Introduction of Research

  1. HOME>
  2. Introduction of Research>
  3. Ensuring the safety of space missions now and in the future

Leading Research for Future
Ensuring the safety of space missions now and in the future

The ever-increasing number of space junk which is referred as "space debris" or just "debris," could be a serious threat on humankind's use of outer space in the future.

JAXA has been examining key technologies including "active debris removal" and "design for demise" as a part of "Clean Space Program" in order to enhance Japanese contribution to sustaining useful outer space environment, in cooperation with the Japanese government and relevant organizations in the world.



The Value of Our Research

  1. Protecting space assets which are necessary infrastructures for Japan's national security and everyday life of the people, while contributing to promoting sustainable use of outer space environment.
  2. Enhancing Japan's initiative against the space debris issue that the world has been tackling, while contributing to the Japanese space industry to gain advantages for future regulatory circumstances.


Research Goals

Formulating International Standards and Guidelines

Making efficient proposals, in cooperation with other spacefaring agencies, on international standards or guidelines for space debris mitigation, actively adopting the latest technologies and the findings in related researches.

 
Researching technologies for debris Mitigation

Acquiring advanced technologies associated with reduction of orbital lifetime, spacecraft controlled reentry and design for demise such as application of the composite materials on upper stages and propellant tanks.

 
Researching technologies for the low-cost Active Debris Removal

Acquiring technologies for the low-cost active debris removal around 2020's using Japan's accumulated technologies such as autonomous rendezvous.

 
Researching technologies for debris Situational Awareness and Defense

Acquiring advanced technologies to improve orbit-determination accuracy on collision avoidance maneuvers, to have more effective protection measures, to have more accurate orbital debris modeling, etc.



Capturing large space debris by debris removal spacecraft
Capturing large space debris by debris removal spacecraft
(conceptual drawings)
Removal by electrodynamic tether
Removal by electrodynamic tether
(conceptual drawings)


Space debris observatory
Space debris observatory
Collision risk assessment software
Collision risk assessment software
High-speed collision test of protection materials
High-speed collision test of protection materials