Unveiling of the Bust of Satish Dhawan at Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota & Presentation of Astronautical Society of India Awards by Prime Minister
The Prime Minster, Dr Manmohan Singh will unveil the Bust of Late Prof Satish Dhawan and present the annual awards of Astronautical Society of India at Satish Dhawan Space Centre SHAR, Sriharikota on Wednesday, September 21, 2005.
About Satish Dhawan Space Centre
Satish Dhawan Space Centre SHAR, located at Sriharikota, a spindle shaped island on the East Coast of Andhra Pradesh, about 80 km north of Chennai, is the spaceport of India. This island was chosen in 1969 for setting up of a satellite launching station. Features like good launch azimuth corridor for various missions, advantage of earth's rotation for eastward launchings, nearness to the equator, and large uninhabited area for safety zone - all make Sriharikota Range, popularly known as 'SHAR', an ideal spaceport. Off Sullurupeta - a small town in Nellore district, Andhra Pradesh on the national highway connecting Chennai and Kolkata - a 20 minutes drive towards the east on the road laid across the Pulicat Lake takes one to Sriharikota. SHAR was named as 'Satish Dhawan Space Centre SHAR' (SDSC), on September 5, 2002, in memory of Prof Satish Dhawan, former Chairman of the ISRO.
Sriharikota Island is 17 km from the main land and is surrounded by the Bay of Bengal on the east and the Pulikat Lake on the West. The shallow backwaters in the Pulikat Lake attract a large number of migratory birds. The island has a variety of flora and fauna. Several new plantations are all along the coast and protect the island from high-speed winds during cyclonic period. The island was inhabited by a tribal community, Yanadis, who have been resettled within the island and also rehabilitated by providing employment opportunities and educational facilities.
The facilities at SDSC include solid propellant production plant, rocket motor static test facility, launch complexes for a variety of rockets, telemetry, telecommand, tracking, data acquisition and processing facilities, and other support services.
The first flight-test of 'Rohini-125', a small sounding rocket took place from here on October 9, 1971. Since then technical, logistic and administrative infrastructure have been enhanced. The establishment of state-of-the-art Second Launch Pad (SLP) is an important addition to this centre. SLP will cater to the requirement of more frequent launchings as well as the requirement of both present launch vehicles as well as those planned in the coming decade.
The propellant production plant produces composite solid propellant for rocket motors of ISRO using ammonium perchlorate (oxidiser), fine aluminium powder (fuel) and hydroxyl terminated polybutadiene (binder). The solid motors processed here include those for the first stage booster motor of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) - a five segmented motor of 2.8 m diameter and 22 m length, weighing 160 tons with a thrust level of 450 tons.
Rocket motors and their subsystems have to be rigorously tested and evaluated on ground before they are declared flight worthy. The facilities at SDSC SHAR are used for testing solid rocket motors, both at ambient conditions and simulated high altitude conditions. Besides these, there are facilities for conducting Vibration, Shock, Constant Acceleration and Thermal/humidity tests.
SDSC SHAR has infrastructure for launching satellite into low earth orbit, polar orbit and geo-stationary transfer orbit. The launch complexes provide support for vehicle assembly, fuelling, checkout and launch operations. The Centre also has facilities for launching sounding rockets for atmospheric studies. The mobile service tower, launch pad, preparation facilities for different launch stages & spacecraft, storage, transfer and servicing facilities for liquid propellants, etc., are the important installation in the PSLV/GSLV launch complex.
For supporting the GSLV Mk III programme additional facilities are being set up at SDSC. A new plant is being set up to process heavier class boosters with 200 tonnes of Solid propellant. The static test complex is being augmented for qualifying the S-200 booster. Other new facilities include a Solid Stage Assembly Building, Satellite Preparation and Filling Facility and Hardware Storage buildings. The existing liquid propellant and cryogenic propellant storage and filling systems, Propellant Servicing Facilities will also be augmented. The range instrumentation system will be strengthened further.
So far, four SLV-3 launch vehicles, four Augmented Satellite Launch Vehicles (ASLV), nine Polar Satellite Launch Vehicles (PSLV) and three Geosynchronous Satellite launch Vehicles (GSLV) have been launched from this Centre.
About Prof Satish Dhawan
Prof Satish Dhawan, who was Chairman, ISRO during 1972-1984, after whom the space centre at Sriharikota is named, was a multi-faceted personality. Truly he was one of the most distinguished Indians of our times - a brilliant aeronautical engineer, an outstanding space scientist, a philosopher, a humanist, and above all, a great visionary. His great human qualities, combining intense personal charm with a deep commitment to social values and an extraordinary objectivity in management, led several generations of students, colleagues and administrators to efforts that would not have been undertaken otherwise.
Prof Dhawan was born on September 25, 1920 in Srinagar. He hailed from a distinguished family - his father was a high-ranking civil servant of the undivided India and retired as the resettlement Commissioner of Government of India at the time of partition. One of his uncles, B D Dhawan, was Governor of Punjab.
Prof Dhawan graduated from the University of Punjab with an unusual combination of degrees - BA in Mathematics and Physics, MA in English Literature and a BE in Mechanical Engineering. In 1947, he obtained an MS in Aeronautical Engineering from the University of Minnesota, and moved to the California Institute of Technology, where he was awarded the Aeronautical Engineer's Degree in 1949 and a Ph.D in Aeronautics and Mathematics in 1951 with Prof Hans W Liepmann as adviser.
