Satyanarayanan Chakravarthy

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Original short description: "Co-founder at, Agnikul Cosmos, Aerostrovilos"


Satyanarayanan Chakravarthy is a Professor of Aerospace Engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology Madras,[1] Chennai, India. He is the co-founder of ePlane, Aerostrovilos and Agnikul Cosmos,[2][3][4] and also the founder and head of NCCRD at Indian Institute of Technology Madras.[5] He received his education from IIT Madras, India and the Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta,[6] GA, USA. He has received multiple awards, including the DRDO Academic Excellence Award twice.[7]


Satyanarayanan Chakravarthy earned his Bachelor of Technology degree, in Aerospace Engineering, from IIT Madras in the year 1991. He acquired his Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering in 1992 and his Doctor of Philosophy in 1995 – both from Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA in the United States.[6]


Upon earning his PhD in Aerospace Engineering, he worked at Georgia Tech for a brief post-doctoral stint – stretching for a period of 2 years, up to 1997.[8] In 1997, he returned to IIT Madras as a professor.[6] He has been a visiting professor at Georgia Tech in 2000-2001, and at the Technische Universitat Darmstadt in 2002, 2003, 2006, and 2009.

Area Of Focus

Satyanarayanan Chakravarthy primarily works in the fields of propulsion and combustion, particularly the different aspects of combustion in gas turbine and rocket engines. He is a deep technology enthusiast and an explorer of exponential technology. The start-ups he has co-founded predominantly deal with automation and deep learning.


Satyanarayanan Chakravarthy heads the National Centre for Combustion Research & Development (NCCRD) at IIT Madras supported by the Science and Technology department of the Government of India. The NCCRD is currently involved in 33 industry projects dealing with varied aspects of combustion in areas such as automotive, aerospace, thermal power and fire research.[9] The NCCRD is the largest of its kind in the world and receives funding to the tune of  Rs. 47 crore – which itself is augmented by research funding of around Rs. 54 crores. He was appointed as the head of the Centre of Propulsion Technology recently. The centre, supported by the DRDO,[10][11][5][12] receives a funding of around Rs. 84 crores. He is on the editorial board of Progress in Energy and Combustion Science, and is a Colloquium Co-Chair on Solid Fuel Combustion for the International Symposium on Combustion, Dublin, 2018.

He has nearly 80 peer-reviewed archival journal publications to his credit, and presented over 200 conference papers, delivered many plenary and keynote lectures and visited many universities such as MIT, Cambridge, TU Berlin and TU Munich in addition to industries such as GE and FM Global.[13]


He was awarded the HAL Prize for the best undergraduate in aerospace engineering in 1991, the Young Engineer Award by the Indian National Academy of Engineering in 2003, the Young Faculty Recognition Award by IIT Madras in 2009, the Dalmi-HEMSI-ACRHEM Award by the High Energy Materials Society of India in 2009, and the DRDO Academic Excellence Award by the DRDO in 2009 and 2016.[6]

Start-up Ventures

Satyanarayanan Chakravarthy is the Director of Aerostrovilos,[14] a startup focussed on micro gas turbines for decentralized power generation. He is also a share-holding Advisor to Agnikul Cosmos,[4][15] a startup company which deals with the development of miniature launch vehicles to launch micro-sized and nano-sized satellites into space. He is currently involved in the ideation process of an Air Taxi startup ePlane[16] for intra-city air commute and regional air connectivity with existing fleets of chartered helicopters and fixed wing aircraft as well as another startup that deals with the design and manufacture of electric planes for the same purpose in the near future. He is involved in efforts to set up a consortium of industries and R&D institutions for making large-sized (~100 seater) conventional planes and turboprop engines for them in India with governmental support at the highest levels to enable regional air connectivity to take off all across India at affordable levels.[17]

He was also the advisor for the Indian Hyperloop Team.[18][19][20]

Web Presence

He has been invited to deliver a talk at the Mahindra Technical Academy on their Great Ideas for Tomorrow (GIFT) programme.  His web presence includes a TedX talk in India's Space Programme[21] and his 55 lectures on a graduate level course on combustion on YouTube through the National Programme on Technology Enabled Learning (NPTEL)[22]


  1. Irudayaraj. "Indian Institute of Technology Madras, Tamilnadu" (in en). 
  2. "Agnikul". 
  3. Ramakrishnan, N.. "Agnikul Cosmos aims for a new orbit" (in en). 
  4. 4.0 4.1 Ramesh, M.. "Small rockets are the next big thing" (in en). 
  5. 5.0 5.1 "India sets up world's largest combustion research facility in IIT-Madras - ET EnergyWorld" (in en). 
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 "Satyanarayanan R Chakravarthy – Aerostrovilos" (in en-GB). 
  7. Irudayaraj. "Indian Institute of Technology Madras, Tamilnadu" (in en). 
  8. "Satyanarayanan R. Chakravarthy". 
  9. "NCCRD | Indian Institute of Technology Madras , Chennai". 
  10. Bhattacharyya, Rica (2018-07-11). "DRDO to invest in IITs to kick-start aerospace defence technology research". The Economic Times. 
  11. "NCCRD | Indian Institute Of Technology Madras , Chennai". 
  12. "DRDO and IITs entering to a most deadly collaboration of sorts for advanced defence-related aerospace research". 
  13. "Satyanarayanan R Chakravarthy | Indian Institute of Technology Madras, Chennai | IIT Madras | Department of Aerospace Engineering" (in en). 
  14. "About Aerostrovilos – Aerostrovilos" (in en-GB). 
  15. Aug 12, U. Tejonmayam | TNN | Updated:; 2019; Ist, 8:28. "Now, send ashes of departed souls to space | Chennai News - Times of India" (in en). 
  16. "The ePlane Company". 
  17. Goyal, Malini (2019-08-08). "Chennai is quickly turning into the new hotbed for deep-tech startup". The Economic Times. 
  18. "IIT-M’s Avishkar Hyperloop makes promising debut" (in en). 2019-07-27. 
  19. "IIT Madras Students Impress Elon Musk With Their HyperLoop Pod". 
  20. DelhiJune 15, India Today Web Desk New; July 24, 2019UPDATED:; Ist, 2019 12:37. "IIT Madras Avishkar Hyperloop unveils pod for the SpaceX Competition" (in en). 
  21. TEDx Talks (2016-05-25), India's race to space | S R Chakravarthy | TEDxIITMadras,, retrieved 2019-06-30 
  22. nptelhrd (2016-06-05), Mod-01 Lec-01 Introduction,, retrieved 2019-06-30