Press Release


Greenhouse gases Observing SATellite (GOSAT)
Research Announcement

April 7, 2008 (JST)

Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA)
National Institute for Environment Studies (NIES)
Ministry of the Environment (MOE)

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), the National Institute for Environment Studies (NIES) and the Ministry of the Environment (MOE) (hereinafter referred to as the "three parties" collectively) will jointly launch the Greenhouse gases Observing SATellite (GOSAT) in Japanese fiscal year 2008 and will start a global observation of greenhouse gases, with an aim to ascertain the global distribution of concentrations of carbon dioxide and other major greenhouse gases, the source/sink status of these gases on the sub-continental basis, and also their temporal variations. The data acquired by GOSAT will be released to the public, after certain data quality evaluation steps, to be utilized by scientists all around the world.

Prior to such data release to general public, the three parties solicit research proposals for the purpose of facilitating the data quality evaluation, including calibration and validation, and the utilization of the GOSAT data. The individual investigators and research organizations that engage in the research activities on the themes selected for this research announcement (RA) will be provided with the GOSAT observation data at an early operational observation phase starts and also will be granted the right to request their own data acquisitions necessary for their researches.

The submission of proposals for this RA is due on June 30, 2008.

[ Research Announcement ]
Proposals to be submitted in response to this RA should be made on any of the following five areas and written in either Japanese or English.
1) Calibration
2) Data processing algorithm
3) Carbon balance estimation, atmospheric transport models
4) Validation
5) Data application
The three parties expect that this research announcement will direct the attention of wide-ranging researchers both in and outside Japan to GOSAT, and all the outcomes of the researches to be conducted under the RA scheme will bring about an improved quality of the GOSAT data, contributing to the elucidation of the behaviors of greenhouse gases and to the promotion of researches on techniques and methodologies to predict the global warming trend as well as its resulting climate changes and consequences. In addition, the three parties are planning to hold a workshop for the principal investigators selected for the RA in autumn this year.

[ RA-related schedule ]
Release of RA
Deadline for submission of proposals
Notification of the selection result
PI meeting/workshop
Launch of GOSAT
April 7, 2008
June 30, 2008
July 31, 2008
Scheduled for autumn of 2008
Scheduled for JFY2008

For further detail, please visit the following URL.

Center for Global Environmental Research
National Institute for Environmental Studies
16-2 Onogawa, Tsukuba-shi, Ibaraki
305-8506 Japan

TEL : 81-29-850-2966 (Japanese)
TEL : 81-29-850-2035 (English)
FAX : 81-29-850-2219

[ For Your Information ] About the GOSAT Project
The Greenhouse gases Observing SATellite (GOSAT) observes the global distribution of concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane, and other greenhouse gases with its on-board greenhouse gas observing sensor. The GOSAT Project was initiated jointly by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), the National Institute for Environment Studies (NIES) and the Ministry of the Environment (MOE) in fiscal year 2003, and has been carried forward as a joint project among the three parties since then. The satellite is scheduled to be launched in fiscal year 2008 and will be observing the earth for at least five years.
The following benefits are expected of the observation by GOSAT.

  • Ascertainment of the global distribution of carbon dioxide and methane concentrations
  • Improvement of the accuracy of global carbon flux estimations
  • Better understanding of the global carbon cycle mechanism
  • Contribution to the development of methodologies to estimate future fluxes per region
  • Contribution to a future establishment of a constant carbon dioxide monitoring framework