U.S. space program vs. Japan space program
In the early periods of space exploration, most countries were unwilling or lacked the ability to explore the resources required for large scale national space programs. In fact, during this period only the US and the Soviet Union supported these kinds of programs. Subsequently, both countries grew stronger in space exploration and became unchallenged pre-eminence in space activities and technologies. However, in recent years, the international interest and activities in space exploration has grown tremendously and many countries have started taking part in the same.
This change of heart by most countries towards space exploration has been brought about by many factors including maturation of industries, markets for communications satellites and transferable space technologies. In addition, space development and assured access to space have become vital factors for high technology growth and national security. With these benefits in mind, many countries have fostered space programs which are promising and successful. A good example of such a country is Japan whose space program grew in less than 20 years from the launch of its first satellite in 1970 to participation in the international space station freedom project.
In comparison to US space program, Japan’s space program has used US technical capabilities as a benchmark for its own capabilities thus causing a conflict in program philosophy between them and the United States. Therefore, since operational philosophies and styles of the two countries’ space programs are distinct, their comparison is important as can give insight into their relative strengths and weaknesses as well as their long term objectives and strategies.
The United States space program began in 1958 with the launch of its scientific satellite explorer. Towards the end of that year, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) whose purpose...