South Korean Navy holds ceremony for latest maritime patrol P-8A Poseidon

Republic of Korea Navy / Facebook

A handover ceremony was held by the South Korean Navy (ROKN) on July 4, 2024, to welcome the latest P-8A Poseidon multi-role maritime patrol aircraft at the Naval Aviation Command, based in Pohang, North Gyeongsang. The handover marked the completion of delivery of six P-8A Poseidon aircraft to the ROKN. 

The event, led by Brigadier General Ha Sung-wook, Commander of the Naval Aviation Command, included an opening ceremony, national ceremony, progress report, aircraft naming ceremony and a commendation service. A speech was also given by Minister of National Defense, Shin Won-sik.  

The event also included an aircraft tail number designation ceremony. This was conducted by Yang Yong-mo, Vice Admiral, and saw the six P-8A Poseidon aircraft numbered in order of entry: 921, 922, 923, 925, 926, 927, following the P-series maritime patrol aircraft model numbering system. 

“The P-8A will greatly contribute to the security readiness of the Republic of Korea as a key force to neutralize enemy submarines and a firm pillar of the Korean sea-based three-axis system,” commented Ha Sung-wook. 

South Korea ordered six P-8A aircraft in September 2018. The first three units were delivered to the ROKN following the training of its personnel in the United States.  

The P-8A is scheduled to enter service in mid-2025. 

The P-8A is a maritime patrol aircraft with anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface ship warfare, and maritime reconnaissance capabilities. It can carry over 120 sonar buoys (sonobuoys) that can be dropped from the aircraft to detect, identify, and track enemy submarines. The P-8A Poseidon can also target submarines and other sea targets using torpedoes, mines, depth charges, and anti-ship missiles. 

The P-8A will replace the ROKN’s aging P-3 fleet, offering an upgrade in speed, detection capabilities, and operational range.  

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