Meet Our Professors of Practice

Department of Aerospace Engineering

Dr V R Lalithambika

Distinguished Scientist, Director (Retd)

Brief Biodata : Retired as the first Director of the Directorate of Human Space Programme, ISRO, taking the lead role in defining the way forward for Indian human spaceflight. Prior to that, she was Deputy Director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, and has more than thirty years experience in the guidance and control design, mission analysis and integrated simulation activities of ISRO launch vehicles. She has spearheaded the design and simulation activities for PSLV, GSLV, GSLV MkIII and India’s first winged entry vehicle RLV TD, and is the recipient of several awards including INAE Woman Engineer of the Year, ISRO performance excellence and merit awards and Astronautical Society of India Space Gold Medal.

Lt. Gen. P R Shankar, AVSM, VSM

Director General of Artillery (Retd.)

Brief Biodata : Retired as Director General of Artillery, Indian Army, Lt. Gen. Shankar has vast operational experience and has held many important command, staff and instructional appointments in the Army. An alumnus of Defence Services Staff College Wellington, Army War College Mhow, Naval Post Graduate School Monterrey and National Defence College Delhi, he gave great impetus to the modernization of Artillery through indigenization. He has a deep understanding and experience of successful defense planning and acquisition spanning over a decade. Major 155mm Gun projects like the Dhanush, M777 ULH and k9 Vajra, Rocket and Missile projects related to Pinaka, Brahmos and, Grad BM21, surveillance projects like Swati WLR and some ammunition projects came to fructification due to his efforts.

Shri Lazar T Chitilappilly

Brief Biodata : Lazar T. Chitilappilly has devoted his career spanning more than three and a half decades to the advancement of high speed aerodynamics and propulsion in this country. He joined ISRO in 1985 after obtaining B.Tech. from IIT Madras and M.E. from IISc Bangalore, and super-annuated in October 2019. And in February 2020, he joined as Professor of Practice in the Department of Aerospace Engineering, IIT Madras. As Project Director for Air Breathing Propulsion, Chitilappilly lead the ``ISRO Scramjet Engine Flight Experiment`` which accomplished the flight test very successfully at a hypersonic speed of Mach 6. Chitilappilly has made specific contributions in the areas of design, flow modeling and testing of aerodynamics and propulsion systems with publications at national and international levels. He had earlier worked in the development of Ejector-Ramjets and Air Breathing Rockets including flight testing. He also lead a team in establishing a high pressure - high temperature ground test facility for Scramjet engine. Later as Group Director for Propulsion Research, he lead a team on development of Hybrid Rockets and was also engaged in various R&D activities on Solid as well as Liquid Rockets.

Dr T Jayachandran

Deputy Director, VSSC, ISRO (Retd.)

Brief Biodata : Retired as Deputy Director, Vikram Sarabhai Space Center, ISRO, Trivandrum, Dr. T Jayachandran has been working in the area of Propulsion, since 1983. He has initiated the efforts in the numerical simulation of fluid flow and heat transfer in propulsion systems in VSSC. Comprehensive in-house design and analysis tools were developed for solid, liquid, cryogenic and electric propulsion systems as well as their test facilities. The complex flow physics in various engines were accurately modeled to the required accuracy and all these tools were continuously updated with the latest published numerical models as well as experimental and flight results. As Deputy Director of Propulsion Propellants and Space Ordnance Entity, he was responsible for the supply of all solid propulsion and pyro systems for all launch vehicles of ISRO. As a member, he participated in many national level reviews for in-house CFD code development, In-house Multi-physics reacting code developments, various design and failure analysis committees of aero and defence systems. He has co-authored 30 journal papers and 80 conference papers. After retirement from ISRO, currently, at IIT Madras, he is leading a group to develop multi-phase, multi-physics codes for various industrial applications including explosive and propellant casting, interior and exterior ballistics, under water propulsion, jet engine plume flows, to name a few.