New Delhi: Eminent missile scientist Dr Vijay Kumar Saraswat will be the new head of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). He will take over from M Natarajan on 1 September 2009 as secretary, Department of Defence Research & Development and also as scientific adviser to the defence minister and director general, DRDO.
Dr Saraswat ascends to the top position at the age of 60, which gives him tenure of five full years.
A Padmashri recipient, Dr VK Saraswat is presently a Distinguished Scientist and chief controller, research & development (missiles & strategic systems) in the DRDO.
Dr Saraswat has spearheaded the development of country's strategic and tactical missile systems including the 'Agni' series of strategic missiles covering a range up to 3,000km.
Dr. Saraswat, a PhD in combustion engineering, started his career in DRDO in 1972 at the Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL), Hyderabad and was responsible for the development of country's first liquid propulsion engine.
As project director 'Prithvi,' he steered the design, development, production and induction of the first indigenous surface-to-surface missile system into the armed forces.