Japan postpones Moon landing; here’s why SLIM mission's rocket launch has to wait
Japan, which aims to be the fifth nation to land on the Moon, has postponed the launch of the lunar probe SLIM.
Japan's scheduled launch of an H2A rocket carrying the lunar probe Smart Lander for Investigating the Moon (SLIM) was postponed due to unfavourable weather conditions, as reported by NHK. The launch was set to take place from the Tanegashima Space Centre in Kagoshima prefecture on August 28.
Coinciding with the SLIM launch, the H2A rocket is also carrying the X-Ray Imaging and Spectroscopy Mission (XRISM), a collaborative effort between JAXA, NASA, and other organizations. This dual launch underscores Japan's commitment to advancing space research and exploration.
JAXA's preparations for the H2A launch included rigorous checks on shared components. This attention to detail aimed to alleviate concerns arising from the H3 rocket's less successful debut in March.
Japan's Moon mission comes after India successfully landed Pragyaan rover via Vikram Lander on the Moon as a part of the Chandrayaan-3 mission by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
Japan's aspirations in lunar exploration come at a time of notable achievements in the field. Just recently, India achieved a significant milestone with the successful landing of the Chandrayaan-3 lander module on the Moon's South Pole region.
This accomplishment marked India as the fourth nation, following the US, China and Russia, to achieve a successful lunar landing. It signified a triumphant rebound from the Chandrayaan-2 mission's crash landing four years earlier.
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