South Korea Launches New Space Agency Aiming to Land on Moon and Mars by 2045

4th Jun 2024
South Korea Launches New Space Agency Aiming to Land on Moon and Mars by 2045

Striving to compete in the global space race, the South Korean government announced ambitious plans to land on the Moon by 2032 and Mars by 2045.

Ambitious Moon and Mars Landing

On 27 May 2024, South Korea officially launched a new agency — the Korea AeroSpace Administration (KASA). This space agency will be responsible for leading space development in the country. Its head is former aerospace engineering professor Yoon Young-bin.

The President of Korea Yoon Suk Yeol emphasized on the importance of boosting the national space industry. Previously the space sector in South Korea was led mostly by the government. So, he initiated a campaign to shift the space industry to the private sector. A cornerstone of this campaign is the launch of KASA, which will play a crucial role in driving these changes.

South Korea Mars plans
Credit: ICT Korea

“The establishment of KASA will be an important stepping stone that guides the way for Korea to become a powerhouse in space economy by setting up the private-led space ecosystem,” – the chief of KASA said.
The government plans to increase spending on space-related programs to 1,5 trillion won ($1,1 billion) over five years from 2022 to 2027. A large part of that funding would go to developing space vehicles, rockets, satellites, and other technologies with commercial applications. Eventually, KASA experts intend to create their own spacecraft to land on Mars.

The maximum number of KASA employees is set to 293, but currently, it operates with 110 experts. The agency is looking for new talents worldwide to fill up the rest of its positions by the end of this year.
For now, Korea’s share in the global space sector is around 1%, and the government intends to increase this number to 10% by 2045 and create over 100,000 jobs in the sector.

President Yoon Suk Yeol envisions KASA as a powerful tool to boost the national economy and bring the Korean space industry to a new level. He announced a plan to plant the Korean national flag on Mars in 2045, when the country celebrates the 100th anniversary of its liberation day.

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