India Launches Record 104 Satellites in Single Mission

Onlookers watch the launch of satellites at Sriharikota, India, on Feb. 15.Onlookers watch the launch of satellites at Sriharikota, India, on Feb. 15.

India has created history by successfully launching 104 satellites on a single mission, overtaking the previous record of 37 satellites launched by Russia in 2014.

All but three of the satellites are from foreign countries, most of them from the United States, BBC reported.

The launch took place from Sriharikota Space Center in south India.

Observers say it is a sign that India is emerging as a major player in the multibillion-dollar space market.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi was among the first to congratulate the scientists tweeting, “This remarkable feat by @isro is yet another proud moment for our space scientific community and the nation. India salutes our scientists.”

Of the 104 small satellites, 96 belong to the United States while Kazakhstan, the UAE, Switzerland and the Netherlands are the other foreign clients.

The Indian government has increased the budget for its space program this year and also announced plans to send a mission to Venus.

Over the past two decades, India has become a key player in the lucrative commercial space market offering a low-cost alternative.

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