Tuesday, July 23, 2024

South Korean Navy receives first P-8A Poseidon aircraft

The Republic of Korea Navy (ROKN) took delivery of its first three P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft on June 19, 2024.

This delivery marks a significant enhancement in South Korea’s anti-submarine warfare capabilities amid growing threats from North Korea.

The initial batch of three aircraft is part of a broader acquisition plan, with three more P-8As scheduled to arrive by the end of June. These aircraft will undergo a year-long evaluation period before becoming fully operational.

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The P-8A Poseidon was chosen to replace the aging fleet of 16 P-3C/K Orion maritime patrol aircraft. The advanced capabilities of the P-8A include faster speeds and extended operational range compared to the P-3.

Upon the P-8A’s arrival, the ROKN conducted a joint flight operation with existing P-3 aircraft to welcome the new fleet.

The P-8A Poseidon is equipped with a long-range X-band radar capable of detecting targets hundreds of kilometers away and advanced EO/IR sensors for high-resolution imaging. It also carries anti-ship missiles, torpedoes, and up to 120 sonobuoys for submarine detection.

With the P-8A, the ROKN’s aerial anti-submarine warfare capabilities will significantly improve, enhancing rapid response and surveillance over South Korean waters. The integration of P-8As, also used by the U.S. Navy, ensures interoperability for joint maritime operations.

The ROKN plans an official acceptance ceremony for the new aircraft on July 4 at the Naval Aviation Command. After comprehensive evaluation and training, the P-8A Poseidons will be operational by mid-2025.

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Executive Editor

About author:

Gu Min Chul
Gu Min Chul
Gu Min Chul is a defense reporter who covers the Korean defense industry and all related issues.

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