Second Military Spy Satellite Successfully Launched into Orbit by South Korea | Military News

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Seoul and Pyongyang are currently engaged in a race to put more reconnaissance satellites into orbit as tensions on the Korean Peninsula continue to rise. South Korea recently launched its second military reconnaissance satellite, following North Korea’s announcement of plans to launch multiple spy satellites this year.

The satellite was successfully launched on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from the John F Kennedy Space Center in Florida, achieving orbit on Sunday, according to South Korea’s National Ministry of Defense. The military in Seoul stated that the successful launch further strengthens their independent intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance capabilities, with plans to continue future satellite launches without any issues.

The launch took place at 23:17 GMT, with the satellite separating from the launch vehicle 45 minutes later and entering its designated orbit. Communication was successfully established with a ground station approximately two hours and 40 minutes after the launch. South Korea aims to launch a total of five military spy satellites by 2025, competing with North Korea to enhance surveillance capabilities in the region.

Following North Korea’s successful launch of its first spy satellite, Malligyong-1, South Korea’s satellite entered orbit the following month. North Korea claims its satellite has transmitted imagery of key sites in the US, though no photos have been released. North Korea has plans to launch more reconnaissance satellites this year, with leader Kim Jong Un aiming to launch three military spy satellites by 2024.

South Korean Defense Minister Shin Wonsik announced the possibility of the first of those launches taking place as soon as next week, coinciding with the April 15 birthday of state founder Kim Il Sung, known as the Day of the Sun. North Korean satellite launches are viewed as a violation of United Nations sanctions imposed due to their nuclear weapons program, as they utilize banned ballistic missile technology.

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