The government has appointed S Somanath as the chairman for Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). Somanath is a rocket scientist by profession.

Somanath will replace K Sivan and will take charge as the new chairman of ISRO. Prior to this, Somanath served as the director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) in Trivandrum.

Somanath brings in rich experience of leading the development of India’s most powerful rocket GSLV Mk-3, which will be used for the country’s human space mission. In addition, he has also worked on the workhorse PSLV rocket.

His appointment as the new chairman at ISRO comes at a time when India is opening its space sector to private firms and startups to build rockets and satellites, besides offering services to both local and global markets.

Somanath’s appointment is aimed at improving the output from the space agency, which has been impacted due to the covid-19 pandemic. The key areas of focus will be technology, policy and implementation. Meanwhile, Somanath stresses on bringing in new approach methods so that available resources can be put to best possible use.