The Navy has commissioned its first female pilot of a P-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft. Lt. Jg. Lee Joo-yeon (26) finished her copilot training for a P-3C aircraft on April 22 and completed her first flight mission Tuesday after a year of basic aviation training.
After graduating from the Korea Naval Academy in 2009, Lee underwent basic flight training for a year. For 29 weeks since last October, she completed intensive training, including day and night aerial maneuvers, patrol flying, and tactical operations.
Lee will be assigned to a flight squadron of a maritime patrol air wing for duties like maritime patrol and intelligence gathering, as well as anti-submarine operations.
The P-3C usually stays in the air for more than six hours per sortie, so pilots apparently expend a lot of physical energy and practice with a high level of concentration. They also often have to operate the aircraft at night and at low altitudes.
"I feel proud to be the Navy's first female maritime patrol pilot," Lee said. "I'd like to locate enemy subs and sink them with my own hands."