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India’s renewable energy policies need amendments now to achieve the goals of 2022, says study

The push for renewable energy has been greater than ever in the recent past, thanks to the realisation of the fact that fossil fuels and other forms of energy wreak havoc on the environment. India, like many other countries, has ambitious goals for producing electricity using renewable sources for 2022. In our rush to chase this goal, how are our policies crafted? Are they a win-win situation for the producers and the customers? Or are they making renewable energy all the more expensive, thus defeating the purpose of the switch? A new study now examines how renewable energy policies are structured and recommends some changes to make them effective and help us reach our 2022 goals.

Living with parasites: A Himalayan tale of birds, mosquitoes and malaria

Humans are not the only organisms under threat by the malarial parasite Plasmodium. These parasites are known to infect a range of animals from primate to reptiles, theis list also includes birds. In their recent study Scientists from the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore have collected these parasites from the blood of various species of birds in the Himalayan foothills. Through their study the team was to show the burden of infection in birds and the seasonality of the infection.

A 3D virtual laboratory to diagnose and fix electromagnetic anomalies

SimYog, a spin-off from the Indian Institute of Science and a private start-up providing electromagnetic diagnostics and services along with developing design and sign-off tools for automotive electronics. Their latest offering is Compliance scope - a virtual 3D laboratory that allows the user to immerse themselves in a virtual world and explore the electrical components and connections and went on to win the coolest demo prize at this edition of IEEE EMC conference

On the ‘Edge’ of making experiences exciting

Cloud computing has emerged as the preferred method for processing large amounts of data. It offers the luxury of processing all the data without owning large processors yourself, while the pay-as-you-use model, also allows for economical use of these resources. However, drawbacks such as latency in transferring the data and requirement of bandwidths have given rise to portable cloud computing devices, like Edge and Fog. Now, read about ECHO- a new software platform from IISc that allows you to build and customize applications for Internet of Things and Cyber Physical Systems.   

Your red wine can help fight cancer, and here is more proof

Plant based derivatives that cure cancer are a plenty with scientists discover more of them with time. One on the list from a long time is Resveratrol, a compound found in grapes, peanuts and berries. But how does this compound fight with cancerous cells? A new study has now thrown some light on the exact mechanism of how derivatives from resveratrol acts on cancerous cells and kills them, in the process, letting the other healthier cells remain unharmed. This discover, the researchers claim, can help scientists in developing more efficient drugs that can fight cancer, a deadly disease. 

Study at IISc Expedites Search for Novel Materials

The field of material science has immensely contributed to our progress and has arguably been a very important driving force behind all the scientific achievement that mankind boasts of today. With the discovery of conductors, superconductors, insulators and semiconductors, there has been a revolution in the field of electric engineering, computer science, electronics, aerospace and others. Now, a new class of materials to this list is topological conductors, which promises to conquer great frontiers in the field of quantum computers and others.  A new research has now shown that amorphous materials like glass can also become topological conductors, thus finding a myriad of applications in different fields. 

From bits to boluses: How do termites build strong mounds?

Termites are renowned architects whose mounds have inspired many building designs around the world. But did you know how termites build their mud castles? A new study has tried to understand how termites use boluses -- a combination of mud and saliva acting as bricks -- to build their mounds. The study also throws light on the properties of materials the termites prefer to use to build mounds and discusses reasons behind the same. This study, the researchers claim, is a first towards understand the unique procedure followed by nature’s best architects in building some of the finest castles. 

TraCount – An initiative towards better traffic control

Getting stuck in a huge traffic jam is a tragedy, especially if you live in cities like Bengaluru, Mumbai or Delhi. The rising number of vehicles are increasingly adding to this problem, depriving us of our time, money and health. A new research now attempts to reduce traffic pileups in cities by using videos of surveillance cameras. Using Artificial Intelligence and Convolutional Neural Networks, the researcher have built TraCount, a system that can count the number of vehicles in a traffic jam and help authorities manage the congestion in a smart and informed way.

Scientists design a twin-pit toilet system that protects ground water from getting contaminated by pit-toilet sewage

Prof. Sudhakar Rao's research team: Mogili Nitish V, Lydia Arkenadan & Ananth Nag.R (from L to R)

While open defecation has well known health risks, toilets with sewage pits come with their own drawbacks. One of them is the contamination of ground water due to sewage leachate -- the water that seeps into the soil from the pit and has extremely toxic levels of nitrates, ammonium and organic carbon. These toxins are known to contaminate ground water making it unfit for drinking. Now scientists have designed a twin-pit toilet system that reduces the levels of nitrates, ammonium and organic carbon in the sewage water before it is being absorbed by the ground. This treated water, the researchers say, have low levels of toxins, making it safe and saving water bodies from contamination due to sewage.

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