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News Release

Successful Launch of Cheollian 2B Satellite This Morning (February 19)

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  • Registration Date 2020-02-26
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Successful Launch of Cheollian 2B Satellite This Morning (February 19)


◇ Successful detachment of Cheollian 2B to normal condition about 31 minutes after the launch
◇ Successful first communication with the earth station (Yatharagga, Australia) at 07:55 AM


□ The Ministry of Science and ICT (MSIT), Ministry of Environment (MOE), and Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries (MOF) announced that the geostationary multifunction satellite Cheollian 2B (3.4-ton class) was successfully launched from the Guiana Space Center in Kourou of French Guiana on February 19 at about 7:18 AM (about 19:18 on February 18 local time).
ㅇ Cheollian 2B was normally detached from the Arian-5 launch vehicle at about 1,630km altitude approximately 31 minutes after the launch, successfully establishing communication with the earth station in Yatharagga, Australia about 6 minutes later (37 minutes after the launch) at 07:55 AM (19:55 local time).
* A total of 4 international ground stations (Fucino in Italy, Yatharagga WASC (Western Australia Space Center) in Australia, Santiago in Chile, and South Point, Hawaii in the United States) will be linked for 24-hour communication with the satellite during the initial operation period.

ㅇ Through communications with the earth stations, the Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI) confirmed that the overall condition of the main unit systems of Cheollian 2B was normal, and that the satellite securely entered the target orbit intended by the launch vehicle.
ㅇ Cheollian 2B plans to approach the geostationary orbit at altitude of 36,000km from the initial elliptical transition orbit by changing the transition orbit five times over the next two weeks. It will then go through the orbital test flight for a few months to obtain accurate atmospheric and marine environmental observation data after securely entering the geostationary orbit. KARI plans to optimize the performance by adjusting the satellite system, such as compensating images from the environmental and marine payloads mounted on Cheollian 2B. The satellite will also go through a software adjustment process to obtain accurate final outputs by applying the software developed exclusively for the observation of atmospheric and marine environments to the data observed during the orbital test flight. KARI plans to launch the normal service for atmospheric environmental information beginning 2021 and marine information beginning October 2020 after these processes are completed.


□ Cheollian 2B, whose development was commenced in 2011 and completed after nine years, is the world’s first geostationary satellite to observe the concentration of aerosols such as fine dust in the air and gaseous air pollutants that cause fine dust. It plans to monitor continuously the Asian region from Japan in the east to Northern Indonesia in the west and Southern Mongolia.
ㅇ The monitoring is expected to enable checking in which region fine dust is generated and developed and how it migrates to affect Korea. It will also confirm in which Korean region concentrated fine dust is generated.
ㅇ Cheollian 2B, together with the geostationary atmospheric environmental observation satellites from the United States (to be launched after 2022) and Europe (to be launched after 2023), will take the lead in global environmental monitoring and will provide the atmospheric environmental information to other countries in Asia to play its part in the international community's environmental conservation efforts by providing information.


□Moreover, Cheollian 2B will take over the marine environmental observation mission of Cheollian 1 and execute it with improved performance*.
* Four times higher resolution (500 → 250m), two times more output data (13 → 26 types), and 18 times faster data transfer speed (6.2 → 115Mbps)

ㅇ Moreover, it is expected to monitor more clearly and in real time the migration of pollutants that can cause serious damage to Korea’s marine environment, such as green algae, red tide, oil spills, and marine debris.
ㅇ It will also contribute to marine research activities by observing various marine characteristics such as sea fog, sea ice, fishery environmental index, and salt concentration.


□The agencies responsible for the development and operation of Cheollian 2A and 2B plan to make sure that the observed data are utilized most effectively through mutual communication and close cooperation.
ㅇ The use of the atmospheric and marine environmental observation data from Cheollian 2B and the observation data from Cheollian 2A is expected to improve the observation accuracy as well as enable additional utilization by a wide range of fields.
ㅇ Other developed countries, such as the United States and Europe, have shown great interest in the convergent utilization of Cheollian 2A and Cheollian 2B in simultaneously observing the meteorological, atmospheric, and marine environments.


□“The passion and dedication of many people have enabled Korea to have world-class development capability in low earth orbit satellite and geostationary orbit satellite by successfully launching Cheollian 2B following Cheollian 2A. With the successful launch of Cheollian 2B, the government plans to support actively the transfer of mature satellite development capability to the private sector to help our economy,” MSIT Deputy Minister Jeong Byung-seon said.
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