• Researchers have identified specific metabolites that can be used as biomarkers for distinguishing dengue and Chikungunya infections.

  • Currently, antigen-based diagnostic tool is available for dengue and anti-body based diagnostic tool is available for chikungunya.

  • Antigen-based and Anti-body based tools takes time for diagnosis.

  • The metabolite clusters can be used for various applications such as

  • Biomarkers

  • Studying disease progression

  • Evaluating potential of drugs

  • Disease Management

Indigenously Developed SONARS

In News: The Government has formally inducted four types of indigenously developed SONARS that will boost its underwater surveillance capability recently.

NAVAL Systems

  • Recently, Kochi based Naval Physical Oceanographic Laboratory (NPOL) of DRDO, has handed over the following four naval systems to Indian Navy.

  • Induction of these Systems will increase the underwater surveillance capability of Indian Naval ships.

  • All these Systems are to be productionised in India.


  • Abhay (Compact Hull-Mounted Sonar for Small Ships & Shallow Water Crafts): Induction of Abhay (by replacing the vintage Russian sonar) enables indigenous sonar system to be installed on small ships, thereby enhancing the ASW surveillance capability of the fleet to smaller vessel, like Shallows Water Crafts, Light Frigates & Patrol Vessels, which was hitherto limited to frigates and destroyers.


  • HUMSA-UG (Upgrade for the Hull-Mounted Sonar Array (HUMSA) Series of Sonar Systems for Ships): It enables smooth upgrade of the capabilities of the indigenously-developed legacy Sonar System HUMSA, by drastically minimizing the existing hardware and addressing technology obsolescence issues, which is currently operational on-board on 18 ships.


  • NACS (Near-field Acoustic Characterization System (NACS) for Ship Sonars): It provides a simple and operationally efficient means to determine the frequency-dependent 3-D transmission and reception characteristics of the hull-mounted sonar aiding in the optimum performance and maintenance of the sonar.


  • AIDSS (Advanced Indigenous Distress Sonar System (AIDSS) for Submarines): It is used to signal that a submarine is in distress and thereby enable quick rescue and salvage.

  • It is a life-saving alarm system designed to transmit sonar signals of pre-designated frequency and pulse shape in an emergency situation, so as to attract the attention of Rescue Vessel in the vicinity.

Trojan Asteroids

  • Trojans are asteroids that are constant companions to planets in our solar system as they orbit the Sun and they constantly lead or follow in the same orbit, they will never collide with their companion planet.

  • The OSIRIS-REx (Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, and Security- Regolith Explorer) is a spacecraft launched by NASA.

  • The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft is currently on a seven-year journey to rendezvous with, study and bring a sample of primitive asteroid to understand the formation of our solar system.

  • It will activate its onboard camera suite and commence a search for elusive “Trojan” asteroids.

  • There are six planets in our solar system with known Trojan asteroids – Jupiter, Neptune, Mars, Venus, Uranus and Earth

  • The Earth Trojan is elusive; to date, scientists have only discovered one Earth Trojan asteroid – 2010 TK7.

Galileo Navigation System

  • EU launches its own Galileo navigation system designed to provide commercial and government customers with more precise location data than GPS.

  • Galileo is owned by the European Commission, the executive arm of the European Union, based in Brussels.

  • The system is also designed to boost search-and-rescue operations by cutting the amount of time it takes to pinpoint distress beacons used by people lost at sea or in the wilderness.

Jupiter’s string of pearls

  • NASA’s solar-powered Juno spacecraft has captured the seventh of Jupiter’s eight features forming a ‘string of pearls’ – massive counter clockwise rotating storms that appear as white ovals in the gas giant planet’s southern hemisphere.

Juno Cam is a colour, visible-light camera designed to capture remarkable pictures of Jupiter’s poles and cloud tops.

Nano Particles to remove Arsenic in Water

  • Arsenic in drinking water is the largest natural mass poisoning, as it is a slow poison, causing numerous adverse health effects, including cancer and genetic anomalies.

  • The technology developed to remove arsenic contamination consists of nanostructured iron oxyhydroxide.

  • The iron oxyhydroxides has large adsorption capacity to remove arsenic in two dissolved forms (Arsenate and arsenite).

  • The filter has the capability to remove arsenic concentration well below the WHO limit of 10 parts per billion.

  • Further, no nano particles are released into the purified water due to the biopolymer cages in which they are contained.

Oil Spilling

  • A chemically Modified Sawdust to act as non-toxic ‘super-sponge’ for cleaning oil spills in the city has been discovered.

  • The sawdust has exceptionally oil-attracting and buoyant properties.

  • Beyond absorbing oil, the saw dust also enhances another approach to combating oil spills called controlled burns.

  • The controlled burn using sawdust is called in-situ burning, the practice can significantly reduce the amount of oil in water and minimise its adverse environmental effects.

  • The in-situ burning has a byproduct of fine dust called wood flour, a woodworking byproduct often used to make wood composites.

  • Containing oil spills in cold waters is especially tricky, as bobbing ice chunks push oil below the water’s surface, making it difficult to collect. The same goes for rough waters, whose tall, clashing waves disperse oil.

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