JAXA has just released an overview of its activities in February, in its monthly press release which outlines the previous month’s activities.
This month’s release gave an overview of the 3rd Space Environment Utilization and Kibo Utilization Workshop (SEKUW), a multilateral initiative that was held from Feb 9-10 in Bangkok, Thailand.
During this workshop, two interesting announcements were made, which are significant for ASEAN’s space efforts – the first, that Thailand will launch a new CubeSat mission using JAXA’s JEM Small Satellite Orbital Deployer (J-SSOD), and Singapore will launch a new nanosatellite mission known as SpooQy-1.
Another startling announcement was the setting up of the Thai National Space Exploration program, whose main objective is a manned space program. The preliminary objective is to determine valuable research on experiments in space.
This year’s workshop is the third annual workshop jointly organized by Thailand and JAXA’s Kibo Utilization Office for Asia (KUOA), which was established in 2010 to help Asia-Pacific countries make use of Japan’s ISS experiment module, known as Kibo.
KUOA is the result of the Asia-Pacific Regional Space Agency Forum (APRSAF), which began in 2005 to promote collaboration between Asia-Pacific countries in space activities.
APRSAF and KUOA have thus far begun a number of regional initiatives, which include the ongoing Asian Try Zero-G competition, which invites youths to submit ideas that can be implemented by Japanese astronauts aboard the ISS.