EQUULEUS (Equilibrium Lunar-Earth point 6U Spacecraft) is a small lunar mission designed jointly by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and the University of Tokyo.
It will measure the distribution of plasma that surrounds the Earth to help scientists understand the radiation environment in the region of space around Earth. It will also demonstrate low-energy trajectory control techniques, such as multiple lunar flybys, within the Earth-Moon Lagrangian points (EML).
EQUULEUS is equipped with the AQUARIUS propulsion system consisting of eight water thrusters also used for attitude control and momentum management. The spacecraft will carry 1.5 kg of water, and the complete propulsion system occupies about 2.5 units out of the 6 units total spacecraft volume.
The scientific payload consists of three instruments:
EQUULEUS is one of 10 cubesats carried with the Artemis 1 (Orion CM-002) mission into a heliocentric orbit in cis-lunar space on the maiden flight of the SLS (Block 1) iCPS launch vehicle in November 2022.
|Type / Application:||Lunar flyby|
|Operator:||JAXA, University of Tokyo|
|Contractors:||JAXA, University of Tokyo|
|Equipment:||PHOENIX, DELPHINUS, CLOTH|
|Propulsion:||AQUARIUS with 8 water thrusters|
|Power:||2 deployable solar arrays, batteries|
|Orbit:||Lunar fly-by, Earth-Moon Lagrangian points|
|EQUULEUS||2022-156E||16.11.2022||CCK LC-39B||SLS (Block 1) iCPS||with Artemis 1 (Orion CM-002), BioSentinel, CuSP, LunaH-Map, Lunar-IceCube, NEA-Scout, LunIR, OMOTENASHI, ArgoMoon, Miles|