The Noshiro Testing Center (NTC) was established in 1962 as one of the affiliated facilities of the Institute of Industrial Science, University of Tokyo (the Institute of Space and Astronautical Science, ISAS of JAXA). Since then, the NTC has conducted various static-firing tests to develop a new launcher for scientific satellites and space probes, Mu Series Rockets, and motors for sounding rockets. The former ISAS developed propellant rockets, using LOX and LH2, in 1975, and it began to develop the high-performance Air Turbo Ramjet (ATR) engine in 1988.
Ground-tests of engine performance have also been done at the Noshiro Center. The ATR engine is designed for the Reusable Launch Vehicle, an air-breathing engine which uses less fuel than a rocket and can therefore transport a larger payload.
At the NTC there are various test facilities for research and development in high-performance engines as well as for solid rockets.