Dr. V.R. Lalithambika

Distinguished Scientist, and Director, Directorate of Human Space Programme at ISRO.

Dr. V. R. Lalithambika graduated in Electrical Engineering in 1984 and followed on with Masters in Control Engineering from College of Engineering, Trivandrum. She joined Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC), ISRO  in 1988 after a brief stint in teaching at the NIT, Kozhikode. She did her PhD in 2009.

At present she is designated as Distinguished Scientist, and Director, Directorate of Human Space Programme at ISRO, which is the nodal agency for defining goals and targets for Human Space Programme, and for synergizing the national effort in this direction.

In her earlier position as Deputy Director, Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, she was responsible for guidance and control design, mission analysis and integrated simulation activities of all ISRO launch vehicles and has played a major role in their success. She was also an active contributor to the Task Group which has formulated ISRO’s Vision 2020.

Fellowships, Awards and Recognitions:

 Fellow of Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE)

Institution of Engineers, India

For her contributions to Indian Aerospace , she has been conferred with the following awards:

  • INAE Woman Engineer of the Year Award ( R and D) 2020, in R and D category
  • ISRO performance excellence award in 2013
  • ISRO merit award in 2010
  • Astronautical Society of India Space Gold Medal in 2001

Other recognitions include

  • Queen of the skies Felicitation at Aero – India 2019
  • Marie Curie Mahila Vijnana Puraskara by Swadeshi Vijnana Andolana, 2018.
  • Doctor of Science (Honoris Causa) by Sathyabama University in 2017
  • Bharathiya Nari ki Udaan Shakthi- by International Women Professionals in Aviation and Aerospace- 2017


Research interests: Aerospace mission, navigation, guidance, control, and simulation and human spaceflight.

She has guided several M Tech and PhD students, . She has sixty five peer reviewed publications to her credit and has delivered more than fifty lectures all over the country.

She is also a  Member of Astronautical Society of India, Aeronautical Society of India and Systems Society of India.