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News Release

Government Finalizes the 2021 Space Development Implementation Plan

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  • Registration Date 2021-03-12
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Government Finalizes the 2021 Space Development Implementation Plan

① Launching the Korean launch vehicle Nuri, ② Launching the 1st next-generation mid-sized satellite ③ Developing a public complex communication satellite (Cheollian 3), ④ Launching nanosatellites (four units) for the observation of space environment, ⑤ Kicking-off the Space Pioneer projects for the localization of core parts.


□ The government held the 36th Space Development Promotion Working Committee* meeting in writing with 16 related ministries. It deliberated on and finalized three agendas, including the “2021 Space Development Promotion Implementation Plan.”
* Space Development Promotion Working Committee: A private-government joint committee chaired by the Vice Minister of Science and ICT as per the Space Development Promotion Act


□ The three implementation plans* finalized by the meeting are legal plans under the Space Development Promotion Act and the specific action plans for 2021 to implement the “3rd Space Development Master Plan (February 2018)” established in 2018.
* 2021 Space Development Promotion Implementation Plan, Satellite Information Utilization Implementation Plan, and Space Risk Preparation Implementation Plan


□ The government finalized the space development plan, including investment of 615 billion won.

ㅇ The plan includes the successful launch of the Korean launch vehicle Nuri scheduled in October 2021, launch of the next-generation mid-sized satellite #1 in March for precise ground observation of the Korean Peninsula, and launch of four nanosatellites for the observation of the space environment in the second half.

ㅇ Moreover, it includes starting the development of Cheollian 3, a geostationary public complex communication satellite, to strengthen disaster and safety response capabilities and provide public satellite communication services and beginning the localization of space parts and support of industrial R&D.


□ 「The details of the 2021 Space Development Promotion Implementation Plan」 are described below.

ㅇ (Strategy 1, technology self-reliance of launch vehicle) Manufacturing the flight model of Korean launch vehicle model Nuri (KSLV-II) for independent space transport will be completed. It will be launched at the Naro Space Center located in Goheung, Jeollanam-do in October 2021.
* Development sequence: Engineering model (EM) → Qualification model (QM) → Flight model (FM).

- The combustion test of the stage 1 certification model that clusters four 75-ton engines to secure the reliability of the Nuri launch will be performed in the first half.
- It plans to operate the support organization, including the inter-ministerial launch safety control council, for a successful launch.
- Moreover, the new launchpad for launching Nuri will be constructed, and simulated training for checking the tracking system at the launch site will be carried out as scheduled.


ㅇ (Strategy 2, satellite development and utilization) The next-generation mid-sized satellite #1 is expected to launch in March 2021, and the geostationary public complex communication satellite Cheollian 3 will begin.

- The Ministry of Science and ICT and the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport are jointly developing the next-generation mid-sized satellite #1 to meet public demand and foster related industries, and it will be utilized for ground observation and change detection, urban planning, and mapping.
* To be launched using the Russian Soyuz launch vehicle in Kazakhstan in February 2013
* The next-generation mid-sized satellite is used for various public purposes through a standard 500kg platform. Currently, # 1, # 2, and # 4 are being developed, with the development of # 3 and # 5 expected to begin in 2021 and 2022, respectively.

- Moreover, the development of Cheollian 3, a geostationary public complex communication satellite, will begin for responding to disaster and safety accidents through water-related disaster monitoring, support for maritime activities, and emergency communication support in disaster areas, providing GPS corrected signals, and serving as a testbed for future satellite communication technologies.
* Using the experience and capabilities of having developed Cheollian 1 and 2, the Ministry of Science and ICT, Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport, Ministry of Environment, and Maritime Police Agency are jointly developing it independently in Korea.

- Moreover, the final tasks, including the final assembly and functional test, of Multipurpose Satellites 6 and 7 being developed for public services such as national security through all-weather ground observation will begin with the goal of launching them in 2022.

ㅇ (Strategy 3, space exploration) For Korea's first lunar exploration orbiter, the payload to a variety of missions, such as lunar surface filming, will be assembled with the orbiter, and the final assembly test of the lunar orbiter system will be performed to prepare for the launch scheduled in 2022.

- Moreover, KARI plans to lead the launch of four 10 kg nanosatellites to be used for basic research to understand space weather and cope with space disasters by observing the space environment.
* To be launched using the Russian Soyuz launch vehicle in Kazakhstan in the second half of 2021

ㅇ (Strategy 4, Korean positioning system) The implementation of the Korea Positioning System (KPS) to provide the position, navigation, and visual information essential for the 4th Industrial Revolution with autonomous vehicles and drones and the national infrastructure operation will begin.
* It will begin in 2022 after passing the preliminary feasibility study in the first half of 2021 and securing the budget.

- Moreover, it plans to lay the foundation for KPS development projects through international cooperation and prior research related to KPS.

ㅇ (Strategy 5, space innovation ecosystem) The support for the Space Challenge project that began in 2020 to develop challenging and innovative pioneering technologies in the space field will be expanded.

- It plans to expand the support from two programs with 1 billion won in 2020 to select and support six new programs with a budget of 4 billion won in 2021.

ㅇ (Strategy 6, fostering the space industry) It will kick off the ‘Space Pioneer project’ to support industrial R&D to localize key parts for systems such as the launch vehicle and satellite.

- The Space Pioneer project is expected to lay the foundation for the self-reliance of space strategic technologies and a virtuous cycle of the space development ecosystem by developing some parts that have relied on other countries.


□ The Space Development Promotion Working Committee also reviewed the “Satellite Information Utilization Action Plan” to promote the use of satellites and the “Space Risk Management Action Plan” to prepare for space dangers, such as fall and collision of space objects.

ㅇ In the field of satellite information utilization, it will expand the use of satellite images in the public sector close to people’s life by improving the national land satellite utilization system for the next-generation mid-sized satellite #1 to be launched in March this year and providing public services in the atmospheric environment with Cheollian 2B.

- The development of satellite utilization technologies will continue through the increased efficiency of satellite image utilization by reducing the image processing time from about 20 minutes to 15 minutes and optimizing the standard image processing code with support for using the AI learning data of satellite images and beginning the development of the system to support using nanosatellites.

ㅇ Moreover, in the field of space risk preparation, it will begin installing a 1.5-meter wide field optical telescope in the southern hemisphere to prevent the collision of Korean satellites in space and monitoring the risk of asteroids and other space objects falling on the Korean Peninsula.

- It will be linked with OWL-Net*, an optical space monitoring system installed and operated in five places in the northern hemisphere, to expand Korea's independent space surveillance capability.
* Optical Wide Field PatroL Network: Korea’s only space object monitoring system installed and operated in Bohyeonsan Mountain, United States, Mongolia, Morocco, and Israel.


□ According to Jeong Byungseon, the 1st Vice Minister, Ministry of Science and ICT, “2021 will be the year to complete space development projects successfully with high public interest and expectations by launching the Korean launch vehicle ‘Nuri’ and the next-generation mid-sized satellite #1.”

ㅇ “I ask the government and development managers to do their best to carry out our mission successfully with a sense of great responsibility”, he added.

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