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S Korea launches sixth Type 214 attack submarine

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A Type 214 class submarine of S Korea. An RoKN photo

SEOUL (BNS): South Korea has launched a new 1,800-ton class attack submarine for the Navy aimed at boosting its underwater warfare capabilities against North Korea.

The underwater vessel, named "Yu Gwan-sun", is the sixth Type 214 class diesel-electric attack submarine for the country's Navy.

Built by the Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering Co., the submarine was launched in the southern coastal city of Geoje, South Gyeongsang Province, on Thursday, according to the official Yonhap news agency.

The Republic of Korea Navy (RoKN) plans to commission the submarine in November 2016.

"It is the first submarine bearing a woman's name in our history," the RoKN said in a statement.

"We've christened it Yu Gwan-sun (a revered independence fighter), to honour her sacrifice and to promote public security awareness, marking the 70th anniversary of independence from Japan's colonial rule and the establishment of the Navy," the news report said quoting the Navy statement.

The submarine is armed with indigenous Haeseong ship-to-ship cruise missiles, torpedoes and mines for anti-vessel and anti-submarine operations. The cruise missiles with a maximum range of 1,500-kms are capable of carrying out precision strikes against enemies' key facilities.

The sub's maximum underwater speed is 20 knots, which enables it to travel between South Korea and Hawaii without refueling.

The diesel-powered submarine will be operated by Air Independent Propulsion (AIP), which bolsters the vessel's submerged endurance and allows the crew to carry out underwater missions for up to two weeks without access to atmospheric oxygen, the Navy said.

The RoKN has placed order for a total of nine Type 214 class submarines being built by the country's Hyundai Heavy Industries (HII) and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. (DSME).

The Navy currently operates 13 submarines that include nine 1,200-ton Type 209 subs and four 1,800-ton Type 214 subs. It also plans to acquire nine 3,000-ton level heavy-attack submarines (capable of launching ballistic missiles) after 2020.

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S Korea  Submarine  Missile  Navy  
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