfomers.
  • Jurassic World- the new movie by Steven Spielberg which opened with a bang in its week on its way to the biggest box office opening ever worldwide.
  • Laudato Si- stands for Praise Be, the 191 page encyclical in which Pope Francis takes a humanistic position on climate change and calls for cultural revolution to change the world’s ‘structurally perverse’ economic system.
  • BX1E- the world’s first electric passenger aircraft which has been designed by the Shenyang Aerospace University and Liaoning General Aviation Academy in China. It can fly at an altitude of 3,000 metres for 45 minutes to an hour at a stretch.
  • Free hit- the hit given after no ball will be discontinued after the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) ratification of the new One day International rules from July 5, 2015. The other key changes would be removal of batting power play and close catchers not being allowed in the first five overs.
  • Space X Falcon 9- the unmanned Space Exploration Technologies rocket which exploded two minutes after take -off from Cape Canaveral, Florida recently.
Current Affairs [May 2015]
  • Pashupatinath- the famous temple of Shiva which was able to survive the major earthquake in Nepal.
  • MESSENGER- the NASA's spacecraft crashed into Mercury ending its historic 11 year mission that provided valuable data and thousands of images of the planet. Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry and Ranging (MESSSENGER) was launched on August 3, 2004 and it began orbiting Mercury on March 18, 2011 and completed its primary science objectives by March 2012.
  • Conservatives- the party led by British Prime Minister David Cameron which came back to power with 331 seats crossing the 326 in the 650 member House of Commons.
  • May 8- this day is celebrated as Victory in Europe Day be most European countries marking the end of the World War II on the continent.
  • The Woman of Algiers (version O) - The painting masterpiece created by Picasso became the most expensive artworks to be sold at an auction when it was sold for Rs.151 crore ($179.36 million) at Christie's in New York recently. It is a vibrant, cubist depiction of nude courtesans and is part of a 15 work series Picasso created in 1954-55 designated with the letters A to O. The previous highest record was $ 142.4 million for Francis Bacon's Three Studies of Lucian Freud in New York in 2013.
  • Ponting Man- The sculpture by Alberto Giacometti became the most expensive sculpture to be sold at an auction when it was sold for Rs.907crore ($141.3 million) recently. It is a bronze figure depicting a skinny 5 foot high person with extended arms. The previous highest record was held by Giacometti whose Walking Man was sold for $104.3 million in London in 2010.
Current Affairs [April 2015]
  • April 2- this day was recently celebrated as World Autism Awareness Day. Autism or Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) affects the way the brain processes information and often prevents individuals from understanding what they see, hear and otherwise sense, resulting in difficulties in social relationships, communications and behavior.
  • Dalny Vostok- the Russian fishing trawler which sank recently killing many persons. 
  • Godzilla- he was recently appointed as resident and tourism ambassador for Tokyo's Shinjuku ward in an effort to lure tourists.
  • Songkran- the most celebrated festival of the year which marks the start of Thailand's traditional New Year was celebrated recently.
  • Asteroid 316201- the asteroid between Mars and Jupiter which orbits the Sun every 5.5 years has been renamed Malala 316201 or 2010ML48 after Malala Yousafzai,the youngest Nobel Prize winner. This asteroid was discovered in 2010 by Amy Mainzer , astronomer at NASA'a Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California.
  • Airbus- the French major aeroplanes manufacturer which has recently agreed to set up plant in India to manufacture helicopters, satellites and military transport planes.
  • Songkran- the most celebrated festival of the year which marks the start of Thailand's traditional New Year was celebrated recently.
  • New Zealand- they defeated Australia to win the 24th Azlan Shah Cup hockey tournament played at Ipoh, Malaysia.
  • Jitu Rai- he clinched the men's 10m air pistol bronze at the ISSF World Cup in Changwon,Korea.
  • April 14th- this day was recently celebrated as World Matrimony Day.
  • Maglev Train- the Japan's state of the art train, which clocked a new world record of 603 kmph in a test run near Mount Fiji near Tokyo.
  • 23rd April- this day was recently celebrated as World Book Day.
  • Pashupatinath- the famous temple of Shiva which was able to survive the major earthquake in Nepal.
  • MESSENGER- the NASA's spacecraft crashed into Mercury ending its historic 11 year mission that provided valuable data and thousands of images of the planet. Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry and Ranging (MESSSENGER) was launched on August 3, 2004 and it began orbiting Mercury on March 18, 2011 and completed its primary science objectives by March 2012.
Current Affairs [March 2015]
  • Fifty Shades of Grey- the erotic drama produced by Universal Pictures of US whose release in India was banned by censor board of India, Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).
  • Ola- this company recently bought rival TaxiForSure in a cash and equity deal worth $200 million.
  • 8th March- this day was recently celebrated as International's Women's Day.

