2 Japanese Astronauts to Stay at ISS for Long-Term Missions

Science Society Technology Politics

Tokyo, Nov. 20 (Jiji Press)--Japanese astronauts Koichi Wakata and Satoshi Furukawa will stay at the International Space Station for long-term missions, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) said Friday.

Wakata, 57, is expected to stay at the ISS around 2022, and Furukawa, 56, around 2023.

Wakata will travel to space for the fifth time and stay at the ISS for a long-term mission for the third time, both of which are record numbers for a Japanese astronaut. Furukawa will make a space flight and have a long-term stay at the ISS for the second time, respectively.

They are expected to head for the ISS aboard a Crew Dragon spacecraft of Space Exploration Technologies Corp., or Space X, or a Starliner spacecraft being developed by Boeing Co.

Since no plan has been set for the operations of the ISS in 2024 and beyond, Wakata and Furukawa could be the last Japanese astronauts to stay at the ISS.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press