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Japan launches multifunctional satellite
Posted: Sat, Feb 18, 2006, 6:08 AM ET (1108 GMT)
H-2A launch of MTSAT-2 (JAXA) A Japanese rocket launched Saturday a multipurpose communications and weather satellite. The H-2A 2024 rocket lifted off from the Tanegashima Space Center in Japan at 1:27 am EST (0527 GMT, 3:27 pm JST) Saturday and placed its payload, MTSAT-2, into a geosynchronous transfer orbit about a half-hour later. The 4.65-ton spacecraft, the heaviest Japanese satellite built to date, carries Ka-, Ku-, and L-band transponders to provide communications services for air traffic control in the Asia/Pacific region. The spacecraft carries an imager to provide meteorological data as well. The launch is the second in as many months for the H-2A, which performed only one flight in all of 2005.; an H-2A launched the ALOS remote sensing satellite in January.
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