Dr. A. Kiran Kumar is Vikram Sarabhai Distinguished Professor, ISRO. During 2015-2018, he has served as Secretary, Department of Space (Govt. of India) and Chairman, Indian Space Research Organisation. Born on October 22, 1952 in Karnataka State, India, he holds M.Sc. Degree in Physics (Electronics) from Bangalore University and M.Tech. Degree in Physical Engineering from Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. He has been conferred with Honoris Causa and DSc by 18 Indian academic institutions.
He has steered the implementation of the applications oriented Indian Space Programme, which has facilitated rapid development in earth observation, communication, navigation, meteorology and space science, as well as development of indigenous launch vehicles and related technologies. He has also led design and development of 50 Electro-Optical Imaging Sensors flown on Space borne platforms starting from Bhaskara in 1979. He his role in the success of Chandrayaan-1 mission and Mars Orbiter Mission has been significant.
He has been the Chair of the Committee on Earth Observation Satellites (CEOS) in 2012 and made valuable contributions to Coordination Group of Meteorological Satellites, Expert Team on Satellite Systems – World Meteorological Organisation as well as Indo-US Joint Working Group on Civil Space Cooperation.
He is the President, Aeronautical Society of India and Fellow of Indian National Academy of Engineering, National Academy of Sciences India, Indian Society of Remote Sensing, Institution of Electronics & Telecommunications Engineers, Indian Society of Systems for Science & Engineering, Indian Meteorological Society, Indian Society of Geomatics, Gujarat Science Academy, Andhra Pradesh Akademi of Sciences and an elected member of International Academy of Astronautics.
He has co-authored 85 publications in various national/international scientific journals/conferences/symposiums.
In recognition of his contributions, he was conferred Padma Shri by the President of India in 2014. He has been conferred with the prestigious 2018 International von Karman Wings Award instituted by the Aerospace Historical Society, together with the Graduate Aerospace Laboratories at the California Institute of Technology, in 2018 and the Chevalier de l’Ordre national de la Légion d’Honneur – the highest civilian honour by the Government of France in 2019 and many more honours and awards in India.