Japan launches satellite for better GPS coverage (Update)

Sep 11, 2010
A H-IIA rocket is pictured leaving the launching pad at Tanegashima Space Center in Tanegashima island, Kagoshima Prefecture, in May. Japan on Saturday will launch a similar rocket that will carry a satellite intended to improve global positioning systems.

Japan on Saturday launched a rocket carrying a satellite intended to improve global positioning systems.

The H-IIA rocket blasted off at 8:17pm (1117 GMT) from the Tanegashima space centre in southern Japan, according to the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).

About 30 minutes after the launch, the rocket successfully released the "Michibiki" satellite, whose name means "showing the way".

JAXA scientists hope the satellite will boost the accuracy and coverage of GPS, which is widely used in Japan by drivers.

Currently, radio waves from a satellite can be hampered by skyscrapers or mountains, and significant errors can be also caused by reflected waves, according to JAXA.

The Japanese space agency hoped to launch three such satellites, meaning that one of them would always be above Japan, but budgetary constraints have stalled plans for the second and third satellites, local media have said.

Explore further: Creating the fastest outdoor wireless Internet connection in the world

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Bad weather postpones Japan rocket launch

May 18, 2010

Japan on Tuesday postponed the launch of a rocket due to deploy a Venus probe and an experimental "space yacht" propelled by solar particles, because of bad weather at the launch site.

Japan postpones rocket launch

Feb 21, 2006

The launch of a Japanese rocket carrying an infrared satellite has been postponed from Tuesday to Wednesday morning due to bad weather.

Japan sends first cargo spacecraft to ISS

Sep 11, 2009

Japan on Friday launched its first unmanned cargo spacecraft to the International Space Station, aiming for a share of space transport after the retirement of the US space shuttle fleet next year.

Japan sends first cargo spacecraft to ISS

Sep 10, 2009

Japan early Friday launched its first cargo spacecraft to the International Space Station, aiming for a share of space transport after the retirement of the US space shuttle fleet next year.

Recommended for you

China condemns 'cyber terrorism' in wake of Sony attack

1 hour ago

China's foreign minister condemned all forms of "cyber terrorism" in talks with his American counterpart, a statement said Monday, as the US accused Beijing's ally North Korea with being behind a cyber attack on Sony Pictures.

BlackBerry rides with Boeing on self-destruct phone

1 hour ago

The news from Reuters on Friday came as no shock to those who know Blackberry's strong rep for security (John Chen, the company's CEO, is not shy about promoting the company's branding message of safety. ...

Cyclist's helmet, Volvo car to communicate for safety

18 hours ago

Volvo calls it "a life-saving wearable cycling tech concept." The car maker is referring to a connected car and helmet prototype that enables two-way communication between Volvo drivers and cyclists for proximity ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.