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Soumya Pillai

Soumya Pillai covers environment and traffic in Delhi. A journalist for three years, she has grown up in and with Delhi, which is often reflected in the stories she does about life in the city. She also enjoys writing on social innovations.

Articles by Soumya Pillai

India launches first winter mission to Arctic

Union minister of earth sciences Kiren Rijiju said India’s winter expeditions to the Arctic will now be regularly undertaken annually,

Union minister of earth sciences Kiren Rijiju flagged off the winter science expedition to the Arctic region on Monday. (Image posted on X by Kiren Rijiju)
Published on Dec 18, 2023 05:13 PM IST

Doctors find chocolate wrapper lodged in 8-year-old’s bronchus after prolonged pneumonia

The family initially thought the symptoms were of seasonal flu, but when the child failed to get better, they decided to seek medical help.

Doctors who treated the child explained that she came in with a significant infection because of the prolonged presence of a foreign body in her body. (Shutterstock/Representational)
Published on Dec 18, 2023 04:11 PM IST

Turned away by three hospitals, 14-year-old cancer patient dies

The teenager’s family alleged Delhi government’s Delhi State Cancer Institute (DSCI), and the centre-run Safdarjung hospital and AIIMS refused treatment citing lack of medicines, beds

The Delhi State Cancer Institute where the 14-year-old was under treatment for four months. The Delhi government has ordered a probe into the matter. (Raj K Raj/HT Photo)
Updated on Dec 07, 2023 05:46 AM IST

Why Chandrayaan module return is key for future missions

These experiments also form the basis of sending humans to the moon and bringing them back safely—a mission recently approved by PM Modi, and expected to happen by 2040

Indian Space Research Organisation released an image of the Chandrayaan-3 Vikram Lander as its Propulsion Module (PM) moved from an orbit around the moon to an orbit around Earth in another unique experiment, on Tuesday (ISRO-X/ANI)
Updated on Dec 06, 2023 01:34 PM IST
By, New Delhi

Chandrayaan-3 Propulsion Module moved from Lunar orbit to Earth’s orbit

“In another unique experiment, like the hop experiment on the Vikram Lander, the PM of Chandrayaan-3 was mobed from an orbit around Moon to an orbit around the Earth,” the statement said.

HT Image
Updated on Dec 05, 2023 06:34 AM IST
By, New Delhi

India’s first polarimetry mission may be launched this month: Isro

XPoSat mission is capable of simultaneous studies of temporal, spectral, and polarization features of the bright x-ray sources

Indian Space Research Organisation scientists say India is set to launch its first X-Ray Polarimeter Satellite (XPoSat), aiming to investigate the polarization of intense X-Ray sources. (Bloomberg)
Updated on Dec 04, 2023 08:50 AM IST

India’s first child liver transplant recipient in 1998 is now a doctor

Children who undergo liver transplants lead an active life and many patients continue to have great careers, they get married and have a completely normal life

Reresentative photo. (File)
Updated on Nov 15, 2023 08:15 PM IST

India-US space project NISAR trial done at Isro facility, launch likely in 2024

NISAR is a low earth orbit observatory jointly developed by NASA and Isro to map the globe in 12 days

NISAR will use radar to study changes in ecosystems such as this forest in Tikal National Park in northern Guatemala. (USAID)
Updated on Nov 15, 2023 04:20 PM IST

High exposure to bad air can worsen mental health, warn doctors

Pollution likely affects the part of the brain that regulates emotions, leading to or aggravating issues such as anxiety, depression and memory loss

A 2022 study conducted on a group of people from US and Denmark found that exposure to air pollution is also significantly associated with increased risk of psychiatric disorder including depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and personality disorder. (ANI)
Updated on Nov 15, 2023 05:16 AM IST

Doctors: Extreme exposure to firecrackers hazardous

Firecrackers emit high levels of ultrafine particulate matter, exceeding the national standard, causing immediate discomfort and long-term health problems.

An analysis by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) highlighted that antimony sulphide — the chemical compound which produces the glitter effect in firecrackers — is a known carcinogen and can cause a nauseating feeling after short-term exposure. (Vipin Kumar/HT Photo)
Updated on Nov 14, 2023 02:49 AM IST

Japanese rover tests on track for lunar mission with India

The mission called LUPEX is for lunar surface exploration and subsurface water search. Rover has been equipped with instruments from JAXA, ISRO, NASA, and ESA.

