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Successor to original Michibiki satellite passes functional tests

Mitsubishi Electric Corp. has completed initial verification of the functions and performance of equipment aboard the orbiting QZS-1R satellite.

QZS-1R was launched Oct. 26, 2021, from Tanegashima Island in Kagoshima Prefecture and is now in quasi-zenith orbit as the successor to the original Quasi-Zenith Satellite (QZS-1), nicknamed Michibiki.

Logo and patch for the QZS-R1 satellite (Image: Miitsubishi Electric)

Logo and patch for the QZS-R1 satellite (Image: Miitsubishi Electric).

With Quasi-Zenith Satellite System services also having completed testing of related ground systems, the Cabinet Office will begin launching various positioning services via the QZS-1R today.

Mitsubishi Electric built and delivered QZS-R1 to the Cabinet Office of Japan. In addition to supporting these services, Mitsubishi Electric will continue developing satellite systems for forthcoming satellites QZS-5 to QZS-7, which will support advanced, sustainable, high-precision positioning in Japan.

Compared to the first Michibiki satellite, the QZS-1R has improved durability that is expected to extend the satellite’s design life by about five years compared to its predecessor. QZS-1R, together with QZS-2, 3 and 4 (all launched in 2017), will support positioning, high-precision positioning augmentation and other satellite services.

Name QZS-1R
Mass Dry mass (i.e., without propellant): approx. 1.6 tons; at launch: approx. 4.0 tons
Dimensions Stowed: approx. 5.4m x 2.9m x 2.9m; wing span: approx. 19m
Orbit Quasi-zenith orbit
Design life More than 15 years
Illustration of QZS-1R. (Mitsubishi Electric)

Illustration of QZS-1R. (Mitsubishi Electric)

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