Basic Information

Center for Advanced Information Science and Technology (CAIST)
Associate Professor
Web site


Courses - Undergraduate
P1 Intro. ProgrammingP3 JAVA Programming I
Courses - Graduate
IT23 Practical Data Analysis with Lunar and Planetary Databases


Earth and Planetary ScienceAstronomy
Educational Background, Biography
Mar. 2008Ph.D. in Science, University of TokyoApr. 2008-Mar. 2009JSPS Research FellowApr. 2009-presentAssociate Professor, University of Aizu
Current Research Theme
- Development and operation of near-infrared spectrometer for the asteroid explorer Hayabusa2"- Analysis of planetary remote-sensing data- Development of a miniature observing instrument for small satellites"
Key Topic
Planetary explorationRemote sensingNear-infrared spectroscopy
Affiliated Academic Society
Japan Society for Planetary Sciences,Astronomical Society of JapanJapan Geoscience UnionAmerican Astronomical Society


School days' Dream
Current Dream
Favorite Books
Messages for Students
Publications other than one's areas of specialization

Main research

Student Cooperative Class Project: Lunar and Planetary Data Analysis & Tanpopo Project on ISS

Student Cooperative Class Project: Lunar and Planetary Data Analysis

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Scientific analysis of earth, lunar and planetary remote sensing data

So that we may learn more about the formation and the future evolution of our solar system, it is extremely important to analyze the remote sensing data captured by lunar and planetary explorers and earth observation satellites. Deploying software technology for analyzing data researched and accumulated by the University, our teams are making new discoveries in the field of earth planetary science and conducting further research into disaster prevention and the environment.

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Asteroid Explorer Hayabusa2

Many members from the University of Aizu, in particular faculty members from CAIST/ARC-Space, have been involved with Hayabusa 2, the asteroid explorer launched by JAXA in 2014. Our University's members have been conducting research in connection with this project in anticipation of Hayabusa 2's arrival at the asteroid 162173 Ryugu in 2018, to be followed by its return to Earth in 2020. Specifically teams at the University have been engaged in developing observation instruments, which include the near infrared spectrometer installed on Hayabusa 2, and in developing analytic software that will model the shape of the asteroid based on data captured by the probe's observation instruments.

JAXA Hayabusa 2 project website

*Material from JAXA's digital archives has been used for the banner images, etc.

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Developing analytic software for lunar and planetary exploration data

Japan's lunar and planetary exploration projects have already generated a lot of observation data, as seen from its Hayabusa asteroid explorer project and Kaguya lunar explorer project. To get the most out of this valuable asset, software will be required that assists with analyzing all that data, helping researchers to advance their scientific analyses across a broad front.
We are investigating technologies that enable the visualization of complex data in an easy to understand fashion, and technologies that will let researchers spot really important pieces of information from a huge mass of data.

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Onboard instruments for Lunar and Planetary Exploration missions

Onboard instruments for Lunar and Planetary Exploration missions

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Promotion of Space Software from UoA! (Factories for Start-Up Ventures, etc.)

This has been started as an educational project supported by Coordination Funds for Promoting AeroSpace Utilizaiton MEXT (2017-19).
O02-2 Factories for Start-Up Ventures no.2 Space Utilization of Remote Sensing Data, CFS Creative Factory Seminar, O03 SCCP Lunar and Planetary Data Analysis & Tanpopo on ISS, and delivery lectures for junior/senior highschool students.

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Dissertation and Published Works

1. N.A. Moskovitz, S. Abe, K-S. Pan, D.J. Osip, D. Pefkou, M.D. Melita, M. Elias, K. Kitazato, S.J. Bus, F.E. DeMeo, R.P. Binzel, P.A. Abell: Rotational Characterization of Hayabusa II Target Asteroid (162173) 1999 JU3, Icarus 224, 24-31, 2013.
2. K. Kitazato, B.E. Clark, M. Abe, S. Abe, Y. Takagi, T. Hiroi, O.S. Barnouin-Jha, P.A. Abell, S.M. Lederer, F. Vilas: Near-infrared Spectrophotometry of Asteroid 25143 Itokawa from NIRS on the Hayabusa Spacecraft. Icarus 194, 137-145, 2008.
3. K. Kitazato, M. Abe, M. Ishiguro, W-H Ip: 25143 Itokawa: Direct Detection of the Current Decelerating Spin State due to YORP Effect. Astron. Astrophys. 472, L2-L5, 2007.
4. T. Hiroi, M. Abe, K. Kitazato, S. Abe, B.E. Clark, S. Sasaki, M. Ishiguro, O.S. Barnouin-Jha: Developing Space Weathering on the Asteroid 25143 Itokawa. Nature 443, 56-58, 2006.
5. M. Abe, T. Takagi, K. Kitazato, S. Abe, T. Hiroi, F. Vilas, B.E. Clark, P.A. Abell, S.M. Lederer, K.S. Jarvis, T. Nimura, Y. Ueda, A. Fujiwara: Near-infrared spectral results of asteroid Itokawa from the Hayabusa Spacecraft. Science 312, 1334-1338, 2006.