Japan sends infrared satellite into orbit

February 22, 2006

Japan Wednesday morning launched into space an infrared astronomical satellite that will be used to create a database on the entire universe.

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency confirmed that Astro-F, the third satellite to be launched into space by Japan within a month, had entered its planned orbit about 180 miles above Earth, Kyodo News reported Wednesday.

The launch, from the Uchinoura Space Center in southwestern Japan, originally was scheduled for Tuesday morning but had been postponed for one day due to bad weather.

The satellite can gather detailed topographical data and capture infrared rays emitted by low-temperature stars and new galaxies.

The agency plans to use the satellite to create a database of the whole universe.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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