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GOSat (Greenhouse Gases Observing Satellite), also known as Ibuki, was launched by an H-IIA rocket Launch Vehicle No. 15 (H-IIA F15) from Japan's Tanegashima Space Center at 03:54 UT on 23 January 2009. Ibuki, which means "breath" in Japanese, is designed to observe the concentration and distribution of greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane, etc.) across most of the Earth's surface. The spacecraft has a mass of approximately 1750 kg, the solar arrays will provide at least 3.8 kW of power and the spacecraft is designed for a five year life span. It will be placed into a 666 km sun-synchronous orbit of inclination 98 deg;. In this orbit Ibuki will be able to re-image the same location after three days. The observation instrument on-board the satellite is called the Thermal And Near-infrared Sensor for carbon Observation (TANSO). TANSO is composed of two sensors: a Fourier Transform Spectrometer (FTS) and a Cloud Aerosol Imager (CAI). JAXA is the agency responsible for development, launch and operations. The National Institute for Environmental Studies and the Ministry of the Environment will carry out advanced processing and utilization of the data.

Alternate Names

  • 33492
  • Ibuki

Facts in Brief

Launch Date: 2009-01-23
Launch Vehicle: H-2A
Launch Site: Tanegashima, Japan

Funding Agency

  • Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (Japan)


  • Earth Science

Additional Information

Questions and comments about this spacecraft can be directed to: Coordinated Request and User Support Office

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