Of Coconuts and Rockets

There are many steps involved in getting a spacecraft ready for launch. But when launching from India on the PSLV, there is one extra step: the coconut ceremony. Breaking a coconut has much significance in the Hindu religion. It usually marks an auspicious occasion like weddings or festival, or the start of a new endeavor such as laying the foundation stone of house, construction of a bridge, or even the acquisition of a new car. It is a happy ritua