Blogs about the Japanese space agency.

The HTV-6 cargo spacecraft capture by the International Space Station's robotic arm (Image NASA TV)

A little while ago the HTV-6 “Kounotori” spacecraft has been captured by the robotic arm Canadarm2 on the International Space Station, operated by Shane Kimbrough with the assistance of Thomas Pesquet. The Japanese space cargo ship, which blasted off last Friday, carries a huge amount of supplies and experiments. After its capture, it will take a little while before the HTV-6 starts getting moved to its berthing location on the Harmony module.

The HTV-6 cargo spacecraft blasting off atop a H-IIB rocket (Image NASA TV / JAXA)

A little while ago the HTV-6 spacecraft blasted off atop a H-IIB rocket from the Tanegashima space center in Japan for a resupply mission to the International Space Station. About fifteen minutes after the launch, the cargo spacecraft separated regularly from the rocket’s last stage, entered its preliminary orbit and deployed its solar panels and navigation antennas.

The Japanese space agency JAXA announced the impossibility to restore at least part of its Hitomi space telescope’s functions. After the interruption of the contacts, in the course of April JAXA started an investigation in order to restore Hitomi’s functions although the damages assessed didn’t leave much hope. The attempts were expected to go on for months, instead the situation turned out to be so bad that they were forced to declare the loss of the satellite.