Re: Dark Side Of The Moon
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Japan's probe satellite put into orbit around moonPosted: 2007/10/05
Japan's first lunar probe satellite was successfully put into orbit around the moon, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency ''JAXA'' said Friday.
TOKYO, Oct. 5 (Xinhua) -- The agency announced that the Selenological and Engineering Explorer was injected into a lunar orbit with an Apogee altitude of 11,741 km and an Perigee altitude of 101 km. Its period is 16 hours and 42 minutes.
The satellite, dubbed "Kaguya" after Japanese ancient fable, was lift off on Sept. 14 with a H-2A rocket from the Tanegashima Space Center in Japan's southern Kagoshima prefecture. The agency performed the lunar orbit injection maneuver on Oct. 4.
Kaguya, which consists of a 3-ton main orbiter and two 50-kilogram sub-satellites, is equipped with 14 scientific instruments and a high-definition television camera. It will start the world's first full-scale mission to explore the moon since the U.S. Apollo program, the agency said.
Under the 55 billion yen (474 million U.S. dollars) project, the satellite is to begin its 10-month mission around December, collecting lunar features related with the origin and evolution of the moon.