New Delhi: After a series of delays, India's GSLV-FO4 began its journey with a bang. It finally took off successfully from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh at 1821 hours IST.
INSAT-4CR, the third in the INSAT-4 series, and its GSLV carrier had a dicey day, but finally everything came together for the country's first successful launch of a communication satellite.
Earlier in the day, some anxious moments were witnessed when the scheduled launch of the geostationary satellite launch vehicle was stopped just three seconds before blast off due to a technical snag.
Memories came flooding back of the unsuccessful launch of GSLV-02 in July last year when the vehicle strayed from its path and had to be destroyed less than a minute after lift-off.
But ISRO wasn't taking any chances this time and after two more postponements came the familiar plumes of smoke.
INSAT-4CR carries with it 12 high-power transponders designed to provide direct-to-home TV services, video-picture transmission and digital satellite news gathering.
“It’s going to have 12 high band transponders which will help in DTH TV,” Professor Yashpal said.
The satellite is now in geosynchronous transfer orbit – a big step for ISRO, and an even bigger step for the country.