Expected Questions in Science and Technology 2019 – IAS/NET (Part-1) - (Set 4) (Download PDF)


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Please find below the most important expected topics for the upcoming UPSC Prelims exam 2019. Subscribe@Examrace YouTube Channel to get the complete series of expected questions. For practice and solutions visit - doorsteptutor. com. You can download the pdf by clicking the option “Download PDF”.

India’s communication satellite GSAT-31

India’s communication satellite GSAT-31 was successfully launched from Spaceport in French Guiana. GSAT-31 was launched from the launch vehicle Ariane 5 VA-247.

Features of the GSAT-31

  • It would be placed at Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit.
  • It will augment Ku-band transponder capacity in Geostationary Orbit.
  • It derives its heritage from ISRO’s earlier INSAT/GSAT satellite series & will provide continuity to operational services on some of in-orbit satellites.
  • It will provide DTH Television Services, connectivity to VSATs for ATM, Stock-exchange, Digital Satellite News Gathering (DSNG) & e-governance applications.
  • It will be used for bulk data transfer for a host of emerging telecommunication applications.
  • After separation from upper stage of Ariane-5,2 solar arrays of GSAT-31 were automatically deployed in quick succession & ISRO’s Master Control Facility at Hassan in Karnataka took over command & control of GSAT-31.
  • ISRO scientists will undertake phase-wise orbit-raising manoeuvres to place satellite in Geostationary Orbit (36,000 km above equator) using its onboard propulsion system. Satellite would be placed in its final orbital configuration.

LOFAR telescope

New map of night sky published recently charts hundreds of thousands of previously unknown galaxies discovered using LOFAR telescope that can detect light sources optical instruments cannot see.

Discovery literally shed new light on some of Universe’s deepest secrets, including physics of black holes & how clusters of galaxies evolve.

About LOFAR Telescope:

  • Low-Frequency Array or LOFAR, is a large radio telescope network located in Netherlands, completed in 2012 by ASTRON, Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy & its international partners.
  • LOFAR consists of a vast array of omnidirectional antennas using a new concept in which signals from separate antennas are not combined in real time as they are in most array antennas. Electronic signals from antennas are digitized, transported to central digital processor & combined in software to emulate conventional antenna.
  • Project is based on interferometric array of radio telescopes using about 20,000 small antennas concentrated in at least 48 stations.
  • Mission of LOFAR is to map Universe at radio frequencies from ~10–240 MHz w/greater resolution & greater sensitivity than previous surveys, like 7C & 8C surveys & surveys by Very Large Array (VLA) & Giant Meterwave Radio Telescope (GMRT).

Quick Reach Surface-to-Air missiles (QRSAM)

India has successfully test-fired 2 indigenously developed Quick Reaction Surface-to-Air missiles (QRSAM) from a test range off Odisha coast.

QRSAM was test fired from a rotatable truck-based launch unit at Chandipur in Odisha’s Balasore dist. 2 missiles tested for different altitude & conditions successfully demonstrated robust control, aerodynamics, propulsion, structural performance & high manoeuvring capabilities

Quick Reaction Surface-to-Air Missiles

  • Missile is all-weather, all-terrain missile w/electronic countermeasures against jamming by aircraft radars.
  • QRSAM uses solid-fuel propellant & has a range of 25 - 30 km.
  • Developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in association w/Bharat Electronics Limited & Bharat Dynamics Limited as replacement to Osa-AK & Kvadrat missile systems.
  • This was 3rd test firing of QRSAM. 1st test firing was done on June 4,2017, & 2nd on July 14,2018.

China’s BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS)

BDS has started offering global service. It is touted as a rival to America’s Global Positioning System (GPS). Pakistan has become first foreign nation to use BeiDou system ending its reliance on GPS.

BDS was 4th global navigation system after US’s GPS, Russia’s GLONASS & European Union’s Galileo.

