A Japanese Epsilon small launch vehicle failed to reach orbit during an Oct. 11 launch, resulting in the loss of all eight smallsats on board.
Japan’s solid-fuel Epsilon 5 rocket successfully put nine small satellites into orbit Nov. 9, including an orbital debris removal technology demonstrator.
Japanese company IHI Aerospace plans to market a version of the little-used Epsilon small launch vehicle to commercial customers, although at prices significantly higher than similar vehicles in development.
Mitsubishi Electric said Dec. 22 that it will build the Innovative Satellite Technology Demonstration-2 as prime contractor for JAXA. The satellite is scheduled to launch on a Japanese Epsilon rocket by the end of March 2022.