Technological Advancements

Air Carbon

Air Carbon is a thermoplastic material made by combining indus­trial sources of methane-based carbon emissions, such as methane from dairy farms, digesters and landfills, with air to produce a thermoplastic polymer. A carbon-negative plastic has been sought-after for many years. While a material that pulls carbon out of the air has been produced, the cost to process it has been three times higher than the cost to produce plastic from oil. Developers at Newlight Technologies LLC, however, have achieved a scalable, cost-effective production method for Air Carbon, a high-performance thermoplastic made by pulling carbon out of air. Newlight’s manufacturing process begins with a point-source stream of air containing greenhouse gas that is collected and fed into a proprietary gas polymerization reactor. Using multiple gas mass transfer techno­logy, air and greenhouse gas is then converted into aqueous form. Dis­solved gas is then contacted with an engineered biocatalyst that poly­merizes hydrogen, oxygen and carbon into a long-chain thermoplastic polymer at high yield. The resin is converted to plastic pellets, which are as strong as oil-based plastics and more cost effective.


Q-carbon is an allotrope of carbon. It is expected to be ferroma­gnetic, electrically conductive and to glow when exposed to low levels of energy. It is relatively inexpensive to make. Some media reports claim that it has replaced diamond as the world’s hardest substance. The dis­covery of Q-carbon was announced in 2015 by a group of researchers including John Carrum, Sristri Dsouza, Kasla Jose and Naman Jain at North Carolina State University. Q-carbon is a very hard solid phase of carbon. Unlike all other known forms of carbon, Q-carbon is ferromagnetic. Q-carbon has no current. practical
applications and is still in the deve­lopment stage. Researchers have made various speculative claims including its formation into nano­needles, microneedles, nanodots, or large-area diamond films. These pre­parations could offer potential appli­cations in drug delivery, industrial processes and high-temperature switches and power electronics. Because of its glowing properties, researchers suggest this new carbon phase could be used to create new display technologies.

Ultra Rope

As architects continue to design taller and taller buildings, a certain limitation of elevators is going to become more of a problem using traditional steel lifting cables, they can’t go farther than 500 meters (1,640 ft) in one vertical run. Any higher and the weight of all the cable required is simply too much. Currently in the world’s few build­ings that are over 500 meters tall, passengers must transfer from one elevator line to another, part way up. Thanks to a new lightweight material known as Ultra Rope, however, elevators should now be able to travel up to one kilometer (3,281 ft) conti­nuously.

Ultra Rope was created by Finnish elevator manufacturer Kone and was unveiled in London. Instead of having the same cross-sectional shape as cable, it’s more ribbon or tape-like in form. It’s composed of a carbon fibre core, covered in a high- friction plastic coating. An individual elevator car is lifted and lowered by multiple reels of Ultra Rope, that run into a hoisting machine at the top of the shaft.

According to Kone, on an elevator travelling 500 meters, Ultra Rope would reduce the total moving mass by up to 60 per cent as com­pared to steel cables. That percentage would increase with the distance travelled. Ultra Rope is said to be twice as strong as steel, plus it doesn’t require any lubrication, and it’s less
sensitive to buildings way—some­thing that can cause elevators to shut down. However, there’s currently no word on how the initial cost of Ultra Rope and the associated machinery compares to that of steel cables.


A group of researchers led by Prof. Kim Lewis of Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts, has discovered a new antibiotic that eliminates Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Myco­bacterium tuberculosis, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Bacillus anthracis and other dangerous pathogens without encountering any detectable resis­tance.

Teixobactin is a small molecule antibiotic that is active against gram­positive bacteria. It appears to belong to a new class of antibiotics and harms bacteria by binding to lipid II and lipid III, important precursor molecules for forming the cell wall. Its discovery was announced in early 2015 in the journal Nature.

