[FPSPACE] Moving the missle
cpvick at globalsecurity.org
Mon Jun 1 08:17:39 EDT 2009
Definitely there is activity in progress both at the factory at Sanum'dong
14 miles north of Pyongyang in which only the movements of the 40 meter long
flat bed erector transporter were seen. It is now reported that the missile
was as expected placed on the erector transporter and placed on a long
railroad car and that it is believed to have been shipped to Misudan-ni on
the east coast verses Tongchang-ri/ Pongdong-ni the west coast facility.
That journey started in the last 24 hours [May 29, 2009] and should take
both a train and road transport trip lasting about 4-5 days at most. We
should know in a few days if that is the case or not if imagery is provided
from open sources.
This last time  it took them about half the time than previously
. Previously this year from the day it was shipped from the factory
to roll out to the pad was 52-54 day with erected/assembly on the pad 12 day
prior to launch that would suggest a July launch. That depends on the final
check out time assembly in the MIK horizontal assembly building before
shipping to the pad. In 2006 they spent 20 days on the pad but this year
only 12 days on the pad. They have produced 20 boosters by 2006 separate
from the R&D elements copies so they are down to 18 boosters being updated
as required at this point.
Some are predicting a June launch and that is conceivably possible
especially to try a satellite launch before the South Korean satellite
launch planned for July 2009.
Whether the west coast Pongdong-ni facility is ready at this time is unknown
and until we know for sure on this I would remain uncertain of the launch
point planned. Whether an ICBM configuration or a satellite launch version
that will be flown is not certain at this time but frankly we will just have
to see what transpires there.
If they fly an LRICBM then that placates their claim of a space program
verses and LRICBM but I expect a probable LRICBM. Earlier assessments of the
Tongchang-ri/ Pongdong-ni the west coast facility is that it potentially
could be ready mid summer but more likely late in the fall of this year. The
Tongchang-ri/ Pongdong-ni as of mid December 2008 still did not have its
upper service levels completed and the gantry umbilical tower still did not
have the gantry crane and the top foundation for that in place so it was not
expected to be completed until May at the earliest. Now that it is June it
may have been accelerated for flight testing soon. Certainly a ground test
missile sent to the Tongchang-ri/ Pongdong-ni site would not be unexpected
but time will tell on that issue.
The multiple missile launches are the typical military exercises held three
times yearly coincided with the DPRK geopolitical statement that is also
associated with their defensive systems testing training.
From: fpspace-bounces at friends-partners.org
[mailto:fpspace-bounces at friends-partners.org] On Behalf Of Morris Jones
Sent: Sunday, May 31, 2009 9:25 PM
To: fpspace at friends-partners.org
Subject: [FPSPACE] Moving the missle
Donga.com suggests the latest NK TD-2 will eventually be moved to the new
West coast launch site at Tongchang-ri.
Is this new base ready for launches?
However, it's still apparently going to Musudan-ri first. Is this for some
sort of payload integration or testing?
The movements (literally) are becoming strange.
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