  • Solar Impulse 2- the world's only solar power plane, which recently set off from Abu Dhabi in a bid to make the first round the world. It will have stop over in India at Ahmedabad and Varanasi. It is expected to cover 35,000km with 25 day travel 12 stop over 5 months. The aircraft founders and pilots are Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg.

  • Britannia- the 141,000 tonne liner which can accommodate up to 3647 passengers was recently inaugurated by British Queen Elizabeth II.

  • Amazon.com- the e commerce giant which recently received the approval of US Federal Aviation Administration to test a delivery drone outdoors over private and rural land in Washington state.
  • Dalny Vostok- the Russian fishing trawler which sank recently killing many persons.
Current Affairs [February 2015]
  • Boyhood- the movie directed by Richard Linkater which won top honours at the68th BAFTA awards in London winning Best film and Best director award.

  • George Lucas- the director and producer of the Star Wars has emerged as the wealthiest Hollywood tycoon with a fortune of $5.4 billion according to Wealth X, a global wealth intelligence and prospecting company.

  • 14 teams- the number of teams which are playing in the 2015 World Cup which will have 49 games was declared open at inaugural ceremony held at Melbourne in Australia and Christchurch in New Zealand.
  • Indian-American Professor Gets Top US Chemistry AwardPurnendu Dasgupta, a Jenkins Garrett professor of chemistry at The University of Texas at Arlington, has been awarded the 2015 American Chemical Society Division of Analytical Chemistry J. Calvin Giddings Award for Excellence in Education.
    The national award recognises a scientist, who has enhanced the professional development of analytical chemistry students, developed and published innovative experiments, designed and improved equipment or teaching labs and published influential textbooks or significant articles on teaching analytical chemistry.

  • Best Picture Oscar Awarded To 'Birdman'
    The Oscar award for the Best Picture was clinched by the team of "Birdman Or (The Unexpected Virtue Of Ignorance)" at the 87th Academy Awards here on Feb 22, 2015.
    The movie tells the tale of Riggan Thomson, best known to the public as Birdman — the superhero he once played in a series of films. He hopes to re-establish himself as a serious actor by mounting his own dramatic production on Broadway.

  • Israel To Explore Making Defence Products In India
    Israel is ready to explore making some defence products in India, its Defence Minister Moshe Ya'alon said , responding to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'Make in India' call to global aerospace firms to manufacture defence equipment in the country.
    "We welcome Prime Minister Narendra Modi's policy of 'Make in India.' We will examine with the Indian government the concept of Make in India to produce some products in India," Ya'alon told reporters after inaugurating his country's pavilion at the Aero India trade expo at the Yelahanka base of the Indian Air Force (IAF) on the city's outskirts.

  • Ashton Carter Sworn In As Obama's New Defence Secretary
    Ashton Carter was sworn in as the 25th US defense secretary -the fourth in US President Barack Obama's six years in office.
    After taking the helm, he will have to tackle mounting issues, such as the fight against the extremist group Islamic State (IS) and a decision on whether to arm the Ukrainian forces with lethal weapons.

  • NASA Launches Deep Space Solar Monitoring Satellite
    The US space agency has launched a new mission called the Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) to monitor solar activity in deep space.
    Launched on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, DSCOVR will provide space weather forecasters from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) more reliable measurements of solar wind conditions, improving their ability to monitor potentially harmful solar activity.

  • Two Indians Win Honours At Grammy Awards
    Two Indians — Ricky Kej and Neela Vaswani — took home a Grammy Award each at the 57th edition of the musical extravaganza held here Sunday night. The latter's narration of the audio of the book "I Am Malala: How One Girl Stood Up For Education And Changed The World" won her the trophy.
    Vaswani, who stays in New York, bagged a Grammy in the Best Children's Album category for recreating Pakistan's Nobel laureate Yousufzai's book in audio form. It reaches out to tell a tale of a brave teenaged girl who risked her life for the right to go to school.

