June 14, 2007 11:04
Korea launched its second Type 214 attack submarine with improved operations capability and weapons systems from Hyundai Heavy Industries shipyard in Ulsan on Wednesday. The 1,800-ton sub is named after General Jung Ji (1347-1391) who fought off Japanese invaders during the Koryo Era. It will go through a year-long testing phase before it is delivered to the Navy in late 2008.
The Jung Ji is armed with Harpoon anti-ship guided missiles and 16 torpedoes. An army official said that a Korean cruise missile with a range of 500 km will be installed when the missile is finished being developed. The sub can carry out underwater operations for up to three weeks without having to surface thanks to an advanced air independent propulsion system, and is evaluated as having six times the fighting power of the older Type 209 subs that are currently the Navy's main underwater attack vessels.
The Navy will start to put three Type 214 submarines into service from this year one by one, and will add another each year from 2012 to 2018. The country's first Type 214, the Sohn Won-yil, was launched last year and will be commissioned at the end of this year. The Navy will spend W2.5 trillion (US$1=W938) between 2010 to 2021 to develop nine 3,000-ton submarines using Korean technology. It's also working on a plan to build a new submarine base.
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