Lonely Planet Writer

Japan launches next-generation weather satellite

Japan has begun operating a state-of-the-art weather satellite – Himawari-8 – intended to greatly improve the accuracy of typhoon tracking and weather forecasts.

Snow over Hirosaki Castle.
Snow over Hirosaki Castle. Image by Ari Helminen / CC BY 2.0

The satellite makes it possible to monitor eyes of typhoons, volcanic ash, accumulations of snow and other conditions in detail. It is also the world’s first geostationary meteorological satellite able to able to record images in colour, with a resolution double that of the satellite’s predecessor. The Japan Meteorological Agency plans to keep Himawari-8 in operation until around 2022. Read more: ajw.asahi.com