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Japanese H-IIA rocket launches satellite into orbit

Saturday, February 18, 2006

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency has successfully launched another of their H-IIA space rockets. Its payload, the MTSAT-2 satellite designed to control air traffic and track weather patterns, has successfully separated from the rocket. It is due to be inserted into a geostationary orbit on the 21st of February.

The satellite is owned by the Civil Aviation Bureau and the Japan Meteorological Agency, part of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport.

The rocket was launched from the Tanegashima space centre in the southern region of Kagoshima, at 15:55 (06:55 GMT). It is the ninth in a series of H-IIA rockets, which form the main part of the Japanese space program. A previous H-IIA rocket was launched less than a month ago.

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