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UPSC Essentials | Mains answer practice — GS 3 (Week 30)

UPSC Essentials brings to you its initiative for the practice of Mains answer writing. Mains Answer Writing covers essential topics under static and dynamic parts of the UPSC Civil Services syllabus covered under various GS papers. This answer-writing practice is designed to help you as a value addition to your UPSC CSE Mains. Attempt today’s answer writing on questions related to topics of GS-3 to check your progress.

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QUESTION 1

Emerging technologies and farm innovations have the potential to be game changer in ensuring food security for all. Discuss.

QUESTION 2

Winners of the Nobel Prize in Physics 2023 have given humanity new tools for exploring the world of electrons inside atoms and molecules. Discuss.

General points on the structure of the answers

Introduction

— An introduction is essential and should be restricted to 3-5 lines. Remember, a one-liner is not a standard introduction.

— It may consist of basic information by giving some definitions from a trusted source and include authenticated facts.

Body

Festive offer

— It is the central part of the answer and one should understand the import of the question to provide rich content.

— The answer must preferably be written as a mix of points and short paragraphs rather than using long paragraphs or just points.

— Using facts from authentic government sources makes your answer more comprehensive. Analysis is important based on the demand of the question, but do not over analyse.

— Underlining keywords gives you an edge over other candidates and enhances presentation of the answer.

— Using flowcharts/tree-diagram in the answers saves much time and boosts your score. However, it should be used logically and only where it is required.

Way forward/ Conclusion

— The ending of the answer should be on a positive note and it should have a forward-looking approach. However, if you feel that an important problem must be highlighted, you may add it in your conclusion. Try not to repeat any point from body or introduction.

— You may use the findings of reports or surveys conducted at national and international levels, quotes etc. in your answers.

Self Evaluation

— It is the most important part of our Mains answer writing practice. UPSC Essentials will provide some guiding points or ideas as a thought process that will help you to evaluate your answers.

THOUGHT PROCESS

You may enrich your answers with some of the following points

QUESTION 1: Emerging technologies and farm innovations have the potential to be game changer in ensuring food security for all. Discuss.

Body:

You may incorporate some of the following points in the body of your answer:

— According to a new World Economic Forum report, the agriculture sector in India can be transformed by promoting the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and other emerging technologies.

— Agriculture and related industries are critical to the Indian economy. The Indian government has promoted technology-enabled sustainable farming, including natural, regenerative, and organic systems, during its G20 presidency.

— Although India has achieved food security by producing 330 MT of food grains, demand for coarse cereals, pulses, oilseeds, and vegetables remains unsatisfied. Furthermore, they are out of reach for a large proportion of the population, resulting in a high proportion of the under/malnourished population, as well as a significant percentage of child wasting (19.3%).

— The AI4AI initiative aims to transform the agriculture sector in India by promoting the use of AI and other emerging technologies.

— The WEF said its AI for Agriculture Innovation (AI4AI) initiative helped more than 7,000 chilli farmers get access to agritech services in the first phase, releasing the phase-1 report of the ‘Saagu Baagu’ (‘agriculture advancement’ in Telugu) initiative being implemented by the Telangana government in collaboration with it.

— These agritech services include AI-based advisories, soil testing, produce quality testing and e-commerce.

— As the urgency of the climate crisis grows, and conflicts and natural disasters continue to devastate communities, threatening global food security, the industry is under increasing pressure to adopt sustainable practices and revamp its portfolios.

— Agriculture has evolved into a dynamic arena with investment opportunities and innovative solutions, making it an attractive domain for tech-savvy and entrepreneurial minds.

Conclusion:

— These technologies have the potential to significantly contribute to improving productivity and sustainability, they are often marked by fragmented technological infrastructure, high costs of operations, lack of access to data and limited technical expertise, while hampering the scale of their impact.

