India’s space agency launched its Chandrayaan-3 rocket on Friday.
Friday’s blast-off from India’s main spaceport in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh occurred at 2:35 p.m. local time (0905 UTC).
New Delhi is aiming to land a rover on the moon. It is scheduled to reach the moon on August 23.
The mission comes four years after an earlier attempt ended in failure.
Only the United States, China and the former Soviet Union have completed successful lunar landings.
Earlier this year, a Japanese start-up attempted to get a lander to the moon, but the object crashed.
India also tried a similar mission in 2019, with the Chanrdayaan-2 rocket and a rover also called Vikram, as in the current mission — but the rover crashed as it attempted a soft landing on the moon.
The Chandrayaan-3 was built with a budget of under $75 million (€66.8 million).
The launch by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is the country’s first major mission since the government under Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced policies to promote investment in private space launches.
India plans for its companies to increase their share of the launch market fivefold, up from 2% in 2020.
India sent its first probe to orbit the moon in 2008. In 2014, it became the first Asian country to put a satellite into orbit around Mars. Three years later, its space agency launched 104 satellites in a single mission.
The ISRO’s Gaganyaan program is scheduled to launch a three-day manned mission into Earth’s orbit in 2024.