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South Korea to Deploy KTSSM-1 This Year, Dubbed “North Korea’s Bunker Killer”

The KTSSM-1 surface-to-surface missile system is designed to penetrate North Korea's underground bunkers and destroy Pyongyang's artillery systems housed within these underground facilities.

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(DEFENCE SECURITY ASIA) — Following the escalating situation on the Korean Peninsula, South Korea has announced its intention to begin deploying its surface-to-surface missile system called the “Korea Tactical Surface-to-Surface Missile” (KTSSM-1) for operational use later this year.

The KTSSM-1 surface-to-surface missile system is designed to penetrate North Korea’s underground bunkers and destroy Pyongyang’s artillery systems housed within these underground facilities.

 Termed as the “bunker killer,” both KTSSM-1 and the under-development KTSSM-II by South Korea are envisaged to serve this purpose.

The deployment of the surface-to-surface missile system KTSSM-1 for operation this year was recently disclosed by the South Korean Ministry of Defense.

Seoul’s decision to deploy and operationalize the surface-to-surface missile system this year follows its successful completion of quality certification last year.

KTSSM-1

South Korea initiated the development of the surface-to-surface missile system KTSSM-1 shortly after the artillery attack incident by North Korea on Yeonpyeong Island in November 2010, which nearly sparked a war between the two neighboring countries.

The artillery attack by North Korea on Yeonpyeong Island resulted in the loss of two local civilians and two North Korean Marine Corps members.

The KTSSM-1 missile system was introduced to the South Korean public in 2017 and has been developed by the South Korean defense agency, the Defense Acquisition and Program Administration (DAPA), along with Hanwha Aerospace.

Launched from a static launcher, the surface-to-surface missile KTSSM-1 has the capability to target distances ranging between 180km to 200km and can penetrate underground bunkers to depths of several meters to neutralize any stored weapon systems.

Its guidance system relies on the Global Positioning System (GPS).

KTSSM-1

KTSSM-1

In January of last year, South Korea conducted a test launch of KTSSM-II.

 Although KTSSM-1 is set to be operationalized this year, South Korea has already developed KTSSM-II, boasting a longer firing range compared to its predecessor.

The ground-to-ground guided missile system KTSSM-II is expected to have a firing range of up to 300km and is equipped with a more powerful explosive warhead, capable of penetrating North Korea’s underground bunkers located far deeper beneath the Earth’s surface. — DSA

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