US Korea Institute

Tuesday July 26th 2016
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38 North offers informed analysis of events in and around the DPRK.

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Satellite Imagery

A look from the sky at what’s happening down in the DPRK.

North Korea’s Ballistic Missile Submarine: Probable Post-Missile Test Maintenance; Construction Hall Externally Complete

North Korea’s Ballistic Missile Submarine: Probable Post-Missile Test Maintenance; Construction Hall Externally Complete

A 38 North exclusive with analysis by Joseph S. Bermudez Jr. Summary Recent commercial satellite imagery, acquired five days after the July 9 launch of the second KN-11 this year, shows post-test activity and provides a status update of the Sinpo South Shipyard, the homeport of North Korea’s GORAE-class ballistic missile submarine [...]

North Korea: High Level of Activity at Nuclear Test Site Portal but Purpose is Unclear

North Korea: High Level of Activity at Nuclear Test Site Portal but Purpose is Unclear

A 38 North exclusive with analysis by Joseph S. Bermudez Jr. Summary Recent commercial satellite imagery indicates a high level of activity at North Korea’s Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Site, specifically at the North Portal area where the DPRK conducted its 2013 and 2016 nuclear tests. Based on imagery alone, it is not possible to determine [...]

Kim Chaek Iron and Steel Complex: Down but Not Out

Kim Chaek Iron and Steel Complex: Down but Not Out

A 38 North exclusive with analysis by Joseph S. Bermudez Jr. and Andy Dinville Summary A comparison of commercial multispectral and thermal satellite imagery from 2015 and 2016 indicates that the Kim Chaek Iron and Steel Complex has not been shut down due to the lack of materials and electricity as has been suggested by recent media reports. [...]

New Evidence of Probable Plutonium Production at the Yongbyon Nuclear Facility

New Evidence of Probable Plutonium Production at the Yongbyon Nuclear Facility

A 38 North exclusive with analysis by Joseph S. Bermudez, Jr. Summary Recent commercial satellite imagery shows new evidence that North Korea is preparing to commence or has already begun conducting a reprocessing campaign to separate more plutonium for nuclear weapons at the Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center. This activity [...]

Camouflage Netting Spotted on North Korea’s Ballistic Missile Submarine

Camouflage Netting Spotted on North Korea’s Ballistic Missile Submarine

A 38 North exclusive with analysis by Joseph S. Bermudez Jr. Recent commercial satellite imagery from May 8 of the Sinpo South Shipyard supports previous reports that North Korea is continuing to actively pursue development of both a ballistic missile submarine and submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBM). Camouflage netting, intended to [...]

Update on Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Site: No Indications that a Nuclear Test is Imminent

Update on Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Site: No Indications that a Nuclear Test is Imminent

A 38 North exclusive with analysis by Joseph S. Bermudez, Jr. Despite predictions by the South Korean government that a nuclear test appeared imminent to coincide with the DPRK's 7th Congress of the Workers' Party of Korea, that gathering is now ended and there are no apparent signs that a detonation will occur in the near future. Recent [...]

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Credit for photo of young North Korean girl: T.M. All rights reserved, used with permission.