Goaltide Daily Current Affairs 2022

Aug 24, 2022

Current Affair 1:
Steep decline in the Supreme Court’s disposal rate in the last few years


Indian Judicial System is fraught with massive pendency of cases. The pendency is observed across all the levels of the judiciary – the Supreme Court, High Courts, District & Subordinate Courts, etc.

As per an update provided in Rajya Sabha in July 2022:

Even in the case of the Supreme Court, 3 positions are vacant, and it will soon be four once the current Chief Justice of India (CJI) retires on 26 August 2022.

Major fall in the Supreme Court’s disposal rate:

As per the response provided in the aforementioned Lok Sabha answer on 05 August 2022, the Supreme Court’s disposal rate was 37.77 in 2021, a slight improvement over 2020 when it was 34.53%.

This Disposal Rate is derived as a percentage of cases disposed by the end of the year compared to the number of pending cases at the beginning of the year.

Current Affair 2:
Sulphuric acid: The next resource crisis  



More than 80 per cent of the global sulfur supply is a waste product, extracted from fossil fuels like oil and natural gas (which typically contain between 1 per cent and 3 per cent sulfur by weight) to reduce emissions of sulfur dioxide, the gas that causes acid rain.

Eliminating fossil fuels to rein in climate change will slash the annual supply of sulfuric acid just as demand is increasing. The world already uses over 246 million tonnes of sulfuric acid annually. Rapid growth in the green economy and intensive agriculture could see demand rise to over 400 million tonnes by 2040.

According to our latest study, a rapid reduction in fossil fuel use required to achieve net zero emissions by 2050 could create a shortfall of sulfuric acid as large as 320 million tonnes by 2040, or 130 per cent of present-day production.

Demand will increase in future:

The rapidly expanding use of low-carbon technologies, such as high-performance batteries, light-weight motors for vehicles, and solar panels, will significantly increase mining of mineral deposits, particularly laterite ores that are increasingly important sources of cobalt and nickel. Cobalt demand could increase by 460 per cent nickel by 99 per cent, and neodymium by 37 per cent by 2050. All of these are currently extracted using large quantities of sulfuric acid.

Sulfuric acid prices would rise, stoking competition in which more profitable green technology industries are likely to outbid fertiliser producers. This would increase the cost of food production and make food more expensive for consumers, especially in developing countries where farmers are least able to afford the higher costs.

An essential industrial chemical

Sulfur is found in a wide range of products, including tyres, sulfur fertiliser, paper, soap and detergent. But its most important application is in industrial chemistry, decomposing a wide range of materials.

How to handle shortage of sulphur?

  1. The US Geological Survey estimates that there is an almost limitless supply of sulphate minerals in evaporites (rocks laid down by the natural evaporation of shallow, salty seas or lakes) and large resources of iron sulphides and elemental sulfur in volcanic deposits, but accessing these would require expanding mining and mineral processing.
  2. In addition to finding new, non-fossil fuel sources of sulfur, demand for sulfur could be reduced by recycling and alternative industrial technologies that avoid intensive use of sulfuric acid.
  3. Recycling more lithium batteries from electric vehicles could also help.

Current Affair 3:
Gaganyaan Low Altitude Escape Motor (LEM) Static Test


Another important milestone in the Gaganyaan project is completed, by successfully test-firing the Low Altitude Escape Motor (LEM) of Crew Escape System, from Sriharikota on August 10, 2022.

The Crew Escape System (CES) takes away the Crew module of Gaganyaan mission in case of any eventuality and rescues the astronauts.

In case of mission-abort during the initial phase of flight, LEM provides required thrust to CES, to take away Crew Module from the launch vehicle.

LEM is a distinctive special purpose solid rocket motor with four reverse flows.

The main objectives of the static test are:

  1. To evaluate motor ballistic parameters.
  2. To validate motor subsystem performance and to confirm the design margins.
  3. To evaluate the thermal performance of nozzle liners; specially to confirm the erosion / ablative characteristics.
  4. To validate integrity of all interfaces.
  5. To evaluate the head-end mounted safe arm (HMSA) based ignition system performance.
  6. To evaluate side thrust due to misalignment and variation in flow and other functional parameters including flow reversal

Current Affair 4:
Sea cucumbers


Despite their name, sea cucumbers aren’t vegetables; they’re echinoderms, from the same phylum of marine animals that includes starfish and sea urchins, and live on the sandy bottoms of oceans, where they perform the important ecological function of nutrient cycling.


Sea cucumbers play a vital role in marine ecosystems

  • Many species of sea cucumber burrow in the sea bed, and this action is a major source of bioturbation (the disturbance of sedimentary deposits by living organisms.), which allows other species to flourish on the seabed.
  • As deposit feeders, sea cucumbers play an important role in nutrient cycling. Their actions reduce organic loads and redistribute surface sediment, and the inorganic nitrogen and phosphorus they excrete enhances the benthic habitat. In this way, they make excellent bioremediators.
  • These same actions increase seawater alkalinity, which helps create local buffers against ocean acidification, supporting the survival of coral reefs.
  • Sea cucumbers are food for others species, and also have complex symbiotic relationships with others.

The biodiversity-rich Gulf of Mannar and Palk Bay areas, the main stretches of water between India and Sri Lanka, are the current hotspot for sea cucumber poaching.


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