Status: 03/07/2023 8:22 AM
The launch failure again ended the Japanese launch vehicle’s flight early. Jaxa is forced by the space agency to trigger the self-destruct. The drive is causing problems.
Shortly after the launch of the newly developed Japanese launch vehicle, the Jaxa space agency triggered the rocket’s self-destruct. The reason given was that the engine of the second stage of the missile did not ignite. The successor to the H2A carrier rocket — Japan’s first new development of a large carrier rocket in nearly 30 years — has lifted off from the Tanegashima spaceport in the southwest of the island kingdom.
The rocket’s planned first flight was canceled at the last minute on February 17 due to an electronic error. This launch attempt was already two years behind schedule.
Rocket to serve the growing demand
According to business newspaper Nikkei Asia, Japan’s space agency Jaxa and industrial group Mitsubishi Heavy plan to complete the launch by the end of March, the end of the fiscal year. With the H3 they want to meet the growing demand for launch vehicles after Russia decided to withdraw its Soyuz rockets from the European spaceport at Kourou in French Guiana.
The H3 is said to be more powerful, cheaper, and safer than the older H2A missile, which is scheduled to be decommissioned in fiscal 2024. According to Nikkei Asia, the now destroyed missile contains a surveillance satellite that also houses a missile early warning system for the Japanese Ministry of Defense. .
Japan wants to gain a stronger foothold in the increasingly lucrative satellite launch business and compete with H3. The H3 missile program is also seen as important to Japan’s participation in future space development, including the US-led Artemis lunar exploration programme. The first launch was originally scheduled for fiscal year 2020 but was delayed due to problems developing a major engine.