(Papers) UPSC Pre Topic Wise Papers : Science and Technology 

 



(Papers) UPSC Pre Topic Wise Papers : Science and Technology 



2015 :

1. With  reference  to  the  use  of  nano-technology  in health sector, which of the following statements is/ are  correct?
1. Targeted  drug  delivery  is  made  possible  by nanotechnology.
2. Nanotechnology can largely contribute to gene therapy.

Select  the  correct  answer  using  the  code  given below:
(a) Only 1
(b) Only 2
(c) Both  1  and  2
(d) Neither  1  nor  2
Ans: C
Exp: Nanotechnology  has  provided  the  possibility  of delivering drugs to specific cells using nanoparticles. The  overall  drug  consumption  and  side-effects  may be  lowered  significantly  by  depositing  the  active agent  in  the  morbid  region  only  and  in  no  higher dose than needed. Targeted drug delivery is intended to  reduce  the  side  effects  of  drugs  with  concomitant decreases  in  consumption  and  treatment  expenses. Drug  delivery  focuses  on  maximizing  bioavailability both  at  specific  places  in  the  body  and  over  a period  of  time.  This  can  potentially  be  achieved  by molecular  targeting  by  nanoengineered  devices. Bionanotechnology  is  a  specific  application  of nanotechnology.  For  example,  DNA  nanotechnology or  cellular  engineering  would  be  classified  as bionanotechnology  because  they  involve  working with  biomolecules  on  the  nanoscale.  Conversely, many  new  medical  technologies  involving nanoparticles as delivery systems or as sensors would be examples of nanobiotechnology since they involve using  nanotechnology  to  advance  the  goals  of biology.  However  whether  it  can  largely  contribute to  gene  therapy  or  not  is  not  clear.) 

2. In the context of modem scientific research, consider the following statements about ‘IceCube’, a particle detector located at South Pole, which was recently in the news:
1. It  is  the  world’s  largest  neutrino  detector, encompassing a cubic kilometre of ice. 
2. It  is  a  powerful  telescope  to  search  for  dark matter.
3. It is  buried  deep in the ice. 
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) Only 1 
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1 and 3 only
(d) 1,  2  and  3

Ans: D

Exp: The  IceCube  Neutrino  Observatory  (or  simply IceCube)  is  a  neutrino  telescope  constructed  at  the Amundsen-Scott  South  Pole  Station  in  Antarctica. Its thousands of  sensors are  distributed  over  a cubic 
kilometre  of  volume  under  the Antarctic  ice.  Similar to  its  predecessor, the Antarctic Muon And Neutrino Detector  Array  (AMANDA),  IceCube  consists  of spherical  optical  sensors  called  Digital  Optical Modules  (DOMs),  each  with  a  photomultiplier  tube (PMT) and a single board data acquisition computer which  sends  digital  data  to  the  counting  house  on the  surface  above the  array.  IceCube was completed on  18  December  2010. However,  a  neutrino  is  an  electrically  neutral elementary  particle  with  half-integer  spin.  The neutrino  (meaning  “little  neutral  one”  in  Italian)  is denoted  by  the  Greek  letter  í  (nu).  All  evidence suggests  that  neutrinos  have  mass  but  that  their masses  are  tiny,  even  compared  to  other  subatomic particles.  They  are  the  only  identified  form  of  dark matter,  specifically  hot  dark  matter. 

3. With reference to ‘Near Field Communication (NFC) Technology’, which of the following statements is/ are  correct?
1. It  is  a  contactless  communication  technology that uses electromagnetic  radio  fields. 
2. NFC is designed for use by devices which can be  at  a  distance  of  even  a  metre  from  each other.
3. NFC can use encryption when sending sensitive information.

Select  the  correct  answer  using  the  code  given below:
(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) Only 3
(c) 1 and 3 only 
(d) 1,  2  and  3
Ans: C

Exp: Near  field  communication  (NFC)  is  the  set  of protocols  that  enables  smartphones  and  other devices  to  establish  radio  communication  with each  other  by  touching  the  devices  together  or bringing  them  into proximity  to  a  distance  of typically  10  cm  (3.9  in)  or  less. 

