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November 23-29, 2015 / Vol 34, No 47 / Hawai`i Island, USA

20 Nov 2015, 21:04 UTC
November 23-29, 2015 / Vol 34, No 47 / Hawai`i Island, USA
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

Japan Space Enterprise Increasing, and More Collaborative Globally

Launch of Japan H-2A F29 rocket from Tanegashima Space Center on island shores at the edge of the Pacific, is set to raise the Telesat Telstar 12 Vantage. This powerful new high throughput communications satellite replaces the old Telstar 12 to enhance coverage over the Americas, Europe, Africa and the Middle East from geostationary orbit at 15° West. If completed this will be the 23rd straight successful H-2A flight. The JAXA Hayabusa 2 “Peregrine Falcon” robotic spacecraft is set for Earth gravity assist flyby December 3, beginning its 2nd year on a round-trip mission to Asteroid 162173 Ryugu. The probe is expected to reach the target in July 2018, survey for ~1.5 years, sample surface material, and depart in Dec 2019 for return to Earth Dec 2020. The wayward JAXA Akatsuki “Dawn” mission is expected to recover soon, using its small attitude-control thrusters to start maneuvering into a highly elliptical orbit around Venus Dec 7, after having overshot the planet on its first attempt in Dec 2010 when the main engine failed during a critical orbital-insertion burn. Also on the manifest is SLIM (Smart Lander for Investigating Moon) in 2019. Japan continues ...

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