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S. Korea deploys indigenous unmanned underwater mine disposal vehicle

Defense 10:15 December 29, 2020

SEOUL, Dec. 29 (Yonhap) -- A new underwater mine disposal vehicle has been deployed to the Navy in a move expected to boost safety and operational capabilities, the arms procurement agency said Tuesday.

The vehicle, developed by local firm Daeyang Electric Co., was first delivered to the military in 2018, and around 10 units were put into operation, according to the Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA).

The vehicle, which adopts key features of a marine robot, is designed to perform mine-clearance missions by searching and identifying mines underwater and neutralizing them by placing explosives, according to the DAPA.

It is remotely controlled to ensure that operators remain out of harm's way when buried mines are detonated.

The new system can withstand strong currents, and stay longer underwater than the imported vehicle that the Navy had used so far, the agency added.

"The gadget will be used around major ports, sea lanes and beaches to remove mines in a swift and safe manner," a DAPA official said. "It is expected to improve the Navy's capabilities."

This photo, provided by the Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) on Dec. 29, 2020, shows an indigenous mine disposal vehicle that was deployed to the Navy. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

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