1 April 2005 (renamed)
|Headquarters||Hsinchu Science Park, East, Hsinchu City, Taiwan|
|Administrator||Chun-Liang Lin (Director General)|
|Primary spaceport||Jiu Peng Air Base, Pingtung, Taiwan|
|National Space Organization|
|Literal meaning||National Space Centre|
The National Space Organization (NSPO, Chinese: 國家太空中心; formerly known as the National Space Program Office) is the national civilian space agency of Taiwan (Republic of China), part of the National Applied Research Laboratories under the auspices of the Ministry of Science and Technology. NSPO is involved in the development of space technologies and related research.
|Director General's Office|
|Satellite operations control|
|Integration and test|
|Division||Planning and promotion|
|Finance and accounting|
|Program office||Mission oriented projects|
NSPO also has numerous laboratories, such as:
|SR-I||15 December 1998||None||Successful first test flight.|
|SR-II||24 October 2001||Tri-Methyl Aluminum (TMA)||Second stage ignition failure, mission lost|
|SR-III||24 December 2003||Tri-Methyl Aluminum (TMA)||Mission successful|
|SR-IV||14 December 2004||Airglow photometer, GPS receiver||Mission successful|
|SR-V||15 January 2006||Ion probe||Mission successful|
|SR-VII||May 10, 2010||Ion probe||Mission successful|
Little has been publicly revealed about the specification of the ROC (Taiwan)'s first launch vehicle for small satellites (SLV) (小型發射載具). It should be able to place a 100 kg payload to a 500–700 km orbit. This SLV will be a major technological improvement based on existing sounding rockets and will consist of four solid propellant stages with two strap-on solid rocket boosters. Therefore, it will be in the same class of the Indian SLV-3. The inaugural launch was scheduled to take place during the second phase of the 2004–2018 space project (第二期太空計畫), placing a Taiwanese-made satellite into orbit and after the preparatory launches of 10 to 15 sounding rockets (探空火箭).
The first phase of Taiwan's space program involves the development of the human and technological resources required to build and maintain three satellite programs, which is expected to be completed with the launch of Formosat-3/COSMIC by the end of 2005. Currently, the spacecraft and instrumentation are designed and assembled in Taiwan by local and foreign corporations and shipped to the U.S. for launch by commercial space launch firms. The NSPO, the military, and Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology have also been working on the development of a sounding rocket for upper atmospheric studies.
The second phase is scheduled to take place between 2006 and 2018. It will involve an emphasis on developing technological integration and miniaturization capabilities required for the development of constellations of microsatellites, as well as encouraging growth in the local aerospace industry.
Since 2009, NSPO has been working with university research teams in developing innovative technology to improve the overall efficiency of hybrid rockets. Nitrous oxide/HTPB propellant systems were employed with efficiency boosting designs, which resulted in great improvements in hybrid rocket performance using two patented designs. So far, several hybrid rockets have been successfully launched to 10~20 km altitudes, including a demonstration of in-flight stops/restarts. By the end of 2014, they will attempt conducting suborbital experiments to 100~200 km altitude.
There have been proposals to elevate NSPO's status to that of a national research institute, however such plans were under debate Legislative Yuan as of late 2007.
In 2019 the Ministry of Science and Technology announced an expected cost of NT$25.1 billion (US$814 million) for the third phase of the National Space Program. The third phase will see at least one satellite launched per year between 2019 and 2028.
In August 2019 Thailand’s Geo-Informatics and Space Technology Development Agency announced that they would consult with the National Space Organization on developing their own indigenous satellites.