S. Korea sets new window for rocket launch

Oct 29, 2012

South Korea said Monday it would make another attempt to send a satellite into space next month after a scheduled rocket launch last week was cancelled because of a technical glitch.

A Science Ministry statement said the 140-tonne Korea Vehicle-1 (KSLV-1) would blast off sometime during a November 9-24 window from the Naro Space Centre on the south coast.

The launch had been slated for last Friday, but was cancelled after engineers detected a broken rubber seal in the connector between the launch pad and the rocket's first stage.

After two previous failures in 2009 and 2010, the current launch is considered crucial for South Korea's efforts to join an elite space club that includes Asian powers China, Japan and India.

The KSLV-1 has a first stage manufactured by Russia, combined with a solid-fuelled second stage built by South Korea.

South Korean and Russian engineers said Friday's problem was not particularly serious, but added that the damaged seal had been sent back to its Russian manufacturer for an additional investigation.

In 2009 the rocket achieved orbit but faulty release mechanisms on the second stage prevented proper deployment of the satellite.

The 2010 effort saw the rocket explode two minutes into its flight, with both Russia and South Korea pointing the finger of blame at each other.

Success this time around will mean a huge boost for —a late entrant into the high-cost world of space technology and exploration and desperate to get its commercial launch programme up and running.

Seoul's ambitions were restricted for many years by its main military ally the United States, which feared that a robust missile or programme would accelerate a regional arms race, particularly with North Korea.

Explore further: Total lunar eclipse before dawn on April 4th

Related Stories

S. Korea to make third rocket launch bid in October

Sep 11, 2012

South Korea will make its third attempt next month to put a satellite in space, the science ministry said Tuesday, as it bids to join an exclusive club of Asian nations with space-launch capability.

S.Korea first rocket launch set for August 11

Aug 02, 2009

South Korea has rescheduled its first space rocket launch from its soil to August 11 after repeatedly postponing it due to technical reasons, officials said Saturday.

Recommended for you

ESA's planetary defence test set for 2020

1 hour ago

If an asteroid were spotted headed towards Earth, what could humanity do about it? ESA's latest mission is part of a larger international effort to find out.

Brief moon eclipse coming April 4

6 hours ago

A brief total eclipse of the Moon may be visible on April 4 to skywatchers in western North America, Australia and East Asia, astronomers say.

Total lunar eclipse before dawn on April 4th

Mar 31, 2015

An unusually brief total eclipse of the Moon will be visible before dawn this Saturday, April 4th, from western North America. The eclipse happens on Saturday evening for Australia and East Asia.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.