Noriko Takaya is the daughter of the famous spaceship commander Yuzo Takaya. Since her childhood Noriko would like to follow her father's steps... Unfortunately, admiral Takaya died during a battle against alien forces when Noriko was still a young girl. At the age of 16, Noriko decides to attend the Okynawa High School for girls willing to become pilots but she is not so good with the control of the robots... Kazumi's suggestions turn out to be very useful to make Noriko trust her own abilities and possibilities. In spite of that many other girls are more capable than Noriko, but when the names of the two girls going to space are announced, she and Kazumi are the ones selected. She has much untapped power, very high potential, and coach Ota knows that... Noriko will be the one in charge of piloting the Gunbuster!
Usually calm, sweet tempered and often insecure, Noriko turns to a real fury when she's fighting with the Gunbuster: in the key moments of the adventure she always knows what to do, she becomes self confident and very determined in achieving her goals. A real leader.