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Rocket Man From Nellore is DRDO’s New Chairman: 10 Things About Satheesh Reddy!

Taking over from S Christopher, Reddy will be holding this portfolio for the next two years, while overseeing every activity of the defence organisation.

DRDO, India’s premier agency for military research and development, will now be chaired by prominent aerospace scientist Dr G Satheesh Reddy. His appointment was formalised by the Appointment Committee of the Cabinet earlier this week.

Reddy is already quite a renowned personality in India’s defence and scientific circles, for his research and development work in missile systems has made a significant contribution towards India’s advancement in fields like aerospace technologies and avionics.

Taking over from S Christopher, Reddy will be holding this portfolio for the next two years, while overseeing every activity of the defence organisation including the conceptualisation, design and development of inertial sensors, navigation schemes, algorithms systems, calibration methodologies, sensor models, simulation along with development of satellite navigation receivers and hybrid navigation systems, as reported by notable news agency, IANS.

Here are ten things to know about DRDO’s new chairman:

Dr G Satheesh Reddy. Source: Facebook.

1. Born in the village of Mahimalaru in the Nellore district of Andhra Pradesh, Reddy is an alumnus of Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University (JNTU) where he had graduated in Electronics and Communication Engineering.

2. Widely renowned for his exceptional expertise in navigation science, Reddy is known to have pioneered several technological developments for India’s missile systems and has made noteworthy contributions towards the successful flight-testing of the Agni V— India’s first intercontinental ballistic missile mission.

3. At present, he is spearheading the Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Missile Complex, which is the ‘Missile Hub of India.’ He is also serving as the Programme Director of the Research Centre Imarat, a key laboratory of the missile complex as well as an advanced centre for design that oversees the development and delivery of avionics systems for missiles and other applications.

4. It was under Reddy’s leadership that the development of the medium-range surface-to-air missile programme, and that too, with a hat-trick in all the first three consecutive missions, was successfully achieved.

5. Besides being the first Indian defence scientist to be bestowed with the fellowship of the Royal Institute of Navigation in London, the decorated scientist also holds the distinction of having received the Silver Medal from the prestigious institute in 2015. He was also selected for the first-ever IEI (India) and IEEE (USA) joint award for Engineering Excellence.

6. The same year, he was appointed as the Scientific Advisor to the Defence Minister, a post, which he continues to hold. He currently answers to Nirmala Sitharaman.


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7. He has fellowships from renowned global institutions like the Royal Aeronautical Society (UK), Indian National Academy of Engineering, Computer Society of India (honorary), Aeronautical Society of India, Institution of Engineering and Technology (UK), American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (Associate) along with a full member diploma as a Foreign Member of Russia’s Academy of Navigation and Motion Control.

8. Reddy has also been conferred with awards like the Homi J Bhabha Memorial Award of the Indian Science Congress Association, National Systems Gold Medal, Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya Award of the Institution of Engineers (India), IETE BV Baliga Memorial Award for his contribution towards planning, design, development, production and timely delivery of critical avionics systems and diversified navigation technologies and Systems Society of India Vikram Award for realisation of Systems of National importance.

9. However, it was his expertise in navigations and noteworthy contributions to the Indian defence programmes that won Reddy the Young Scientist Award, DRDO Scientist of the Year Award and the celebrated Agni Award for Excellence in Self-reliance as a team leader for indigenous development of world-class and highly accurate ring laser gyro-based inertial navigation system. He is also a recipient of National Aeronautical Prize as well as National Design Award.

10. Besides being appointed as DRDO’s chairman, Reddy is also the Secretary of the Department of Defence Research and Development (DDR&D) as well as the Director General of Missiles and Strategic Systems.

(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)

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Written by Lekshmi Priya S

Shuttling between existentialist views and Grey's Anatomy, Lekshmi has an insanely disturbing habit of binge reading. An ardent lover of animals and plants, she also specializes in cracking terribly sad jokes.