Leading Research for Future
Research on space-qualified parts
Space-qualified parts, which have capability of withstanding the space environment, are indispensable for the reliable operation of a satellite over a long period in space. We have been researching and developing space-qualified parts essential to satellite development with two objectives: maintaining independent space programs and placing Japan's future satellites in a more competitive position.
We take a long perspective approach to R&D on space-qualified parts. Our scientists work with research institutes and private sectors to identify promising domestic technologies and focus our resources on the development of parts that we expect to provide innovative, effective solutions for future satellite systems. We intend to better translate our research into practical outcomes at the earliest stage possible.
The Value of Our Research
A large satellite typically incorporates more than about 100,000 different space-qualified parts. Space-qualified electronics, for example, are assembled using a wide variety of space-qualified parts. A satellite cannot be completed if any part is unavailable.
The functionality of parts substantially limits what satellite systems can accomplish. The improved performance and functionality of the systems hinge on improved space-qualified parts.
To reach the two objectives of maintaining Japan's own space missions and enhancing the competitiveness of Japanese satellites, we will develop parts strategically selected in JAXA's Parts Program.
Some of our R&D activities at JAXA have focused on parts critical to the functionality and performance of a satellite. Specifically, we seek to optimize the following types of strategic, space-qualified parts.
Space-qualified user programming device
To meet diversifying, high-level space mission requirements flexibly, we are leveraging JAXA's expertise in microprocessor circuit design to mature a domestically developed SOI*1-ASIC*2technology for use in space missions over the next five years.
*1 SOI: Semiconductor device in which a silicon semiconductor layer is formed on an insulator layer
*2 ASIC: A kind of integrated circuit that is designed and built for a specific application or purpose
Space-qualified IC packaging and radiation-hardened chips
We are encouraging private sectors to manufacture commercial semiconductors fit for use in space.
Space-qualified parts with power consumption reduced by more than 80%
We are applying compound semiconductors to develop a higher-efficiency, lower-loss power switching device for a power converter and controller power device over the next few years.
Looking a decade ahead, we are also researching semiconductor technologies to develop normally-off computing that will enable an ultra-low-power space-qualified device.