The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) is Japan's national aero-space agency. Through the merger of three previously independent organizations, JAXA was formed on 1 October 2003. JAXA is responsible for research, technology development and the launch of satellites into orbit, and is involved in many more advanced missions, such as asteroid exploration and possible manned exploration of the Moon. JAXA launch their Epsilon vehicle from the Uchinoura Space Center and their H-II vehicles from the Tanegashima Space Center.
ASNARO-2 (Advanced Satellite with New system ARchitecture for Observation) is an advanced small X-band radar satellite for Earth observation for Japan. Satellite weighs about 495 kg and is to operate in sun-synchronous orbit.