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Exos D (Akebono)

Exos D [ISAS]

The purpose of the Exos D or Akebono mission was to investigate the particle acceleration regions above the auroral region in order to develop a better understanding of the acceleration mechanism and of its relation to substorm phenomena.

The spacecraft was spin-stabilized with a rotation rate of 7.5 rpm. The attitude was magnetically controlled with spacecraft axis pointing to the sun. All onboard operations such as command and data acquisition were controlled by an onboard computer permitting automatic operations for a full week.

The scientific instrumentation was:

  • Electric Field Detectors (EFD)
  • Magnetic Field Detector (MGF)
  • Very Low Frequency Wave Detectors (VLF)
  • Stimulated Plasma Wave and High Frequency Plasma Wave Detectors (PWS)
  • Low Energy Particle Detectors (LEP)
  • Suprathermal Ion Mass Spectrometer (SMS)
  • Velocity Distribution of Thermal Electrons (TED)
  • Visible and UV Auroral Television (ATV)

JAXA stopped sending and receiving signals to and from EXOS-D on April 23, 2015 to terminate its operation after more than 26 years in orbit.

Nation: Japan
Type / Application: Research, upper atmosphere, plasma
Operator: ISAS
Power: 4 deployable fixed solar arrays, batteries
Lifetime: 17 years (reached)
Mass: 294 kg
Orbit: 300 km × 8000 km, 75
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
Exos D (Akebono) 1989-016A 21.02.1989 Ka LP-M M-3S-2 [KM-D]