Rocket Lab launches Japanese satellite from its launch pad in New Zealand

New Zealand’s Rocket Lab and Japan are embarking on an exciting new space mission. It can expand knowledge about our home planet.

Rocket Lab запустила японський супутник
Rocket launch. Source:

New launch by Rocket Lab

Rocket Lab, a California-based company that specializes in launching small satellites into orbit, launched a Japanese satellite on Friday from the company’s complex on New Zealand’s Mahia Peninsula.

The mission, titled “Awakening the Moon God,” was originally scheduled for Wednesday but was postponed due to a forecast of strong winds. The Electron rocket took off at 8:06 a.m. Kyiv time.

The rocket successfully placed the TSUKUYOMI-I satellite into orbit on behalf of the Japanese startup Institute for Q-shu Pioneers of Space Inc. Rocket Lab announced it in a statement released two hours after the launch.

What is known about the mission?

The launched vehicle is equipped with SAR. This is a synthetic aperture radar satellite named after the Japanese moon god. According to the company, it will collect images of the Earth. This is the tenth launch of this rocket in 2023, which allows it to exceed its own record of nine launches set last year.

It is also interesting to note that this is the 42nd time the Electron rocket has been launched from Mahia or the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport on Wallops Island, Virginia, since 2017. The company itself was founded in New Zealand back in 2006.

Based on materials: