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Jump to: Mission Objectives, Mission Instrumentation, Mission Parameters, Additional Information

Mission Photos:

Courtesy of JAXA

Mission Objectives:

The purpose of Engineering Test Satellite-8 (ETS-8/ETS-VIII) is to support development, experimentation and confirmation of large satellite bus technology, large-scale deployable antenna technology, mobile satellite communications system technology, mobile satellite digital multimedia broadcasting system technology and basic positioning technology using high-accuracy time standard devices. Launch of ETS-8 into geostationary orbit from the H-IIA launch vehicle occurred in December 2006. JAXA plans to conduct a time synchronization experiment for future positioning satellite technology, including a time synchronization experiment and time management using atomic clock onboard a ETS-8. The main objectives of this test satellite system are:

  • Large satellite bus technology
  • Large-scale deployable antenna technology
  • Mobile satellite communications system technology
  • Basic positioning technology
Mission Instrumentation:

ETS-8 as the following instrumentation onboard:

  • Large-scale deployable reflector
  • High-power transponder
  • On-board processor
  • High accuracy clock
  • Laser retroreflector array
Mission Parameters:
Sponsor: (JAXA) Japan
Expected Life: 3 years
Primary Applications: experimental
COSPAR ID: 0605901
SIC Code: 1579
Satellite Catalog (NORAD) Number: 29656
Launch Date: 16-Dec-2006
RRA Diameter: 1.6"
RRA Shape: unknown
Reflectors: 36
Orbit: geostationary
Inclination: unknown
Eccentricity: unknown
Perigee: 36,000 km
Period: 24 hours
Weight: 2,800 kg

Additional Information:

Web sites:


  • Nugent, D., "The ETS-VII Laser Retroreflector Array", Presentation to 12th International Workshop on Laser Ranging, Matera, Italy, November 13-17, 2000.
  • Sawabe, M., T. Uchimura, A. Suzuki, H. Noda, "Laser Retroreflector Array of Geostationary Satellite, ETS-VIII", 14th International Laser Ranging Workshop, San Fernando, Spain, June 7-11, 2004.
  • Nakamura, R. "SLR Tracking Standards for Engineering Test Satellite-VIII (ETS-VIII)", December 2006.