Tokyo, October 29: A Japanese rocket carrying the United Arab Emirates' first locally made satellite has lifted off from a space center in southern Japan. The KhalifaSat Earth observation satellite was launched by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency from its Tanegashima Space Center.
The H-2A rocket also is carrying an Ibuki-2 greenhouse gas observation satellite for Japan. The launch is part of the Gulf nation's ambition under its fledging space programme. SpaceX Lands Falcon 9 Rocket on Land After Delivering Satellite.
The country aims to send its first two astronauts to the International Space Station in 2019. The UAE also aims to send a probe on its way to Mars in 2020 and to build a science city there by 2117. Japan also aims to expand its commercial satellite launch services by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and make them globally competitive.