Who is known as the Missile Woman of India?
Tessy Thomas (born April 1963) is an Indian scientist and Director General of Aeronautical Systems and the former Project Director for Agni-IV missile in Defence Research and Development Organisation.She is the first ever woman scientist to head a missile project in India
Tessy Thomas is a scientist at the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). She served as the Project Director for the Agni IV and V missiles, making her the first woman to lead missile teams in India. These are intercontinental ballistic missiles that have very high ranges and are capable of carrying nuclear warheads. Dr. Thomas’ expertise on the solid propellent systems were critical in the development of the re-entry system of the missile, which helped it withstand great velocities and temperatures of 3,000° Celsius on re-entering the atmosphere.
Tessy Thomas joined DRDO in 1988,where she worked on the design and development of the new generation ballistic missile, Agni. She was appointed by Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam for the Agni Project. In addition, Tessy was the associate project director of the 3,000 km range Agni-III missile project. She was the project director for mission Agni IV which was successfully tested in 2011. Later, Tessy was appointed as the project director of the 5,000 km range Agni-V in 2009, which was successfully tested on 19 April 2012. In 2018, she became the Director-General, Aeronautical Systems of DRDO.