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General

Malaria- it is not just a human disease

Our world is changing - too much and too fast. Species are moving into higher latitudes and altitudes, often carrying new infectious agents with them. As climate changes, vectors of infectious diseases such as mosquitoes, often find themselves in excellent breeding environmental conditions for extended periods of time. They thrive in these altered climatic conditions, and so do the diseases they carry. Many of these vectors infect wild populations of birds. Many aspects influence disease transmission in birds - evolutionary history of the species, whether it is a migratory or non-migratory species, whether it evolved in isolation (such as on an island) or the mainland (where it was exposed to many parasites), the presence and diversity of vectors (mosquitoes and other arthropods) in its habitat, the structure and composition of the forest it inhabits, and climatic variables that influence bird migration and vector breeding.

The 2015 Chennai floods – A rapid assessment

In December 2015, Chennai witnessed massive floods killing about 400 people and displacing thousands. Now, researchers from Interdisciplinary Centre for Water Research (ICWaR) at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, in collaboration with researchers from Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), Madras and Bombay have assessed the flood related information in the public domain and data from secondary sources and carried out quick first level analyses to develop an understanding about possible reasons for the floods. They observed that the massive floods were a result of a combination of factors; high rainfall intensity, overflowing rivers, global climate drivers, unplanned urbanization, inadequate drainage system and upstream reservoir releases.

Centre for Contemporary Studies – Bridging Science and Humanities

“Medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for.” - so goes the famous quote from the highly acclaimed movie, the Dead Poet Society. While this may be the ultimate secret to a happy life, our academic institutions and mindsets often ignore Arts & Humanities.

Understanding the dynamics of strategic marketing and innovation is key to MSME growth, shows study

When India’s emerging market bubble had burst by 2014, the government launched the “Make in India” initiative to resuscitate the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and popularize entrepreneurship. The initiative would provide skills and create jobs for the workforce while looking to make India a manufacturing hub with modern laws and policies that aid investors and entrepreneurs. In India, MSMEs are the second largest employer and about 12 million people are expected to join the workforce in the next three years. However, this sector is facing a lot of challenges like technological obsolescence, supply chain inefficiencies, increasing fund shortages among others. Now, a new study by the Department of Management Studies at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, has provided some interesting aspects of performance of MSMEs. “Our work studies the role of strategic marketing and innovation to improve the performance of MSMEs and its contribution to the economic development of the country as a whole”, says Mr. Lohith C.P., one of the research team members.

Freshwater affects surface temperature and salinity in the Bay of Bengal, say scientists

River discharge and rainfall differently affect the sea surface temperature, salinity and ocean currents in different parts of the Bay of Bengal, finds a new study from the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore. The team headed by Dr. P. N. Vinayachandran at the Centre for Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, IISc, has used the Ocean General Circulation Model, a mathematical model to depict the physical and thermodynamical processes involved in oceanic circulation, to study the impact of freshwater inflows on the thermodynamics in different parts of the Bay of Bengal.

Solar installation in the city as good as any others in the country

The performance of a solar plant installed at the Indian Institute of Science campus, Bengaluru has been found to be as good as other well-performing ones in the country, according to a team of researchers at the Divecha Centre for Climate Change. Armed with the data from a solar system they monitored in the IISc campus, the team shows that solar installations can perform reasonably well in the city. They also show that seasonal changes have significant impact on the performance of the system; with a reduced efficiency when the module is too hot.

Scientists design new methodology to better predict Land Surface Temperature under cloudy conditions

Measurement of Land Surface Temperature (LST) is important for hydrology, environment science and many associated fields. Prof. D. Nagesh Kumar of Department of Civil Engineering at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, and his team have proposed a novel methodology that can accurately predict LST at high resolution even under cloudy conditions. Their work has been published in the ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing.

Scientists Design Highly Sensitive Force Sensor

Scientists at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore have proposed a new force sensor that can detect changes in forces as small as ten nano-Newtons. That’s one hundred millionth of a Newton, the unit of force! The proposed sensor uses a special crystal with specific resonation characteristics that can sense these tiny forces. Sensors that detect small forces are used in the fields of chemical sensing, bio sensing, temperature sensing, humidity sensing, pressure sensing, and stress sensing. An eight-member team from the Department of Electrical Communication Engineering and the Center for Nano Science and Engineering headed by Prof. T. Srinivas, is behind this innovation.

Submesoscale fronts linked to persistent fresh surface layer in the Bay of Bengal

The persistence of a thin, surface layer of fresh water in the Bay of Bengal (BoB) is known to have a great influence on weather and climate across South Asia. However, the mechanism that sustains this low-salinity layer has remained a puzzle for ocean scientists.
Prof. Debasis Sengupta and his colleagues G. N. Bharath Raj and J. Sree Lekha of the Center for Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore, with M.Ravichandran of the Indian National Center for Ocean Information Services, Hyderabad and Fabrice Papa of the Indo-French Cell for Water Sciences, IISc, have presented the first evidence that submesoscale fronts may be the key to the sustenance of a fresh layer in the north BoB.

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