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Tanegashima, Uchinoura centres to open for year-round rocket launches

Year-round rocket launches at two space centres in Kagoshima Prefecture will become possible from the next fiscal year as local fishermen's associations have agreed to lift a 190-day limit, the science ministry and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency said Thursday.
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Tanegashima Space Center
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Tanegashima Space Centre captured at January 13 08:45 ST

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Credit JAXX

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Tanegashima Space Centre captured at July 22, 05:55 ST

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tanegashimaSatellite

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Latitude: 30.400943 Longitude: 130.977437

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3024'3.42"N 13058'47.60"E

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An advisory panel, organized under the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry has recommended that Japan build a new launch pad for its space program overseas because its current one is restricted by local fishing concerns.
The committee urged the government to consider sites such as Christmas Island in the Pacific archipelago of Kiribati.


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Japan's current space centre, on the southern island of Tanegashima, lags behind sites used by U.S. and European space agencies because its launching period is limited by local fishing seasons and the centres small capacity.
Tanegashima's small airport also means that rocket components must be shipped to the island, instead of flown, increasing transportation costs and the time required to stage a launch.

Tokyo already has a tracking station on Christmas Island to trace its rocket shots from Tanegashima and has conducted aircraft tests in the region.
Launch sites along the Earth's equator are optimal because the planet's rotation is fastest there, giving rockets an extra boost and saving fuel.

Six Japanese astronauts have gone into space. Earlier this year, an official with the Japanese space agency, JAXA, said the nation was considering a plan to establish a manned lunar base by 2025.

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