Recognising the contributions of engineers to the wheels of progress and technological development, India is celebrating Engineer’s Day on Friday, September 15, 2017. The date has been marked as a tribute to the of eminent Indian engineer Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya, who is known for the idea of dams with floodgates for which he was knighted by King George V and was later a recipient of the Bharat Ratna.
We learn about Visvesvaraya and his life on Engineer’s Day, but do we know about others who contributed to the field? Here are some personalities who made their mark in the pages of national engineering history:
1. Satyendra Nath Bose
Satyendra Nath Bose was a specialist in theoretical physics. He is known for his work on quantum mechanics and for his theory of the Bose-Einstein condensate. Bose was born in Calcutta in 1894, became a fellow of the Royal Society and was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 1954.
2. Satish Dhawan
Satish Dhawan was an aerospace engineer who was born in 1920 and is known as the father of experimental fluid dynamics research in India. Dhawan was a graduate of the University of Punjab in Lahore who then went on to study at the University of Minnesota and the California Institute of Technology. He even completed a double PhD in mathematics and aerospace engineering and was the chairman of ISRO until 1984. Read | Happy Engineer’s Day: Five things you need to know about M Visvesvaraya, click here
3. Rajeshwari Chatterjee
Chatterjee was Karnataka’s first woman engineer and served as a professor and, later, the chairperson of the department of electro-communicating engineering at IISc Bangalore. She was born in 1922 and studied at the Central College of Bangalore and Mysore University. She and her husband, Sisir Kumar Chatterjee, were the first in India to research on microwave engineering and build a microwave research laboratory.
4. C Kumar N Patel
Born in 1938 in Baramati, Maharashtra, Patel is an electrical engineer who developed the carbon dioxide laser which is now widely used in various industries. He studied at the University of Pune and Stanford University and was later awarded National Medal of Science by former US president Bill Clinton for his contributions to quantum electronics and the invention of the carbon dioxide laser.
5. Kalpana Chawla
The first woman of Indian origin in space, Kalpana Chawla left the world in awe as she flew on Space Shuttle Columbia in 1997. She was born in 1962, got her bachelor’s degree in aeronautical engineering from Punjab Engineering College in Chandigarh before she moved to the US for a Master of Science and a PhD in aerospace engineering after which she joined NASA.