Pohang Class Patrol Combat Corvettes
The Pohang is a class of Patrol Combat Corvette (PCC) of the Republic of Korea Navy (ROKN). A total of 24 ships were built by Korea Shipbuilding Corporation, Hyundai Heavy Industries, Daewoo Shipbuilding and Korea Takoma. Pohang Class is preceded by Donghae class corvette.
The lead ship in class, Pohang (PCC-756), was delivered to ROKN in 1984. Remaining ships including Gunsan (PCC-757), Gyeongju (PCC-758), Mokpo (PCC-759), Gimcheon (PCC-761), Chungju (PCC-762), Jinju (PCC-763), Yeosu (PCC-765), Jinhae (PCC-766), Suncheon (PCC-767), Iri (PCC-768), Wonju (PCC-769), Andong (PCC-771), Cheonan (PCC-772), Bucheon (PCC-773), Seongnam (PCC-775), Jecheon (PCC-776), Daecheon (PCC-777), Sokcho (PCC-778), Yeongju (PCC-779), Namwon (PCC-781), Gwangmyeong (PCC-782), Sinseong (PCC-783) and Gongju (PCC-785) were delivered by 1993.
The Pohang class ships are divided into ASUW (anti-surface warfare) and ASW (anti-submarine warfare) variants according to the weapon systems fitted onboard. The ASUW type includes four ships and ASW type comprises 20 ships. ROKN currently operates 22 Pohang Class corvettes. The first ship in class, Pohang, was retired and used for training exercises. Cheonan was sunk by the torpedo attack from North Korea on 26 March 2010.
The external form is identical to the Tonghae class. The versatile design allows the operators to equip the ship for multi-role missions.
Pohang class has a length of 88.3m, a beam of 10m and a draft of 3m. Displacement of the ship is 1,200t.
The vessel has a maximum speed of 32kt and can complement over 90 crew members.
Pohang Class missions
The primary mission of the corvette is coastal line patrolling. Pohang class is deployed as a main force to monitor defence in the South Korean coast. These ships were equipped to perform anti-submarine, anti-ship and anti-aircraft warfare operations in the littoral environment.
Pohang Class missiles
The ASUW type ships are armed with two MM-38 Exocet anti-ship missiles, while ASW variants are equipped with four Harpoon anti-ship missiles. The MM-38 is a short-range ship launched cruise missile developed by MBDA. The missile has a maximum range of 40km and can carry a 165kg warhead.
Pohang Class guns
The first four ships are fitted with an Oto Melara 76mm gun and two Emerson 30mm anti-aircraft guns. ASW type vessels are equipped with two OTO Melara 76mm guns and two Breda 40mm guns. Oto Melara has a rate of fire of 120 rounds a minute and a range of 16km.
ASW variants are equipped with Mark 32 triple torpedo tubes for Mark 46 torpedoes. These tubes can launch six torpedoes against submarines.
The torpedo travels at a speed of 45kt and is equipped with active and passive homing and a 44.5kg warhead. There are 12 Mark 9 depth charges also available for anti-submarine operations.
Pohang Class countermeasures
The ASUW ships are equipped with Mel Protean chaff launchers. Each launcher comprises four cells, with 36 grenades. The magazine can also be replaced with three IR flare containers, each accommodating 21 decoys. Other countermeasure equipment includes Thorn EMI or NobelTech intercept or jammer.
The Raytheon SPS-64 surface search radar, Signaal WM 28 fire control radar, Signaal LIOD (Lightweight Optronic Director) and SRN 15 TACAN (Tactical Air Navigation) Sonar are fitted on the ASUW type corvettes. The ASW type ships are equipped with Samsung or Marconi ST-1810 surface search radar, ST-1802 fire control radar, Samsung or Radamec 2400 optronic system and Signaal PHS-32 Hull mounted Sonar.
The Pohang Class corvettes are powered by a combined diesel or gas (CODOG) propulsion system. The system comprises two MTU diesel engines and a LM2500 gas turbine. Theses engines driving two shafts through the gearboxes provide 6,260SHP. The propulsion system provides a maximum speed of 32kt and a range of 4,000nm at a cruise speed of 15kt.