Eminent space scientist and former Chairman of Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) Prof Udupi Ramachandra Rao passed away on 24 July 2017 at his residence in Bengaluru. He was 85.
Reports suggest that Rao was bed-ridden for quite long due to geriatric health issues.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his tweet said that he is saddened by demise of renowned scientist, Professor UR Rao and his remarkable contribution to India's space programme will never be forgotten.
Who was Professor Udupi Ramachandra Rao?
• Born in Adamaru area of Karnataka’s Udupi district, Prof UR Rao is credited with having played an instrumental role in building up Indian satellite programmes right from the days of the nation's first satellite Aryabhatta.
• Prof Rao served as the chairman of ISRO for 10 years from 1984-1994.
• An Alumni of Madras University, Prof Rao was serving as the Chancellor of the Thiruvananthapuram-based Indian Institute for Space Science and Technology till his last breath.
• At present, he was serving as the chairman of the governing council of the Physical Research Laboratory in Ahmedabad.
• He was also serving many reputed scientific research institutions and Universities as a member of their academic councils and panels.
• Prof UR Rao was awarded with the Padma Bhushan in 1976 and Padma Vibhushan in 2017 for his contribution to Indian space technology.
• In October 2016, International Astronautics Federation inducted Prof Rao in its 'Hall of Fame'. He was the first Indian to achieve such a feat
• He is the person, who accelerated the development of rocket technology in India like ASLV (Augmented Satellite Launch Vehicle) rocket in 1992 as well as PSLV launch vehicle – which successfully launched an 850 kg satellite into a polar orbit in 1995.
• He also initiated the development of the Geo Stationary Launch Vehicle (GSLV) and the development of cryogenic technology in 1991.
What: Died aged 85
When: 24 July 2017
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