Successful suborbital test launch of the LTP-135s rocket at Hokkaido Spaceport

Demonstrated innovative solid propellant “LTP”

Hokkaido, Japan, March 2024 – Taiki Town Office and SPACE COTAN Co., Ltd., which jointly develop and operate “Hokkaido Spaceport”(hereinafter referred to as “HOSPO”), a commercial spaceport open to the private sector in Asia, announced that Prof. Yasuhiro Morita of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (hereinafter referred to as “JAXA”) successfully conducted suborbital test launch of the LTP-135s rocket from Taiki, Hokkaido.

The LTP-135s rocket is a small rocket that uses an innovative solid rocket fuel, Low Melting Temperature Thermo-plastic Propellant(hereinafter referred to as “LTP”), which is being developed to obtain the technology for mass production of solid rockets. 
This was the third suborbital test launch and the first for HOSPO.
This test confirmed the combustion of LTP in an accelerated environment.

《Test Summary》

Objective: To confirm of LTP combustion in an accelerated environment.
Test Day: March 17, 2024
Location: Hokkaido Spaceport Runway
Overview of the test: The rocket was launched to the east-southeast and the LTP burned successfully. The rocket reached an altitude of about 5,000m and opened its parachute.

This test was conducted by Professor Yasuhiro Morita of the Institute of Space and Astronautical Science, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) in cooperation with IHI AEROSPACE CO., LTD. and IHI AEROSPACE ENGINEERING Co., Ltd., with launch operations entrusted to Uematsu Electric Co., Ltd.

《About LTP-135s rocket》

Total weight:24.5kg

《About LTP》

LTP is an innovative solid rocket fuel that reduces the production time of solid rocket fuel to one-tenth of that of conventional solid rocket fuel, enabling significant cost reduction and mass production.

Japanese government supports private rocket development. Increased need for spaceport for private use.

The global space market is expected to grow to a huge market of more than 1.1 trillion USD by 2040, nearly three times the current market size, due to the expansion of the private space sector, the growing importance of the security sector, and the proliferation of small satellite services using satellite constellations. Demand for space transportation services is also growing, but supply is short, creating a bottleneck in the industry.
In Japan, based on the Basic Plan on Space Policy(*1) approved by the Cabinet in June 2023, it was clearly stated that access to space should be secured without dependence on other countries and that independent space activities should be realized. As a specific policy, the Small and Medium Business Innovation Promotion Program(SBIR Phase 3)(*2) was launched to promote the practical application of advanced technologies by venture companies. 
In addition, the development and utilization of space by the public and private sectors have become more active, with JAXA’s the Smart Lander for Investigating Moon(SLIM) successfully landing on the moon in January of this year, the successful launch of JAXA’s H3 rocket in February, and the launch of the Kairos rocket by SPACE ONE Co.,LTD. in March.
This further increases the need for launch and testing sites available to the private sector. HOSPO, as a commercial spaceport for private use, will provide a launch vehicle development environment for various launch vehicle operators.

About Taiki Town Office

  • Representative: Mayor Yutaka Kurokawa
  • Location: 33, Higashi-Hondori, Taiki-machi, Hiroo-gun, Hokkaido
  • Overview: A town with a population of 5,400 where agriculture, fishing, and forestry are the core industries. The town began attracting aerospace experiments in 1985, and has been promoting the development of a space city for about 40 years since then. Hokkaido Spaceport was opened in 2021 as the global commercial spaceport in Taiki Town. The goal is to create an aerospace industry cluster and ecosystem with Hokkaido Spaceport as its core.
  • WEB:

About SPACE COTAN Co., Ltd.

  • Representative: Yoshinori ODAGIRI, President and CEO
  • Location: 98 Nishihondori, Taiki-machi, Hiroo-gun, Hokkaido 
  • Business Overview: Overall promotion of HOSPO project based on mandate from the Taiki town, and operation of HOSPO. 
  • WEB:

About Hokkaido Spaceport(HOSPO)

HOSPO is a commercial spaceport open to the private sector in Asia, that was launched in April 2021 in Taiki, Japan. Taiki Town has been attracting the aerospace industry for about 40 years, and is said to be one of the most suitable locations for a world-class spaceport due to its geographical advantages, such as an expansive sea to the east and south for launching rockets, and a large land area that allows for high expansion of the launch site. The suborbital launch site “LC-0” is already in operation, and private rockets have reached space three times in the past.
To realize our vision of “creating an aerospace industry cluster and ecosystem”,  we are developing new launch and test sites for rockets and space planes, and contributing to the development of rockets and the space industry as an infrastructure. We aim to contribute to regional development and Japan’s economic revitalization.
We are currently working on a new orbital launch site “LC-1” and extending the runway to 1,300 meters.

Future image of Hokkaido Spaceport

*1: Source: Cabinet Office, Government of Japan, Website

*2: Source: Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology(MEXT), Website