South Korea rocket launch set today-A A +A
Friday, October 26, 2012
MANILA -- South Korea is hours away from possibly joining the ranks of other spacefaring countries as it is expected to launch its first-ever space rocket on Friday afternoon.
State-funded Korean Broadcasting Service (KBS) reported that the Korea Aerospace Research Institute began making final preparations after no problems were found in the last rehearsal of the launch on Thursday.
However, KBS also reported that the country's Ministry of Education, Science and Technology will still convene to review weather conditions and determine if the scheduled launch will still push through today.
South Korea's first space rocket, the Korea Space Launch Vehicle-1 (KSLV-1) or the Naro-1, will be carrying the country's Science and Technology Satellite-2.
In the Philippines, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRMMC) and other government agencies already made a contingency plan weeks before South Korea's rocket launch.
According to NDRRMC executive director Benito Ramos, the launch window is between 2:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Philippine time but it could be postponed until October 31.
The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippine and the Philippine Air Force (PAF) will issue the policy in the flight path of the satellite launch vehicle.
PAF projected the satellite’s first stage to separate and fall in a zone 450 nautical miles east of Palanan, Isabela. The second stage is expected to fall in an area 340 nautical miles east of Samar Province while the anticipated third stage will fall in an area 330 nautical miles of Surigao del Sur Province.
Meanwhile, the Maritime Industry Authority will issue a flag advisory to all shipping companies regarding the falling debris of the satellite in Philippine waters.
For its part, the Department of Interior and Local Government will issue a “no fishing zone” policy in the projected falling areas.
Ramos earlier assured that there is no need for panic from the public regarding South Korea's planned launch.
The Yonhap News Agency reported that the success or failure of the KSLV-1 will be determined in just nine minutes after its lift-off, according to experts.
Friday's scheduled launch will be South Korea's third attempt to send the KSLV-1 into space after both of its earlier tries in August 2009 and June 2010 were declared failures minutes after the lift-offs.
Yonhap also reported that South Korea has so far sent up 10 satellites into space, but all using foreign rockets.
The country's neighbor, North Korea, also conducted a rocket launch last April to put a satellite into space but ended in failure minutes after the lift-off. (Emmanuel Louis Bacani/Sunnex)