Dr. Chandra


American (stated in the book to have Indian heritage)


Astronaut, scientist


Bob Balaban

Sivasubramanian Chandrasegarampillai, known as Doctor R. Chandra in the film, was a scientist and inventor of the HAL 9000 computer. He was one of the three non-Soviet crewmembers on the Leonov, to investigate the great mystery surrounding Discovery, HAL, and the Jupiter Monolith.



Dr. Chandra spent many years trying to figure out what went wrong with HAL. He experimented with a similar model, a feminine computer named Sal. Dr. Chandra was chosen to participate in the American-Russian expedition aboard the Cosmonaut Alexei Leonov, as he knew HAL better than anyone else. He was kept in suspended animation during the flight to Jupiter and was revived shortly after they arrived.

After Walter Curnow and Maxim Brajlovsky managed to stabilize Discovery 1, Chandra reactivated HAL and slowly examined him. He eventually discovered the reason for HAL's malfunction was because he had been given conflicting orders- he was a computer designed for providing accurate information, and he had been ordered to keep the purpose of the mission from David Bowman and Frank Poole.

When the crew of the Leonov decided to leave early, Dr. Chandra was required to occupy Hal, and keep him from aborting the countdown. After the Leonov was launched in orbit, Chandra and the other two American astronauts were put into suspended animation.

In 2061: Odyssey Three, it was revealed that Chandra died in hibernation during the return trip to Earth. No obvious cause of death could be found, though his crewmates speculated that "he couldn't live without HAL."

In the film version of 2010, Chandra's name is given as "R. Chandra" when he enters his office at the University of Chicago; this version of Chandra is obviously American. In the novel, Chandra is from India, and his name is given as Sivasubramanian Chandrasegarampillai.