Korea's first astronaut will be taking Korean traditions and culture with him when he lifts off for the International Space Station in April.
The Ministry of Science and Technology unveiled Wednesday a total of 55 items that will go into space with astronaut Ko San: ten mission logos, space suits, two bokjumeoni (a traditional Korean pouch believed to bring good fortune), Byeol-dong-i and his sidekick Wi-ppo (two mascots of the Korea Aerospace Research Institute), traditional purses, banknotes, and more.
Since astronauts customarily leave money from their country in the Space Station, the Ministry of Science and Technology decided to send traditional Korean purses filled with W1,000, W5,000 and W10,000 bills (US$1=W946).
Other items include "The Night Counting Stars," a poem by prominent Korean poet Yoon Dong-ju, and a scarf with a pattern of the Cheonsangyeolchabunyajido, an astronomical map made during the Chosun Dynasty.
Twenty postcards to commemorate Korea's first astronaut will also go into space, as it is a sort of custom that astronauts take postcards of their homeland to the Space Station, put stamps on them and bring them back to Earth.