Hakuto, Japan’s first civilian team that aims to send an unmanned lunar expedition, announced that it is providing technical assistance to the “Project to Pierce the Moon With the Spear of Longinus” on Friday. The “Project to Pierce the Moon With the Spear of Longinus Committee” unveiled its plans as part of the 20th anniversary of the Neon Genesis Evangelion anime. Hakuto is the only team from Japan competing for the Google Lunar XPRIZE.
The evening of Nov. 3 had a big surprise for people in Japan: A big, bright meteor streaked across the sky, giving locals an absolutely stunning light show.
You can see the green and orange light of the meteor as it falls toward Earth. These colors are likely due to the presence of magnesium and sodium in the meteor itself that produce green and orange light, respectively, when subjected to extreme heat.
The celestial event took place over western Japan and was reported within a couple of hours of a series of US meteor sightings across the East coast.
In Japan, cameras at the Fukuoka airport caught this amazing footage:
Aug 19, 2014
Sanrio’s beloved character has embarked on a special mission this year–all the way to space!
The “Let’s Send a Message from Space! Campaign” (「宇宙からメッセージを送ろう！」キャンペーン) is part of the festivities to celebrate Hello Kitty’s 40th anniversary in 2014. Our favorite feline friend was even launched into space back in June, and her makers are now taking applications from anyone in the world to display messages on the digital display board inside her satellite. Wouldn’t it be cool to see your very own message delivered from space?
Rather than wading into the debate as to whether a tree covered in beautiful cherry blossoms or a piece of cutting edge technology is the more representative symbol of Japan, you could split the difference by awarding the title to one of the sakura cherry trees grown from seeds that were taken into space. Not only do they combine the country’s admiration of both nature and innovation, their seeds’ journey to the stars seems to have imparted some of them with the amazing ability to bloom in just half the time of regular cherry trees.
Apr 3, 2014
For a country that allegedly has little contact with the outside world, North Korea somehow manages to end up in the news an awful lot. While it’s hard to tell how much of what we hear and read is true, sometimes a nugget of truth–beautiful, hilarious truth–slips through the cracks of propaganda on both sides of the ideological line and leaves us giggling.
As you’ve probably heard, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) has recently unveiled the logo for their year-old space agency, NADA. Though they may have expected fanfare or at least a bit of grudging respect, the main response they got was an Internet full of giggles.
Though Japan is well known for its abundance of large-eyed anime girls and unique otaku culture, the country is also world-renowned for its technology sector. One of Japan’s most active technology organizations is, of course, JAXA, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, which has sent numerous satellites and probes into the heavens. However, aside from a promotional video released last year, we have to admit that the thought of combining space and anything from otaku culture, like moe maids, never even crossed our minds.
Fortunately, there are people out there a bit more creativity than us! We were recently contacted by a reader who wanted to share his unique figure collection with RocketNews24. While there are many folks around the world who collect maid figures, we’ve never see anyone who could describe their collection with these two little words: “Space maids!
Michelle Lynn Dinh
Feb 20, 2014
That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for…electrolytes?
The makers of Pocari Sweat, the unfortunately named Japanese sports drink with a salty flavor reminiscent of actual sweat, have just announced plans to launch the bottle beverage into space, hopefully making it the first drink to ever set foot bottle on the moon.
Dec 4, 2013
When a new asteroid is discovered and its orbit is established, the right to name that floating chunk of matter is given to the astronomer who found it. And, somewhat unsurprisingly, a lot of the people who dedicate their lives to astroscience exhibit other nerdy hobbies as well! At least, we have to assume so given the number of space rocks with apparent ties to anime, manga, and other mainstream media. Who would have thought that the heavens are so full of otaku references!?
Nov 20, 2013
Regular RocketNews24 readers will know how much we love capsule hotels – and tiny spaces in general, for that matter – to the point that we were genuinely saddened when one of the country’s premier locations announced last month that it was to close its doors. So when we caught a glimpse of the new Pengheng Space Capsules Hotel in Shenzhen, China, which combines minimalist hotel accommodation with a futuristic vibe similar to that of the Evangelion hotel rooms we’ve drooled over for so long, we could barely contain our excitement.
Join us after the jump for a photo tour of this awesome new capsule hotel!
A whole new world: Japan captures fantastic view of the earth’s stratosphere using an iPhone 【Photos】
Sep 26, 2013
On August 29, for only the second time in the country’s history, Japan’s aerospace researchers managed to successfully retrieve a video capture module from the Pacific Ocean, bringing home some positively beautiful pictures from the Earth’s stratosphere. Amazingly, they accomplished this feat relying mostly on balloons and an iPhone!
More details about this awesome accomplishment and a collection of photographs taken by the space balloon after the jump.
Jun 25, 2013
As we mentioned last week, June 23rd’s full moon coincided with the celestial body passing through the closest point to Earth in its orbit, an event known as the supermoon. Unfortunately, last Sunday also coincided with scattered showers in the Tokyo area, and no matter how much fist-shaking we did, it proved futile in dispelling the cloudy skies.
Thankfully, lunar fans in other regions had better luck and were kind enough to share their photos and videos of the supermoon with the rest of us. Check out this stunning collection.
Calling All Evil Billionaires: The Dream of Space Flight Can be Yours for a Fraction of Your Fortune
May 15, 2013
It used to be that to go to space you needed to join NASA and become an astronaut. But you’re an evil billionaire, and you’re far too busy being evil for all that training in the gravitron.
