Press Release


JAXA Astronaut Selected for the Second Space Shuttle Mission
for Transporting and Assembling
the Japanese Experiment Module Kibo

March 23, 2007 (JST)

Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA)

We are pleased to announce that the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) agreed the Japanese astronaut to fly aboard the second Space Shuttle flight for the transportation and assembly of the Japanese Experiment Module Kibo of the International Space Station (ISS) (STS-124/1J).

Assigned Astronaut: Astronaut Akihiko Hoshide (Mission Specialist (MS))
Orbiter: Atlantis
Planned Flight Schedule:   Early 2008
Mission Duration: About two weeks
Expected activities: Assemble the Pressurized Module (PM) to the ISS and activate it, and perform other activities. Specific tasks assigned to him are to be determined in the future.
Planned schedule of the Astronaut:
  General training for being aboard the Space Shuttle and the ISS and specific training for Kibo assembly will be provided.
Reference: Brief personal history of Astronaut Akihiko Hoshide
Onboard Schedule for the Japanese Astronauts
Comments from JAXA President
Reference Link: ISS Kibo Information Center

Brief personal history of Astronaut Akihiko Hoshide

Akihiko Hoshide Astronaut
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency
38-year-old (As of March 2007)

1968 Born in Tokyo, Japan.
1992 Bachelor’s Degree in mechanical engineering from Keio University.
1997 Master of Science Degree in aerospace engineering from the University Of Houston, Cullen College of Engineering.
1992 Joined the National Space Development Agency of Japan (NASDA; currently Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency).
1992 to 1994   Worked as a member of Nagoya office for the development of the H-II launch vehicle.
1994 to 1999 Worked as an astronaut support engineer for the Astronaut Office, supporting the development of the astronaut training program and the evaluation of crew interfaces designs.
February 1999 Selected as one of three Japanese astronaut candidates for the International Space Station (ISS).
April 1999 Started Basic Training program in Japan.
January 2001 Certified as an astronaut.
April 2001 Participated in the ISS Advanced Training provided by international partners.
July 2003 Participated in the Soyuz-TMA Flight Engineer training in Russia.
May 2004 Certified as a Soyuz-TMA Flight Engineer.
June 2004 Started the Mission Specialist (MS) Candidate training in NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC).
February 2006 Certified as an MS.
2006 to present Continues astronaut training. Provides engineering support for Japanese Experiment Module "Kibo" and H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV). Communicates with astronauts on board the ISS as a CAPCOM.

Onboard Schedule for the Japanese Astronauts

March 23, 2007

Comment from JAXA President Keiji Tachikawa
Selection of Japanese Astronaut for the Second Space Shuttle Mission
for Transporting and Assembling the Japanese Experiment Module Kibo

Today, I was very pleased to hear that Astronaut Akihiko Hoshide was selected to fly aboard the second Space Shuttle flight (1J) for transporting and assembling the Japanese Experiment Module Kibo to the International Space Station (ISS).

Astronaut Hoshide will participate in the assembly of the Pressurized Module (PM), its activation and functional check out for his main activities.

Although this is the first flight for Astronaut Hoshide, I firmly believe that he will successfully accomplish this important mission with his experience accumulated from the development of Kibo and preparation for its flight operation, in addition to his profound knowledge of Kibo.

With the selection of Astronaut Hoshide to fly aboard the second flight to assemble Kibo, Japanese astronauts will fly on all Kibo assembly missions. It is quite important for Japan to have its astronauts aboard to assemble, activate and check out Kibo, which was developed by Japan, and accordingly, it will complete the preparation for the space experiments and promote the manned space activities of our country.

Finally, I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to NASA and all other international and domestic organizations that made this decision possible.

For inquiries:
JAXA Public Affairs Department
Tel: +81-3-6266-6413 to 7, Fax: +81-3-6266-6910