South Korea Fails to Launch Space Rocket for the Second Time

250px-KSLV-1_Naro_ReplicaSouth Korea failed again to join the space launch industry after its space rocket lost signal 137 seconds after lift-off. It is believed that the rocket may have exploded.

The rocket, Korea Space Launch Vehicle 1 (KSLV-1), was supposed to have launched last Wednesday, June 9. However, a malfunctioning fire extinguishing system on the launch pad moved the schedule a day later.

At 1701H (0801 GMT), June 10, the KSLV-1 lifted off from the Naro Space Center at Goheung, South Korea.

Controllers were cheering at the time of the lift-off but were stopped when they saw a bright flash on their screens. At that moment, the rocket should have been 43 miles into the atmosphere.

The KSLV-1, partly built in Russia and in South Korea, had cost 500 billion won (400 million USD;  275 million pounds).

The first attempt of the nation to launch a rocket was last year. The rocket reached beyond second stage at which point the payload fairing made it fail to reach orbit. The added weight caused the rocket to fall back again and it is believed that it may have disintegrated upon reentering the atmosphere.