India on Thursday launched the first model rocket from its space center in the remote coastal city of Vadodara to test the country’s rocket technology.

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will send the rocket, which is part of its Chandrayaan-2 mission, to the satellite-laden launchpad on the outskirts of Vahangiri, about 140 km (75 miles) east of Bangalore.

The rocket will take off from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in the city’s north and fly about 100km to an altitude of 1,200km, the ISRO said in a statement.

The launch comes amid rising tensions in the region, with India saying it is preparing to send a space probe to Mars and the United States accusing it of violating the 2015 Outer Space Treaty.ISRO’s rocket is the third Indian rocket to be launched this year.

It launched a rocket on July 18 and a rocket this week from Sriharikota, about 70 km (45 miles) south of Vanniyal, the capital of Tamil Nadu state.

Tags: