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After launch, the sixth Japanese satellite, CORSA-B, was officially renamed Hakucho, the Japanese word for swan. The spacecraft had the shape of an octagonal rightprism, with maximum width 80 cm and height 65 cm, and was spin-stabilized at a rate of 5 to 8 rpm. The spin axis was maneuvered by means of magnetic torquing. Eleven X-ray detectors of various specifications were devoted to the observation of cosmic X rays. Four detectors had fields of view perpendicular to the spin axis and scanned over a wide region of the sky in search of X-ray novae and transients. The other seven detectors had FOVs along the spin axis and were used to study selected celestial objects. Observational data could either be telemetered back in real-time or stored in an onboard data-recorder. Telemetry frequencies were 136.725 MHz at 500 mW and 400.450 MHz at 100 mW. The scientific objectives of Hakucho were (1) a systematic survey and watch of short-lived X-ray phenomena, (2) observations of selected X-ray sources with a wide spectral coverage (0.1 to 100 keV), (3) study of short-term variabilities and pulsations of X-ray sources, and (4) study of the X-ray sky in the sub-keV range.

Alternate Names

  • Cosmic Radiation Satellite B
  • 11272

Facts in Brief

Launch Date: 1979-02-21
Launch Vehicle: M-3C
Launch Site: Uchinoura Space Center, Japan
Mass: 96.0 kg

Funding Agency

  • Institute of Space and Aeronautical Science, U of Tokyo (Japan)


  • Astronomy

Additional Information

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



NameRoleOriginal AffiliationE-mail
Prof. Minoru OdaProject ManagerUniversity of Tokyo 
Prof. Satio HayakawaProject ScientistNagoya

Other Sources of Hakucho Information/Data

The Hakucho Satellite

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