ALOS (Advanced Land Observing Satellite)
A Japanese satellite designed to observe and map Earth's
surface, to enhance cartography, monitor natural disasters, and survey land
use and natural resources to promote sustainable development. The four-ton
ALOS follows JERS and ADEOS,
and will extend the database of these earlier satellites using three remote-sensing
instruments: the Panchromatic Remote-sensing Instrument for Stereo Mapping
(PRISM) for digital elevation mapping, the Advanced Visible and Near Infrared
Radiometer type 2 (AVNIR-2) for precise land coverage observation, and the
Phased Array type L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (PALSAR) for day-and-night
and all-weather land observation.
ALOS had been scheduled for deployment in 2003; however, the failure of
a number of recent Japanese satellite launches led to various delays. ALOS
was eventually launched by an H-2A rocket from Tanegashima on Jan. 24, 2006.
page at JAXA website
AND SPACE PROBES