Lucky for you and whatever evil space plans you’re hatching, SXC (Space Expedition Corporation) offers the dream of space travel to any commoner with US$100,000 lying around, a pittance that will barely put a dent in your underground chamber of dubiously acquired gold bricks.
There are also a number of other aerospace companies offering a variety of space travel flavors, from a few minutes in orbit to a full 9 days at the International Space Station (ISS), complete with space walk. Let’s take a look at the different space travel packages offered, including one that costs US$150 million.
Some people like a little white noise or some relaxing music to help them sleep, but for us, sleep just won’t come unless there are epic sci-fi space battles playing out above our heads. Maybe we have a bizarrely specific type of sleep disorder.
Space: the final frontier. This is the voyage of a homemade rocket carrying the fearless Hello Kitty as its sole passenger. Its mission: to explore the effects of altitude on air pressure and temperature, and to boldly go where no Kitty has gone before… Read More
- The 11 Cat Islands of Japan 【Photos】1
- ISIS-inspired gang kills middle school boy: “We’ll cut off your head while you’re still alive!”2
- Japanese netizens rediscover “Full Armor Game Boy,” question how the ’90s defined portability3
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- American man’s dramatic nine-second snow struggle captivates Japanese netizens 【GIFs】5
- After Obama’s otaku outing, images surface of Love Liver Joe Biden getting cozy with anime idols6
- Anime pillow responds to your rubbing with moans and groans, gets angry if you get too grabby7
- Images of man pickpocketing wearing a sign reading “I’m a pickpocket” go viral in China8
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- D Free: a new wearable device that gives you a 10-minute warning to find a toilet 【Video】10
- Anime pillow responds to your rubbing with moans and groans, gets angry if you get too grabby1
- Japanese netizens stare at red dot for 30 seconds, freak out when they see what happens2
- Time to quit your job – Company in Japan now hiring for the position of Ninja Master3
- Fan film ‘Dragon Ball Z: Light of Hope’ – two years in the making, but well worth the wait【Video】4
- Creepy news: Estimate a complete stranger’s breast size with this new plastic folder!5
- Pretty kitty says “Good morning” in Japanese, not just a doting owner’s imagination!6
- Revenge bento show us it’s a dish best served cold (and boxed) with insults and hidden chilies7
- “Hell on Earth” as Tokyo subway station floods with sewage8
- ISIS-inspired gang kills middle school boy: “We’ll cut off your head while you’re still alive!”9
- Malaysian girl who got famous for holding things has a beautiful sister【Photos】10
- Hachiko, Japan’s most loyal dog, finally reunited with owner in heartwarming new statue in Tokyo1
- Anime pillow responds to your rubbing with moans and groans, gets angry if you get too grabby2
- Literal breastplate will give you a cosplay-ready, anime-class bust in seconds 【Photos】3
- English hot spring manners poster is so thorough, even Japanese people are learning from it4
- Meet Asuna, the hyperreal android that will leave your jaw hanging 【Video】5
- Keanu Reeves tries to be a tourist in Akihabara, gets mobbed by fans instead6
- Japanese netizens stare at red dot for 30 seconds, freak out when they see what happens7
- Man beats up woman for not looking like “goddess” he spent thousands of dollars to meet8
- This amazingly detailed theme park map is what Tokyo Ghibli Land would look like9
- The number one thing that foreign men find “not so kawaii” about Japanese women10
- Hachiko, Japan’s most loyal dog, finally reunited with owner in heartwarming new statue in Tokyo1
- Self-taught Singaporean artist creates unbelievably realistic art on plywood2
- Anime pillow responds to your rubbing with moans and groans, gets angry if you get too grabby3
- Literal breastplate will give you a cosplay-ready, anime-class bust in seconds 【Photos】4
- Nobel Prize-winner Shuji Nakamura to Japan’s young people: “Get out of Japan”5
- Kyoto taxi drivers reduce convenience store robberies by 50 percent by doing absolutely nothing6
- Buyers’ remorse in China: After a record-breaking day of online shopping, the angry selfies begin7
- Historic Kyoto temple first in Japan to offer gay weddings8
- Cosplay ideals vs. cosplay reality, a.k.a. cool vs. funny 【Photos】9
- Internet ready to shut up and take your money as preorders finally start for Cat Ear Headphones10
- After Obama’s otaku outing, images surface of Love Liver Joe Biden getting cozy with anime idols
- Anime pillow responds to your rubbing with moans and groans, gets angry if you get too grabby
- Images of man pickpocketing wearing a sign reading “I’m a pickpocket” go viral in China
- Japanese netizens stare at red dot for 30 seconds, freak out when they see what happens
- D Free: a new wearable device that gives you a 10-minute warning to find a toilet 【Video】
- Boys’ turn: The top 10 most common shonen manga scenarios, according to Japanese fans
- Here’s what happens if you buy all the drinks in the combini and mix them together 【Video】
- Kitties keeping the gods company: Check out these photos of cats in Japanese shrines!
- We visit a reasonably-priced sushi shop so good you’ll forget all about that “Jiro” guy
- Japanese watch maker shirks labor law, says “time’s up” on factory in Guangzhou, China
- Online seller pulls cruel trick, sells pencil lead photographed alongside Nintendo 3DS XL
- Resort in the Philippines decides to stop ripping off Gundam, rip off another robot instead
- New nail art technique produces beautiful nails, sticky abominations in equal measure