• Kyodo

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Japanese astronaut Kimiya Yui will be leaving Earth in 2015 as part of an International Space Station crew, NASA said Wednesday.

NASA said American Kjell Lindgren, Yui and Oleg Kononenko of Russia will blast off on a Russian Soyuz spacecraft in June 2015 that will take it to the ISS for a six-month stay.

Yui, a 43-year-old former Air Self-Defense Force pilot, has undergone training in the United States and Russia since being certified as an astronaut in 2011. He will conduct research inside Japan’s Kibo laboratory module.