Kyoto University and Sumitomo Forestry Co., Ltd. have completed the Wooden Artificial Satellite (LignoSat), which took about four years to develop as part of the Space Wood Project, which they have been working on since April 2020. It is scheduled to be delivered to JAXA on June 4, 4, and released into space from the Japanese Experiment Module "Kibo" approximately one month after arriving at the International Space Station (ISS).

 For the structure of the actual wooden artificial satellite (flight model) that will be launched this time, Magnolia wood was selected as a tree species that can be stably used in space based on the results of various physical property tests. Using magnolia trees felled in the Sumitomo Forestry Monbetsu company-owned forest, the structure of the structure is elaborately and firmly assembled without using any screws or adhesives, which is called ``Tomegatakushi Arikumitsugi.'' Adopted traditional Japanese techniques.

 The completed wooden artificial satellite is an ultra-small satellite called a CubeSat, measuring 1mm square on each side, and has successfully passed numerous rigorous safety inspections by NASA/JAXA. For the first time in the world, the use of wood in space has been officially approved. In preparation for operations in outer space, it will be loaded onto a Space It is scheduled to be released into space from the ridge.

 After being released from the ISS, the plan is to measure the wooden structure's strain, internal temperature distribution, geomagnetism, and soft errors, and send the data to a communication station installed on the Kyoto University campus. In the future, we will continue to analyze various data obtained from this wooden artificial satellite.

 The development of this wooden satellite was the result of various physical property tests, including a wood space exposure experiment conducted on the ISS's external platform from March to December 2022, as well as vibration tests, thermal vacuum tests, and outgassing tests on the ground. Based on the data obtained. In the wood space exposure experiment, we confirmed the excellent strength and durability of the wood, with no cracking, warping, or peeling, even under the harsh environment of space where there are large temperature changes and powerful cosmic rays. Other ground tests have also shown that wood has no negative impact on the health and safety of astronauts or on precision equipment or optical components.

 After numerous experiments and tests, it passed NASA/JAXA inspection, proving the safety of using wood in space. The fact that the wooden artificial satellite has passed NASA/JAXA's safety review and the use of wood in outer space has been approved is an extremely valuable step for both the space industry and the wood industry, and is an extremely valuable step for the space industry as well as the wood industry, demonstrating the potential of wood as a sustainable resource. It is of great significance in expanding the scope of wood use and promoting further use of wood.

 Furthermore, in order to avoid becoming space debris in outer space, it is an international rule that small artificial satellites that have completed their mission must be re-entered into the atmosphere and burned up. Conventional metal satellites generate fine particles called alumina particles when they burn, which can have a negative impact on the Earth's climate and communications, but since wood burns out upon re-entry into the atmosphere, wooden satellites may be used in the future. This impact can be expected to be reduced by increasing the number of satellites.

 Kyoto University will use the development know-how and operational data from the first Wooden Artificial Satellite (LignoSat) as basic materials for the design of the second unit, which is currently being planned, and for the data to be considered for measurements with the second unit.

 Sumitomo Forestry will further analyze the knowledge gained through this development and aim to elucidate the fundamental mechanism of material deterioration at the nano-level. By elucidating this mechanism, we will develop technology to suppress wood deterioration, promote the development of highly functional wood building materials such as highly durable wood exterior materials, and new uses for wood, and utilize it in places where wood has not been used before. For example, this will lead to the expansion of the use of wood for data center facilities, etc., and contribute to the development of the forestry and lumber industries.

Reference: [Sumitomo Forestry Co., Ltd.] World's first wooden artificial satellite (LignoSat) completed, handed over to JAXA for operation in space Pursuing the potential of wood and aiming to expand the use of wood

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