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Kounotori 8
HTV 8 release.jpg
H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV-8) being grappled by the Canadarm2 on 1 November 2019.
Mission typeISS resupply
COSPAR ID2019-062A
SATCAT no.44546
Mission duration40 days
Spacecraft properties
SpacecraftKounotori 8
Spacecraft typeHTV
ManufacturerMitsubishi Heavy Industries
Launch mass15800 kg [1]
Dry mass10500 kg
Payload mass5300 kg
Dimensions9.8 metre of long,
4.4 metre of diameter
Start of mission
Launch date24 September 2019,
16:05:05 UTC [2]
RocketH-IIB No. 8
Launch siteTanegashima, Yoshinobu-2
ContractorMitsubishi Heavy Industries
End of mission
Decay date3 November 2019
Orbital parameters
Reference systemGeocentric orbit
RegimeLow Earth orbit
Berthing at ISS
Berthing portHarmony nadir
RMS capture28 September 2019,
11:12 UTC [3]
Berthing date28 September 2019,
14:09 UTC [4]
Unberthing date1 November 2019, 13:45 UTC [5]
RMS release1 November 2019, 17:21 UTC [6][7]
Time berthed34 days
Mass5300 kg
Pressurised3400 kg
Unpressurised1900 kg

Kounotori 8 (こうのとり8号機), also known as HTV-8 is the 8th flight of the H-II Transfer Vehicle, a robotic cargo spacecraft to resupply the International Space Station. It was launched on 24 September 2019, 16:05:05 UTC.[8]


Major changes from previous Kounotori are:[9]

  • Replacement of Earth sensor with star tracker for spacecraft attitude control
  • New cargo racks developed for HTV-X which allows 30% more Cargo Transfer Bags (CTB) to be carried in the Pressurized Logistics Carrier (PLC). (316 CTBs for Kounotori 8, compared to 248 CTBs of Kounotori 6)


Kounotori 8 carries about 5300 kg of cargo, consisting of 3400 kg in the pressurized compartment and 1900 kg in the unpressurized compartment.[9]

Cargo in the Pressurized Logistics Carrier (PLC) include:[9]

  • JAXA experiment Cell Biology Experiment Facility-Left (CBEF-L)
  • JAXA experiment Sony Optical Link for ISS (SOLISS), a satellite optical communication demonstration co-developed with Sony Computer Science Laboratories [ja]
  • JAXA experiment Hourglass, which will investigate the behavior of soil and rock particles under low gravity conditions[10]
  • Gas bottle for JAXA experiment
  • Experiment materials for Electrostatic Levitation Furnace (ELF)
  • CubeSats to be deployed from ISS: NARSSCube-1, AQT-D, RWASAT-1
  • NASA system supply cargo: new water tank for Water Storage System (WSS)
  • NASA system supply cargo: tank for Nitrogen Oxygen Recharge System (NORS)

In the Unpressurized Logistics Carrier (ULC), Kounotori 8 carries six lithium-ion batteries Orbital Replacement Units (ORUs) for replacing the ISS's existing nickel-hydrogen batteries. The transportation of replacement batteries is a continuation from the previous Kounotori 6 and 7, and will continue through to Kounotori 9.[9]



The H-IIB launch vehicle carrying Kounotori 8 was initially scheduled to be launched at 21:33:29 UTC, 10 September 2019.[11][12] During launch preparation, a fire broke out at the launch pad at around 18:05 UTC (T minus 3.5 hours), and the launch was called off.[13] The cause of fire was attributed to the static electricity on the heat resistant material under the mixture of liquid oxygen and gas oxygen for the engine pre-cooling.[14]

After the modification to the mobile launch platform to suppress static electricity, a new launch was scheduled at 23 September 2019, 16:30 UTC,[14] but the collision avoidance check revealed that the 2nd stage of the launch vehicle might approach near the Soyuz MS-15 which was scheduled to be launched on 25 September 2019. A revised launch schedule was set for 16:05 UTC, 24 September 2019.[15] On 24 September 2019, 16:05:05 UTC, the Kounotori 8 aboard H-IIB was launched successfully.[8]

