NEW DELHI (AP) — India triumphed in its first interplanetary mission, placing a satellite into orbit around Mars today and catapulting the country into an elite club of deep-space explorers.

In scenes broadcast live on Indian TV, scientists broke into wild cheers as the orbiter’s engines completed 24 minutes of burn time to maneuver the spacecraft into its designated place around the red planet.

Scientists described the final stages of the Mars Orbiter Mission, affectionately nicknamed MOM, as flawless. The success marks a milestone for the space program in demonstrating that it can conduct complex missions and act as a global launch pad for commercial, navigational and research satellites.



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