  • World's oldest man celebrates 112th birthday
    A Japanese man who was certified as the oldest living man by the Guinness World Records in August 2014, turned 112.
    Sakari Momoi, a resident of Saitama city, is still in good health, Xinhua news agency reported.
Current Affairs [January 2015]
  • Two Years Eight Months and Twenty Eight Nights- the new novel of British author Salman Rushdie to be published after seven years, is based on collection of folk tales known as the Arabian Nights.
  • Kepler 438B- one of the eight new planets found in distant solar system by NASA's Kepler space telescope, could be termed as Earth's twin, is 12%larger than Earth and get 40%more light.
  • Charlie Hebdo- the French satirical magazine which recently faced a terrorist attack at it's headquarter in Paris killing 12 persons.
  • MH370 Met With Accident, Malaysia Declares Officially
    The Malaysian government has officially declared that Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 met with an accident March 8 last year, and all 239 people on board the plane are presumed dead.
    The announcement was made by Director General of Malaysian Department of Civil Aviation Azharuddin Abdul Rahman on Jan 29, 2015.
    Neither the wreckage of the aircraft nor the bodies of those on board have been found yet.

  • Saudi King Abdullah Dies: Modi CondolesKing Abdullah died on Jan 23, 2015 of complications from pneumonia and has been succeeded by his brother Salman, the Saudi Arabian royal household said in a statement.
    Prime Minister Narendra Modi condoled the demise of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia.
    "In King Abdullah, we have lost an important voice, who left a lasting impact on his country. I condole his demise," Modi said in a statement

  • Sri Lanka Polls: Sirisena won PM Modi Congratulates Sirisena
    Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated Maithripala Sirisena on his victory in the Sri Lankan polls and reaffirmed India's continued support for the nation's peace and development.
    "I spoke to Maithripala Sirisena and congratulated him. I congratulate the people of Sri Lanka on the peaceful and democratic poll process," the prime minister said in a statement.
    He added: "As a close friend and neighbour, reaffirmed India's continued solidarity and support for Sri Lanka's peace, development and prosperity."

  • Colombia's Paulina Vega Wins Miss Universe 2014 Title
    Colombian beauty Paulina Vega beat 87 contestants, including India's Noyonita Lodh, to win the Miss Universe 2014 crown here on 25th January, 2015.
    Bangalore girl Noyonita, 21, failed to reach the Top 10, but she had managed to pave her way into the Top 15 at the 63rd edition of the pageant. India has not won the Miss Universe crown since 2000, when now Bollywood actress Lara Dutta had walked away with the accolades.
    At the 2014 pageant, contestants from 88 countries were participating.

International Current Affairs 2014

Current Affairs [December 2014]
  • Modi-Putin talks: 12 new n-reactors in India, 20 agreements inked
    Nuclear energy cooperation between India and Russia got a major boost with both sides inking a vision document for the construction of 12 Russia-built nuclear units in India over the next two decades as Prime Minister Narendra Modi and visiting Russian President Vladimir Putin held summit talks here.
    The two sides inked 20 agreements, including in the sphere of defence cooperation, oil and gas and in trade, after the holding of the 15th India-Russia annual summit.

  • 141, mostly children, killed in Peshawar school attack
    In one of the worst acts of human savagery ever perpetrated, the Pakistani Taliban senselessly slaughtered 141 people, 132 of them children, in a brazen terror attack launched by its heavily armed gunmen and suicide bombers on an army-run school in Pakistan's Peshawar city in retaliation to the army's operation against extremists in North Waziristan.
    The horrifying attack was carried out by a group of paramilitary uniform-wearing terrorists who stormed the Army Public School complex in Peshawar, the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province bordering Afghanistan, Pakistani media said.

  • Robin Williams, Brazil World Cup, Ebola top 2014 Google searches
    The late Hollywood star Robin Williams, Brazil's World Cup soccer championship, and the Ebola virus have been the top searches on Google this year, according to the tech company.
    The smartphone game "Flappy Birds", cross-dressing Austrian singer and Eurovision winner Conchita Wurst, the animated game of the feature film "Frozen", the Sochi Olympic Games, and Ukraine also made it to the 11 most popular searches.

