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EXPRESS : Experiment Re-entry Space System

The development of EXPRESS was started in 1990 as the first Japanese-German joint space program for the purpose of microgravity experiment and autonomous reentry, and was launched on January 15, 1995 by a M-3SII No.8 rocket from the Kagoshima Space Center(presently JAXA) in Japan.
However, the EXPRESS capsule was not injected into the planned orbit due to rocket malfunction. The orbit was 250kmx115km (estimate), instead of 210kmx400km. It was estimated that EXPRESS re-entered after the third orbit, instead of planned five days of microgravity experiment. It was found in Ghana, Africa instead of at the planned landing site, Woomera, Australia.
The spacecraft had survived its atmospheric re-entry. Although the microgravity experiment was not performed, experimental sample of the re-entry heat shield materials was recovered.
EXPRESS was a multi-national collaboration involving Japan and Germany who managed this project, Russia that provided the re-entry Spacecraft and Australia that had prepared the landing site with legal support for accepting the space object.

Outline of system

Total Weight 765kg (incl. experiments 130kg)
-Service Module 360kg
-Re-entry Module 405kg
Heat Shield Ablator
Attitude Control 3-Axis Control
Payload Power Continuous 92W, Peak 400W
Experiments Microgravity Experiment

-Crystalgrowth of catalyst for refining petroleum (NEDO/USEF ;presently J-spacesystems) Re-entry Experiments
-Re-entry Experiment (ISAS ;presently JAXA)
-High performance material experiment (NEDO/RIMCOF)
-Ceramic tile experiment (Germany)
-Pyrometric re-entry experiment (Germany)
-Rarefied flux experiment (Germany)

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