The Challenger mission that carried the first African-American into space deployed a multipurpose satellite for what country?
The mission’s primary payload was INSAT-1B, an Indian communications and weather observation satellite, which was released by the orbiter and boosted into a geostationary orbit.
An early plan for STS-8, released in April 1982, had scheduled it for July 1983. It was expected to be a three-day mission with four crew members, and would launch INSAT-1-B, an Indian satellite, and TDRS-B, a NASA communications relay satellite.
Once functional, however, it provided satisfactory service for seven years, returning 36,000 images of Earth and broadcasting television to thousands of remote Indian villages.