  • Indian Navy on standby for AirAsia flight searchThe Indian Navy has kept a surveillance aircraft and three ships ready as an AirAsia flight with 162 people on board Sunday went missing en route from Indonesia to Singapore.
    "The Indian Navy has kept one Boeing P8I on standby at INS Rajali (Tamil Nadu) and three ships ready for search and rescue operations for the Air Asia flight which has been reported missing since this morning (Sunday)," a navy official said.

Current Affairs [November 2014]
  • India, Australia agree on new security cooperation framework
    India and Australia marked a new synergy in bilateral relations as they agreed on a framework for security cooperation to boost defence, civil nuclear and economic ties even as Prime Minister Narendra Modi ended a hectic five-day, four-city visit.
    The two countries signed five agreements, including one on exchange of sentenced prisoners, while Modi also addressed the Australian parliament, the first Indian prime minister to do so.

  • Under Satya Nadella Microsoft emerges as world's 2nd top firm
    Under the leadership of its new Indian-American CEO Satya Nadella, Microsoft has overtaken oil giant Exxon Mobil to become the world's second most valuable company after iPhone maker Apple Inc.
    Nadella restructured Microsoft that has been struggling with the declining market in personal computers to focus on cloud services and mobile technology while cutting jobs and company expenses, Tech Times reported.

  • India, Australia Agree On Early Closure Of Civil N-Agreement
    India and Australia agreed on seeking an early closure on the civil nuclear agreement and also to speed up negotiations on a bilateral trade agreement as Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi held talks with his Australian counterpart Tony Abbott on Nov 18, 2014 (Tuesday).
    Modi, addressing the media here after talks with Abbott, said he has asked for easier access for Indian business to the Australian market and quicker investment approvals.

  • Google signs 60-year lease with NASA
    In a bid to reduce costs and shed surplus property, the US space agency has signed a 60-year lease with Planetary Ventures LLC – a shell organisation operated by Google for real estate deals – to manage Moffett Federal Airfield (MFA) in California and restore its historic Hangar One.
    Google will initially invest more than $200 million into the site, NASA said in a statement.

Current Affairs [October 2014]
  • Union Carbide ex-chief Warren Anderson is dead

    Warren Anderson, who headed Union Carbide when a gas leak in its Bhopal pesticide plant killed thousands, is dead, the New York Times reported.

    Anderson died Sep 29 at a nursing home in Vero Beach, Florida, aged 92, the Times said. His death, not announced by his family, was confirmed from public records.

    Anderson flew to Bhopal four days after the world's worst industrial disaster and was arrested. But after paying bail he left India and never returned to face trial.

  • Australia Govt lifted ban on facial coverings in Public areas

    A move to force Muslim women who cover their faces to sit in a separate enclosed public gallery at Australia's Parliament House has been reversed, media reported .

    Earlier this month, Speaker Bronwyn Bishop and Senate President Stephen Parry approved new rules applying to anyone wearing "facial coverings", ABC News reported.

  • NASA Tool To Help Airlines Reduce Weather Delays

    NASA scientists have developed a tool that would help airlines minimise weather delays and save both flight time and fuel.

    Known as Dynamic Weather Routes (DWR), this computer software tool is programmed to constantly analyse air traffic throughout the National Airspace System along with the ever-shifting movements of weather severe enough to require an airliner to effect a course change.

    When the DWR tool finds an opportunity for an airliner to fly more efficiently to its destination, saving time and money, while also remaining at a safe distance from the storm, the computer rings an alert to the airline flight dispatcher.

  • Australian Richard Flanagan wins 2014 Man Booker prize

    The first Man Booker prize to allow American nominees was won by an Australian, with Richard Flanagan triumphing for a novel of love and war that tells the harrowing stories of prisoners and captors on the infamous Burma railway.

    Flanagan won for The Narrow Road to the Deep North, with philosopher AC Grayling, who chaired the judges, describing the book as "an absolutely superb novel, a really outstanding work of literature", the Guardian reported.

  • Jean Tirole awarded 2014 Nobel Prize for Economics

    French economist Jean Tirole has won the Nobel Prize in economics for his work on market power and regulation.

    Tirole, 61, wins a prize of 8m Swedish krona (£692,000). He is six years younger than the average age of Nobel economics laureates.