Prof Dhawan joined the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore in 1951 of which he became Director in 1962. Two outstanding features of his tenure as the Director of Institute reveal his philosophy in research - first, they were carried out at low cost with indigenous development or adaptation of available materials, skills and instrumentation and second, the basic research areas investigated in his laboratories were inspired in some way by the problems faced by the newly-born aircraft industry of the country.
Prof Dhawan took over as Chairman of Space Commission and Chairman, ISRO, and Secretary to Government of India in the Department of Space in 1972. In the following decade, Prof Dhawan directed the Indian space programme through a period of extraordinary growth and spectacular achievements. Major institutions such as ISRO Satellite Centre at Bangalore, Sriharikota Range, Master Control Facility at Hassan, ISRO Telemetry Tracking and Command Network (ISTRAC) were established and many new technologies required for space exploration were developed. In doing so, he provided a model for the country on how to define, formulate and organise high technology projects and deliver sophisticated systems within stipulated time frames. Major programmes on satellite and launch vehicles were carefully defined and systematically executed. Pioneering experiments were carried out in remote sensing and satellite communications under Prof Dhawan's leadership. Even after he retired as Chairman, ISRO and Secretary, Department of Space, in 1984, he continued to give advice on the space programme, which was always marked by scrupulous objectivity and a deep concern for the society's problems.
Prof Dhawan's stewardship of ISRO was distinguished by his keen sensitivity to the true needs of a developing nation, a confident appreciation of the ability of ISRO's scientists and engineers, and the involvement of Indian industry, both public and private. But what was striking about Prof Dhawan was his deep commitment to human values and the use of science and technology for development. The space community in India owes deep gratitude to Prof Dhawan for imbibing in the community an abiding sense of technological excellence, human values, and social commitment.
While Prof Dhawan was bestowed many awards for his contribution to science and technology by various bodies within India and abroad, the citation presented to Prof Satish Dhawan when he was awarded the 1999 Indira Gandhi Award for National Integration brings out the essence of the man:
"the award goes fittingly to one of our foremost scientists, teachers, and nation builders, Prof Satish Dhawan, who has made multi-dimensional contributions to scientific education, research, policy formulation and implementation and is deeply concerned with the solution to national problems through the use of science"
Astronautical Society of India and Its Awards
The Astronautical Society of India (ASI) with its registered office in Bangalore, was set up in 1990 to foster the development of astronautics in the country. ASI is engaged in the dissemination of technical and other information related to astronautics by conducting technical meetings, bringing out technical publications and organising exhibitions. The society is also playing an active role to promote the interests of other developing countries in astronautics through the International Astronautical Federation, Paris, of which the ASI is a voting member.
Aryabhata Award, ASI Awards and Space Gold Medals:
The Aryabhata Award, which is named after the fifth century Indian Astronomer and Mathematician and also in commemoration of the first Indian Satellite, Aryabhata, launched on April 19, 1975, is presented annually to an individual for outstanding life-time contribution to the promotion of astronautics in India. The ASI Awards are also presented annually to individuals in recognition of their significant contributions made in India in the fields of (a) Rocket and related technologies (b) Spacecraft and related technologies (c) Space Sciences and space applications and (d) Space systems management.
Space Gold Medal for Meritorious Service is presented annually to the personnel of Department of Space and who have made outstanding contributions to the Indian space programme. ASI instituted the award from the year 2000 for which the corpus fund has been contributed by a space scientist.
Aryabhata Award 2003:
Dr K Kasturirangan, Director, National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore
ASI Awards 2003:
Rocket and Related Technologies
R N Bhattacherjee, Director, TMS, Defence Research and Development Laboratory, Hyderabad and
M K G Nair, Dy.Dir. Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre, Valiamala, Thiruvananthapuram
Spacecraft & Related Technologies
N K Malik, Deputy Director. (Control and Mission) ISRO Satellite Centre, Bangalore
Space Science and Applications
Prof Shyam Lal, Chairman, Space and Atmospheric Sciences Division, Physical Research Laboratory, Ahmedabad
Space Systems Management
K Thyagarajan, Prog. Dir. SSS, ISRO Satellite Centre, Bangalore, and
R K Rajangam, Project Director, INSAT-4B, ISRO Satellite Centre, Bangalore
Space Gold Medals
Smt Annie Nelson, Engr 'SG', ISAC, Bangalore
Shri Khamitkar Sachin Pundlik, Tradesman 'D', SDSC SHAR, Sriharikota
Mr.H.N.Madhusudana, Engineer-SG, ISRO HQ, Bangalore
Shri L.M.Gangrade, Engr 'G', ISAC, Bangalore
Shri M.Enamuthu, Engr 'H', VSSC, Thiruvananthapuram
Smt E.Sujatha, Engr 'SG', VSSC, Thiruvananthapuram
Shri Tomy Abraham, Sr.Technician 'C',SAC, Ahmedabad
Shri M.B.Mahajan, Engr'SE', SAC, Ahmedabad
Shri V.Kumbakarnan, Engr 'SF', SDSC SHAR, Sriharikota
Dr.V.Narayanan, Engr 'SF', LPSC, Thiruvananthapuram