Aryabhatta - First Indian Experimental Satellite

India's foray as a space power was initiated with the launch of the Aryabhatta artificial satellite. The objectives of this project was to indigenously design and fabricate a space-worthy satellite system and evaluate its perfromance in orbit.

The main objectives of the mission were:

to evolve the methodology of conducting a series of complex operations on the satellite in its orbital phase;
to set up ground-based receiving, transmitting and tracking systems;
and to establish infrastructure for the fabrication of spacecraft systems.

The exercise also provided an opportunity to conduct investigations in the area of space sciences. The satellite carried three experiments, one each in X-Ray Astronomy, Solar Physics and Aeronomy. The satellite weighed 360 Kgs and was launched on April 19, 1975, by a Soviet Intercosmos Rocket, it was placed in an orbit of 619 X 562 kms.