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Emily LakdawallaOctober 2, 2013

On Gandhi's birthday, India ships Mars spacecraft to launch site

Several Indian news sites posted a press wire article this morning indicating that India's Mars Orbiter Mission departed its assembly and testing facility in Bangalore today and is now on the way to the coastal launch site, the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota, a journey of about 400 kilometers.

My favorite detail from the story: that they selected Gandhi Jayanti day -- the national holiday celebrating Mahatma Gandhi's birthday, like President's Day here in the U.S. -- for the trip, "as traffic would be less."

The launch is currently scheduled for Monday, October 28 at 16:14:45 Indian standard time (3:44:45 PDT / 10:44:45 UTC).

ISRO's Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM)

ISRO / Glen Nagle

ISRO's Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM)

Read more: Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), mission status

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Emily Lakdawalla

Solar System Specialist for The Planetary Society
Read more articles by Emily Lakdawalla

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