S.Korea preps for first domestic rocket's launch

The three-stage NURI rocket, designed by KARI, to eventually put 1.5-ton payloads into orbit 600 to 800km above the Earth, will carry a dummy satellite into space on Thursday (October 21).

The new KSLV-II NURI has solely Korean rocket technologies, according to KARI's Launcher Reliability Safety Quality Assurance Division.

South Korea's last such booster, launched in 2013 after multiple delays and several failed tests, was jointly developed with Russia.

It will be important for South Korea's plans to launch surveillance satellites into orbit, in what national security officials have called a constellation of "unblinking eyes" to monitor North Korea, as the South has remained almost totally reliant on the United States for satellite intelligence on its northern neighbor.

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