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Operation Schedule of Kizuna (WINDS) and Experimental Plans in the Asia-Pacific Region

The Wideband InterNetworking engineering test and Demonstration Satellite (WINDS), also known as Kizuna, was launched on February 23, 2008, and JAXA has successfully completed the deployment of multi-beam antennas onboard Kizuna at the end of a series of critical phase operations conducted on March 1, 2008.

JAXA confirmed the satellite to have entered into a geostationary orbit (at about 143 degrees east longitude) on 14th March. JAXA will also spend about four months carrying out initial checks on the functions of the onboard equipment. Kizuna is planned to begin steady operations in July 2008.

Mr. Toshio Higuchi, Senior engineer in the Satellite Applications and Promotion Center at JAXA said,

"The applications of Kizuna will be widespread as it has been equipped with high-speed data lines that can transfer data such as a large volume of files at high speed, and it can also support broadband Internet access.

Kizuna is open for use by many kinds of universities and research institutes. Last year, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications in Japan sought applications for using Kizuna to conduct experiments. Of the applications submitted by universities and research institutes in the Asia-Pacific region, 53 experiments were selected and are to be carried out in the near future.

The themes of those experiments can be broadly summed up as remote education, remote medication and disaster management.

Here, we will introduce two kinds of experiments for which JAXA plans to collaborate with organizations in the Asia-Pacific region.

1. e-learning experiment between universities in Asia
Since 2002, JAXA has been using some commercial satellites to implement this kind of experiment with the Asia Institute of Technology (AIT) in Thailand, the Malaysia Multimedia University (MMU) in Malaysia, the University of Tsukuba in Japan and KDDI Corporation in Japan.
JAXA plans to verify the results obtained with Kizuna and to further expand the application of Kizuna in this field.

2. Application experiment to Sentinel Asia (STEP2), a shared system for providing disaster information in Asia-Pacific region

In the event of a disaster in the Asia-Pacific region, JAXA plans to construct a data distribution system using Kizuna so that images of stricken areas taken by various Earth observation satellites can be promptly distributed to disaster prevention agencies in the Asia-Pacific region."

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