Indian Moon Rocket lifts off

Yesterday the Indians successfully launched their unmanned moon mission the Chandrayaan 1. The ship carries 11 different experiments and it is planned that it will enter lunar orbit by November 8th. The Indians plan to fire a small impact rocket onto the surface to prepare for an unmanned landing on a later mission using a Russian developed lunar rover. The ship should orbit the moon for about two years conducting mapping and other activities.

This was the 12th successful (they have had 2 failures) launching of the Indian built Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV -this was the first launching of the new XL (presumably Extra Large) version) which can launch a payload of 1,800kg. The rocket is 44m tall and 2.8m in diameter. The Satish Dhawan Space centre is on Sriharikota Island just north of Chennai.

Agent Triple P says jolly well done ISRO for developing such an effective home grown rocket; this mission will bring you right up there in the new Asian space race!

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