|Prof. U. R. Rao|
In 1966, he returned to India and once again joined PRL as Fellow and continued with his research. Thus, began his second phase of life. Here he began research studies on X-rays and gamma rays in cosmic rays. These experiments involved use of balloons, rockets and satellites, which were used as payloads. Meanwhile, Rao served as associate professor at PRL from 1968 to 1970. In 1970, he was promoted as professor. He worked on that post for two years. In 1972, he was appointed as director of ISRO Satellite Centre in Bangalore. He successfully discharged his duties here till 1984. During his researches at PRL, he and his colleagues had made important contributions towards understanding the interplanetary medium. His research on solar winds has increased our understanding of the subject. The data interpretation of American Satellites pioneer I and Pioneer II became easy due to his researches. His understanding of the solar winds by unraveling the American satellite Mariner II observations provided a new insight to the world of science. He was the first to establish the relationship between geomagnetic storms and solar winds with the help of observations made on earth. For his highly accurate analysis of the Pioneer 6,7,8, and 9 observations, he was awarded the ‘Group achievement Award, by National Aeronautics & Space administration (NASA) in 1973.
|Prof. U R Rao Photo|
On October 2, 1984 Prof Rao was appointed chairman of ISRO and secretary of Space Commissions, Government of India. He was entrusted the entire responsibility of the country’s space programme. Taking forward the programme by guiding the scientists and engineers, he performed his duties successfully till 1994. Under his leadership the country’s space programs took a giant leap and made various achievements. During his tenure, satellite launch vehicles were produced. This achievement was recognized. Launch vehicles like the ASLV, which could launch a satellite with a payload of 150 Kg in lower orbit and PSLV, which could launch a satellite with a payload of 1000 kg in polar orbit were prepared. Besides, special cryogenic engines are acquired to produce launch vehicles for GSLV geostationary satellites. These satellite launch vehicles can put satellites with 2.5 ton payload into orbit.
Prof Rao has played an important role in enhancing India’s name in the world of space science. This is the reason why many institutes, universities and many governments in the country and abroad have lauded his efforts. In 1975, the Russian Science Academy, while praising his efforts for the successful launch of Aryabhatt satellite, honoured him with the Russian ‘Medal of Honour’. The same year, he was awarded the ‘Dr. Vikram Sarabhai Research Award’ instituted by the Hariom Ashrama, for his contribution to space physics. He was also awarded the ‘Dr. Shantiswaroop Bhatnagar Prize’ for his contribution to engineering science. The Karnataka government conferred on him the ‘State Award’. In 1980, the Indian Engineering Institute gave him the ‘National Design Award’ and for his contribution to electronics science and technology, he was given the year’s ‘Vasvik Research Award’. For his services to the country, the President conferred on him the Padma Bhushan.
|Prof Udupi Ramchandra Rao|
Today, he works as chairman of the PRL governing body. Besides, he is associated with various institutions. He has to his credit, more than 150 research papers. He has also written a book on the Aryabhatt project with his colleague Dr. Kasturirangan. It describes in detail about the project, its results and also analysis of its images. In 1996, he had detailed discussions with the then Prime Minister Narasimha Rao, on how science and technology would be useful in increasing foodgrain production, economic development and health of the country, and wrote a book in this connection. Thus, he has served the country in various fields. We pray to the almighty to grant him good health and long life, so that he continues to guide the country in space research.
|Great Scientist Udupi Ramchandra Rao Photo|
|Prof U R Rao Images|
|Prof U R Rao Photo|
|Prof U R Rao Pictures|
|Prof. U.R. Rao Images|
|Scientist Prof U R Rao Photos|