On March 7, Japan’s next-generation H3 missile was tested for the first time, but without success.
Smoke rises from the H3 rocket launch pad at Tanegashima Space Center
Smoke rises from the launch pad of the H3 rocket at the Tanegashima Space Center in Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan, February 17, 2023. (Documentary photo: Kyodo/TTXVN)
The Japan Aerospace Agency (JAXA) said the self-destruct mode was activated minutes after the rocket’s launch because the rocket’s second stage engine was not operating as expected. Previously, the plan to launch missile tests had also been postponed several times, most recently last month.
The H3 rocket is the successor to the H2A. During the test, this missile was launched on March 7 at noon, but JAXA forced to activate self-destruct mode after assessing that the missile could not accomplish its mission as planned. Thus, JAXA has once again failed to succeed in the missile development process. In October 2022, the small Epsilon-6 rocket also had to self-destruct a few minutes after its launch because it strayed from its orbit.
H3 marks Japan’s first viable effort in the past 20 years to develop a new generation of missiles to replace the H2A. Although H3 should help Japan strengthen its position in the increasingly competitive race to develop missiles for commercial use, the missile development process remains extremely bumpy.
Japan aims to successfully develop H3 to use it not only for launching satellites and probes, but also to participate in cargo delivery missions to the International Space Station (ISS). The estimated cost of manufacturing an H3 rocket is 5 billion yen ($37 million), only half the cost of manufacturing an H2A, but its satellite launch capacity is 1.3 times greater. The Japanese H2A rocket has been in service since 2001 and has a successful launch rate of 97.8%, with only one failure out of a total of 46 launches to date.
Article source: VNA/News Journal
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On March 7, Japan’s next-generation H3 missile was tested for the first time, but failed. Smoke rises from the launch pad of the H3 rocket, directly at the space center…