On June 10, South Korea’s space rocket, the KLSV-1, exploded 137.19 seconds after blastoff from the Naro Space Center in Goheung, South Jeolla Province, said the Minister of Education, Science and Technology Ahn Byong-man. The space rocket, carrying an observation satellite designed to study global warming and climate change, exploded at an altitude of about 70 km, 470 km south of Jeju island. It is South Korea’s second failed launch attempt, after the first in August 2009.
The ministry reported that the rocket debris fell into waters around 30 degrees northern latitude and 128 degrees eastern longitude, but had caused no damage to the Japanese territory or people. The Korean and Russian engineers who co-designed the rocket now set out to investigate the cause of the explosion.
South Korea has spent Won2,250bn, the equivalent of 1.79bn USD, on its space program, hoping that the investment would prompt higher value-added exports to the global space services market. However, the recent two failures are predicted to spur strong public criticisms on the huge government spending on the project.
Korea's 2nd Rocket Launch Attempt Fails [The Choson Ilbo, 11 June 2010]
S Korea rocket explodes after blast-off [Financial Times, 11 June 2010]