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Statement by Minister Seko on the Success of the Launch of Small Rocket "SS-520 No.5"

February 3, 2018

  1. Today, the Small Rocket "SS-520 No.5," which was developed by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency(JAXA)based on a commission by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry(METI), was successfully launched and went into orbit as scheduled. This is great news.
  2. The launch of SS-520 No. 4 in January 2017 was not successful and the rocket failed to settle into orbit as planned. SS-520 No. 5 was developed based on thorough analysis of the causes of the failure of No. 4, and was launched with full-scale preparations. For the first time, this rocket is equipped with a flight controller using commercial parts developed by a Japanese company. The success of its launch is a great step forward for the Japanese space industry toward further cost reduction.
  3. Expanded use of satellite data as part of the big data infrastructure is considered promising and demand for microsatellites is anticipated to increase. Under such circumstances, needs for small rockets are further expanding. I hope diverse initiatives by private companies follow the successful launch of SS-520 No. 5 to further expand the base of the Japanese space industry.

Division in Charge

Space Industry Office, Manufacturing Industries Bureau

Last updated:2018-02-08
Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry1-3-1 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8901, Japan Tel: +81-(0)3-3501-1511
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