Japan planning moon mission: space agency

April 20, 2015
The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency plans to launch the moon mission as early as the fiscal year starting in April 2018, acco
The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency plans to launch the moon mission as early as the fiscal year starting in April 2018, according to the Yomiuri Shimbun newspaper

Japan plans to launch an unmanned mission to the moon as a stepping stone to a future visit to Mars, officials and local media said Monday.

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) unveiled the plan for a to a council of the cabinet office and the ministry of education, culture, sports science and technology, a JAXA official said.

If successful, Japan will be the fourth country to send an unmanned probe to the moon after Russia, the United States and China.

"This is an initial step and a lot of procedures are still ahead before the plan is formally approved," the official said.

According to the evening edition of the Yomiuri Shimbun, JAXA plans to launch the moon mission as early as the fiscal year starting in April 2018, with a development cost estimated at up to 15 billion yen ($126 million).

The probe, named SLIM (Smart Lander for Investigating Moon), will be carried by the nation's solid-fuel "Epsilon" rocket, the newspaper said, adding that the ministry plans to request a budget for the programme next year.

If successful, Japan will be the fourth country to send an to the moon after Russia, the United States and China, the daily said.

This is part of Japan's effort to prepare for a mission to Mars in the future, the Yomiuri reported.

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Returners
2 / 5 (2) Apr 20, 2015
If successful, Japan will be the fourth country to send an unmanned probe to the moon after Russia, the United States and China.


Put an asterix there and note that India has already gone to Mars with a camera and transmitter, so they could have gone to the Moon if they thought it was worth it for their first space mission. Mars was a more interesting target for them.

I can see why Japan is interested in the Moon though, for material and energy resource harvesting given their large population and small land mass of their home island chain.
TechnoCreed
4.5 / 5 (4) Apr 20, 2015
If successful, Japan will be the fourth country to send an unmanned probe to the moon after Russia, the United States and China.


Put an asterix there and note that India has already gone to Mars with a camera and transmitter, so they could have gone to the Moon if they thought it was worth it for their first space mission. Mars was a more interesting target for them.

Mangalyaan (the Indian Mars mission) is an orbiter not a lander. Japan is planning to land on the moon.

If you only knew how to read...
yyz
3.7 / 5 (3) Apr 20, 2015
"...India has already gone to Mars with a camera and transmitter, so they could have gone to the Moon if they thought it was worth it for their first space mission."

India has already sent a probe to the Moon: https://en.wikipe...rayaan-1

In a few years India plans to send a orbiter/rover combo to the Moon: https://en.wikipe...rayaan-2
Returners
not rated yet Apr 20, 2015
If you only knew how to read...


Actually they used the term "Probe" but that is too broad of a term, because Orbiters and Landers are "probes", but so is Pioneer and Voyager.

China did land a rover on the Moon, but China hasn't been to Mars, so India is ahead of them in that respect.

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