Tokyo — A Japanese start-up developing "shooting stars on demand" says it will be ready to deliver the world’s first artificial meteor shower in a spectacular show over Hiroshima in early 2020. ALE, based in Tokyo, is in the final stages of developing two micro-satellites that will release tiny balls that glow brightly as they enter the atmosphere, simulating a meteor shower. The first satellite will hitch a ride into space on a rocket being launched by Japan’s space agency by March 2019. The second will be launched in mid-2019 on a private-sector rocket. "We are targeting the whole world, as our stockpile of shooting stars will be in space and can be delivered across the world," ALE CEO Lena Okajima told reporters on Wednesday. Each satellite will be able to carry 400 tiny balls, whose chemical formula is a closely-guarded secret. Ejected from the satellite, the balls will glow as they plunge through the atmosphere. The 400 balls will be enough for 20 to 30 events, according to the...

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