Sivan K named new ISRO chairman

Pat Wise
January 13, 2018

But, once again, finances came in the way again of Sivan's pursuit of academics.

He studied in government schools in Tarakkanvilai his native village and at neighbouring Valangumaravilai in Tamil medium.

K Sivan is the new chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and secretary, Department of Space. His elevation comes even as ISRO is preparing to launch its 100th satellite on Friday.

Sivan, who joined ISRO way back in 1982, has worked for the development of various projects of the space agency.

The co-passenger satellites consist of one micro and nano satellite each from India as well as three micro and 25 nano satellites from Canada, Finland, France, South Korea, Britain, and the United States. Sivan will replace current ISRO Chairman AS Kiran Kumar, whose term will end on January 14.

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Tomorrow's launch also marks the first for ISRO this year after the unsuccessful mission of navigation satellite IRNSS-1H on August 31 last year when the heat shield of the rocket did not separate in the final leg of the launch sequence.

Besides contributing significantly to the PSLV project, Sivan was also involved in designing the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) and GSLV Mk-III vehicle.

He evolved novel strategies for launching India's MARS mission endeavor through PSLV.

He graduated from Madras Institute of Technology in aeronautical engineering in 1980 and completed master of engineering in aerospace engineering from IISc, Bengaluru in 1982.

Sivan has been the recipient of multiple prestigious awards including Doctor of Science (Honoris Causa) from Sathyabama University, Chennai in April 2014, The Distinguished Alumnus Award 2013 from MIT Alumni Association, Chennai, Dr Biren Roy Space science award for the year 2011, ISRO merit award for the year 2007 and Shri Hari Om Ashram Prerit Dr. Vikram Sarabhai Research award for the year 1999. They have two sons, Sushanth and Siddharth.

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