(Source: WEF says India’s agri sector can scale new highs with AI, other emerging technologies)

Points to Ponder

Different Agro-Climatic Zones in India

AI in Agriculture

mKisan Portal

Related Previous Year Questions

What is Integrated Farming System? How is it helpful to small and marginal farmers in India? (2022)

What are the challenges and opportunities of the food processing sector in the country? How can the income of the farmers be substantially increased by encouraging food processing? (2020)

What are the present challenges before crop diversification? How do emerging technologies provide an opportunity for crop diversification? (2021)

QUESTION 2: Winners of the Nobel Prize in Physics 2023 have given humanity new tools for exploring the world of electrons inside atoms and molecules. Discuss.

Introduction:

— The Nobel Prize in Physics for 2023 has gone to three scientists, Anne L’Huillier, Pierre Agostini, and Ferenc Krausz whose work made it easier to observe electrons, and which has potential applications in the field of diagnosing diseases and developing electronic gadgets.

— They have been awarded for their experiments “which have given humanity new tools for exploring the world of electrons inside atoms and molecules.

— They have demonstrated a way to create extremely short pulses of light that can be used to measure the rapid processes in which electrons move or change energy.

Body:

You may incorporate some of the following points in the body of your answer:

What exactly have the scientists done?

— An atom, a tiny unit into which matter can be divided, is composed of a nucleus of protons and neutrons, and electrons that travel around this nucleus. Electrons move so fast that it is impossible to observe them in real time.

— L’Huillier, Agostini, and Krausz’s work has brought humanity closer to observing and studying the movement of electrons by producing light pulses that last only attoseconds, or 1/1018 of a second.

— For example – It can be compared to a high-shutter-speed camera. If a normal camera is used to capture a moving train, the image will be blurred. But a high shutter-speed camera can freeze motion and capture a clear image of the train.

Background

— According to the Nobel website, L’Huillier discovered in 1987 that when a laser light wave was passed through a noble gas, it interacted with the atoms, giving some electrons extra energy that was then emitted as light. She kept working on it.

— In 2001, Pierre Agostini succeeded in producing and investigating a series of consecutive light pulses [or flashes of light], in which each pulse lasted just 250 attoseconds. At the same time, Ferenc Krausz was working with another type of experiment, one that made it possible to isolate a single light pulse that lasted 650 attoseconds.

— These flashes of light made it possible to provide images of processes inside atoms.

Potential uses

— Attosecond science has potential applications in a variety of areas, from electronics to medicine, across disciplines in physics, chemistry and biology.

— “One of the active areas of research using this technology is in medical science, particularly in finding therapies for cancer care,” said Kamal P Singh of IISER Mohali, who also works with femtosecond lasers.

Conclusion:

— Attosecond physics allows us to better understand mechanisms governed by electrons. “The next step will be to put them to use,” said Eva Olsson, Chair of the Nobel Committee for Physics.

— A better understanding of how electrons move and transmit energy can also help in creating more efficient electronic gadgets.

(Source: Nobel Prize in Physics 2023: What the three scientists have been awarded for)

Points to Ponder

Why is this work important?

Nobel Prize in Chemistry and Medicine

Related Previous Year Questions

The Nobel Prize in Physics of 2014 was jointly awarded to Akasaki, Amano and Nakamura for the invention of Blue LEDs in 1990s. How has this invention impacted the everyday life of human beings? (2021)

Discuss the work of ‘Bose-Einstein Statistics’ done by Prof. Satyendra Nath Bose and show how it revolutionized the field of Physics. (2018)

Previous Mains Answer Practice

UPSC Essentials: Mains answer practice — GS 1 (Week 28)

UPSC Essentials: Mains answer practice — GS 1 (Week 29)

UPSC Essentials: Mains answer practice — GS 2 (Week 29)

UPSC Essentials: Mains answer practice — GS 2 (Week 28)

UPSC Essentials: Mains answer practice — GS 3 (Week 28)

UPSC Essentials: Mains answer practice — GS 3 (Week 29)

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