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# 048 - Rare ISRO failure ... CO2 shortage & beer ... Tonga Volcano
Welcome to yet another edition of the Newsletter.
Great news for NRIs. They can now use the Bharat Bill Payment System to pay their Indian utility bills. This means they can pay their families' bills without having to open NRE accounts. Approximately 20,000 billers have been added to the system.
An update on the Twitter vs. Elon Musk case. One of the reasons Elon Musk does not want to buy is Twitter’s unwillingness to follow local rules in India. Twitter has had numerous run-ins with the Indian government. However, Mr. Musk would have been aware of these issues long before he made a bid to buy the company.
Tonga has an underwater volcano that recently erupted in January. Scientists have confirmed that this is the most powerful volcanic eruption in 140 years since the Krakatoa volcano erupted in Indonesia in 1883. The resulting explosion's sonic boom was recorded in Alaska (6000 miles away), and the resulting water vapour cloud was nearly 36 miles high.
Craft Beer shortage in US & supply chain issues
Following semi-conductors and fibre optics, the craft beer industry is now facing supply chain issues (at least for now).
Carbondioxide (yes, the much-maligned molecule CO2) is a key ingredient in beer. CO2, but only food-grade CO2 is a common byproduct of fertiliser industries, and many factories are closed this summer due to unexpected maintenance.
Another important source of naturally occurring foodgrade CO2 is Jackson Dome, a dormant volcano in Mississippi. However, contamination in the local plant means that an important source of raw material is no longer available.
Furthermore, aluminium and barley prices have risen since the pandemic. All of these factors are causing local craft beer manufacturers to shut down.
A rare failure for ISRO
ISRO's stellar track record of successfully launching satellites took a small hit. ISRO's SSLV D1 failed to place 2 small satellites in circular orbit due to a faulty sensor. This is a small dent to the agency's efforts to commercialize launch of small satellites.
One of the 2 satellites, Azaadisat, was an educational initiative by 75 girl students. ISRO has confirmed that the two satellites were placed in elliptical orbit and is no more usable.
Indian Government to ban cheaper Chinese made smartphones
The Indian government is attempting to ban the sale of Chinese smartphones priced under $150 / Rs. 12000 in order to increase the production and sale of Indian-made budget smartphones. This will hurt smartphone manufacturers such as Xiaomi, Realme, and others.
But, will Indian smartphone manufacturers be able to scale up? They were merely traders, not OEMs, and had long since lost their market share. JIO will be the sole beneficiary with this move.
Till the next edition, Stay Safe and Healthy.