Korea plans to launch an exploratory lunar probe aboard its own launch vehicle by June 2020 and later embark on missions to Mars and asteroids by 2040, the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning announced yesterday.This represents a revision of the space development blueprint that moves up the time frame of the lunar landing mission and outlines a budget and other long-term space plans.
The advancement of Korea’s space program is one of President Park Geun-hye’s key pledges in line with other projects aimed at fostering the sciences and engineering fields. Initially, the development of the space launch vehicle, or rocket, was scheduled for September 2021 with a budget of 1.545 trillion won ($1.45 billion). The ministry pushed up the schedule by one year and three months, and boosted the budget to 1.957 trillion won.
South Korea on Thursday successfully launched a new science satellite, beginning a two-year mission to search for clues about the evolution of the universe. The Science and Technology Satellite-3, or STSAT-3, blasted off at 1:10 p.m. aboard a Dnepr launch vehicle from the Yasny launch base in southern Russia near the border with Kazakhstan.
The three-stage, liquid-fueled Russian launcher sent the 170 kilogram satellite into orbit approximately 600 kilometers above sea level. The launch vehicle “successfully released the STSAT-3 into our target orbit around Earth exactly 929 seconds after lift-off,” the launch team in Russia said.
“It’s a great relief after all the things we’ve been through to prepare this moment, over the past seven years,” Rhee Seung-wo, the STSAT-3 program manager told The Korea Herald. Controllers confirmed that initial contact with the satellite was made at 2:40 p.m., 89 minutes after lift-off at a ground station in Svalbard in the Arctic Ocean.
South Korea’s new multipurpose satellite made contact with a ground station in the Asian country early Friday, confirming its successful deployment into its target orbit, officials in Yasny said.The first communication contact was made at 2:35 a.m. (5:35 a.m. KST), according to the officials from the Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI).
The Korea Multipurpose Satellite-5 (KOMPSAT-5) was launched Thursday from a launch base in Yasny, located some 1,800 kilometers southeast of Moscow, using Russia’s Dnepr rocket, a space launch vehicle converted from a Soviet-era intercontinental ballistic missile.
Beacon signals from the satellite were initially picked up by the Troll Satellite Station in Antarctica, 32 minutes following the launch, partly indicating the satellite’s successful deployment into its orbit.
The government vowed on Monday to invest 1.6 billion won ($ 1.43 million) over the next three years to nurture qualified professionals in the satellite industry. The Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning has partnered with the Satellite Technology Research Center of Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology to jointly develop new training courses for selected postgraduate students and researchers.
The ministry said it was seeking to increase manpower in the space industry from roughly 2,000 to 5,000 by 2020. Korea made major strides earlier this year by successfully launching its first locally assembled space rocket KSLV-1 from its own soil for the first time.
South Korea is set to launch its first radar-equipped Earth observation satellite as planned on Aug. 22, the government announced on Thursday. The Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning said that the satellite KOMPSAT-5 was moved Thursday to the Yasny launch base in Russia.
The KOMPSAT-5 is the country’s first SAR, or synthetic aperture radar, satellite that is capable of providing images in all weather conditions. The ministry said the SAR satellite would eliminate the limitations of traditional satellites, such as monitoring flooding under heavy clouds. If the launch is successful, the satellite will begin operating after a six-month test period in February 2014 at an altitude of 550 km in a dawn-dusk orbit.
South Korea will launch its first radar-equipped Earth observation satellite capable of providing images in any type of weather condition, in an important step in developing its commercial space program. The Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning announced Thursday that the satellite KOMPSAT-5 is scheduled for lift off on Aug. 22 from a Yasny launch base in Russia.
KOMPSAT-5 is the country’s first SAR or Synthetic Aperture Radar satellite. The country’s three previous Earth observation satellites use high resolution cameras, but the SAR satellite uses radar to monitor the Earth.
The KOMPSAT-5 will operate at an altitude of 550 km in a dawn-dusk orbit, a type of orbit set up so that the area of Earth directly below the satellite is always just in daylight ― either at dusk or dawn. It will conduct all-weather and all-day observations of the Earth during its five-year mission.
The government will soon set up measures to help commercialize its space technology while also working to further develop its commercial space sector that will include the early development of a shuttle to the moon, the science ministry said Thursday.
The move comes as there are only 61 private companies or research institutes developing space technologies in the country while 44.2 percent of them have annual sales of less than 1 billion won ($909,000), according to the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning.
South Korea successfully launched its first space rocket, the Korea Space Launch Vehicle-1, in January, becoming the world’s 13th nation to have launched a space rocket from its own soil. “The country has so far developed its key space technologies and related industry through government-led space programs, but it has yet to witness any meaningful commercialization of space technologies due to its lack of a serious space industry,” the ministry said in a press release.
The first satellite footage taken by Naro space rocket or KSLV-1, Korea’s first space launch vehicle that was launched last month has been released.
Ministry of Educational Science and Technology (MEST) and Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) released satellite footage of Korea peninsula and thermal image of china and announced on March 3, Naro space rocket operated as usual from March 1.
The footage was a demonstration of infrared light payload taken at an altitude of 500 kilometers on Feb. 17 and 21. Cheollian infrared footage confirmed the sensory on the payload worked properly.
The Science and Technology Satellite-2C (STSAT-2C) will be revealed to the public Friday in a pre-shipment ceremony to be held at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) in Daejeon, 160 kilometers south of Seoul, according to the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology.
The satellite, indigenously developed by KAIST, is the third of its kind as its two predecessors — STSAT-2A and STSAT-2B — were lost in failed attempts to launch the country’s first space vehicles in August 2009 and June 2010.
A new and improved Korea Space Launch Vehicle-1, also known as Naro-1, is scheduled to be launched in October, with the specific launch date to be set later. The country’s first space rocket was developed jointly with Russia.
The chief of Korea’s aerospace agency expressed optimism ahead of the launch of the nation’s first space vehicle slated for October. “Everything is under control and I’m sure we’ll have a successful launch in October,” Kim Seung-jo, president of Korea Aerospace Research Institute, said in an interview with The Korea Herald.
Korea failed in its previous two attempts to launch its own rocket in 2009 and 2010. KARI has learned crucial lessons from the experiences. The KSLV-1, known as Naro-1, is a two-stage rocket built in cooperation with Russia. Russia’s Khrunichev Space Research designed and manufactured the lower part and KARI developed the upper part.