It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
Ikaros will demonstrate the principle of using sunlight as a simple and efficient means of propulsion. The technique has long been touted as a way of moving spacecraft around the Solar System using no chemical fuels. The mission team will be watching to see if Ikaros produces a measurable acceleration, and how well its systems are able to steer the craft through space. The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (Jaxa) said in a statement that its scientists and engineers had begun to deploy the solar sail on 3 June (JST). On 10 June, Jaxa said, confirmation was received that the sail had expanded successfully and was generating power through the thin film solar cells embedded in the membrane