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MADEX 2019: South Korea aims to deploy Tiger Shark torpedo by 2020

A mock-up of the Tiger Shark heavyweight torpedo on display at MADEX 2019 (M.Boruah/Janes)

A mock-up of the Tiger Shark heavyweight torpedo on display at MADEX 2019 (M.Boruah/Janes)

South Korea is expected to deploy the Tiger Shark torpedo on its naval submarines by 2020, a South Korean government agency has told Jane’s .

The weapon, which has been designed for the KSS-2 and KSS-3 classes of submarines, was showcased at the International Maritime Defense Industry Exhibition (MADEX 2019) in Busan.

The Tiger Shark concept was first introduced by LIG Nex1 during MADEX 2017. An Agency for Defense Development (ADD) official said acceptance trials by the Republic of Korea Navy (RoKN) were conducted in 2018, and production, as well deployment on RoKN submarines, is expected by 2020.

The Tiger Shark is designed to strike enemy vessels from longer distances and features enhanced speed and processing capabilities over its predecessor, the White Shark torpedo.

The wire-guided torpedo is equipped with passive and active sonar and possesses wake-homing capabilities. According to LIG Nex1, the conformal transducer arrays have more than +/-100° horizontal detection angle and about +/- 20° vertical detection capabilities. Navigational data is provided by a fibre-optic inertial navigation system (INS).

The torpedo is designed for standard 553 mm tubes, has a length of 7.1 m, and a weight of 1.7 tonnes. The torpedo is armed with 260 kg of plastic-bonded explosive (PBX) warhead with magnetic influence and contact fuses.

It has a top speed of about 50 kt, with a range of 50 km and endurance of 60 mins. The brushless DC (BLDC) motor of Tiger Shark is powered by lithium-polymer batteries and features a counter-rotary propeller arrangement.

The weapon is optimised for shallow-water performance with operating depth ranging from 2 to 600 m.

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