Science and Technology

Electric times

| Updated on January 31, 2021

Four get cryo-EMs

Three IITs — of Kanpur, Madras and Bombay — and the Bose Institute, Kolkata, will each get a new ‘cryogenic electron microscope’ machine. Grants have been sanctioned by the Science and Engineering Research Board, which called for proposals to set up the machines last year, under its Intensification of Research in High Priority Areas programme. The equipment will be used for research in structural biology, enzymology, drug discovery etc. The samples tested are frozen for stability before being bombarded with electrons.

First CSP-sCO2 plant

The Society for Innovation and Development (SID) of the Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, is setting up on a pilot scale the country’s first CSP-sCO2 plant. Preparation of a detailed project report is on. In this, concentric circles of mirrors reflect sunlight onto the top of a ‘receiver tower’ in the middle; the sunlight heats up carbon dioxide to a supercritical temperature. The critical temperature of a substance is the temperature above which its vapours cannot be liquefied; critical pressure is the pressure required to liquefy a gas at the critical temperature — anything above is supercritical. Supercritical gas has high energy, so it can turn turbines faster and generate more electricity.

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Published on January 31, 2021
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