FILE PHOTO: ISS is photographed by Expedition 66 crew member from aÊSoyuz MS-19Êspacecraft
The International Space Station Photo: Reuters/ROSCOSMOS

Japan extends participation in International Space Station to 2030

1 Comment

Japan will extend its participation in the International Space Station (ISS) program to 2030, education and science minister Keiko Nagaoka said on Friday, following the footsteps of ally the United States.

The United States pledged in December to keep the ISS operational through to 2030. Among Washington's program partners, which are Russia, Canada, Japan and the 11-nation European Space Agency, Tokyo is the first to join the United States in extending participation.

The space station, a science laboratory spanning the size of a football field and orbiting about 250 miles (400 km) above Earth, has been continuously occupied for more than two decades under a partnership led by the United States and Russia.

Japan's announcement comes just days after NASA's next-generation moon rocket blasted off from Florida in a crewless voyage inaugurating the U.S. space agency's Artemis exploration program, in which Japan is also participating.

"ISS is inevitable as a place to verify technologies for the Artemis program. It is also an important venue for Japan-U.S. cooperation," Nagaoka said at a signing ceremony for a Japan-U.S. agreement on cooperation for a lunar space station called Gateway.

Under the agreement, a Japanese astronaut will go aboard Gateway, which is under development for the Artemis program, and Japan will supply batteries and other equipment for that space station.

U.S. President Joe Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida in May confirmed their intention to include a Japanese astronaut in the program, including its lunar surface missions.

"We will maintain close cooperation with the United States to realize a Japanese astronaut's landing on the moon in the second half of the 2020s, which would be the first for non-Americans," Kishida said in a message read aloud at the ceremony.

© Thomson Reuters 2022.

©2022 GPlusMedia Inc.

1 Comment
Login to comment

It is out of date in 2025. A major accident will happen. Already cracks.

chinas new shiny one is absolutely awesome. You can check it out online. Probably Musk will buy the ISS and turn it into a hotel. Only hope for its existence.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites