Japan to launch radar, optical satellites

Updated: 2013-01-27 14:27


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TOKYO - The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. are set to launch an information-gathering radar satellite and an optical satellite using an H-2A rocket Sunday, local media reported.

The liftoff is scheduled at around 1:40 p.m. Sunday from JAXA's Tanegashima Space Center on Tanegashima Island in Kagoshima Prefecture, southwestern Japan, according to the Kyodo News Agency.

The radar satellite is reportedly capable of detecting objects on the ground even at night and through cloud cover, while the optical satellite is designed to demonstrate higher resolution shooting technology.

Japan currently has a radar satellite and three optical satellites in operation. With the planned launch on Sunday, it aims to expand its satellite network so that any specific point on the ground can be shot at least once a day, according to reports.