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Initial Results from Performance Verification (PV) Phase

The infrared satellite AKARI (formerly ASTRO-F) of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), which was launched from the Uchinoura Space Center on the 21st of February (UT), captured light for the first time when the telescope aperture lid was opened on the 13th of April. After the aperture lid was jettisoned the instruments became fully operational and their performance was confirmed. Following this, the telescope focus adjustment and the optimization of the attitude control system, etc., were successfully carried out.

We have moved from the performance verification (PV) phase to Phase 1 (real observations) of the mission. Infrared images of world class resolution and sensitivity has been presented to the general public.

May 22, 2006