MOSCOW, January 31 (RIA Novosti) – After a successful Wednesday launch, South Korea’s scientific satellite made its first contact with a ground station on Thursday, the Yonhap news agency said.
The country's Satellite Technology Research Center at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology in Daejeon announced that the first communication contact with the Science and Technology Satellite 2C (STSAT 2C) was made at 3:27 a.m. local time on Thursday [6:27 p.m. Wednesday GMT]
The homegrown 140-ton Korean Space Launch Vehicle-1 (KSLV-1), also known as Naro, delivered the satellite to orbit on Wednesday afternoon, becoming the country’s first space success following two unsuccessful attempts in 2009 and 2010.
The rocket caryying the the 100-kg satellite blasted off from South Korea's Naro Space Centre 482 kilometers) south of Seoul at 11:00 Moscow time on Wednesday.
"At 4 p.m. today, 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," the agency quoted Science Minister Lee Ju-ho as saying.
Russia’s Khrunichev Space Center built the first stage for the rocket under a 2004 agreement. The solid-fuel second stage and payload were designed and built in South Korea.
The project has been dogged by failures, notably in 2009 when the rocket failed to deliver a 100-kilogram oceanic and atmospheric research satellite into orbit. In 2010, the carrier exploded two minutes after take-off.