A Japanese aerospace start up funded by a former internet maverick has successfully launched a small rocket into space. Interstellar Technology Inc. says the unmanned MOMO-3 rocket has exceeded 100 kilometres (60 miles) in altitude before falling into the Pacific Ocean.
The company says it proves that a rocket using mostly commercial parts can reach the space.
The rocket, about 10 meters (32 feet) long and 50 centimetres (1.5 feet) in diameter, weighs about 1 ton. The rocket is capable of putting payloads into orbit.
The company, founded in 2013 by former Livedoor Co. President Takafumi Horie, aims to develop low-cost commercial rockets to carry satellites into space.
Saturday’s success came after two failures in 2017 and 2018. It is Japan’s first privately developed rocket to reach the outer space.