SunstarTV Bureau: On the 89th birthday of Professor Udupi Ramachandra Rao, Google celebrated this with a Doodle on its homepage featuring an animated image of the renowned Indian space scientist with a background of the earth and shooting stars.
Google also has shared with a description on Doodle’s website that, “Happy Birthday, Prof. Rao! Your stellar technological advancements continue to be felt across the galaxy.”
Notably, Rao was born in a remote village of Karnataka on this day in 1932. He began his career as a cosmic-ray physicist.
After completing his doctorate, Professor Rao brought his talents to the US, where he worked as a professor and conducted experiments on NASA’s ‘Pioneer’ and ‘Explorer’ space probes.
On his return to India in 1966, he initiated an extensive high energy astronomy programme at the Physical Research Laboratory, India’s premier institution for space sciences, before spearheading his country’s satellite programme in 1972.
Under Rao’s guidance, the first Indian satellite ‘Aryabhata’ was launched in 1975. He helped design and launch over 18 satellites for advancing India’s communication, and meteorological services.
From 1984 to 1994, Professor Rao continued to propel his nation’s space programme to stratospheric heights as Chairman of Indian Space Research Organisation.
Here, he developed rocket technology such as the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV), which has launched over 250 satellites.
Prof. U.R. Rao became the first Indian Space Scientist to be inducted into the “Satellite Hall of Fame” at Washington DC, the U.S. in 2013. He also became the first Indian Space Scientist to be inducted into the “IAF Hall of Fame” in Mexico.
He breathed his last on July 24, 2017, in Bengaluru.