South Korea hails successful launch of homegrown rocket

SEOUL: Korea said on Thursday it has successfully launched homegrown Nuri rocket and put working satellites into orbit, hailing an important step forward for the country’s burgeoning space program.
This is Nuri’s third launch, which successfully put test satellites into orbit last year after a failed attempt in 2021 that caused the rocket’s third-stage engine to burn out too soon.
The three-stage rocket, more than 47 meters (155 feet) long and weighing 200 tons, took to the sky at 6:24 p.m. (09:24 GMT) from the Naro Space Center on the southern coast of South Korea, to a large trail of white smoke.
“We report to the public that the third launch of Nuri, independently developed to ensure delivery in domestic space, has been successfully completed,” he said. Lee Jong-ho, Minister of Science and Technology.
He said the main satellite had communicated with South Korea’s King Sejong Station in Antarctica, adding that the launch confirmed “our potential for launch services for satellite operations and different space exploration”.
Southern Korea will make three more Nuri launches by 2027, Lee added.
President of Korea Yoon Suk Yeol praised Nuri’s launch, saying it would give the country a competitive edge in the global space race.
“The success of Nuri’s third launch is a great achievement that declares South Korea to have joined the G7 space powers,” he said in a statement.
The launch comes a day after initial plans were canceled due to a computer communication error that was resolved on Thursday.
In previous tests, the missile carried payloads mainly designed to test the performance of the launch vehicle.
This time, the rocket was led by eight active satellites, including one “commercial-grade satellite”, according to the report. science department.
Over 200,000 viewers watched the premiere live stream on YouTube, with one comment: “Fly high Nuri! Let’s go to space!”
South Korea has outlined ambitious plans for spaceflight, including landing spacecraft on the Moon in 2032 and Mars in 2045.
In Asia, China, Japan and India all have advanced space programs, and South Korea’s nuclear-armed neighbor North Korea is the most recent to join the club of nations. has the ability to launch its own satellite.
Ballistic and space rockets use similar technology and Pyongyang claims to have put a 300-kilogram satellite into orbit in 2012 in what Washington condemns as a disguised missile test.
South Korea’s space program has had mixed records – the first two launches in 2009 and 2010, partly using Russian technology, both failed.
The second exploded two minutes after takeoff, with Seoul and Moscow blaming each other.
In the end, a 2013 launch was successful, but still relied on a Russian-developed engine for the first stage.
Last June, South Korea became the seventh country to successfully launch a one-ton rocket.
The Nuri three-stage rocket has been in development for a decade at a cost of two trillion won ($1.5 billion).


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