South Korea launches its first rocket

Jan. 30, 2013 at 8:03 AM
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NARO SPACE CENTER, South Korea, Jan. 30 (UPI) -- South Korea's science minister said Wednesday the country placed a satellite into orbit with the successful launch of its first space rocket.

Yonhap News Agency said whether the Korea Space Launch Vehicle has positioned its satellite correctly will be determined early Thursday.

"At 4 p.m. today [Wednesday], the Naro was successfully launched. The satellite was deployed 540 seconds after the launch and an analysis of related data shows the satellite has successfully entered its target orbit," Minister of Education, Science and Technology Lee Ju-hu said told a press conference.

The satellite began transmitting signals shortly after its deployment, Yonhap News Agency reported, which were then received by a ground station in Norway.

Officials there said the transmittal of signals means the satellite is working properly.

Yonhap said officials will know if the satellite is fully functional when it makes its first contact with the county's own station at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology at 4 a.m. Thursday.

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