Dr. A.P.J.Abdul Kalam : He spent the next four decades as a scientist and science administrator

APJ Abdul KalamDr. A.P.J.Abdul Kalam (Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam) former president of India and was an Indian scientist. Born at Rameswaram in Tamilnadu state on 15th October 1931 and pass away on 27th July 2015. He was 11th president of India from 2002 to 2007. He studied physics and aerospace engineering, after graduating from the Madras Institute of Technology in 1960, Kalam joined the Aeronautical Development Establishment of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) as a scientist. He started his career by designing a small helicopter for the Indian Army, but remained unconvinced by his choice of a job at DRDO. Kalam was also part of the INCOSPAR committee working under Vikram Sarabhai, the renowned space scientist. In 1969, Kalam was transferred to the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) where he was the project director of India’s first Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV-III) which successfully deployed the Rohini satellite in near-earth orbit in July 1980. Kalam had first started work on an expandable rocket project independently at DRDO in 1965. In 1969, Kalam received the government’s approval and expanded the programme to include more engineers. He spent the next four decades as a scientist and science administrator, mainly at the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and was intimately involved in India’s civilian space program and military missile development efforts. Also played a pivotal organizational, technical and political role in India’s Pokhran-II nuclear tests in 1998, the first since the original nuclear test by India in 1974. After serving a term of five years, he returned to his civilian life of education, writing, and public service. He has received several prestigious awards, including the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian honour. A P J Abdul Kalam’s 79th birthday was recognised as World Student’s Day by United Nations. He has also received honorary doctorates from 40 universities. The Government of India has honoured him with the Padma Bhushan in 1981 and the Padma Vibhushan in 1990 for his work with ISRO and DRDO and his role as a scientific advisor to the Government. In 1997, Kalam received India’s highest civilian honour, the Bharat Ratna, for his immense and valuable contribution to the scientific research and modernisation of defence technology in India. In 2005, Switzerland declared 26 May as science day to commemorate Kalam’s visit in the country. In 2013, he was the recipient of the Von Braun Award from the National Space Society “to recognize excellence in management of and leadership for a space-related project.

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