Japan postpones rocket launch

February 21, 2006

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

The Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency postponed the launch of the satellite, ASTRO-F, on an M5 rocket because rainfall around Uchinoura Space Center in southwest Japan could endanger the rocket's ascent. It will launch the satellite Wednesday morning, Kyodo News reported Tuesday.

The satellite is an infrared astronomical satellite that can map the sky at infrared wavelengths, first developed by Britain, the United States and the Netherlands.

The agency expects that it may contribute to probing the Milky Way and astronomical phenomena, and discovering extrasolar planets.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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