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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Sunday, 23 January 2022 11.54 PM IST

Malayali scientist Dr S Somanath appointed as ISRO chairman

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THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Malayali rocket scientist Dr. S Somanath will be the next chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). He is currently the Director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre in Thiruvananthapuram. Dr. Somanath will succeed K Sivan who completes his extended tenure on Friday. Dr. Somanath is the fifth Malayali to head the ISRO. The other Malayalees who have occupied the topmost post in the Indian space sector are MGK Menon, K. Kasturirangan, G. Madhavan Nair, and K. Radhakrishnan.

As per the order issued by the Personnel Ministry, S Somanath has been appointed as the chairman of the ISRO as well as the Space Secretary. Somanath, who will be the 10th chairman of the premier space organisation, took charge as the VSSC’s head on January 22, 2018, after a two and a half years stint as the Director of Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre (LPSC), Valiamala, Thiruvananathapuram.

Previously, he served as the Associate Director (Projects) of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre and also as the Project Director of GSLV Mk-III launch vehicle, according to his official biodata. Under his leadership, the first experimental flight of LVM3-X/CARE mission was successfully accomplished on December 18, 2014, it said.

Somanath did his B Tech in Mechanical Engineering from TKM college of engineering, Kollam, and Masters in Aerospace Engineering from Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, with specialisation in structures, dynamics and control. He was a gold medalist.

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