Europe has agreed to support India in its quest to send a probe to the Moon.
Europe's first mission to the Moon has just arrived in orbit
The Chandrayaan 1 remote-sensing spacecraft is due to depart on the South Asian nation's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle in 2007/2008.
The European Space Agency (Esa) Council agreed this week to provide three instruments for the one-tonne probe.
Esa's counterpart, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), was founded in 1969, and launched its first satellite in 1975.
Since then, it has developed a number of launch vehicles as well as satellites for Earth observation, remote sensing, telecommunications and weather forecasting.
Together with China and Japan, it is part of a fast-developing Asian space sector.
The three instruments supplied for Chandrayaan 1 will be identical to those currently in orbit around the Moon on Esa's Smart 1 spacecraft - a demonstrator probe that is trialling new and miniaturised technologies.
Smart 1 has just begun a comprehensive survey of the key chemical elements in the lunar surface.
Scientists say this should confirm theories about the origin of the Moon - the product of a cataclysmic collision between the Earth and a Mars-sized body billions of years ago.