Performance of Akatsuki/IR2 in Venus orbit
It is essential for instruments, that work in space or at or near the target bodies, to be evaluated under the actual operating conditions. Establishing the procedure of data processing is also important. IR2, which cools its sensor and optics by a cryo-cooler, is affected in particular by thermal environment in the orbit. Efforts were made to produce the data with best possible quality by understanding the behavior of IR2. Achievements include the brightness correction between electrically-independent quadrants of the sensor, the flat-field response, and the absolute calibration coefficients for high-precision photometry of Venus. It is expected that such "quality assured" IR2 data will be used in a variety of studies from the atmospheric dynamics to the cloud microphysics.
These research results are reported in Satoh et al. "Performance of Akatsuki/IR2 in Venus orbit: the first year" and appear in the Nov 2017 edition of the planetary science journal Earth, Planets, and Space.