  • French Author Gets Nobel Prize For Literature

    This year's Nobel Prize for literature has been awarded to French author Patrick Modiano, it was announced on Oct 9,2014.

    He has been awarded the prize "For the art of memory with which he has evoked the most ungraspable human destinies and uncovered the life-world of the occupation".

  • Scientists behind 'inner GPS' awarded Nobel prize in medicine

    John O'Keefe, May-Britt Moser and Edvard Moser – have shared the 2014 Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine, the Nobel Committee announced on Oct -6 ,2014 ( Monday).

    The Nobel assembly at the Karolinska Institute has decided to award one half of the physiology or medicine prize to John O'Keefe and the other half jointly to May-Britt Moser and Edvard Moser for their discovery of cells that constitute a positioning system in the brain, Xinhua reported.

Current Affairs [September 2014]
  • NASA Selects Boeing, SpaceX To Ferry US Astronauts To ISS

    With a goal to end the US' sole reliance on the Russian Space Shuttle in 2017, NASA selected two American firms to transport astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS).

    The space agency chose the US multinational Boeing Co and California-based Space Exploration Technologies Corp (SpaceX) for the multi-billion dollar contract to carry astronauts in space taxis to and from orbit using their CST-100 and Crew Dragon spacecraft, respectively.

  • World's First Swimming Dinosaur Found In Morocco

    In a surprise find, palaeontologists have discovered the world's first known swimming dinosaur – a 15-metre-long behemoth with a crocodile-like face.The creature called Spinosaurus aegyptiacus had feet well suited to paddling and a sail-like structure rising from its spine.It also had unusually dense bones, possibly to help weigh it down as it hunted its underwater prey.

  • Modi Seeks Japan's Help In Skill Development

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi Monday sought Japan's help for skill development in India. Stating that 65 percent of India's population was young, Modi said: "In 2020, when the world would need a workforce, we are preparing for it from now itself, so that we can match the global workforce."

    "India is a youthful nation. We want to give importance to skill development. Be it quality, zero defect, discipline, we give importance to it," Modi said while addressing business leaders here.

  • World's first lab grown stem cells implanted

    Japanese researchers have successfully implanted lab-grown retinal tissue from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) into a woman in her 70s – the world's first recipient of stem cells.

    In a two-hour procedure, a team of three eye specialists led by Yasuo Kurimoto of the Kobe City Medical Center General Hospital transplanted a 1.3 by 3.0 millimetre sheet of retinal pigment epithelium cells into an eye of the woman who was suffering from an age-related macular degeneration.

Current Affairs [August 2014]
  • 111-Year-Old Japanese Officially Declared World's Oldest Man

    Sakari Momoi, a 111-year-old Japanese citizen, was Wednesday officially recognised in Tokyo as the oldest man in the world by the Guinness World Records award committee.

    Momoi bags the title after the death in early June of previous record holder, US citizen Alexander Imich, who was just one day older than the Japanese, the committee said in a statement.

  • Hiroshima commemorates 69th anniversary of atomic bombing

    Hiroshima, the Japanese city that suffered US atomic bombing in 1945 during the World War II, commemorated the 69th anniversary of the bombing Wednesday at the city's Peace Memorial Park.

  • NASA Creates Space Engine Like None Other

    In what could be a game changer in space exploration, NASA has successfully tested a "microwave thruster system" that requires no propellant to generate thrust.

    The engine appears to produce propulsion through electricity and nothing else.

  • First World War victims paid tribute across the globe

    The governor of Belgium's Liege province Monday to the victims of the First World War (WWI) as part of ceremonies to mark the centenary of the outbreak of the war.

    Speaking at the Cointe Inter-Allied Memorial in Liege, Governor Michel Foret asked gathered dignitaries to remember all those who died during the conflict.

  • Japan Announces 3.5 Trillion Yen Investment To India

    Japan Monday announced public-private investment of 3.5 trillion yen (Rs.2.03 trillion) in India.

    India and Japan held official talks Monday in the third day of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's five-day sojourn to Japan.

Current Affairs [July 2014]
  • NASA celebrates 45 years of moon landing

    On July 20, 1969, Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to set foot on the moon.

