Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. said Thursday it successfully launched an H-2A rocket carrying a British communications satellite from Tanegashima Space Center in southwestern Japan, with the satellite entering its planned orbit about 26 minutes after liftoff.
The rocket carrying the first of two Inmarsat-6 satellites of Britain's Inmarsat Global Ltd. was launched at 12:32 a.m. following a one-day delay due to poor weather.
Liftoff was also pushed back by about an hour as the Japanese manufacturer conducted a final check of the rocket, finding no abnormalities.
The H-2A rocket, measuring 53 meters in length and with a 4-meter diameter, lifted off with four solid-fuel boosters to carry the heavy satellite.
According to Mitsubishi Heavy, the latest flight is the fifth instance of an H-2A rocket carrying a satellite of a foreign country, with others having been from Canada, South Korea and the United Arab Emirates.
The Inmarsat-6 series are the world's largest commercial communications satellites, according to Inmarsat.
Japan space agency starts recruiting astronauts, 1st time in 13 yrs
Japan launches Epsilon small rocket carrying 9 satellites
Japan puts successor to aging GPS-improving satellite into orbit