Japan to boost heaviest sat into orbit in December

27 Oct 2006
00:00
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(Asia In Focus via NewsEdge) The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) will be launching its heaviest satellite ever on December 16.

Kiku No. 8, officially known as Engineering Test Satellite VIII, weighs approximately 5.8 tons and sports two large antennas that will span an area the size of a tennis court when deployed.

The satellite will be placed in geostationary orbit approximately 36,000km above Earth and will be used for experiments involving direct communications between the satellite and a handheld terminal.

The launch will cost 11.9 billion yen ($100 million), with the satellite built at a cost of around 43.6 billion yen ($370.7 million).

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