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Hanwha contracted to improve South Korean C-130s

South Korea's Lockheed Martin C-130 fleet is a key component of its special forces' operations and deep infiltration and penetration. In this photo, a RoKAF C-130 drops five-gallon drums of water during a military exercise in South Korea in 2017. (US Department of Defense)

Hanwha Systems has announced that it has been awarded a contract by the South Korean government to improve the Republic of Korea's (RoK's) Lockheed Martin C-130H Hercules aircraft.

In a filing on the South Korean financial market, Hanwha said the contract was awarded by South Korea's Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) on 19 June. According to the filing, the contract period became active on 19 June and is expected to be completed by 30 November 2027.

According to Hanwha, the contract has a value of KRW73.659 billion (USD57.42 million). A Hanwha Systems spokesperson said that the project aims to enhance the C-130H transport aircraft by installing various new systems and components.

“These include directional infrared countermeasures (DIRCM), a missile approach warning system (MAWS), and a survival management computer (EWC). These additions will provide the C-130H with its own protective equipment,” the spokesperson said.

“Hanwha Systems plans to integrate the MAWS, which is provided by overseas partners, with the domestically developed DIRCM and EWC,” the company spokesperson said.

Hanwha started the operational testing of the DIRCM in 2018, according to Janes data. In the same year, DAPA said that the locally developed DIRCM was designed to counter the non-imaging IR seekers used by many older missiles still in service. DAPA had said that the system would be further developed to counter more modern missiles using an imaging IR (IIR) seeker. Janes

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