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[The 8th Navy Combat Training Group] New landing ship-The Ilchulbong-with flapping commission pennant

[The 8th Navy Combat Training Group] New landing s

The new landing ship (LST-), ‘The Ilchulbong,’ has been commissioned into the service with its commission pennant hoisted.

Republic of Korean Navy's 8th Combat Training Group (The 8th Combat Group) held a ceremony to mark the commissioning of The Ilchulbong vessel at Jinhae Naval Port in Changwon, Gyeongsangnam-do Province, in the afternoon on April 11. A commissioning ceremony is to place a ship in active service with its naval forces after the ship undergoes building and delivering. The Ilchulbong ship construction started in October 2015, and the ship was launched in October 2016 and was delivered to the Navy on the 2nd day of April.

The ceremony was hosted by the commander of the 8th Combat Group, Rear Admiral Han Dong-jin, and was attended by some 200 people, including major commanders and soldiers from the navy and the marine corps, officials from the Defense Acquisition Program Administration, Defense Agency for Technology and Quality, Hyundai Heavy Industries and subcontractors.

The 4900-ton class Ilchulbong is the Navy's third landing ship (LST-II). The 127-meter-long and 19-meter-wide Ilchulbong can sail at the maximum speed of 23 knots (40per hour), with about 120 crew members onboard. It can accommodate about 300 fully-armed landing forces. In addition, it has high-speed landing boats (LCM: landing craft mechanized), amphibious vehicles (KAAV: Korean Amphibious Assault Vehicle), and armored vehicles and can make two landing helicopters take off and land. Accordingly, it can carry out 'Over The Horizon Amphibious Operation,' in which a ship sets sail beyond visual range and radar coverage on the enemy's coastline.

Especially, it is equipped with the combat system and 40guns, decoy system, surface-to-air antimissile, and navigation and search radar, which were developed with domestic technologies. Its another strong point is that it can command and control in perfect order through a separate amphibious operation commanding office. It boasts a significant improvement in survivability from the Navy's existing Gojunbong-class landing ships(2600-ton class LST-) by applying bulletproof design and installing fire resisting bulkhead.

It normally transports armored personnel, equipment and supplies to the bases and islands, and in case of a local conflict, it transports the troops rapidly responding to it. Besides, it supports international cooperative activities including peace-keeping operations (PKO) and carries out non-military and humanitarian operations such as relief activities in a disaster. The Ilchulbong ship will be put into operation after undergoing commissioning and other trials.

The Navy named its third Cheonwangbong-class landing ship as 'The Ilchulbong' to pay a tribute to the braveness of the marines came from Jeju Island who took an active part during the Korean War and to match the powerful spirit of Seongsan Ilchulbong, which spreads out into the sea, with the image of the landing ship sending troops into the rear of the enemy.

By Byeong-No, Yun < >

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