2018 : Contribution Of Indian Scientist Towards A Clean Future

Beyond rocket launches and nuclear capable missiles, Indian scientist have left their mark in the field ranging from nanotechnology to space weather during the year 2018. We have complied few of their achievements that will contribute to a ‘Clean Future.’

A gel that can protect farmers from toxic pesticides

Most farmers do not wear any protective gear while spraying chemicals in fields, which often leads to pesticide exposure and toxicity. Scientists at the Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine, Bangalore have developed a protective gel – poly-Oxime – that can be applied on skin and can break down toxic chemicals into safe substances.

World’s thinnest material with novel technique

Pushing the envelope in nanotechnology, researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar have developed a material that is 100,000 times thinner than a sheet of paper. This is said to be the world’s thinnest material. It can find a range of applications – from next-generation batteries to ultraviolet absorbing films.

Gene editing applied to banana genome

Using the gene editing technique – CRISPR/Cas9 – researchers at the National Agri-Food Biotechnology Institute, Mohali have edited the banana genome. This is the first such work in any fruit crop in India. Gene editing could be deployed for improving nutritional quality, agronomical important traits as well as pathogen resistance in banana.

Space weather warning model rules out ‘mini ice age’

A team of scientists from the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) Kolkata have dismissed the speculation that the upcoming sunspot cycle is going to be stronger, based on calculations using a model developed by them.

Green technique can address Plaster of Paris pollution

A team of scientists at Pune-based National Chemical Laboratory (CSIR-NCL) has developed a technique that helps recycle Plaster of Paris waste from hospitals in an eco-friendly and economical way. The new technique disinfects waste and converts it into useful products like ammonium sulphate and calcium bicarbonate.

Computing capacity for weather forecasting gets a boost

During the year, the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) upgraded its computing capacity for weather forecasting and climate monitoring, taking its total high performance computing (HPC) power to as high as 6.8 Petaflop. With this, India rose to the fourth position, next only to United Kingdom, Japan and USA in terms of dedicated capacity for HPC resources for weather and climate proposes.

Scientists use silk polymer to develop artificial vertebral disc

Scientists at Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati developed a silk-based bioartificial disc that may find use in disc replacement therapy in future. The group has developed a fabrication procedure for a silk-based bioartificial disc adopting a “directional freezing technique”. The use of a silk biopolymer to fabricate a biocompatible disc can reduce the cost of artificial discs in future.

Transgenic rice with reduced arsenic accumulation, flowering mustard

To address the problem of arsenic accumulation in rice grains, researchers at Lucknow- based CSIR-National Botanical Research Institute developed transgenic rice by inserting a novel fungal gene, which results in reduced arsenic accumulation in rice grain.

This feature is complied from various stories published by us during the year, in association with ‘India Science Wire’