- Japan launched a fourth satellite for a new high-precision global positioning system (GPS) it hopes will encourage new businesses and help spur economic growth.
- An H-2A rocket carrying Japan’s fourth and final quasi-zenith satellite, the Michibiki No. 4, lifted off from the Tanegashima Space Center in Kagoshima Prefecture, southwestern Japan on Oct 10.
- Having four satellites that loop over Japan and Australia in a figure of eight orbit will allow for uninterrupted coverage and puts engineers on course to switch the system on in April.
- Japanese GPS can locate devices to within several centimeters compared with the commonly-used U.S. system, which has an accuracy of about 10 meters.
- Japan plans to have seven of the geo-positioning satellites in orbit by 2023.
- The Quasi-Zenith Satellite System is a three-satellite regional time transfer system in development and the satellite-based augmentation system for the Global Positioning System that would be receivable within Japan.