BeiDou Navigation Satellite System

  • China has named its navigation satellite system after Chinese term which means ‘Big Dipper’. BeiDou-1 consisted of 3 satellites & was offering navigation services mainly in China & neighbouring regions. It was decommissioned in 2012.
  • 2nd generation of navigation system, BeiDou-2 became operational in China in December 2011 w/partial constellation of 10 satellites in orbit & started providing services in Asia-
  • Pacific region from December 2012.3rd generation of navigation system, BeiDou-3 began to provide global services from 27th December 2018.
  • China plans to have a total of 33 satellites operating in orbit for BeiDou by end of 2018 which includes 15 BeiDou-2 satellites & 18 BeiDou-3 satellites. China plans to launch another 11 BeiDou-3 satellites & one BeiDou-2 satellite in coming 2 years to form a complete global network for enhancing global service performance.

Chang’e-4 lunar probe

Chang’e 4 probe spacecraft has become 1st spacecraft to land on far side of moon.

Chinese lunar exploration mission aims to achieve soft-landing on far side of Moon. Mission aims to deliver samples of Moon rock & soil to Earth.

About Mission:

  • For 1st time, there would be soft-landing on far side of Moon. China’s mission consists of a static lander & rover.
  • Rover will touch down on Von Karman crater, located on side of Moon which never faces Earth. During landing, probe will descend on thrusters & touch down on rugged terrain of lunar far side. Landers will aid in characterising region’s geology & composition of rock & soil.
  • Instruments would examine whether impact which created South Pole Aitken Basin has punched thru crust down to Moon’s mantle layer. This will shed light on early history of our only natural satellite.
  • Mission will characterise “radio environment” on far side to lay groundwork for creation of future radio astronomy telescopes on far side, which is shielded from radio noise of Earth.
  • To study respiration of seeds & photosynthesis on Moon static lander is carrying container w/potato & Arabidopsis plant seeds to perform a biological experiment.

Lander will send data thru satellite Queqiao of China.

Chang’e-4 mission is part of Chinese larger lunar exploration mission. 1st & 2nd Chang’e missions were aimed at gathering data from orbit. 3rd & 4th missions concentrated on surface operations. 5th & 6thare sample return missions, delivering lunar rock and soil to laboratories on Earth.

NASA’s Cassini

  • Cassini–Huygens is an unmanned spacecraft sent to planet Saturn. It is a Flagship class NASA–ESA (EU) –ASI (Italy) robotic spacecraft.
  • Cassini is 4th space probe to visit Saturn & 1st to enter orbit. It has studied planet & its many natural satellites.
  • Cassini has revealed existence of earth-like geographic features, great lakes of liquid nitrogen gas on Titan’s surface.
  • Cassini found evidence for existence of Underground Ocean on moon Enceladus.
  • NASA announced that spacecraft has found evidence that underground ocean could sustain some form of life. Cassini has generated a rich volume of data that will fuel scientific study for decades to come.

Human Space Flight Centre (HSFC) and Gaganyaan

  • HSFC which would be core of ISRO’s future manned missions was inaugurated at ISRO headquarters in Bengaluru.
  • HSFC will implement 1st development flight of Gaganyaan w/support of existing ISRO Centres.
  • HSFC would be responsible for end-to-end mission planning, development of engineering systems for crew survival in space, crew selection & training & pursue activities for sustained human space flight missions.


  • India’s 1st manned space mission is accorded highest priority by ISRO & plan is to have 1st unmanned mission in December 2020 & 2nd for July 2021.
  • Manned mission will happen in December 2021.
  • Gaganyaan project is headed by R. Hutton, who was Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) Director.
  • Gaganyaan project takes Indian astronauts into space to a height of 350 - 400 km above Earth & orbits around planet for at least a week.
  • Indian astronauts would be conducting experiments in space.

- Published/Last Modified on: May 16, 2019


Monthy-updated, fully-solved, large current affairs-2019 question bank(more than 2000 problems): Quickly cover most-important current-affairs questions with pointwise explanations especially designed for IAS, NTA-NET, Bank-PO and other competetive exams.