South Korea Recovers North Korean Satellite Wreckage

At approximately 2000 EST, the South Korean military announced they had recovered salvage from the Manri-1 Spy Satellite on the Chollima-1 satellite carrier rocket, which was unsuccessfully launched on May 30th, 2023. Below are the photos released by the South Korean military.

The wreckage was found 200km west of the island Eocheong in 75m of water. Multiple salvage ships and P-8 recon aircraft were deployed in the search. However, South Korean officials stated that recovering the 15m section of the rocket was extremely challenging:

“Divers first attached pieces of hauling gear to the cylinder-shaped wreckage and linked it to steel wires. Before it was lifted close to the surface, divers added additional pieces of equipment to ensure it would not fall back down. Then, they hauled it onto a military ship, using a crane.

Challenges emerged from the initial phase as divers could hardly find parts of the round-shaped wreckage’s exterior where they could fix wires — unlike the uneven exterior of the crashed helicopter salvaged last year.

Among the hindrances were the heavy weight of the wreckage stuck in the mud flat and the possibility that it could break apart while being lifted. Concerns also arose that an explosion could occur if it contained combustible elements like a fuel storage part.“

The search is ongoing for the actual satellite and the rest of the rocket body.

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Ethan Alun
Ethan Alun
A United States Naval Academy and American Military University Alumni, Ethan covers flash military, intelligence, and geo-political updates.
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