George Joseph (scientist)

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Dr. George Joseph
Born (1938-08-04)August 4, 1938
Chengannur, Kerala, India
Residence Flag of India.svg Ahmedabad, India
Nationality Flag of India.svg Indian
Known for Pioneering contribution to the Indian Space programme in the area of earth observation technology.
Awards Padma Bhushan (1999)
Scientific career
Fields Satellite Imaging Sensors, Remote Sensing and Space Science
Institutions Space Applications Center, ISRO, Center for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and the Pacific(affiliated to UN)

Dr. George Joseph has made significant contribution to the development of remote sensing technology in India, especially in the field of earth observation sensors. He is rightfully considered the pioneer of satellite based imaging sensors in India.

Early life[edit]

Dr. George Joseph, born on 4 August 1938 to Advocate MG Joseph and Alice (Kaipanattu family, Puthuppally, Kerala), hails from Chengannur, Vydhianveetil family (a branch of Kaduvettoor family), Kerala, India. After completing schooling he joined St.Berchmans College, Changanassery and was alumni of Alagappa Chettiar college, Karaikudi, Tamil Nadu and University College, Trivandrum Kerala. He served as lecturer in Union Christian College, Aluva, Kerala and at CMS College Kottayam,Kerala. Afterwards he was a trainee at Bhabha Atomic Research Center (BARC), Mumbai.

Dr. Joseph is married to Mercy (Kolathu Puliyelil family, Maramon) and they have two sons Joseph (Gibu) and Mathews (Reji).

Research career[edit]

Dr. Joseph started his research career in 1962 at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research(TIFR), Mumbai, where he was involved in the study of cosmic rays. Based on his research work at TIFR he was awarded PhD degree by the Bombay University. A novel detector system designed by him was flown on the first Indian satellite Aryabhata (satellite) to detect solar neutrons.[1]

Contributions to the Indian Space Programme[edit]

In 1973, Dr. Joseph joined the Space Applications Centre, Ahmedabad-one of the centers of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO),and initiated the development of remote sensing technology particularly sensors of various types. He has been the guiding force in the design and development of all the earth observation cameras on board Indian Remote Sensing Satellite(IRS) and INSAT. He served ISRO in various capacities including Director, Space Applications Centre and took keen interest and initiative to ensure the fruits of space technology reach common man. One of the noteworthy contributions of Dr. Joseph is the study report on Indian Mission to Moon in the capacity as Chairman, Lunar Mission Study Task Force.[2]

Dr. Joseph has served in a number of national and international committees/organizations including President of Technical Commission -I of the International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ISPRS)[3] during 1996-2000 and Director, Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and the Pacific (CSSTEAP), (affiliated to the United Nations), with headquarters at Dehradun during 2006-2009.[4][5]

Fellowship/ Membership of professional bodies[edit]

Important positions held[edit]

2006–2009 Director, Center for Space Science &Technology Education in Asia & the Pacific (affiliated to the UN)
1998–2003 Satish Dhawan Distinguished Professor (ISRO)
1994–1998 Director, Space Applications Centre, Ahmedabad
1990–1994 Associate Director, Space Applications Centre, Ahmedabad
1985–1994 Dy. Director (Remote Sensing) Space Applications Centre, Ahmedabad
1975–1985 Head, Sensor Development Division Space Applications Centre, Ahmedabad
1970–1973 Fellow, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Bombay
1959–1961 Lecturer in Physics, Union Christian College, Alwaye (Affiliated to University of Kerala)

Special Responsibilities/assignments (international /national)[edit]

2004–2005 Member, Governing Council, Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services, Hyderabad
2003–2004 Member of the International Academy of Astronautics Study Team on Space to promote peace – initial focus on reconstruction of Afghanistan.
2002–2004 President, Indian Society of Remote Sensing
1999–2001 President, Gujarat Science Academy
1997–2000 Member, Research Council, National Institute of Oceanography
1996–2000 President, Technical Commission-I, International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ISPRS)
1996–1999 President, Indian Society of Geomatics
1994–1997 Member, Research Council, Central Glass and Ceramic Research Institute, Calcutta
1994–1996 President, Indian Society of Remote Sensing[6]
1989–1998 Member, Governing Body of Centre for Earth Science Studies, Trivandrum
1988–1991 Member-Secretary, Indian National Committee for Space Research (INCOSPAR)
1985–1988 Member, Governing Council, Indian Institute of Astrophysics (IIA),Bangalore

National Recognition[edit]

Padma Bhushan – 1999 by Government of India[7]

Other Awards[edit]

  • Ministry of Earth Sciences (MOES) award -2009 for lifetime contribution in Ocean Science and technologies[8][9]
  • Geospatial Technologies Lifetime Achievement award- 2008
  • Outstanding Achievement award by ISRO-2008
  • Aryabhata Award instituted by Astronautical Society of India for outstanding lifetime contribution to the promotion of astronautics in India-2007
  • Bhaskara Award – 1997: Instituted by Indian Society of Remote Sensing for outstanding lifetime contribution
  • Shri Om Prakash Bhasin Foundation Award for Science and Technology - 1987 the discipline of Space and Aerospace
  • SICO - National Academy of Sciences Award for Instrumentation-1986

Books Authored[edit]


External links[edit]

Government offices
Preceded by
*PP Kale
*Director SAC (ISRO)
Succeeded by
*AKS Gopalan