[Via Satellite 12-29-2014] The Japan Meteorological Agency has released the first images from the Himawari 8 geostationary weather satellite, which launched Oct. 7, 2014 aboard an H2A rocket. Mitsubishi Electric built the satellite using the DS2000 platform.
The Himawari 8 spacecraft is slated for operation by mid-2015. Between then, the satellite will undergo testing and checking of in-orbit systems and ground facilities.
Himawari 8 carries an Advanced Himawari Imager (AHI), from Exelis. Based on Exelis’ Advanced Baseline Imager (ABI), the device is expected to improve weather forecasting and provide more reliable early warnings for severe storms.