Japan Successfully Launches Smallest Satellite-Carrying Rocket (News)

Science Technology

Kimotsuki, Kagoshima Pref., Feb. 3 (Jiji Press)—The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, or JAXA, successfully launched one of the world's smallest satellite-carrying rockets on Saturday.

The SS-520 blasts off on its successful mission on February 3, 2018, from the Uchinora Space Center in Kagoshima Prefecture. (© JAXA; courtesy Jiji)

The fifth rocket in the SS-520 series released a microsatellite developed by the University of Tokyo into geocentric orbit about seven and a half minutes after the liftoff at the Uchinoura Space Center in Kimotsuki, Kagoshima Prefecture, at 2:03 p.m.

In January last year, JAXA launched the fourth SS-520 but failed to receive data from the rocket.

For the 9.5-meter-long fifth launch vehicle, less than one-fifth of the length of Japan's mainstay H-2A rocket, JAXA changed the electrical wiring design to prevent a power cable for its data transmitter from causing a short circuit.

"I'm happy and relieved," Habu Hiroto, associate professor at JAXA in charge of the development of the rocket, told a news conference.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

space Jiji Press rocket satellite