JAXA has created multiple facilities to emulate the lunar terrain, with a dark room, sandy terrain with rocks and lunar lighting, to test the mobility and navigation abilities of the rover. (File)(Satish Bate/HT Photo)
Updated on Nov 12, 2023 03:08 AM IST

Centre to use Isro satellites for pollution monitoring

A senior official of MoES said they are already working with Isro to identify stubble-burning hotspots

Ludhiana, India – November 08, 2023: Despite a ban on the Stubble Burning, local farmers are still indulged in the practice, ignoring the orders and effect on the environment. Farmers are setting the stubble on fire in their fields at Village Jodhan nearby in Ludhiana on Wednesday, November 08, 2023. This photos click at 4:30 pm (Photo by Gurpreet Singh/Hindustan Times)
Updated on Nov 11, 2023 05:36 AM IST

Payload on board Aditya-L1 captures first X-ray glimpse of solar flares

On September 2, Isro launched the Aditya-L1 spacecraft—the country’s maiden mission to study the Sun—from the spaceport in Sriharikota

The mission will allow India’s scientists to unlock new insights about the centre of our solar system. (Isro)
Published on Nov 07, 2023 07:36 PM IST

Battle for breath: Vulnerable, sick queue up at Delhi ERs

Prolonged exposure to such high levels of air pollution can increase risk of lung cancer, cardiovascular diseases, and neurological disorders

On Thursday, a toxic cocktail of pollutants led by PM 2.5 engulfed the Capital. Delhi’s 24-hour average air quality index (AQI) was 392 (very poor) at 4pm. (Sanchit Khanna/HT Photo)
Updated on Nov 03, 2023 06:06 AM IST

Bad air behind anaemia, low birth weight in kids, finds study

The findings highlight that impacts of pollutants on children’s health were far more adverse as compared to finer particulate matter

Children play in a park on a foggy morning in Noida on Wednesday. (Sunil Ghosh/HT Photo)
Updated on Nov 02, 2023 05:38 AM IST

Isro analysing results from Gaganyan’s Saturday test

The Gaganyaan, India’s first human spaceflight mission, envisages to demonstrate of human spaceflight capability.

Scientists at the Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) said they have started analysing data from the crew escape system after Saturday’s successful mission. (AFP)
Updated on Oct 27, 2023 04:47 AM IST
By, New Delhi

Heatwave intensity set to spike, new hot spots likely: Govt study

Heatwave frequency will increase as much as four to seven times, the analysis by DST’s Mahamana Centre of Excellence in Climate Change Research has predicted, which could increase five to 10 times in the mid and long term

Scientists have warned that the frequency of intense heat will increase substantially. (HT Photo)
Updated on Oct 25, 2023 05:46 AM IST
By, New Delhi

Isro conducts test flight for Gaganyaan mission

The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) has successfully completed a test launch and recovery of a crew module for the Gaganyaan mission, bringing the country's first human space flight project one step closer to reality. The test involved simulating an emergency situation to ensure the crew module could safely remove itself from the test vehicle and land in the sea. Isro aims to launch an unmanned flight for the Gaganyaan mission in the first half of 2024, followed by a manned mission around 2025.

The Gaganyaan test vehicle lifts off from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota on Saturday. (AFP)
Updated on Oct 22, 2023 05:56 AM IST
By, New Delhi

Gaganyaan TV-D1 test successful after initial glitch

The lift-off was postponed twice from its initial launch time (8am) and was later temporarily put on hold five seconds before the lift-off due to a technical anomaly, which was rectified immediately before the take-off

Isro’s maiden Test Vehicle Flight TV-D1 (Twitter/@DrJitendraSingh)
Published on Oct 21, 2023 12:29 PM IST

Isro put on ‘hold’ Gaganyaan TV-D1 test flight over technical anomaly

Space Agency chief S Somanath said that the test flight would be rescheduled soon after checking the anomaly

TV-D1 Test Flight (Twitter/@isro)
Updated on Oct 21, 2023 09:59 AM IST

Key test today for India’s human spaceflight mission

Last-minute checks were on for a test flight that will enable the agency to carry out a series of safety tests for the Gaganyaan mission, one of the officials aware of the matter said

Isro is about to commence unmanned flight tests for the Gaganyaan mission in Sriharikota from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (ANI)
Updated on Oct 21, 2023 05:42 AM IST

Indo-Gangetic plains to undergo varied rainfall patters in future: Study

Rainfall patterns over the Indo-Gangetic plains will undergo significant changes in the coming years due to climate change.

