Status Report

Public Invited to Send Names & Messages to Asteroid on Hayabusa 2

By SpaceRef Editor
April 1, 2013
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The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) is scheduled to launch the asteroid explorer “Hayabusa2” [Note 1] on the H-IIA Launch Vehicle in 2014. The Hayabusa2 will arrive at an asteroid in 2018 to investigate it for one and half years, before returning to Earth in 2020.

JAXA will record and load your names, messages and illustrations on onboard devices (the target marker [Note 2] and re-entry capsule [Note 3]) of the Hayabusa2. Through this campaign and Hayabusa2’s six-year space mission, we would like people to deepen their understanding of Japan’s space probe activities. The following is the campaign outline.

1. Campaign name Let’s meet with Le Petit Prince! Million Campaign 2

2. Campaign period From 12:00 p.m. on April 10 (Wed.), 2013 thru July 16 (Tue.) (Japan Standard Time)

3. Campaign items Names, messages, collection of messages, and illustrations recorded and loaded onto the onboard devices of the Hayabusa2 (Target marker [2] and Re-entry capsule [3])

4. How to apply Please refer to the following JAXA website:


[1] The asteroid explorer “Hayabusa2” is a successor to the asteroid explorer “Hayabusa,” which returned to Earth in June 2012. The Hayabusa2 will challenge a sample return mission by bringing sand from an asteroid to elucidate the origin and evolution of the solar system and raw materials of life while leveraging technology and experience acquired through the Hayabusa. For the Hayabusa2 project outline and mission overview, please refer to the following site:

[2] The target marker is a marking device for when the Hayabusa2 lands on the asteroid. The marker will be dispatched from the Hayabusa2 to the asteroid to stay there after arriving on the surface.

[3] The re-entry capsule will be detached from the Hayabusa2 main body to return to Earth while protecting sample sands from the asteroid from high heat at the time of re-entry to Earth’s atmosphere. The capsule plays the last important role for the Hayabusa2 mission by carrying sand back from the asteroid.


JAXA Public Affairs Department
+81 3-5289-3650

JAXA website:

SpaceRef staff editor.