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S. Somanath Biography: Birth, Age, Family, Education and Achievements

Dr. Sreedhara Somanath is a prominent Indian aerospace engineer and rocket technologist known for his significant contributions to the Indian space program. S. Sommanth has dedicated more than 35 years to the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO). Somanath’s impressive career trajectory and accomplishments have earned him a well-deserved reputation in the field of space exploration.

Early Life of S. Somanath

Somanath, born in July 1963 in Alappuzha (Alleppey), Kerala, has emerged as a prominent figure in the aerospace industry. He pursued his educational journey with dedication and passion.

Educational Life of S. Somanath

Somanath’s educational journey began at St. Augustine’s High School. He pursued his higher education at various institutions:

  • Tech in Mechanical Engineering from TKM College of Engineering, Kollam.
  • Master’s in Aerospace Engineering, Dynamics and Control from the Indian Institute of Science.
  • D. in Mechanical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras.

Family and Personal Life

Somanath married to Valsala, who contributes to the Goods and Service Tax (GST) department, operating under the Ministry of Finance. Together, they are proud parents of two children, both of whom have achieved Post Graduate degree in Engineering. Somanath’s father, despite being a Hindi teacher, nurtured his son’s scientific curiosity by providing him with science books in both English and Malayalam languages.

Career Highlights of S. Somanath

Somanath’s career at ISRO has been marked by several significant roles and accomplishments:

  • He joined ISRO in 1985 and held various positions at LPSC (Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre) and VSSC (Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre).
  • He served as Project Manager for the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) project.
  • Deputy Director of Structure Entity/ Propulsion & Space Ordnance Entity.
  • Project Director for GSLV Mk.III
  • Deputy Director of the Propulsion and Space Ordnance Entity, where he conducted to the PSLV project.
  • Director of LPSC, responsible for designing and implementing liquid propulsion systems.
  • Director of VSSC, where he oversaw launch vehicle design and realization.

Chandrayaan-3 Mission

Under Somanath’s leadership, ISRO successfully launched the Chandrayaan-3 mission in 2023. The spacecraft, launched on July 14, achieved lunar orbit on August 5, and it successfully fulfilled its mission on August 23, 2023 at 6:04 PM. This achievement underscores Somanath’s commitment to advancing space exploration.

Awards and Vision

Somanath’s dedication and contributions have earned him several prestigious awards, including:

  • Space Gold Medal from the Astronautical Society of India (ASI).
  • Performance Excellence Award and Team Excellence Award from ISRO for contributions to GSLV Mk.III.
  • Membership in the Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE).
  • Corresponding Member of the International Academy of Astronautics.

Legacy and Impact

Somanath’s contributions to ISRO’s various projects, especially in the field of launch vehicle technology and lunar exploration, have been instrumental in advancing India’s space capabilities. His leadership and expertise continue to play a significant role in shaping the country’s space endeavors and international partnerships.

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