    Forty-five years later, NASA will celebrate Monday the giant leap by honouring Armstrong, who died in 2012, with a renaming ceremony of the historic "operations and checkout building" at Cape Canaveral in Florida, the launch site.

  • Japan ends 60-year military's ban on fighting abroad

    Japan took a historic step on July 01 2014 by ending a ban that has kept the military from fighting abroad since 1945. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe but a move that has riled China and worries many Japanese voters.

    The change, the most dramatic shift in policy since Japan set up its post-war armed forces 60 years ago, will widen Japan's military options by ending the ban on exercising "collective self-defence," or aiding a friendly country under attack.

  • US names Antarctica mountain Mt.Sinha after an Indian-American scientist

    To Honour an Indian-American scientist Akhouri Sinha, The United States named a mountain in Antarctica as Mt. Sinha. The mountain was named as the recognition of Sinha's work done as an explorer in 1971-72.

    Sinha's pioneering biological research expedition has provided critical data about the animal populations in Antarctica.

Current Affairs [June 2014]
  • Earth's largest water reservoir located inside Earth's mantle

    Earth's largest water reservoir might be located deep inside the Earth's mantle. This was revealed by a study published in the journal Science on 13 June 2014.

    The study was conducted by the Northwestern geophysicist Steve Jacobsen and University of New Mexico seismologist Brandon Schmandt.

  • Cabinet Clears China MoU For Industrial Parks

    The Indian government has given in principle approval to an MoU to allow China to set up industrial parks the country. The move comes ahead of the five-day visit of Vice-President Hamid Ansari to China from Thursday.

    China, which has established five industrial parks in ASEAN countries like Cambodia, Indonesia and Vietnam, is keen to set up similar industrial parks in India. The states being examined for the purpose include Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Haryana.

  • NASA built World's most powerful telescope to track alien's life

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) plan to build Advanced Technology Large Aperture Space Telescope (ATLAST) in Portsmouth. It will be the World's most powerful and largest telescope once it is built.

Current Affairs [May 2014]
  • Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Plaza coming up in Texas

    A seven-foot tall bronze statue of India's freedom movement leader will be the centrepiece of the Mahatma Gandhi Memorial of North Texas with walls inscribed with some of his quotes.

    After four years of planning and fundraising, ground was broken at Thomas Jefferson Park in Irving for the memorial last Saturday, according to dallasnews.com.

  • Royal Navy Submarine Service appointed first female submariners

    Royal Navy Submarine Service of United Kingdom appointed female submariners for the first.

    Pioneering lieutenants Maxine Stiles, Alex Olsson and Penny Thackray on 5 May 2014 have become the first women to serve in the Royal Navy Submarine Service. This step was taken for the first time in the 110-year history of the Submarine Service.

Current Affairs [April 2014]
  • Government to Issue E-Visa to tourists from 180 Countries

    The government will soon operationalise electronic travel authorization or e-Visa facility to inbound tourists from 180 countries.

    According to Tourism Secreatry Parvez Dewan, the government will operationalise the electronic travel authorization within a year.

    Dewan was speaking at the inauguration of the first edition of Incredible India Travel Bazaar (IITB), organised by Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) in partnership of with the tourism ministry.

Current Affairs [March 2014]
  • One Million Kids Suffer From TB Annually: Study

    As the world observes World TB Day Monday, a shocking research reveals that despite improved medication and government as well as aid agencies' efforts, the number of children suffering from tuberculosis (TB) annually has doubled since 2011.

    Researchers from Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) and Harvard Medical School (HMS) in Boston have estimated that around one million children suffer from TB annually- twice the number previously thought to have tuberculosis and three times the number that are diagnosed every year, the researchers claimed.

  • India, Singapore win 2014 UN Water for Life award

    India and Singapore have won the 2014 edition of the UN-Water's Water for Life Best Practices Award for their sustainable practices of water resources.

    This was announced Friday during an official UN ceremony here to mark World Water Day 2014 that falls March 22.

  • India seeks level playing field for all in Global Internet

    Close on the heels of the US decision to relinquish its oversight of Internet Corporation for Assignment of Names and Numbers (ICANN), a global multi-stakeholder meeting – NETmundial – on the future of internet governance will be held in Sao Paulo, Brazil, April 23-24. Nearly 800 delegates representing government, private sector, civil society, academia and technical communities, including several from India, are expected to attend this meeting.