– APRIL 11, 2017 –
The Japanese space agency, JAXA, has announced plans to launch a new solar sail to succeed
in Ikaros. The latest launch in 2010 demonstrated that it was possible to follow trajectories
interplanetary with the sole pressure of the solar wind.
The new sail will make 2500 m², a surface nearly ten times greater than Ikaros. But that’s not all, it will also be fully covered with solar panels that will feed an ion engine giving the ships a double propulsion. The mission of the probe will be to explore the Trojan asteroids around Jupiter, it should be launched in the early 2020s.