|Message to Astronaut Doi|
I am very glad Dr. Doi conducted Japan's first EVA successfully.
I am sure you enjoyed every moments in space during this EVA.
Mission specialist Winston Scott and you started the EVA, which lasted for about seven hours and 40 minutes, by first retrieving the Spartan science satellite, which was designed to observe outer layers of the sun's atmosphere or corona, and put it into its latches in the cargo bay.
Though this contingency EVA to manually catch the Spartan was not originally scheduled, they had an experience of similar case in the water tank during the ground training.
I was able to watch this whole process of retrieving SPARTAN with confidence, as I knew you were cool-minded and handling the situation properly. It was such a great experience for the Japanese manned space program that you contributed in saving Spartan, which would be repaired and deployed again into space in the future.
On the ground, mission specialist Wakata worked in a NASA working group making the scenario how to catch Spartan.
Actually witnessing Japanese astronauts accumulating technique necessary for the assembly of the International Space Station in this EVA, I felt the Japanese manned space program has made big progress.
Takao, I'm sure that you are excited about your mission! I'm looking forwards to watching you moving about in the black space. I wish you the best of luck. Have a great space flight!
I was very happy when Dr. Doi was named to perform a spacewalk on STS-87.
Japanese manned space program has started from the field of space experiment and it has been expanding steadily. Dr. Doi's Japan's first EVA on this STS-87 mission is very a important step towards the assembly of the International Space Station and the operation of the Japanese Experiment Module.
Dr. Doi is a very calm man. During the 6 to 7 hours of EVA, he is required to complete a very long list of complicated tasks, but I am sure he will be able to complete the mission successfully.
I hope Dr. Doi will enjoy a wonderful flight and beautiful earth views with a lots of surrounding stars.
Whenever I go and ask Astronaut Doi a question about something from the ASCAN (Astronaut Candidate) training course that I am currently attending, he always takes the time to explain the answer to my question very clearly. He has a very warm personality. I am proud that Astronaut Doi is not only the first Japanese, but also the first astronaut with a foreign nationality from the NASA ASCAN training course to perform a spacewalk. He is drawing a lot of attention from European and Canadian astronauts because his mission will open doors to many other astronauts for EVA opportunities. I wish the best of luck for Astronaut Doi.
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Last Updated : November 25, 1997