SEE IT: Rocket explodes seconds after launch, raining fire down on the launch pad

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A Japanese rocket intentionally exploded seconds after liftoff Wednesday morning.

SpaceOne, which provides space delivery services to customers, had planned to become the first private company in Japan to launch a satellite into orbit by launching the 59-foot Kairos spacecraft from the Kii Peninsula. But about five seconds after takeoff, the rocket exploded, causing a huge fire, flying debris and plumes of smoke engulfing the sky.

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Afterward, Space One President Masakazu Toyoda said, “We judged that the rocket would be unable to accomplish its mission, so we canceled the flight.” “We take what has happened in a positive light and continue to prepare to take on the next challenge.”

The fire was extinguished and no one was injured on the launch pad. Reuters reported.

SpaceOne says the highly automated launch vehicle will self-destruct if it detects an error in its flight path, control systems or other problems that could lead to a crash that endangers people. It is unclear what issue was detected.

The company said it would investigate the incident, but did not say when the investigation would be completed or when it would launch the Kairos rocket.

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A Space One rocket carrying a Japanese satellite exploded five seconds after liftoff. (From NTV, Associated Press)

“We don’t use the world’s ‘failures’ because each test brings new data and experience for new challenges,” Toyoda said at a press conference. He said space travel requires many failures before success.

According to Reuters, the Japanese rocket was carrying a government experimental satellite that could replace an existing intelligence satellite in orbit if it were to fail. Part of its mission will be to monitor potential dangers from North Korean rocket launches. Associated Press reported.


The Kairos rocket was scheduled to launch last Saturday, but it was postponed after the ship entered a restricted takeoff zone.

Space One was founded in 2018. The Tokyo-based company eventually hopes to offer space services and travel.