Research on Aeronautical Technology Safety Technology for Aviation and Disaster-Relief Program

Safety Technology for Aviation and Disaster-Relief Program (STAR)

Loss of control in flight (LOC-I) triggered by meteorological factors such as turbulence has been reported as the leading cause of serious aircraft accidents and incidents during the 10 years up to 2012. Based on JAXA's world-leading laser radar (LIDAR) technology, one project of the STAR program aims to realize weather safety avionics for next-generation passenger aircraft by developing a gust response/load alleviation system to reduce suppress wing vibrations and motions induced by turbulence. This project will help to prevent a major cause of in-flight accidents and incidents as well as boosting the competitiveness of the Japan's equipment manufacturers.

Although aircraft played a major role in disaster relief in the aftermath of the Tohoku earthquake, it has become apparent that improvements are required in information sharing, mission coordination and enabling all-weather operations. To strengthen the capability to respond to any future large-scale disaster, JAXA is pursuing the development of a disaster relief aircraft operations control system to make safer and more effective use of disaster relief aircraft assets. The system includes satellite observation and communication for greater efficiency and information management capability. JAXA is also developing technologies to expand the use of unmanned aircraft in disaster relief operations.
JAXA is contributing to realizing a safe and secure society by steadily advancing projects for the next-generation air traffic management system (DREAMS), which will provide key technologies to achieve the safety and operational efficiency goals of CARATS, Japan's long-term vision for its air traffic management system.

Research and development project for aviation safety technology

Distributed and Revolutionarily Efficient Air-traffic Management System (DREAMS)

To prepare for the ever-expanding aviation transportation volume that is expected to amount to twice that of the current status in 2030, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has presented a future vision, "Global Air Traffic Management (ATM) Operational Concept", which evolves global air traffic management concept itself by promoting globally harmonized action.
The DREAMS project pursued the development of five key technologies between JFY2012 and 2015: 1) weather information technology; 2) noise abatement technology; 3) high-accuracy satellite navigation technology; 4) trajectory control technology; and 5) aircraft operation technology for disaster relief.
JAXA continues to pursue follow-through activities such as making proposals concerning the technologies to international standardization organizations and promoting technology transfers to the private sector and other destinations.

R&D of onboard safety avionics technology to prevent turbulence-induced aircraft accidents (SafeAvio)

With a view to creating the world's first system of its kind to improve the safety of passengers and crew, JAXA is conducting research and development of onboard safety avionics technology to prevent turbulence-induced aircraft accidents (SafeAvio) that uses Doppler light detection and ranging (LIDAR) to detect turbulence in advance and automatically control and suppress the lurching of the aircraft.

Turbulence detection

Aircraft operation technology for disaster relief (D-NET2)

Structure of disaster-relief aircraft management system network (D-NET2)

Rescue operations within 72 hours after a natural disaster are by far the most important in the event of a disaster. Because the functions of ground transportation networks have diminished capacities during this period, effective use of aeronautical and space equipment is of the utmost importance for optimal operation of disaster relief aircraft.
JAXA supports enhanced provision for an eventual large-scale disaster by developing the necessary technologies to implement "Integrated aircraft operation system for disaster relief (D-NET2)", which assists collection and sharing of disaster information through the integrated operation of aircraft such as helicopters, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and satellites, for efficient and safe rescue operations by disaster relief aircraft.