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"Please support our newly born JAXA!"

October 1, 2003 Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency Yasunori Matogawa

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency was born on Oct. 1, 2003. Its acronym is "JAXA" (pronounced "Jacksa".) Please call us "JAXA". The biggest feature of our new name is that we added the word "Exploration" that represents our activities.
Most of the employees of the three former organizations that were merged into JAXA, the Institute of Space and Astronautical Science, the National Aerospace Laboratory, the National Space Development Agency of Japan, have been infatuated with the skies and space since they were young. Some have dreams to travel freely in space in a launch vehicle, aircraft or probe. Others perform demanding jobs that require discipline in order to fulfill the challenges of solving the mysteries of space and the solar system.

It was like "a bolt out of the blue" for many of us when Minister Atsuko Toyama of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology announced the merger of the three organizations. "How could the government unify these three organizations that have totally different cultures?" After a while, however, we accepted this announcement as part of the political reforms in Japan, and since then, the three organizations have worked desperately hard to make the merger a success. Our road on this journey had several bumps, but we reached our destination for the newest aerospace exploration organization of the 21st century to take its first step.

There are a variety of activities in the skies and space waiting for JAXA to tackle.

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