The Martian Moons eXploration (MMX) Project session at the 67th Space Science and Technology Association Conference

The 67th Space Science and Technology Association Conference (known as “Ukaren”) was held from Tuesday October 17 through to Friday October 20, 2023 at the Toyama International Conference Center and the ANA Crowne Plaza Toyama. The conference hosted a wide variety of lectures on space science and space technology with approximately 1,800 participants; a record number for Ukaren!

The Space Science and Technology Association Conference sign

On the Thursday (19th) and Friday (20th) of the conference, the Martian Moons eXploration (MMX) Project held one of the organised sessions (OS) which included 34 presentations related to MMX. The presentations covered a wide range of topics, including an overview of MMX, the development and testing status of the spacecraft bus system, mission equipment and ground systems, and operational readiness for the launch of MMX, which is expected next year. The first talk by Project Manager Kawakatsu Yasuhiro was so popular that many attendees had to watch standing. We were really happy with all the interest.

Project Manager Kawakatsu Yasuhiro gave a presentation at the Martian Moons eXploration (MMX) organised session.

On the Thursday, there was a special lecture with a discussion between Tsutsui Yoshinori from NHK Educational who is the lead of the MMX Super Hi-Vision (SHV) camera and Toyama photographer Inagaki Yasuto, whose work was included in the conference poster for Ukaren. Under the title “The Flowers, Birds, Wind, and Moon of the Universe ~ The beauty of Toyama and the beauty of the Universe”, the two talked about common ground about how photographs can trigger emotions, such as the images from the lunar orbiter Kaguya’s high-definition camera, the images that the SHV is planning to capture of Phobos that will allow humans to see the moon at 4K/8K resolution for the first time, and likewise, the images that capture the beauty of Toyama via the artist’s eye in the camera view finder.