JAXA has begun a series of pad tests for its H-IIB launcher at the Tanegashima Space Launch Complex with a 10-second captive firing of the Mitsubishi twin-motor first stage. With Mitsubishi Heavy Industries as its partner, JAXA is developing the H-IIB to lift the H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV) to the International Space Station. The effort is JAXA’s first public-private partnership. An enhanced version of JAXA’s H-IIA, the newer launcher uses two Mitsubishi LE-7A liquid hydrogen/oxygen ...

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