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Japan Launches a New Intelligence Satellite

Japan Launches a New Intelligence Satellite

The satellite was launched by the Japanese firm Mitsubishi Heavy Industries’ H-2A rocket carrying the satellite, which took off from Japan’s Tanegashima Space Centre. IGS Optical 8, set to become a part of Japan’s planned satellite constellation, is an optics-carrying one with a ground resolution of more than 40 cm. Its brethren, Optical 5, Optical 6 and Optical 7, are in active use.  IGS Optical 8’s target orbit is a 310-mile-high sun-synchronous path to function under sun-light conditions. 
In addition to military use, the satellite will improve awareness and response during a natural disaster such as an earthquake or a more threatening tsunami. Remote photography of the disaster area can help with navigation through ruins and damage control activities.
Japan began this programme as a direct reaction to North Korea testing a Taepodong-1 missile over Japanese territory in 1988. 
 

FNSS