Minister of State for Space Policy, Takuya Hirai, visits Astroscale

Posted March 29th, 2019 Posted in Blog

On March 25, 2019, Takuya Hirai, Minister of State for Space Policy, and Shuzo Takada, Director General, National Space Policy Secretariat from the Cabinet Office of Japan visited our Headquarters in Tokyo. During the visit, Minister Hirai and Takada were able to discover how we are keeping space clean, see the progress of our space debris removal satellite, ELSA-d, and meet the team keeping our orbits safe.

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Our Founder & CEO, Nobu Okada, addressed the current situation we are facing and why our orbits need a service to remove what’s already up there and what’s going to go up in the coming years. He also discussed how we are developing the technology, the business case and are actively participating in conversations regarding the policy to keep space clean.

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Our Software team showcased how we are using augmented reality technology to build ELSA-d faster and more efficiently.

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During a tour of our clean room where ELSA-d is being assembled, our team of engineers explained the core components of our satellite including the docking mechanism, optical sensors and solar panel wings.

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Last stop was to say a quick hello to our team of Space Sweepers.

Before wrapping up, a press conference was held where Minister Hirai commended Astroscale for our “moonshot” mission to keep space clean, our technical capabilities, and for leading Japan’s contribution to the international space debris discussion.

He further commented that the Government of Japan and its Ministries, along with the rest of the world, will be watching and supporting us as we prepare to launch our demonstration mission in early 2020.


More photos are available here: