06/15/2019, 03.01
JAPAN
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Origami beyond the atmosphere: a rocket will launch paper planes from space

Japan’s Interstellar Technologies wants to try an “unprecedented mission”. The MOMO-4 observation rocket will carry three paper planes and release them at an altitude of more than a hundred kilometres. Once released, they will glide down to Earth.

Tokyo (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Origami, a traditional Japanese art of paper folding, is about to cross the limits of the atmosphere for the first time.

Interstellar Technologies Inc., the first private Japanese firm to successfully launch a rocket in space, announced two days ago that its next spacecraft will carry paper airplanes to be released over the Earth.

On 4 May, the Japanese start-up launched into space the unmanned MOMO-3 rocket from a facility in Taiki, a town in Japan’s northernmost prefecture of Hokkaido.

"For our next step, we want to try the unprecedented mission of sending paper planes gliding down to the ground from space. We hope this will help people feel closer to the universe and enjoy our space project," the company stated.

The MOMO-4 observation rocket will carry a payload of three paper airplanes at an altitude of more than a hundred kilometres. The planes will then be released by a ground operator pressing a button from the control station in Japan.

The paper planes are expected to re-enter the atmosphere, gliding towards the earth's surface.

The company has developed a special device to release them in flight and will cover its operating costs through crowdfunding with the names of contributors printed on the paper planes.

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