Feeds

Failed Nork rocket bits straddle Japan

Pyongyang claims of 'singing sat' success dismissed

Intelligent flash storage arrays

North Korea, as expected, launched a large multi-stage rocket at the weekend. Parts of the stack fell on either side of Japan. Pyongyang claims that a satellite was put into orbit: Japanese and US air-defence commanders have stated this is untrue.

According to the US Northern Command, the rocket was a "Taepodong-2" long-range missile, which launched at 3:30 PM UK time on Saturday. US and Japanese warships equipped with SM-3 ballistic missile interceptors were on station in the Sea of Japan, but officials of both governments had previously stated that the North Korean rocket would not be interfered with unless it threatened US or Japanese territory.

Northern Command and the North American Aerospace Defence command (NORAD) issued a statement saying:

Stage one of the missile fell into the Sea of Japan/East Sea. The remaining stages along with the payload itself landed in the Pacific Ocean.

No object entered orbit and no debris fell on Japan.

NORAD and USNORTHCOM assessed the space launch vehicle as not a threat to North America or Hawaii and took no action in response to this launch.

North Korea's official news agency claimed that a satellite had been placed in orbit, where it was transmitting revolutionary songs. However this claim was widely discounted.

The Taepodong-2 design is assessed as potentially being able to deliver a payload as far as the western coast of the USA, or alternatively to put one into low orbit. In its only previous test in 2005, however, it blew up less than a minute after launch. North Korea is believed to have the materials and expertise to make a nuclear bomb, but not yet one small enough to be carried by such a missile.

Based on available reports, analysts are suggesting that the launch, while something of a step forward on the 2005 test, was a failure. It was thought that upper stages had failed to separate, preventing the payload reaching its intended speed and height.

"North Korea has not been able to demonstrate a reliable system capable of being an ICBM or a space launch vehicle," Joseph Bermudez of Jane's Information Group told AFP.

It has been previously suggested that Pyongyang is seeking to prove such a capability: either as a counter to be bargained away in negotiations with the West and Japan, or alternatively for sale to Iran.

US president Obama, attending an EU-US summit in Prague, condemned the launch as "provocative". Gordon Brown, also in the Czech republic, said it was "completely unacceptable", according to the Guardian.

The US and European allies argued at an emergency session of the UN Security Council in New York that the launch had violated a council resolution passed in 2006 following earlier tests. The western powers pressed for a hardline reaction, including strong condemnation and new sanctions.

However these suggestions faced strong resistance from China and Russia. The Security Council session ended early this morning without any agreement being reached. ®

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
MARS NEEDS WOMEN, claims NASA pseudo 'naut: They eat less
'Some might find this idea offensive' boffin admits
Boffins who stare at goats: I do believe they’re SHRINKING
Alpine chamois being squashed by global warming
LOHAN crash lands on CNN
Overflies Die Welt en route to lively US news vid
Comet Siding Spring revealed as flying molehill
Hiding from this space pimple isn't going to do humanity's reputation any good
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
No sail: NASA spikes Sunjammer
'Solar sail' demonstrator project binned
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
prev story

Whitepapers

Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.