K. Radhakrishnan, Director, Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC), Thiruvananthapuram, took over as Chairman, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), from G. Madhavan Nair on Saturday. Dr. Radhakrishnan also assumed office as Chairman, Space Commission and Secretary, Department of Space. He has 38 years of experience in space technology, applications and space programme management. He graduated in Electrical Engineering from Kerala University and obtained his MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore. He received his Ph.D. from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur in 2000. He has been a Member of the Space Commission from October 2008.

Sixty-year old Dr. Radhakrishnan began his career when he joined the VSSC as an avionics engineer in 1971. Since then, he has held several posts such as Project Director for setting up Regional Remote-sensing Service Centres, Director of Budget and Economic Analysis for ISRO and Mission Director of Integrated Mission for Sustainable Development. He has had a short stint in the Ministry of Earth Sciences in 2004-2005 as the founder Director of Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS) and first Project Director of Indian National Tsunami Warning System. From 2005 to 2008, he was Director, National Remote-Sensing Agency, Hyderabad, which has now been renamed National Remote-Sensing Centre (NRSC).

When Dr. Radhakrishnan was Director, VSSC from 2007 to 2009, there were five successful launches of ISRO’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV), which totally put 20 spacecraft including Chandrayaan-1 into orbit.

During the tenure (September 2003 to October 2009) of outgoing ISRO Chairman, G. Madhavan Nair, there were 25 successful launch vehicle and spacecraft missions. The highpoint of his career was ISRO putting Chandrayaan-1, India’s first scientific mission to the moon, into orbit on October 22, 200

PTI reports from Thiruvanthapuram

Avionics expert K. Radhakrishnan today took over as the Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) from G. Madhavan Nair here.

A highly respected scientist with 35 years of experience in ISRO, 60-year-old Dr. Radhakrishnan has played a key role in many of the country’s space projects, including Chandrayaan—I.

“It is with high hopes and great expectations that I am taking over this responsibility. It is a huge task that has been entrusted on me. I am confident that we will be able to achieve our goals with the dedicated work and support of the entire team of ISRO,” he said after assuming charge.

Before his elevation as ISRO chief, Dr. Radhakrishnan was the Director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC).

He joined the organisation in 1973 shortly after graduating in Electronic Engineering. He later pursued MBA from IIM Bangalore and a doctorate from IIT, Kharagpur.

He had served as Director, Regional Remote Sensing Service Centres, Director of Budget and Economic Analysis, Project Director of Early Warning System of Tsunami and Storm Surges.

Hailing from Irinjalakkuda in Thrissur district of Kerala, Dr. Radhakrishnan is also a keen enthusiast of classical arts and music. An ardent Kathakali fan, he had occasionally performed the dance, taking time off his busy schedule.

Meanwhile, senior ISRO scientist, P. S. Veeraraghavan, assumed charge as Director of VSSC.

Mr. Veeraraghavan had played an important role in major Indian space projects like PSLV and GSLV.

He has served ISRO in various capacities as director of Inertial Guidance Systems and Deputy Director of Mechanisms and Vehicle Integration at VSSC.

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