4. The  Genetic  Engineering Appraisal  Committee  is constituted under the
(a) Food  Safety  and  Standards Act,  2006
(b) Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999
(c) Environment (Protection) Act, 1986
(d) Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972
Ans: C

Exp: The  Genetic  Engineering  Appraisal  Committee (GEAC) is the apex body constituted in the Ministry of  Environment  and  Forests  under  ‘Rules  for Manufacture,  Use,  Import,  Export  and  Storage  of Hazardous  Microorganisms/Genetically  Engineered Organisms  or Cells  19892 ,  under the Environment Protection  Act,  1986.  (Source:  website  of  Ministry of  Environment,  Forest  and  Climate  Change) 

5. In  which  of  the  following  activities  are  Indian Remote  Sensing  (IRS)  satellites  used? 
1. Assessment of crop productivity
2. Locating  groundwater  resources
3. Mineral exploration
4. Telecommunications
5. Traffic studies
Select  the  correct  answer  using  the  code  given below:
(a) 1, 2 and 3 only 
(b) 4 and 5 only
(c) 1 and 2 only
(d) 1, 2,  3, 4 and 5

Ans: A

Exp: Data from  Indian Remote  Sensing  satellites  are used for  various  applications  of  resources  survey  and management  under  the  National  Natural  Resources Management  System  (NNRMS).  Following  is the list
of  those  applications:

  • Space  Based  Inputs  for  Decentralized  Planning (SIS-DP)
  • National  Urban  Information  System  (NUIS)
  • ISRO Disaster Management Support Programme (ISRO-DMSP)
  • Biodiversity Characterizations at landscape level
  • Preharvest  crop  area  and  production  estimation of  major  crops.
  • Drought  monitoring  and  assessment  based on  vegetation  condition. 
  • Flood  risk  zone  mapping  and  flood  damage assessment.
  • Hydro-geomorphological  maps  for  locating underground water  resources for  drilling well.
  • Irrigation  command  area  status  monitoring
  • Snow-melt  run-off  estimates  for  planning water  use  in  down  stream  projects
  • Land  use  and  land  cover  mapping
  • Urban  planning
  • Forest  survey
  • Wetland  mapping
  • Environmental  impact  analysis
  • Mineral  Prospecting
  • Coastal  studies
  • Integrated  Mission  for  Sustainable Development  (initiated  in  1992)  for generating  locale-specific  prescriptions  for integrated  land  and  water  resources development  in  174  districts.

6. The term  ‘IndARC’,  sometimes  seen in the  news, is the  name  of
(a) an indigenously developed radar system inducted into  Indian Defence
(b) India’s  satellite  to  provide  services  to  the countries  of  Indian Ocean Rim
(c) a  scientific  establishment  set  up  by  India  in Antarctic region
(d) India’s underwater observatory to scientifically study the Arctic  region
Ans: D
Exp: A  major  milestone  in  India’s  scientific  endeavors in  the  Arctic  region  has  been  achieved  on  the 23rd  July,  2014  when  a  team  of  scientists  from the  ESSO-National  Centre  for  Antarctic  and Ocean  Research  (NCAOR)  and  the  ESSONational  Institute  of  Ocean  Technology  (NIOT) uccessfully  deployed  IndARC,  the  country’s  first multi-sensor  moored  observatory  in  the Kongsfjorden  fjord  of  the  Arctic,  roughly  half
way  between  Norway  and  the  North  Pole.  This moored  observatory,  designed  and  developed  by ESSO-NIOT  and  ESSO-NCAOR  with  ESSOIndian  National  Centre  for  Ocean  Information Services  (INCOIS)  was  deployed  from  the Norwegian  Polar  Institute’s  research  vessel  R.V. Lance  during  its  annual  MOSJ-ICE  cruise  to the  Kongsfjorden  area.  The  observatory  is presently  anchored  (78°57´  N  12°01´E),  about
1100  km  away from the North  Pole  at  a  depth  of 192  m  and  has  an  array  of  ten  state-of-the-art oceanographic  sensors  strategically  positioned at  discrete  depths  in  the  water  column.  These sensors  are  programmed to  collect  real-time  data on  seawater  temperature,  salinity,  current  and other  vital  parameters  of  the  ford.  (Source:  PIB)

7. HINI  virus  is  sometimes  mentioned  in  the  news with  reference  to  which  one  of  the  following diseases?
(a) AIDS 
(b) Bird flu
(c) Dengue 
(d) Swine flu

Ans: D

Exp: Influenza A (H1N1) virus is the most common cause of  human  influenza  (flu).  In  June  2009,  the  World Health Organization (WHO) declared the new strain of  swine-origin  H1N1  as  a  pandemic.  This  strain
is  often  called  swine  flu  by  the  public  media.

8. With  reference  to  bio-toilets  used  by  the  Indian Railways, consider the following statements: 
1. The decomposition of human waste in the biotoilets is initiated by a fungal inoculums.
2. Ammonia  and  water  vapour  are  the  only  end products  in  this  decomposition  which  are released into  the  atmosphere.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) Only 1 
(b) Only 2
(c) Both  1  and  2
(d) Neither  1  nor  2
Ans: D

Exp: The  bio-toilets  introduced  by  the  Indian  Railway with  assistance  from  DRDO  uses  bacteria.  The naerobic  bacteria  named  ‘inoculum’  are  used  in the  bio-toilets  have  been  collected  and  analysed by  DRDO  from  Antarctica  and  the  efficiency  of this  system  has  been tested in extreme climates and conditions.  it  will  be  kept  in  a  container  under  the lavatories  that  convert  human  waste  into  water and  small  amounts of gases. Gases will be released into the atmosphere and the water will be discharged after  chlorination  onto  the  tracks.

