Tag Archives: HTV

Video of the Japanese launchpad fire

I have embedded below the fold the video of the launchpad fire on September 10 that forced Japan to scrub the launch of its H-2B rocket carrying its HTV unmanned cargo freighter to ISS.

I set up the video to start just prior to the appearance of the fire, at 10 minutes in. Its appearance is quite dramatic. The video then continues for about twenty more minutes, showing the fire-fighting effort that brings the fire under control.

Japan’s space agency JAXA has still not released any further information about what caused the fire, the damage, or when they might reschedule the launch.
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Japan scrubs launch due to launchpad fire

Japan today scrubbed the launch of its unmanned HTV cargo freighter to ISS due to a launchpad fire that broke out only three and half hours before liftoff.

There is as yet no word on the cause of the fire, or how much damage it caused. Nor have they said anything about rescheduling the launch.

This would have been Japan’s second launch in 2019, a drop from the average of 4 to 6 in the last five years.

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Japanese experiment to remove space junk fails

A Japanese experiment designed to test technology for removing space junk and flown on that country’s most recent cargo ship to ISS has failed to deploy its tether as planned.

The system, designed by the Japanese space agency (JAXA) and a fishing net company, should have unfurled a 700-meter (2,300 ft) tether from a space station resupply vehicle that was returning to Earth. According to JAXA scientists, however, the system appears to have faltered.

This only adds another technical failure to a string of technical failures by Japanese spacecraft. And even though the cargo ship operated as planned, its launch was delayed when engineers discovered a leak during testing. Overall, it increasingly appears that Japan’s space program has the same kind of quality control problems as Russia.

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Japan successfully launches its ISS cargo freighter

Japan today successfully launched its sixth HTV unmanned cargo freighter to ISS.

The launch had been delayed from a September launch due to “leaking pipes”, whatever that means. Its successful launch now however relieves some of the supply pressure on ISS, caused by the failed launch of Russia’s Progress on December 1 and the September 1 Falcon 9 launchpad explosion.

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Japan to upgrade its ISS cargo freighter

The competition heats up: Japan has decided to upgrade its HTV cargo freighter to ISS by cutting its weight by 30% and reducing the cost to build it by half.

Without doubt the success of the U.S. in quickly building two private and relatively inexpensive freighters, Dragon and Cygnus, has influenced this decision. The managers in Japan have realized that the HTV is not efficient and could be streamlined, and they are trying now to do it.

Isn’t competition a wonderful thing?

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Some questions about today’s hypersonic test flight

Here are some additional stories describing today’s test flight of the Hypersonic Test Vehicle.

I have several questions, and no answers:

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