Koichi WakataStatus: Active 8/1/1963 – Nationality: Japanese Type: Government First Flight: 1/11/1996 Last Flight: 11/7/2013Koichi Wakata (若田 光一 Wakata Kōichi, born 1 August 1963) is a Japanese engineer and a JAXA astronaut. Wakata is a veteran of four NASA Space Shuttle missions, a Russian Soyuz mission, and a long-duration stay on the International Space Station. During a nearly two-decade career in spaceflight, he has logged more than eleven months in space. During Expedition 39, he became the first Japanese commander of the International Space Station. Wakata flew on the Soyuz TMA-11M/Expedition 38/Expedition 39 long duration spaceflight from 7 November 2013 to 13 May 2014. During this spaceflight he was accompanied by Kirobo, the first humanoid robot astronaut.LaunchesSpace Shuttle Endeavour / OV-105 | STS-72Space Shuttle Discovery / OV-103 | STS-92Space Shuttle Discovery / OV-103 | STS-119Soyuz FG | Soyuz TMA-11MJapan Aerospace Exploration AgencyType: Government Abbreviation: JAXA Administration: Administrator: Hiroshi Yamakawa Founded: 2003 Launchers: H-IICountry: JPNThe Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) is Japan’s national aero-space agency. Through the merger of three previously independent organizations, JAXA was formed on 1 October 2003. JAXA is responsible for research, technology development and the launch of satellites into orbit, and is involved in many more advanced missions, such as asteroid exploration and possible manned exploration of the Moon. JAXA launch their Epsilon vehicle from the Uchinoura Space Center and their H-II vehicles from the Tanegashima Space Center.