November 21 to early December, vibration and shock tests were conducted
in the C ridge on the MTM (Mechanical Test Model) of the INDEX satellite.
Unlike other scientific research satellites, one of the objectives of
the INDEX satellite is an in-house system. Without asking for help from
the large satellite manufacturers, Professor Higuchi, his assistant Okuizumi
and other young members, alternately despairing and hopeful, began to
assemble the satellite panel and install the dummy instrumentation.

The INDEX satellite is a piggyback onboard H-IIA of
50 kg class that costs about 0.4 billion yen and is due to be launched
around 2002. Although a miniature, it is a 3-axis attitude-controlled
multipurpose satellite.

With current space scientific-research satellites,
a major problem is that long-term projects do not generate results until
more than 10 years after their start. In addition, they cost more than
15 billion yen, including launch costs. To change this, the INDEX satellite
was proposed as a newly developed satellite technology to demonstrate
on its orbit immediately and to provide the opportunity for scientific
observation with timely results. The first project carries a particle
sensor and three cameras to shoot the fine structure of the Aurora from
the polar orbit. The actual proof of the technology is provided by integrated
satellite control by high-speed (60MHz) processor, the lithium batteries,
the solar panels with hyper-efficient reflectors, etc. In addition, the
satellite system design is carried out in ISAS, within possible limits,
and all loading software is developed in-house.