Dr. Prakash Chauhan
Dr Prakash Chauhan (born on 15.05.1969) obtained his postgraduate degree in Applied Geophysics from University of Roorkee (now Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Roorkee) and Ph. D. in Physics from Gujarat University, Ahmedabad. Prior to joining National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC), Hyderabad, he was the Director at the Indian Institute of Remote Sensing (IIRS), Dehradun since April 2018. He joined Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) in 1991 at Space Applications Centre, Ahmedabad as scientist and since then working for the applications of Space Technology including Remote Sensing technology for Geosciences, Atmospheric and Oceanic process studies, Natural resources management for ocean and land resources. He initiated research activities for planetary remote sensing at Space Applications Centre to study solar system objects mainly Earth’s Moon and Mars, through Indian planetary missions. He also served as Group Director at Space Applications Centre, Ahmedabad for Biological and Planetary Sciences Group during 2014 to 2018.
His major achievements are in the area of Earth Observation applications including development of algorithms for ocean colour parameter retrieval, marine living resource assessment, aerosol remote sensing for space based air quality monitoring, river and reservoir water level estimation using space borne altimeters and coastal zone management. More recently he has been working to use satellite remote sensing data for understanding the climate response of Himalayan Cryosphere and Air Quality assessment from Space.
He has done lead work in using the hyperspectralsatellite data for Indian Planetary Missions such as Chandrayaan-2 and Chandrayaan-1 for lunar surface composition mapping. He had been the Principal Investigator for Infrared Imaging spectrometer (IIRS) instrument on-board Chandrayaan-2 mission. He also led a team scientist for scientific analysis of data from Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) instruments. More recently his work on Chandryaan-2 IIRS spectrometer data has resulted in unambiguous detection of H2O and OH on the surface of the Moon. His findings have conclusively established presence of water molecules at different location on the Moon.
As Director of Indian Institute of Remote Sensing (IIRS),Dehardun, Dr Chauhan spearheaded activities for research and capacity building in the field of applications of Remote Sensing and Geoinformatics technology for societal applications in India. He is actively providing guidance and support for international organisations like CSSTEAP-UN in conducting space technology courses for Earth System Science. As project director of ISRO-DMS (Advance Techniques &Capacity Building) coordinated international charter activities to provide remote sensing inputs for disaster management.
As Director of UN affiliated Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and the Pacific (CSSTEAP), he has significantly contributed towards capacity building for Space Applications in Asia and the Pacific region along with UNOOSA. New innovative digital learning platforms such as MOOCs and on-line courses are introduced to continue the CSSTEAP activities despite COVID pandemic.
He is currently serving as Chair of the Working Group of Whole at STSC of UNCOPUS. He has also served as Chair for CEOS working group on Capacity Building and Data democracy (WGCapD) for the year 2018-19. He is executive member of International Ocean Colour Co-ordination Group (IOCCG) and representing ISRO. He has also represented ISRO at CEOS as Co-Chair for Ocean Colour Virtual Constellation (OCR-VC). He had also been member of prestigious NASA-ISRO Planetary Science working group.
He has been awarded prestigious Prof. P.R. Pisharoty memorial award for the year 2004 by Indian Society of Remote Sensing, Hari Om Ashram PreritDr.Vikarm Sarabhai Research Award by Physical Research Laboratory (PRL), Ahmedabad for 2009, ISRO merit award by Indian Space Research Organistaion in 2010 and Satish Dhawan award by ISRS, Dehradun for 2016.He has been conferred with the "2023 Asia-Pacific Region Excellence in Space award" on 22nd September 2023 during the Awards Ceremony of 29th Session of Asia-Pacific Regional Space Agency Forum (APRSAF-29) organized at Jakarta, Indonesia.He has published more than 150 peer review papers in national and international journals and he is currently fellow of the National Academy of Science (NASI), Allahabad, Indian Society of Remote Sensing and Indian Social Science Academy