Operation while berthed to the ISS

Kounotori 8 was captured by the Space Station Remote Manipulator System (SSRMS) at 23:13 UTC, on 27 September 2019,[16] and berthed at Harmony's nadir Common Berthing Mechanism (CBM) by 17:55 UTC, on 28 September 2019.[17]

The External Palette (EP8), which carries the lithium-ion battery Orbital Replacement Units (ORU), was extracted from the Kounotori 8's Unpressurized Logistics Carrier (ULC) by the SSRMS (Canadarm2) on 29 September 2019.[18]

The External Palette of Kounotori 7 (EP7) was placed in the Kounotori 8's ULC.[19] EP7 was left on the ISS after the departure of Kounotori 7 due to the schedule change of extravehicular activity after the launch failure of Soyuz MS-10.

Departure and reentry to the Earth atmosphere

On 1 November 2019, Kounotori 8 was detached from Harmony's CBM by the SSRMS (Canadarm2), and it was released into orbit at 17:20 UTC.[20]

It was disposed by the destructive reentry to the Earth atmosphere at around 02:09 UTC, on 3 November 2019.[21]


  1. ^ - 14 May 2020 - 20 May 2020 This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  2. ^ Live coverage: Japanese cargo freighter set for launch to ISS
  3. ^ ISS: Expedition 60
  4. ^ Japan's Kounotori Spaceship Attached to Station This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  5. ^ "Kounotori 8 was unberthed of Harmony". JAXA. 1 November 2019. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  6. ^ @planet4589 (1 November 2019). "Aboard ISS, Japanese cargo ship HTV-8 was unberthed around 1230 UTC and released into orbit at 17:21 UTC. HTV-8 will carry out destructive deorbit over the South Pacific tomorrow night" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  7. ^ Expedition 61
  8. ^ a b "Launch Result of the H-II Transfer Vehicle Kounotori 8 aboard the H-IIB Vehicle No. 8". Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. 25 September 2019. Retrieved 25 September 2019.
  9. ^ a b c d "宇宙ステーション補給機「こうのとり」8号機(HTV8)【ミッションプレスキット】" (PDF) (in Japanese). JAXA. 30 August 2019. Retrieved 3 September 2019.
  10. ^ "JAXA to launch eighth HTV space station cargo mission in September". Spaceflight Now.
  11. ^ "Launch Schedule of the H-II Transfer Vehicle Kounotori 8 aboard the H-IIB Vehicle No. 8". Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. 29 July 2019. Retrieved 12 September 2019.
  12. ^ "Launch Time of the H-II Transfer Vehicle Kounotori 8 aboard the H-IIB Vehicle No. 8". Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. 9 September 2019. Retrieved 12 September 2019.
  13. ^ "Launch Canceled, H-II Transfer Vehicle Kounotori 8 aboard the H-IIB Vehicle No. 8". Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. 11 September 2019. Retrieved 12 September 2019.
  14. ^ a b "Updated Launch Schedule of the H-II Transfer Vehicle Kounotori 8 aboard the H-IIB Vehicle No. 8". Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. 20 September 2019. Retrieved 25 September 2019.
  15. ^ "Updated Launch Schedule of the H-II Transfer Vehicle Kounotori 8 aboard the H-IIB Vehicle No. 8". Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. 21 September 2019. Retrieved 25 September 2019.
  16. ^ 「こうのとり」8号機がSSRMSに把持されました (in Japanese). JAXA. 28 September 2019. Retrieved 3 October 2019.
  17. ^ 「こうのとり」8号機、ISSとの結合完了! (in Japanese). JAXA. 29 September 2019. Retrieved 3 October 2019.
  18. ^ 曝露パレットの収納完了 (in Japanese). JAXA. 1 October 2019. Retrieved 3 October 2019.
  19. ^ Keeter, Bill (1 October 2019). "ISS Daily Summary Report – 10/01/2019". ISS On-Orbit Status Report. NASA. Retrieved 3 October 2019. This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  20. ^ "Kounotori 8 Leaves the ISS". JAXA. 2 November 2019. Retrieved 6 November 2019.
  21. ^ "Successful re-entry of H-II Transfer Vehicle "Kounotori 8" (HTV-8)". JAXA. 3 November 2019. Retrieved 6 November 2019.

External links

This page was last edited on 30 November 2020, at 22:56
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