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Thread: What I Would Like to See From North Korea's Space Program

  1. #1
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    What I Would Like to See From North Korea's Space Program

    More launches.

    I'd like to see more launches. I don't think three launches is nearly enough to form a solid basis for a space launch engineering program. I'd like to see dozens of launches. Three or four a year, or more. Stand 'em up, light 'em off, and consume telemetry until, like Mr. Creosote, they are in danger of rupturing.

    Speaking of space launch engineering programs, I'd like to see more details about that. I'd like to see a coherent, phased plan for building knowledge upon knowledge and expertise upon expertise, going from simple prototypes to commercial-grade payload delivery systems.

    Speaking of payload delivery systems, I'd like to see a detailed program about that, too. I'd like to see a plan for a series of payloads with practical applications--sounding rockets, survey satellites, observatories, etc.

    And since in this global world, where there are many space programs that have already gone where North Korea has yet to go, I'd like to see international teams--North Koreans sharing their vision for orbital science with experts from other space agencies, and learning from them. I'd like to see North Korean payload specialists learning the state of the art from their peers around the world, and then contributing to advancing the state of the art.

    That last I'd like to see most of all: North Korea's position on the globe is sub-optimal for delivering payloads to orbit. I think they could contribute more to the global space program in terms of payload design and support, working with global partners at joint launch facilities near the equator, than in developing their own orbital launch capabilities. Or they could become a major contributor to sea launch technology.

    So that's what I'd like to see.

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by stutefish View Post
    I don't think three launches is nearly enough to form a solid basis for a space launch engineering program.
    The outcome of the last one would tend to confirm your opinion!

  3. #3
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    Taking aside whole "grass as national cuisine" issue, I do not think North Koreans can afford anything like robust space program. I would not even call it "space program". I predict this program will have many, many more faliures, because it is kinda hard to work every time with fresh staff without experience, if you know what I mean.

  4. #4
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    They will be punished, but perhaps not executed.

    There are a lot of things that they cannot afford but do anyway--like this for example
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ryugyong_Hotel

    It is precisely because they don't spend a lot of money on food but prestige that these things get made. Frankly Sea Dragon or some other pressure-fed would be right up their alley.

    http://shipping.einnews.com/news/shipyards/northkorea
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_K...rine_transport

    Should their new leader support space--there would be no holdbacks permitted. Anyone critical of spaceflight would have problems. But these would likely be called missile launches, so a winged rocketplane might escape sactions.

    They are not afraid of hypergolics and may embrace them even as China moves to other propellants. A piggyback spaceplane with an pressure-fed external tank of denser hypergolics with very simple re-usable engines on a tiny orbiter might work well for them if they get things straight. The first stage doesn't seem to have been the problem.

    In some ways, parallel staging might be better for them. Have one whole rocket lift off another, then off that one can be hard. Then too, typical rockets are hard enough for them. It might have been better for them to simply lengthen the first stage and operate stand-by engines once the first ones burn out to gain familiarity. See how far they can make a first stage fly.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    Should their new leader support space--there would be no holdbacks permitted. Anyone critical of spaceflight would have problems.
    A bit like here!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    They will be punished, but perhaps not executed.

    There are a lot of things that they cannot afford but do anyway--like this for example
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ryugyong_Hotel

    It is precisely because they don't spend a lot of money on food but prestige that these things get made. Frankly Sea Dragon or some other pressure-fed would be right up their alley.
    While that is true, I do not see how anybody with any claim on morals could say "I would like to see this state of affairs continue"

    I would like North Korean government to stop being grotesque tyrants and to stop starving their population. If that means giving up their space ambitions, I am all for it.

  7. #7
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    Sadly that's not going to happen. If it wasn't this--it would be something else. At least the Unha could be said to be a true satellite launcher. India--which also had some trouble with feeding folks--launched the Agni missile
    http://up-ship.com/blog/?p=14444

    There was no condemnation, even though this thing (outside of use as a sounding rocket perhaps) has NO space launch capability of any significance. Agni is very like the Pershing--an easily deployable, easily stored solid missile. This is a pure weapon. The global reaction? Silence.

    Frankly I want all nations to have a space program for the overview effect if nothing else. Space advocates in each country will be a counter to other folks in their governments who want local monies spent on tanks, fighters, ships.

    Pardon my megalomania, but I want little publiusr's the world over to go after their Air Forces like I do the fighter jocks here.

    We'd be better off.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ilya View Post
    I would like North Korean government to stop being grotesque tyrants and to stop starving their population. If that means giving up their space ambitions, I am all for it.
    While I don't like to see anyone starve, comments like this cross the line into politics.

    The opening post was fine, but frankly, we need to limit the discussion of North Korea's space program to technical aspects; anything else is getting into politics.

    This was our second attempt at this, and it has failed too. I am closing this thread.

    Until the North Koreans have a space program that is easily distinguishable from their military program, I think this is a topic we need to stay away from on BAUT.
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

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