Ukraine: Ukraine and Japan have agreed to launch a joint satellite project to monitor regions around the crippled Chernobyl and Fukushima nuclear plants.
The agreement came during a meeting between Ukrainian Foreign Minister Leonid Kozhara and his visiting Japanese counterpart Fumio Kishida in Kiev. It will be a joint project of Tokyo University and the Ukrainian state space agency. Ukrainian carrier rockets will be used to launch Japanese-developed satellites. Eight miniature satellites will be put into orbit by 2014. These satellites will gather information on the effects of radioactive elements in the surrounding areas of the nuclear plants. They will also receive signals from sensors installed on the ground. These signals will be used to collect information from areas where radiation levels exceed the norm.