S Nambi Narayanan, a mechanical engineer with a Masters in Chemical Rocket Propulsion from the Department of Aerospace & Mechanical Sciences at Princeton University, was among the pioneers in Indian space science. After joining the space mission as a Technical Assistant (Design) in 1966, he led a team of Indian scientists to France in the 1970s to jointly develop with the French the Vikas-Viking engine. He was the Project Director for the second and fourth stages of PSLV, when he also served as the Deputy Director of the Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre, Thiruvananthapuram. He was the first Project Director for Cryogenic Propulsion Systems in the early 1990s. He retired as Director, Advanced Technology and Planning, ISRO in 2001. Now living in Thiruvananthapuram with his wife, he has a son and a daughter.