HTV Demonstration Flight under way

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) launched the H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV) Demonstration Flight aboard the H-IIB Launch Vehicle Test Flight (H-IIB TF1) at 2:01:46 a.m. on September 11, 2009 (Japan Standard Time, JST) from the Tanegashima Space Center.

The launch azimuth was 108.5 degrees. The launch vehicle flew smoothly, and, at about 15 minutes and 10 seconds after liftoff, the separation of the HTV Demonstration Flight was confirmed.

The HTV-1 Mission is the first flight of the H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV) that is designed, developed and built in Japan. Soon, Japan's unmanned transfer vehicle, HTV, will fly to the ISS delivering supplies, equipment and spare parts for the ISS.

The Collision Avoidance Maneuver (CAM) demonstration went quite smoothly. The last maneuver took place at 4:34 p.m.,September 12, and with that, the HTV-1 concluded all the CAM tests. The HTV-1's systems functioned well throughout the demonstration, proving that the HTV-1 could safely move away from the International Space Station (ISS) in case of any emergency during its final rendezvous phase.

The HTV-1 Mission will deliver approximately 4.5 tons of cargo to the ISS.

On the HTV-1 Mission, the HTV will carry additional propellants and batteries since demonstration tests are scheduled during the mission. Therefore, the cargo carried on the HTV-1 Mission is less than the standard mass capacity of the HTV.

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