India’s Mars Mission has been one of the most ambitious space projects of the country till date. But do you know who was the woman behind its success? Minal Sampath is a systems engineer who worked in a windowless room for over 18 hours a day to make it possible. She even abstained from taking any leaves for two years.

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Childhood

As a child, she dreamt of becoming a doctor, and a chance show on TV changed her mind. She was studying in 8th standard when she was fascinated seeing a space show. However, Minal never envisioned herself working on the Mars Mission, she says.

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Career and Awards

Minal Sampath is a gold medallist in electronics and communication engineering. She began her career in ISRO and initially served as a Satcom Engineer. This was followed by a transfer to the Space Application Centre.

She has played an instrumental role in developing and delivering the Mars Orbiter Mission payloads from the Space Application Centre.

Minal received the ISRO Team of Excellence Award for 2013. She was conferred the Young Scientist Merit Award by ISRO for her contribution in the Telemedicine programme.

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Future plans

Minal aspires to become the first woman director of a space centre. She has also expressed her desire of seeing more women scientists in India. “I want women to imagine that they can do this,” she had said.

She is the perfect role model for young girls wanting to become scientists and putting the country on the world map. She has proved that there is so much Indian women are capable of achieving. All they want is OPPORTUNITY and SUPPORT.

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