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Japan launches rocket to supply ISS

2009-09-11 13:09 BJT

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Japan launched a rocket with its first unmanned transport vehicle to supply the International Space Station on Friday.

The newly-developed H-2B number one rocket blasted off from the Tanegashima Space Center shortly after 2 a.m. local time. The transport vehicle, "HTV", separated from the rocket 15 minutes later.

It went into the planned orbit successfully. The HTV will send some 4.5 tons of supplies to Japan's Kibo laboratory module on the ISS.

And it's expected to play a crucial role transporting supplies to the space station, along with Russian and European supply vehicles, after US space shuttles are decommissioned in 2011.

Editor: Zhang Pengfei | Source: CCTV.com