Japan has finally announced that they will take part in the Lunar Gateway project of NASA and they have announced it officially. NASA’s Lunar Gateway project is seeking to establish a periodic research along with staging a station around Moon. This Lunar gateway is a major component of the Artemis program of NASA that focuses on landing the first American women next to the American man on the Moon’s surface by the year of 2024.
The involvement of Japan was first confirmed on 18th October 2019 at the meeting of the Japan’s Strategic Headquarters for National Space Policy where the Prime Minister of Japan named Shinzo Abe was present. They accepted a recommendation from the panel which established the possibility that Japan should join these efforts of NASA and the working with the NASA’s project can help Japan to get several benefits in few ways which include the boost of its technological profile and also this project can strengthen the relationship between US and Japan.
More details on the process how Japan will take part in the project are not yet available. It makes sense that the decision has been made only. The lunar exploration startup of Japan is ispace, and they also have welcomed the news. The Founder and CEO of ispace, Takeshi Hakamada is an email stated that they welcomed the development with a great optimism for a bright future of the lunar exploration and the relationship between the United States and Japan as well. They strongly believe that the partnership of Draper-ispace can complement the effort of the US-Japan for a sustainable return from Moon.