Research on Space Science

The biggest challenges of space science are to reveal the mysteries of the structure and evolution of the universe, the processes of planet formation, and the origin of life.
Due to the progress of rocket and satellite technologies, space observations unhindered by the Earth’s atmosphere have become possible and X-ray and infrared astronomies have progressed rapidly. We have learnt about objects that used to be invisible. In addition, the history of the solar system is gradually being revealed through explorations of the Moon and planets. Space-based astronomical observations and planetary explorations have entered a mature phase.
We will continue further observations and research to investigate where mankind came from and where we are going, as well as investigate the past and future of the Earth

Major Research and Development

GREAT, Ground Station for Deep Space Exploration and Telecommunication

JAXA has launched for deep space exploration the project for development and operation of new antenna and ground station with expanded capacity.

Scientific Ballooning

A huge balloon is a flying object for scientific observations and space engineering tests in the same manner as satellites and sounding rockets.

Research on Lunar, Planetary Science

Studying planets and the moon leads us to understand the birth of the Earth and the origin of the solar system and life. Observing planets and the moon through various methods and analyzing acquired data from every angle are imperative for these studies.

Research on Space Plasma, X-Rays, and Infrared-Rays

Capturing phenomena in the solar system and planets beyond it and their surrounding area provides us with clues to solve the mysteries of space. Therefore, it is essential to acquire as much information as possible by seizing various radio waves including X-rays, infrared lights and plasmas in addition to visible lights.

Research on Space Technologies

JAXA promotes space engineering research to stably perform space exploration activities “further”, “with more flexibility” and “in wider directions.”

Astronomical Observation Satellites

Latter Phase In Operation

Solar Physics Satellite "HINODE" (SOLAR-B)

The HINODE, an observatory satellite to study the impact of the Sun on the Earth High expectations for new solar observations through international efforts by the United Kingdom, the United States and Japan

INnovative-technology Demonstration Experiment "REIMEI" (INDEX)

Cutting-edge small satellite developed in-house

Exploration of energization and Radiation in Geospace "ARASE" (ERG)

To elucidate high-energy electrons that repeat their generation and disappearance.

Under Development

X-Ray Imaging and Spectroscopy Mission (XRISM)

XRISM is a new X-ray astronomical satellite which observes plasma in stars and galaxies. With a new generation of X-ray imaging spectroscopy technologies, XRISM will resolve mysteries regarding the formation of the universe.

Operation Completed

Aurora Observation Satellite "AKEBONO" (EXOS-D)

An aurora observation satellite that observed the physical phenomena taking place in geospace while collecting detailed data in collaboration with the ground stations

X-ray Astronomy Satellite "Hitomi" (ASTRO-H)

New space image to be elucidated by X-ray astronomy

X-ray Astronomy Satellite "Suzaku" (ASTRO-EII)

Suzaku to probe into black holes and galaxy clusters to study their structure and evolution.

Infrared Imaging Satellite "AKARI" (ASTRO-F)

AKARI: Seeking an understanding of the formation and evolution of galaxies

Operation Finished

Magnetospheric Observation Satellite (GEOTAIL)

Explores the magnetotail to understand the flow of energy from the sun.

Lunar and Planetary Exploration Spacecraft

Nominal Phase In Operation

Mercury Exploration Mission "BepiColombo"

BepiColombo will elucidate the mysteries of Mercury

Latter Phase In Operation

Asteroid Explorer "Hayabusa2"

Hayabusa2 to clarify the origin and evolution of the solar system as well as life matter

Small Solar Power Sail Demonstrator "IKAROS"

Space yacht accelerated by radiation of the Sun

Venus Climate Orbiter "AKATSUKI" (PLANET-C)

AKASTUKI will elucidate the mysteries of Venus, Earth’s twin sister.
Japan will initiate the beginning of a new era of Venusian exploration.

Under Development

Smart Lander for Investigating Moon (SLIM)

Small probe challenges an accurate lunar landing

Martian Moons Exploration (MMX)

Mission that discloses the origin and evolution of the red planet

Deep Space Exploration Technology Demonstrator (DESTINY⁺)

DESTINY⁺ is a deep space mission that unites engineering and science objectives.

Hera-Mission to a binary asteroid system for planetary defense and science

These are the satellites used for communication and positioning (to know one's position). We are also developing satellites to advance new technologies.

Operation Completed

Asteroid Explorer "HAYABUSA" (MUSES-C)

HAYABUSA’s mission: to bring back samples from an asteroid and investigate the mysteries of the birth of the solar system.

SELenological and ENgineering Explorer "KAGUYA" (SELENE)

SELENE: The largest lunar mission since the Apollo program

Operation Completed