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S. Korea's K9 self-propelled howitzers perform well in int'l tests

All Headlines 16:33 September 01, 2016

SEOUL, Sept. 1 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's K-9 self-propelled howitzers (SPHs) performed well in international tests this year, paving the way for the weapon system to be exported to major markets, the state defense procurement agency said Thursday.

In the 2016 Self-propelled Howitzers Development Forum hosted by the Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA), Hanwha Techwin Co., a local defense-related company, introduced performance test results for the K-9 SPHs carried out in several countries.

The weapon's performance tests were made in Norway in January, Sweden in May, the United Arab Emirates in August and Finland in September. Most of the countries are potential buyers of the South Korea-made weapon, the DAPA said.

In January's test, the K-9 SPHs competed with its counterparts such as Germany's PzH-2000, Switzerland's M109L47 and France's Caesar in areas of firing, mobility, maintenance and loading space. It advanced to the short list of well-performing self-propelled guns, the agency said.

In previous tests conducted in Spain, Malaysia, Australia and India from 2003 to 2010, the K-9 SPHs met all of the local performance requirements. About 1,000 K-9 SPHs with that can shoot a round to a range of 40 kilometers have been deployed with the South Korean Army and its technology has been exported to Turkey and Poland, DAPA said.

"The current K-9 SPHs will be gradually replaced with an automotive and unmanned vehicle with remote control technology," an official said.

kyongae.choi@yna.co.kr
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