Indo-Gangetic plains to undergo varied rainfall patters in the coming years, according to a study. (HT Archive)
Updated on Oct 18, 2023 04:50 AM IST

Aim for Indian on the Moon by 2040: Modi

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has set ambitious goals for the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), including establishing an Indian Space Station by 2035 and sending the first Indian to the Moon by 2040. The Prime Minister also called for the development of a roadmap for future Moon missions, the construction of a new launch pad, and the exploration of interplanetary missions. ISRO's crucial test flight for its first manned space mission, Gaganyaan, is scheduled for October 21.

HT Image
Updated on Oct 18, 2023 05:58 AM IST
By, New Delhi

Space station by 2035, manned mission by 2040: PM Modi tells ISRO to aim high

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has directed the Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) to aim for a manned mission to the Moon by 2040 and to establish an Indian Space Station by 2035. Modi also called for the development of a roadmap for future Moon missions, the construction of a new launch pad, and the setting up of human-centric laboratories. Isro's test flight for India's first human spaceflight, Gaganyaan, is scheduled for 21 October. The mission will demonstrate India's ability to send manned space missions.

PM Narendra Modi chaired the meeting in the presence of Science minister Jitendra Singh and ISRO chairperson S Somnath. (HT photo)
Updated on Oct 17, 2023 08:33 PM IST

Record spike in aerosol in Hindu Kush region: Study

The increase in aerosols in the Hindu Kush-Himalaya-Tibetan Plateau region could be the reason behind increase in temperatures, altering rainfall patters and accelerating glacier retreat, a study by Isro’s Physical Research Laboratory has shown

The hindu Kush-Himalaya-Tibetan Plateau region has been witnessing an alarming increase in aerosol levels, shows study. (Wikimedia Commons)
Updated on Oct 13, 2023 06:20 AM IST

Server failure at Delhi AIIMS hits OPD, emergency operations

Doctors and administrative staff said that the servers crashed on Wednesday night, making it difficult for medics to access medical records and reports of patients

AIIMS spokesperson Dr Rima Dada said, “The servers are fine, and all online activities have resumed. It was a planned maintenance activity,” she said. (HT Archive)
Updated on Oct 13, 2023 05:30 AM IST

AIIMS server down for nearly 12 hours, hospital claims “planned maintenance”

Doctors and administrative staff said servers crashed Wednesday night, making it difficult for medics to access medical records and patient reports

The All India Institute of Medical Sciences is the top teaching hospital in the country. (HT photo)
Updated on Oct 12, 2023 08:41 PM IST

Aditya-L1 goes through crucial manoeuvre: Isro

The space agency said the manoeuvre ensures that the spacecraft is on its intended path towards the Halo orbit insertion around L1.

A graphic representation of ISRO’s Aditya L1 mission.(HT_PRINT)
Updated on Oct 09, 2023 04:17 AM IST
By, New Delhi

Gaganyaan: India's 1st manned mission abort test demo likely on October 25

A senior official from the Indian space agency said that the abort capability demonstration can be expected later in the month, if “all goes per plan”

Joint team of Indian Navy and Isro during the recovery trials of Mission Gaganyaan's Crew Module onboard earmarked ship, at Eastern Naval Command, in Visakhapatnam (PTI)
Updated on Oct 07, 2023 02:36 AM IST

‘It could be a bad year if on-ground steps inadequate’: Nasa expert on farm fires

Predicting the pre-winter air quality crisis is difficult since there is wide variation in factors: whether farmers choose to burn the paddy residue is a key determinant, as is the sort of weather that prevails

Stubble burning in a field at Daduana village in Amritsar. (ANI)
Updated on Oct 03, 2023 05:20 AM IST
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