PSLV-C11 carrying India's [ Images ] first unmanned moon spacecraft Chandrayaan-1 lifted off successfully from ISRO's Satish Dhawan Space Centre on Wednesday.
At the end of the 49-hour countdown, the 44.4 meter tall four-stage PSLV-C11 blasted off from the second launch pad with the ignition of the core first stage.
Scientists cheered as the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle weighing 316 tonnes at the time of launch, soared majestically into partially cloudy sky at 6.22 am from the space port, 100 km north of Chennai.
This is the 14th flight of ISRO's workhorse PSLV, which had launched 29 satellites into a variety of orbits since 1993. This launch vehicle uses larger strap-on motors to achieve higher payload capability.
The Chandrayaan-1 is carrying 11 payloads, five entirely designed and developed in India, three from European Space Agency, one from Bulgaria and two from US, which would explore the Moon [ Images ].
The rocket would place the spacecraft in a transfer orbit around the earth shortly. Greet the scientists on achieving this major milestone!