India’s space program continued its busy 2023 with the launch of its first solar research mission, Aditya-L1, on Saturday. Liftoff, aboard the country’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) XL rocket, occurred at 11:50 Indian Standard Time (06:20 UTC) from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre.
Aditya-L1 will be the first mission conducted by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) that is dedicated to studying the Sun. Bound for the Earth-Sun L1 Lagrange point, it will also be the first Indian spacecraft to operate at this location. ISRO expects the mission to contribute to global research into the Sun, with a focus on space weather and the solar wind.