South Korea announced ambitious plans to launch a lunar
probe by 2020, joining an unofficial Asian space race that has seen Japan and
China successfully launch lunar probes to the moon, said South Korean space
officials. The country also hopes to launch a second lunar probe in 2025,
this time aiming to land on the moon.
The Ministry of Science and Technology also said South Korea wants to develop
the Korea Space Launch Vehicle-2 (KSLV-II), a new rocket with the ability to
carry a payload up to 300 tons into space. A new research center and
rocket launch pad should be completed next year in late 2008 or early 2009.
The first generation of KSLV, the KSLV-I, is slated to launch sometime in 2008.
South Korea has sent a dozen satellites into orbit, but had to rely on foreign
rockets every time.
South Korea plans to invest
almost $4 billion USD into space research over the next 10 years, hoping to
be able to develop and launch its own rockets and satellites. KARI also
plans to pay Russia to ferry a Korean astronaut to the International Space
Station (ISS) next year.
The Japan and Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) Selenological and Engineering
Explorer (SELENE) lunar probe successfully captured high-definition videos of
the Earth rising and of the lunar surface. The Chinese Chang'e 1 space
probe will begin to transmit its own findings back to Earth sometime next
month. The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) also has had recent
success with its initial space plans.
quote: Mining the moon will not be feasible for decades
quote: But the Azera is different. Hyundai's new flagship has all the expected Hyundai virtues, yet it looks, feels and drives like a premium Japanese car. Its XG350 predecessor was faux luxury, but the Azera is the real thing. Peel off the funky "H" badges and you might mistake its spacious, upscale interior for that of a Toyota Avalon.
quote: Inside, the Azera pours on the hospitality with surprising artistry. A crisp character line runs from the dash through to the door panels, encircling the driver and front passenger. It's an elegant ribbon of textured vinyl, really good faux wood and metallic piping. Just a subtle design cue, but along with the cabin's tight construction, it's enough to make this Hyundai feel like a full-on luxury sedan.Although we weren't as impressed by the plastic used for the window buttons and control stalks, overall materials quality hits a high standard. The leather upholstery is soft and double-stitched. And it's almost impossible to distinguish between the soft vinyl and harder plastic surfaces on the dash, because everything is so smooth and low in gloss.
quote: Interior accommodations are handsome and intelligently placed, even in the base GLS model. Brushed metallic surfaces look upscale and there are three different faux (and oddly convincing) wood grain trims throughout the range of trim levels. There are four different types of leather spread over SE and Limited trim levels, the nicest of which is only available in the Limited Ultimate.
quote: No, I would never sit in, drive , or spend my money on a Hyundai or Kia. Both are junk, built like crap.
quote: Do you have something personal against Koreans?