Biography of S Somanath: The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) appointed S Somanath as the 10th Chief of ISRO on January 12, 2022. He was appointed for a joint term of three years from the date of joining the post, including extension of tenure after attaining the age limit in public interest or until further orders, whichever comes first.
ISRO successfully led various space missions under the chairmanship of S Somanath. One of them was the soft landing of Chandrayaan 3 on the South Pole of the Moon and now India’s first trip to the Sun.
Here is a detailed biography of ISRO’s tenth president, S Somanath.
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Biography of S Somanath
University of Kerala
Indian Institute of Science
|It worked||Dr. K. Sivan|
|Currently serving||Tenth President of ISRO|
Biography of S Somanath: Birth, Age and Education
S Somanath was born in July 1963. He hails from Alappuzha (Alleppey), Kerala. He is 58 years old.
S Somanath graduated in mechanical engineering from the University of Kerala and completed his postgraduate studies in aeronautical engineering from the Indian Institute of Science (IISc).
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S The Somanath Family
S Somanath is married to Valsala and the couple has two children. Her wife works in the Goods and Services Tax (GST) department under the Ministry of Finance. Both children completed postgraduate studies in engineering. Despite being a Hindi teacher, Somanath’s father encouraged his son’s passion for science and fed him science books in English and Malayalam.
S Somanath career
S Somanath joined ISRO in 1985 and since then has held many positions in LPSC and VSSC including Project Manager-Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV), Deputy Director Structures Entity/Propulsion & Space Ordnance Entity and Project Director, Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV Mk-III).
He was associated with the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) project during its initial phase and was Deputy Director of the Propulsion and Space Regulation Unit until November 2014.
In June 2015, he served as director of the Liquid Propulsion Systems Center (LPSC), which is responsible for the design and implementation of liquid propulsion systems for launch vehicle and spacecraft programs.
S Somanath was previously associated with the Vikram Sarabhai Space Center (VSSC) as its director. VSSC is ISRO’s leading center responsible for the design and implementation of launch vehicles.
S. Somanath New Chairman of ISRO
As part of his role as the new chairman of ISRO, S Somanath will focus on technology, policy, implementation and areas of stakeholder concern. It will also work to expand the space ecosystem into industries.
S Somnath took over as the President of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) on 14 January 2022. He is the 10th President of ISRO and the first from Kerala.
Somanath is an aerospace engineer with over 35 years of experience in the aerospace sector. He has held several key positions at ISRO, including Director of the Vikram Sarabhai Space Center (VSSC) and the Liquid Propulsion Systems Center (LPSC). He is also the recipient of the prestigious “Space Gold Medal” from the Astronautical Society of India.
Somanath is a highly qualified and experienced engineer with a proven track record. He is well respected in the space community and is known for his dedication to his work.
In his new role as Chairman of ISRO, Somanath is tasked with leading the organization into its next phase of growth. He said he plans to focus on developing new technologies, expanding ISRO’s reach into new areas and strengthening its international partnerships.
He worked on the development of Chandrayaan-3 and announced the launch of India’s lunar mission scheduled for July 13 to July 19, 2023. The spacecraft lifted off on July 14, 2023, and the LVM3 M4 vehicle propelled Chandrayaan-3 to its assigned orbit.
On August 5, Chandrayaan-3 reached lunar orbit and the mission became successful on August 23, 2023 at 18:04.
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S Somanath’s area of expertise
Somanath is an expert in launch vehicle structural systems, structural dynamics, mechanisms, pyro systems and launch vehicle integration. His pioneering contribution to mechanical integration design has resulted in PSLV becoming a highly sought after microsatellite launcher around the world. He also provided technical guidance for the design of GSLV MkIII.
S Somanath pays
RPG Group Chairman Harsh Goenka mentioned ISRO Chairman S Somanath’s salary in his recent tweet. He wrote, “Chairman of ISRO, Somanath’s salary is 2.5 lakh rupees per month. Is this right and fair? Let’s understand that people like him are motivated by factors beyond money. They do what they do because of their passion and dedication to science and research , for national pride to contribute to their country and for personal fulfillment in achieving their purpose. I bow my head to dedicated men like him!”
Chairman of ISRO, Somanath’s salary is 2.5 lakh rupees per month. Is it right and fair? Let’s understand that people like him are motivated by factors beyond money. They do what they do because of their passion and commitment to science and research, because of the national pride that contributes to their…
— Harsh Goenka (@hvgoenka)
September 11, 2023
With Somanath awards and honors
1- Gold Space Medal from Astronautical Society of India (ASI) 2- Excellence in Performance Award-2014. and Team Excellence Award-2014. for realization of GSLV Mk-III by ISRO3- Member of Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE) 4- Corresponding member of International Academy of Astronautics (IAA).
Also read | List of ISRO Presidents