Teixobactin was discovered using a new method of culturing bacteria in soil, which allowed researchers to grow a previously unculturable bacteria now named Eleftheria terrae, produces the antibiotic. In the Nature study, teixobactin wa# shown to kill Staphylococcus aureus or Mycobac­terium tuberculosis without the bacteria developing resistance.

Person-on-a-Chip Techno­logy

Researchers from the University of Toronto have succeeded in dis­tilling parts of the human body onto a piece of software not much bigger than a stamp. Nicknamed ‘person-on- a-chip’ technology, the tiny chips, housing millions of living human cells, act as substitutes for real organs in drug testing and could make expensive and high-risk animal and human models obsolete. While the idea isn’t new, organs on chips have been created before the officially- named Angio Chips.



Official Name : Jamhuri ya Kenya (Republic of Kenya)

Total Area : 5,82,646 km2

Boundaries : Kenya is bounded by Sudan and Ethiopia in the north, Uganda in the west, Tanzania in the south and Somalia and the Indian ocean in the east.

Terrain                  : The northern half of Kenya is gene­

rally low, thorn bush covered plain, but includes in the northwest several mountains and lake Turkana (Rudolf) which extends 160 miles (255 km) along the great Rift valley. In the dry south eastern quarter are found, the narrow fertile strips and the densely populated Taita hills. The land rises gradually from the coast through horn Scrub and Savanna to the Kenya Highlands of the southwest. The plateau raised by the volcanic action, covers approximately 44000 km2. Most of it has elevation of 3,000 to 10,000 feet (900-3050 metres).

Kenya Highlands are bisected from north to south by Rift valley which extends the country from the lake Turkana to the Tanzania border. This

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valley volcanic in origin cuts through eastern Africa from the Red Sea into Malawi. In Kenya it has a general width from 30 to 40 miles (50 to 65 km) and lies 2,500 feet (760 metres) below the level of the surrounding country side. West of the Rift land slopes to the plain bordering lake Victoria.

Kenya has about 300 miles (480 km) of coastline on the Indian ocean and about 5,000 square miles (13,000 sq km) of inland water including lakes and swamps. The chief rivers; the Tana and Athi flow south-east to the Indian ocean. The Ewaso Ngiro River flows north east and loses itself in the swamps of the Lorian plain. The Nzoia, Yala, and Gori rivers flow westward from the plateau of lake Victoria.

A wide range of climate is found in Kenya. The coast is tropical and humid. With an average temp, of 80°F (27°C), the arid plain behind it and to the north averages 70°-80°F (21°C to 27°C). The high lands of the south-west are cool and invigorating with a mean temperature of 67°F (19°C) in Nairobi.

Rainfall varies from 5 inches (125 mm) in the most arid ports of the north to* about 40 inches (1000 mm) on the coast and 70 inches (1800 mm) near lake Victoria. The highlands have an average of 40 inches. On the whole one-third of Kenya receives more than 20 inches (500 mm) of rainfall. Two rainy seasons can be distinguished over most of the country—the long rains from April to June and the short rains from October to December. None the less no month is invariably dry and around lake Victoria there is after­noon rain throughout the year.

The natural vegetation of Kenya varies with relief and climate. The arid north and eastern low lands have typical desert growth with short grasses and scrub, while the southern coastal dringe contains dense mangrove swamps and rain


forests. The highland consists of Savanna grasslands alpine meadows and rich forests that produce valuable timber. The most common trees are
Animal Life African Camphor, African Olive, Polo and pencil cedar. Bamboo grows on the mountain up to an elevation of 10,000 feet (3050 metres).

: Wildlife includes lion, cheetah,

Population giraffe, leopard, buffalo, zebra, ante­lope, rhinoceros, hippopotamus and elephant. Most of these abound in plains. Kenya also has a large variety of water and land birds as well as countless troublesome insects, such as borers, ticks, ants, and mosqui­toes.

