Japan launches HTV cargo ship to ISS

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Japan today successfully launched to ISS the last of its first generation HTV cargo ships.

This was the ninth such cargo ship launched by Japan. The mission was also the last launch of Mitsubishi’s H-2B rocket, Japan’s most powerful. It is being replaced with the H-3 rocket, which they hope to fly for the first time before the end of this year. They also hope that the H3 will be cheaper to operate, and will allow Mitsubishi to garner some commercial business with it, something they failed entirely to do with the H-2B.

This was also Japan’s second launch in 2020, which means they remain outside the leaders in the 2020 launch race:

8 China
6 SpaceX
6 Russia

The U.S. continues to lead China 11 to 8 in the national rankings.


One comment

  • LocalFluff

    I heard that this Cygnys will conduct another zero gravity fire test onboard as it has left the ISS.

    This guy mentions a recent paper (Precipitation Modification by Ionization” by Harrison+. It models theoretically how ionization of the atmosphere by nuclear tests increases rainfall. They only use data from the UK to also find an empirical correlation with rainfall. It opens for the possibility to ionize the atmosphere in order to control cloudiness to “fight global warming” and droughts.

    This is the theory behind how the Solar minimum could cause global cooling. Less Solar (sunspot) activity means a weaker Solar magnetic field. This means less protection of Earth’s atmosphere against cosmic rays that ionizes the atmosphere, causing more cloud formation and a cooler climate.

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