PROFESSOR U.R.. RAO IS TO PRESIDE OVER THE PLENARY SESSIONS OF UNISPACE III
Professor Rao, who was born on March 10, 1932, in Admar, Karnataka State, India, is a renowned space scientist who has made original contributions to the development of space technology and its extensive applications. Professor Rao, who started his career as a Cosmic Ray Scientist, made valuable contributions to the understanding of interplanetary physics and high energy astronomy, which are acclaimed world wide.
Later on, he undertook the responsibility of establishing the Indian Space Programme on an end-to-end basis, while playing an active role in the international arena as a space expert, organizer and visionary over a period of three decades. Professor Rao guided the Space Applications Programme in the areas of communication, distance education, TV broadcasting and remote sensing and was responsible for the launching of the Integrated Mission for Sustainable Development which showed the benefits of space technology at the grass-roots level.
During his long and distinguished career Professor Rao has received many honorary doctorate degrees from universities all over the world. He is also a member of many scientific bodies and has published over 250 articles in various scientific and technical journals. He is the author of three books and has edited 10 special editions of CLIODIN, IAF.
As a leading authority in his field, Professor Rao has received many and various important awards. Among them are the Paddy Bhushan in 1976, a very high civilian award of the Indian government; the Yuri Gagarin Award in 1991 ; the Frank J Malina Award of the International Astronautical Federation in 1994; the COSPAR Vikram Sarabhal Medal in 1996 and the G.M.Modi Award in 1997 and 1999.