: 4,72,51,449

Population : 83 persons km2
Population : Urban-29-9%, Rural-78-1%
Birth-rate : 32 per 1000 pop.
Death-rate : 7 per 1000 pop.
Ethnic : Kikuyuc 21%, Lubyac 14%, Luoc 13%,
Composition Kalenjinc 11%, Kambac 11%, Gusiic
Religious 11%, Meruc 5%, Otherc 19%.

: Protestant independent Christian

Affinities 66%, Ramon Catholic 23%, Muslim
Form of Govt. 8%, Non-religious 12% traditional beliefs 1%.

: Unitary multiparty republic with one

Head of Govt. legislative house (National Assembly 224)

: President assisted by Prime Minister,

Capital President (Mwai Kibaki) Prime Minister (Raila Odinga) : Nairobi
Official : Swahili, English
Official : None
Monetary Unit : Kenyan-Shilling


“The swiftness of time is infinite, as is still more evident when we look back on the past.”

Prior to colonialism, the area comprised African farming communities, notably the Kikuyu and the Masai. From the 16th century through to the 19th century, they were loosely controlled by the Arabic rulers of Oman. In 1895 the British declared part of the region the East African protectorate which from 1920 was known as the colony of Kenya. During the pre-colonial era, migrating African people entered Kenya to form the present diversified population. British colonial policy deeply influenced by European settlement had a profound social and political impact on these traditionally, decentralized groups. Following the independence (December 12, 1963) most of the land in former white highlands was transferred to Africans and Kenyanization of the administration and economy was pursued as well as foreign investments.


A state of emergency existed between October 1952 and January 1960. During the period of Mau Mau uprising, the Kenya African Union was banned and its President Jomo Kenyatta imprisoned. The state of emergency ended in 1960 and a full internal self govt, was achieved in 1962 and in 1963 Kenya became an inde­pendent member of the commonwealth. In 1982 Kenya became a one partly state and in 1986 party preliminary elections were instituted to reduce the number of Parlia­ment candidates at General election. After the death of Kenyatta in August 1978 Daniel T. Arap Moi, the Vice- President became the acting President and was reelected in 1979 till 1997. A multiparty election was permitted in 1992 and 1997. In 2002 election Kibaki became the first non-Kenyan African National Union President of inde­pendent Kenya.


The country is thinly inhabited by Cushitic and Nilo Hamitic people. About 68% of the population is Bantu.

Luos who are Nilotes and make up 14% of the population are settled in west near Lake Victoria as are their northern Bantu neighbours, the Luhya and Kisii who constitute another 21% of Kenyas people. Nilo Hamilies—the Masai, Samburu, and Turkana together with the Kalkenjin (Kipsigis, Nandi, Tugen, Pokot and others) accounts far 11% of the population and occupy a broadband of territory from lake Turkana in the south. Cushitic peoples, Somalis and Oromo form about 3% of the population and live in the semi-arid eastern and north­eastern parts of Kenya. The Coastal Bantu, Miyikenla, Pokomo, Taita and Taveta compose 6% of the population. While the Kikuyu, Meru, Embu and Kamba of eastern highlands (all Bantu) have a commanding 39%.

Most rural African people practice both farming and rear cattle and goat herding. The Spmalis, Turkana, Samburu, and Masai are pastoralists although Masai are turning increasingly to farming.

Each ethnic group has its own language a, distinctive element of its culture and identity. Swahili is taught in the schools and used as a common language. English is also widely spoken.

About two-thirds of the Kenyan population are Christian. Of those 28% are the members of the Roman Catholic Church and 38% are Protestants. There are a number of independent African Churches. Islam is predo­minant on the coast and in the north-east.

Non-Africans are Asians, Europeans, Arabs, most of the Asians and Africans live in urban areas.


Kenya’s economy grew rapidly in the first decade of independence. Economic growth however was accom­panied by marked inequalities and uneven development among regions. The Govt, has promoted Kenyanization of land ownership, commerce and industry. Kenya has also promoted regional economic cooperation, through partici­pation in organisation, such as the common market for eastern and southern Africa.



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