Tuesday, February 26, 2008

[Korea.net News, Science / Tech, January 21 2008] Institute head confident over space development

The domestic space industry is set for a major takeoff this year, with the first Korean astronaut to blast off into space in early April and the country’s first space center to open in June. More than 300 billion won will go into the sector this year alone.

In a recent interview with Korea Plus, a vernacular biweekly published by the Government Information Agency, the president of Korea Aerospace Research Institute, Paik Hong-yul, provided an overview of the country’s 2008 space development plan and its expected economic effects.

Established in 1989, the institute is Korea’s leading aerospace think tank.


Q: How does Korea rank globally in space development?

Paik: Our country’s program is in the early stage, but Korea Aerospace Research Institute is trying hard to develop technologies for satellite information communication and data processing. We are simultaneously developing three satellites for the purposes of communication, oceanographic research and meteorological observation.


Q: What is the domestic space sector’s main objective for 2008?

Paik: We are aiming for the successful launch of Korea Space Launch Vehicle-I. Experts say success depends not only on technology but also on luck. But challenge and struggle can even alter bad luck. If we do not sent it up now, we will crash. Korea’s space industry will take off this year, first on April 8 when astronaut Ko San goes into space, and second in late December, when the first domestically made satellite blasts off.

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