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SEOUL, January 28 (Itar-Tass) – South Korea’s Naro Space Center located in South Jeolla Province, or Jeollanam-do, 480 kilometers south of Seoul is ending preparation for the launch of the Naro-1 space rocket with a research satellite onboard on January 30, a representative of the Korea Aerospace Research Institute said on Monday.
The rocket is now being installed on the launching pad, he said.
Successful launch of the space rocket also known as the Korea Space Launch Vehicle-1 (KSLV-1) will make South Korea the world’s thirteenth country launching a satellite from its territory.
At present, Seoul has already launched around dozens of satellites, but all of them were taken into space by foreign rocket boosters from other countries’ territories.
The first two attempts in 2009 and 2010 failed to place a satellite into orbit.
Last year’s launch attempt was the third time the country had tried to send a space rocket into space. The blastoff was scheduled for October 26, but a broken rubber seal in a connector between the rocket and its launch pad forced South Korea to reschedule it. On November 11 and November 29 the launches were also postponed over malfunction in a solid fuel second stage and other failures.
The Naro-1 rocket was built within the framework of the Russian-South Korean agreement on cooperation in space research and exploration for peaceful purposes.
The rocket’s first stage liquid fuel rocket was made at Russia’s Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center and the second stage and the satellite, which has a mass of 100 kilograms, - in South Korea.
Since 2002 South Korea has already spent around $475.3 million on the project, the Yonhap news agency said.