9. With  reference to  ‘fuel  cells’  in  which  hydrogenrich fuel and oxygen are used to generate electricity, consider the following statements:
1. If pure hydrogen is used as a fuel, the fuel cell emits  heat  and  water  as  by  products.
2. Fuel cells can  be used  for powering buildings and not for small devices like laptop computers.
3. Fuel  cells  produce  electricity  in  the  form  of Alternating Current  (AC).
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) Only 1
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1 and 3 only
(d) 1,  2  and  3
Ans: A

Exp: It  can  be  used  in  small  devices  also  and  Fuel cells   produce  electricity  in  the  form  of  Direct Current(DC).

10. The  term  ‘Goldilocks  Zone’  is  often  seen  in  the news in the  context  of
(a) the limits  of  habitable zone above the  surface of  the  Earth
(b) region  inside  the  Earth  where  shale  gas  is available
(c) search for the Earth-like planets in outer space
(d) search for meteorites containing precious metals
Ans: C
Exp: In  astronomy  and  astrobiology,  the  circumstellar habitable  zone  (CHZ),  or  simply  the  habitable zone,  is  the  region  around  a  star  within  which planetary-mass  objects with  sufficient  atmospheric pressure  can support  liquid  water  at  their surfaces.  The  bounds  of  the  CHZ  are  calculated using the known requirements of Earth’s biosphere, its  position in the  Solar  System  and the  amount  of radiant  energy  it  receives  from  the Sun.  Due  to the  importance  of  liquid  water  to  life  as  it  exists on  Earth,  the  nature  of  the  CHZ  and  the  objects within is believed to be instrumental in determining the  scope  and  distribution  of  Earth-like 
extraterrestrial  life  and  intelligence. The  habitable  zone  is  also  called  the  Goldilocks zone,  a  metaphor  of  the  children’s  fairy  tale  of Goldilocks  and  the  Three  Bears,  in  which  a  little girl  chooses from  sets  of three items,  ignoring the ones  that  are  too  extreme  (large  or  small,  hot  or cold,  etc.),  and  settling  on  the  one  in  the  middle, which  is  “just  right”.

2014 :

1. With  reference  to  technologies   for  solar  power  production, consider the following statemenrs:

1. ‘Photovoltaics’ is  a  technology that  generates
electricity  by  direct  conversion  of  light  into
electricity, while ‘Solar Thermal’ is a technology
that  utilizes  the  Sun’s  rays  to  generate  heat
which is  further  used in  electricity  generation
process. 

2. Photovoltaics  generates  Alternating  Current
(AC),  while  Solar  Thermal  generates  Direct
Current  (DC).

3. India has manufacturing base for Solar Thermal
technology, but not for Photovoltaics. 

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) Only 1
(b) 2 and 3 only 
(c) 1,  2  and  3 
(d) None

2. With  reference  to  two  non-conventional  energy sources called  ‘coalbed methane’ and  ‘shale  gas’, consider the following ‘statements: 
1. Coalbed  methane  is  the  pure  methane  gas extracted  from  coal  seams,  while  shale  gas is a mixture of propane and butane only that can be  extracted  from  fine-grained  sedimentary rocks. 
2. In India abundant coalbed methane sources exist, but so far no shale gas sources have been found.  Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) Only 1 
(b) Only 2
(c) Both  1  and  2
(d) Neither  1  nor  2

Ans: D

3. Which  of  the  following  pair  is/are  correctly matched?
Spacecraft Purpose
1. Cassini-Huygens : Orbiting the Venus and transmitting data to the Earth
2. Messenger : Mapping and investigating the Mercury 
3. Voyager  1  and  2 : Exploring the outer solar system 
Select  the  correct  answer  using  the  code  given below:
(a) Only 1
(b) 2 and 3 only 
(c) 1 and 3 only 
(d) 1,  2  and  3

Ans: B

4. There is some concern regarding the nanoparticles of  some  chemical  elements  that  are  used  by  the industry  in  the  manufacture  of  various  products. Why?
1. They can  accumulate in the environment, and contaminate water and  soil. 
2. They  can  enter  the  food  chains. 
3. They can trigger the production of free radicals. 
Select  the  correct  answer  using  the  code  given below:
(a) 1 and 2 only 
(b) Only 3
(c) 1 and 3 only 
(d) 1,  2  and  3

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