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December 18-24, 2017 / Vol 36, No 51 / Hawai`i Island, USA

15 Dec 2017, 20:50 UTC
December 18-24, 2017 / Vol 36, No 51 / Hawai`i Island, USA
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Japan Prepares 2 Upcoming Launches in Advance of Lunar and Galactic Missions

JAXA plans to launch 2 rockets from separate launch sites during the coming 2 weeks. From Tanegashima Space Center on December 23, Mitsubishi Heavy Industry Launch Services’ H-2A rocket #37 will for the first time attempt to deliver 2 satellites at different orbital altitudes: Global Change Observation Mission – Climate (GCOM-C) and Super Low Altitude Test Satellite (SLATS). The 2000-kg GCOM-C (also “Shikisai”) at an ~800 km orbit intends to monitor global changes related to the atmosphere and vegetation over a 5 year period using a second generation imager capable of observing in as many as 19 bands from near-UV to infrared wavelengths. SLATS (also “Tsubame”) will use an ion engine to test the potential use of very low orbital altitudes from 268 km to 180 km over at least a 2 year period, measuring atomic oxygen concentration and its damaging effects on satellite surfaces including multi-layer insulations. H-2A rocket’s new capability of launching multiple satellites into different altitudes will help with the proposed launch of SLIM lunar lander along with the X-ray Astronomy Recovery Mission for studying galactic plasma NET 2019. From Uchinoura Space Center on Dec ...

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