The Republic of Korea (ROK) Navy commissioned its first indigenous-built Dosan Ahn Changho-class (KSS III program) submarine today. ROKS Dosan Ahn Chang-ho (SS-083) was built by Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME). The commissioning ceremony of the submarine, named after South Korean independence fighter Dosan Ahn Chang-ho, was held at Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering Co.’s Okpo shipyard on the southern island of Geoje. The Dosan Ahn Chang-ho will be deployed by August 2022 after a year of evaluations. After the deployment, the submarine will take an active role as the country’s strategic weapons system against threats.
ROKS Dosan Ahn Changho (SS-083) is the lead ship of Dosan Ahn Changho-class submarines. Measured to displace over 3,800 tonnes (3,700 long tons) submerged during sea trials, they are the largest conventional submarines ever built by South Korea. The Batch II vessels will increase their displacement by approximately 450 t (440 long tons) (4,250 t, 4,180 long tons submerged), according to the Defense Acquisition Program Administration. Dosan An Chang-ho , which has a beam of 9.6 m, is now the largest submarine in the RoKN’s inventory: about 18 m longer and 3.3 m wider than the service’s 1,800-tonne KSS-II-class boats.
The Dosan Ahn Changho class are equipped with the Korean Vertical Launching System which will be able to carry up to “Chonryong” land-attack cruise missiles and “Hyunmoo” submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBM), becoming the first submarines in the South Korean navy to have this kind of capability. They will also have many other improvements compared to their predecessors built with a greater degree of South Korean technology, which will include Samsung SDI lithium-ion batteries. INDRA was selected to provide its electronic defense system (ESM) PEGASO and Babcock of the UK would design and manufacture the Weapon Handling System.