Man behind Aryabhatta and renowned Indian scientist UR Rao passes away


A Renowned Indian space scientist and former ISRO chairman U.R. Rao passed away in Bengaluru in the early hours of Monday, said a space agency official.

Udupi Ramachandra Rao, popularly known as UR Rao, was born in Adampur village in Udupi on March 10, 1932.

For his vast contribution to development of India's space technology, Rao was inducted by International Astronautical Federation (IAF) in 2016 into its Hall of Fame. From 1984 to 1994 Rao, was the chairman of the state-run ISRO for a decade.

Despite that he wrote several books on subjects related to space research, Professor Rao published over 350 scientific and technical papers covering wide range of topics including cosmic rays, interplanetary physics, high energy astronomy, space applications and satellite and rocket technology.

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At that time, India was heavily dependent on Russian Federation for cryogenic technology. Interestingly, Rao had then said, "I thought I will get this (Padma Vibhushan) posthumously".

According to ISRO, He had served as the Chairman of the Governing Council of the Physical Laboratory at Ahmedabad and also as the Chancellor of the Indian Institute of Science and Technology (IIST) of Thiruvananthapuram.

During his tenure in ISRO, many successful PSLV missions were launched, but more importantly it was UR Rao who made ISRO start the GSLV vehicle.

He was also inducted into the prestigious Satellite Hall of Fame in 2013 at a glittering ceremony organised by the Society of Satellite Professionals International in Washington.