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Japan successfully launches first military communications satellite

Japan has successfully launched its first military communications satellite Kirameki-2 (kee-RAH-meh-kee 2) satellite.

It was launched on board of H-2A rocket that lifted off from the Tanegashima Space Center in southern Japan. The satellite separated from the rocket and entered a designated orbit.

Key Facts
  • The Kirameki-2 satellite has been designed to upgrade Japan’s existing communication network in the face of China’s increasingly assertive maritime activity and North Korea’s missile threat.
  • It is the first of three satellites that will replace three civilian satellites currently used by Japan’s military. The new satellites will allow military units to communicate on a high-speed and high-capacity network.
  • These satellites aimed at stepping up Japan’s emergency response capability in case of natural disaster, China’s maritime activity from southern Japanese waters to South China Sea, as well as missile threats from North Korea.
  • They will be also used by Japanese troops operating overseas as part of international peacekeeping operations, including those off the Somali coast and in South Sudan.

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