South Korea’s First Orbital Mission to the Moon is on its Way

A graphic showing the orbital path the Danuri Lunar Pathfinder spacecraft will take to go into orbit around the Moon. Credit: Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI)

South Korea launched its first robotic mission to the Moon last week, as a SpaceX Falcon 9 successfully launched the Danuri Lunar Pathfinder mission on August 4, 2022 from Florida’s Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.

The spacecraft was placed into a fuel-saving lunar transfer orbit, and it should arrive in lunar orbit in December.

Translated, Danuri means “enjoy the Moon.”

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South Korea Launches its First Rocket. The Third Stage cut off Short.

So far, only six countries have successfully launched more than 1 ton of equipment into space using domestically developed rockets.  A seventh, North Korea, has successfully done so with a slightly smaller payload.  Recently, their southern neighbor attempted to get into this exclusive club by testing its first-ever three-stage orbital rocket.  

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South Korean Rocket Explodes 137 Seconds Into Flight

A South Korean rocket carrying a climate observation satellite apparently exploded 137 seconds into its flight early Thursday. The two-stage Naro rocket operated normally during and after liftoff from the country’s space center, Minister of Education, Science and Technology Ahn Byong-man said. But then communications with the rocket were lost.

This is the country’s second major space setback in less than a year.
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