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MSH-571 Yang Yang

Through the 1990s the navy remained a small force primarily dedicated to protecting the nation's territorial waters and islands. Now it has started to take on the features of an "Ocean-Going Navy" of the 21st century by building and commissioning Korean versions of a destroyer (KDX), a heavy landing ship (LST), a mine laying ship (MLS), and a mine hunting ship (MSH).

The Republic of Korea Navy mine hunter Yang Yang was operational at the beginning of 2000, and at that time seven more of the 730-ton ships were on order. By 2005 South Korea had a large mine countermeasures project under way, with up to 11 Yang Yang-class mine hunters expected to enter service in the next decade. By 2006 the navy was pushing forward with mine-clearing helicopter program by cutting back on mine-hunter acquisition, and it appeared this would mark the end of Yang Yang class construction. Indeed, by 2008, a total of only three were operational.

The Yang Yang class design is an enlarged version of the earlier Kang Keong / Swallow Chebi] Class MHC class using the same construction technology and layout as the earlier vessels. They are designed and built in accordance with most-up graded naval standard for anti-shock, anti-magnetic, minimum under water accoustic and electro magnetic interference. Newly introduced facilities ensures perfect quality assurance for the single skin G.R.P. hull structure.

The minehunting capabilities consist of: the Thomson Marconi SAS TSM 2061 Mk 3 combat system integrating a Thomson Marconi 2093 variable depth minehunting sonar; Raytheon I-band navigation radar; and two Italian Gaymarine Pluto Gigas ROVs. The ships are also fitted with the BAE Systems Wire Sweep Mk 9 deep wire sweep system and CIS combined influence sweep. Self-defence is provided by a Sea Vulcan Gatling 20 mm light AA gun and two 7.62 mm machine guns.

A Kongsberg Simrad integrated navigation and dynamic positioning system is fitted to aid in precise manoeuvring during minehunting and route survey operations. The machinery system comprises two MTU 2,000 bhp diesels driving two independent vertical Voith-Schneider cycloidal propellers through a gearbox and universal joint shaft. A 134 hp thruster is transversely mounted in the bow for precise manoeuvring. Machinery control is exercised through an Integrated Platform Management System (IPMS) supplied by CAE of Canada and sited in the machinery control room. The digital IPMS monitors and controls the ship's entire hull electrical and mechanical systems as well as the propulsion, electrical distribution, steering, damage control and navigation system. A microprocessor-based semi-automatic manoeuvring system co-ordinates the movements of the cycloidal propellers. In addition the engines can be controlled from the wheelhouse or from a local position in the engine room.

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