Eminent nuclear scientist who died of Covid had close links with TN

Sekhar Basu

Chennai: The Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) condoled the sudden demise of eminent nuclear scientist Dr Sekhar Basu at Kolkata, while being treated for the Covid-19.

An official release said Dr Basu served as the Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission and Secretary to the Government, DAE, from 23 October, 2015 to 17 September, 2018.

He was the Director of Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC), India’s premier multi-disciplinary R and D centre from 19 June, 2012.

He has also worked as the Project Director of Nuclear Submarine Programme and later as the Chief Executive of the Nuclear Recycle Board in the same institute.

Dr Basu was one of the architects of India’s 80 MW compact Pressurised Water Reactor (PWR), which powers Arihant, the country’s nuclear-powered submarine.

He had also been proactively engaged in the design, development, construction and operation of nuclear recycle plants at Tarapur, Maharashtra and Kalpakkam in Tamilnadu, involving reprocessing and nuclear waste management.

Dr Basu was associated with IGCAR in Kalpakkam for over 18 years and was passionate about this place.

He was instrumental in according the approval for the construction of the Palar Check dam at Vayalur near Kalpakkam, which has not only improved the water table in the area, but also helped in manifold increase in farm cultivation.

His efforts are credited with bringing perfection in technology, which provided major boost to the Indian nuclear power programme.

Dr Basu accelerated the pace of Nuclear Power deployment in India by getting the approval to construct 10 Pressurized Heavy Water Reactors (PHWRs) and two Pressurized Water Reactors (PWRs).

Under his supervision, DAE has initiated actions for multi-fold rise in uranium exploration and mining in India.


NT Bureau