Submarine sonar scientist to head NPOL

S. Vijayan Pillai, outstanding scientist, has assumed charge as the new director of the Naval Physical and Oceanographic Laboratory (NPOL) at Thrikkakara, the only DRDO laboratory in Kerala.

Mr. Pillai is a native of Oachira in Kollam. He was serving as the senior associate director for ‘USHUS’ submarine sonar systems for the past four years. An M.Tech graduate in integrated circuits and system engineering from IIT Kharagpur, he started his career in the Air Force, but joined DRDO as scientist-B in 1989.

Major contributions

His major contributions were in submarine mounted sonar systems like ‘Panchendriya’ and ‘USHUS’. Installations of four ‘USHUS’ systems on board ‘Sindhughosh’ class of submarines were carried out in Russian dockyards by a DRDO contingent under his leadership, which included installation and setting to work, with close interaction with Russian counterparts.

He also has over 600 days of sailing experience on board submarines during which he led a team of scientists in conducting sonar experiments in Indian and international waters.