GS Paper I- History and Geography of the World and Society.
Russia And US Partner To Build 1st Ever Space Station Near Moon.
- Russia and the United States have agreed to cooperate on a Nasa-led programme to build the first lunar space station, part of a long-term project to send humans to Mars.
- The US space agency said earlier this year (2017) that it was exploring a programme called the Deep Space Gateway, a multi-stage project to push further into the solar system.
- The project envisages building a crew-tended spaceport in lunar orbit that would serve as a “gateway to deep space and the lunar surface,” Nasa has said.
Highlights Of The Development–
- Nasa has been far from coy in its ambitions to send humans to orbit Mars by the 2030s, and subsequent plans to colonise of the red planet. But plans to return to the moon have waxed and waned with the US administration.
- While George W Bush was keen to see humans on the moon again by 2020, Barack Obama ditched the plan and focused on plans to visit Mars, including a mission to test the necessary technology by capturing a boulder from the surface of an asteroid and bringing it into lunar orbit.
- Now, it seems, it’s all change again. With the Trump administration, asteroid missions have fallen from favour: with a spaceport orbiting the moon, crewed visits to the lunar surface are once again on the menu.
- On 27th September, 2017 the Russian space agency Roscosmos announced that a cooperation agreement had been signed at an astronautical congress in Adelaide.
- Igor Komarov, Roscosmos’s general director, said no fewer than five countries were building their own rockets and systems.
- Russia and the United States also discussed using Moscow’s Proton-M and Angara rockets to help create the infrastructure of the lunar spaceport, the statement said, adding that the main works were scheduled to begin in the mid-2020s.
- Space exploration – including joint work on the International Space Station (ISS) – is one of the few areas where international cooperation between Russia and the US has not been marred by tensions over Ukraine and Syria.
- The $100bn ISS, which has been orbiting Earth at about 17,000mph per hour since 1998, is the world’s largest space project.
Sources- The Guardian.
GS Paper II- Governance.
Hyderabad Airport Becomes First In India To Provide Wheelchair Lift.
- The Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in Hyderabad has become the first airport to provide a wheelchair lift or vert-lift.
- The move comes as part of GMR Hyderabad International Airport Ltd’s Accessible India Campaign for passengers with reduced mobility.
Highlights Of The Development-
- Out of approximately 40,000 passengers who fly in and out of Hyderabad every day, over 100 are wheelchair-bound. The new facility has been made available to domestic arrival passengers under the GHIAL’s signature programme ‘Passenger is Prime’.
- The lift is electrically powered. After securing the wheelchair bound passenger on to the lift’s platform, it can be operated by a remote control. The facility also has a power back-up to ensure uninterrupted operation. It takes around two minutes for a passenger to move up from the gate to the baggage claim area.
- The RGIA also has dedicated curbside parking for people with reduced mobility, with proper signage, and intercom facility at both departure and arrival ramps. Wheel chair assistance from the curbside till check-in is also provided at the airport.
- Elevators across the terminal also have Braille instructions helping visually challenged passengers. Wheel-chair friendly washrooms are also available at RGIA.
- SGK Kishore, CEO, GHIAL said that they are happy to be the first airport in India to introduce a Verti-lift to serve our passengers. Under their ‘Passenger is Prime’ programme, their consistent endeavour has been to adopt and implement new technology and services to provide exceptional services to passengers who require assistance of any kind. The verti-lift is our latest effort as part of this programme which is also in line with the government’s ‘Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan’ initiative.
GS Paper III- Security.
CISF Security At Mumbai Airport Rated Best In World.
- The CISF security at the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (CSIA) in Mumbai has been recognised as the best service in this domain by a global quality rating agency.
- The latest initiative of doing away with the tagging and stamping of hand baggage, handling increasing passenger footfalls smoothly, curtesy and helpfulness of CISF personnel, restoring forgotten items of the passengers, and feeling of being safe and secure by passengers and visitors under CISF security cover were taken into account while deciding the award.
Highlights Of The Development-
- CISF security cover at the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai, has been adjudged as the best airport security by the World Quality Congress (WQC).
- The awards announced by the WQC, an independent organisation guided by an advisory council, are based on independent evaluation by the WQC jury.
- The CISF has been providing security coverage to the CSIA, the second busiest and hypersensitive airport in India, since August 21, 2002.
- Over 5,000 CISF personnel are currently deployed for the protection of CSIA from where nearly 4.1 crore passengers travelled safely during 2015-16, the official said.
- In July, 2017, a WQC survey adjudged CISF security cover at Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport as best.
- Last year also (2016), a survey was conducted by the Airport Service Quality (ASQ) wherein security of Delhi Airport was adjudged best among other international airports like Dallas, Heathrow, Paris and Dubai.
- The award function will be held in the second week of October, 2017 at Dubai Mall in Dubai.
- The about 1.80 lakh personnel-strong paramilitary force is tasked to secure 59 civil airports in the country at present.