SEOUL, Oct. 18 (Yonhap) -- South Korea plans to start deploying a new military mine detector capable of locating non-metal objects, such as those made of wood, in the latter half of next year, the state arms procurement agency said Monday.
The Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) signed a contract with local developer Hanwha Systems Co. last week to mass-produce the hand-held mine detector, as the military seeks to replace its aging detectors introduced in the late 1990s.
Developed in December last year, the new detector employs Ground Penetrating Radar technology -- the first time a local company has applied the technology using radio waves to identify underground structures and features.
The military plans to start deploying the detectors to the armed forces in the latter half of next year in phases following a series of operational tests.
Once fully deployed, the mine detectors will be used to clear mines along the lines of ground operations during wartime and to conduct peace operations to remove stray mines near the inter-Korean border and recover the remains of troops killed during the 1950-53 Korean War, officials said.
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