India has canceled the launch of a lunar mission to explore the lunar south pole.
The Chandrayaan-2 mission was aborted less than an hour before today's takeoff. The spokesman for the Indian Space Research Organization B.R. Guruprasad says a "technical hurdle" was observed in the 640-ton launch system.
The agency says a new release date will be announced.
Chandrayaan, the word for "art of the moon" in Sanskrit, is designed for a soft landing on the other side of the moon and for sending a vehicle to explore water reservoirs confirmed by an earlier Indian space mission.
The nationalist prime minister of India, Narendra Modi, is eager to show the country's technological and security skills. If India achieved the soft landing, it would only be the fourth to do so after the United States, Russia and China.