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Abdul Kalam
11th President of India, Distinguished Professor, IIT

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image After demitting office as the 11th President of India, Dr. Abdul Kalam has committed himself to the India Millennium Mission 2020, a program that he piloted, which aims to transform India into a developed nation by 2020.  Before his five-year presidency, Dr. Kalam acted as Project Director to develop India’s first indigenous Satellite Launch Vehicle. He was also the Scientific Adviser to the Defence Minister and Secretary from July 1992 to December 1999, the Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India, in the rank of Cabinet Minister, from November 1999 to November 2001 and was responsible for evolving policies, strategies, and missions for many development applications.
Biography

Born on 15 October 1931 at Rameswaram in Tamil Nadu, Dr. Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam specialized in Aeronautical Engineering at the Madras Institute of Technology. Dr. Kalam was the Project Director of India’s first indigenous Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV-III), which successfully injected the Rohini satellite in the near-earth orbit in July 1980. 

After working for two decades in the Indian Space Research Organization, (ISRO) and mastering launch vehicle technologies, Dr. Kalam took up the responsibility of developing indigenous guided missiles at the Defence Research and Development Organisation as the Chief Executive of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP). He was responsible for the development and operations of AGNI and PRITHVI missiles and for building indigenous capability in critical technologies through networking of multiple institutions. He was the Scientific Adviser to the Defence Minister and Secretary, Department of Defence Research & Development from July 1992 to December 1999. During this period he led the weaponisation of strategic missile systems and the Pokhran-II nuclear tests in collaboration with Department of Atomic Energy, which made India a nuclear weapon State. He also gave thrust to self-reliance in defence systems by progressing multiple development tasks and mission projects such as Light Combat Aircraft.

Dr. Kalam has served as the Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India, in the rank of Cabinet Minister, from November 1999 to November 2001, and was responsible for evolving policies, strategies, and missions for many development applications. Dr. Kalam was also the Chairman, Ex-officio, of the Scientific Advisory Committee to the Cabinet (SAC-C) and piloted India Millennium Mission 2020.

Dr. Kalam took up academic pursuit as Professor, Technology & Societal Transformation at Anna University, Chennai from November 2001 and was involved in teaching and research tasks. He has written four books, Wings of Fire, India 2020 - A Vision for the New Millennium, My Journey, and Ignited Minds - Unleashing the Power within India, which have been translated into many Indian languages.

Dr. Kalam has received honorary doctorates from 30 universities and institutions. He has been awarded prestigious civilian awards, Padma Bhushan (1981) and Padma Vibhushan (1990), and the highest civilian award, Bharat Ratna (1997). He is a recipient of several other awards and fellow of many professional institutions.

Dr. Kalam became the 11th President of India on 25 July 2002. After five eventful years he demitted office on 25 July 2007. His focus is on transforming India into a developed nation by 2020.

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Hosts
Graduate Aeronautical Laboratories
California Institute of Technology
GALCIT
Northrop Grumman Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Conference Chairs

Jean-Lou Chameau
President, California Institute of Technology
Alexis Livanos
President, Northrop Grumman Space Technology
Charles Elachi
Director, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory


Conference Organizers
Ares Rosakis
Director GALCIT, California Institute of Technology
Dwight Streit
Vice President, Foundation Technologies Northrop Grumman Space Technology

 

 
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