South Korea's third aegis combat naval ship, the Seoae Ryu Seong-ryong, was handed over to the Navy on Thursday by its builder at a shipyard of Hyundai Heavy Industries in the southeastern city of Ulsan.
The new destroyer, which is equipped with high-tech aegis radar, is truly one of a kind.
[Interview : Park Sang-cheol, Sr. vice president
Hyundai Heavy Industries] "The Seoae Ryu Seong-ryong is quite different from other existing aegis vessels. Over 100 tons of steel are attached on both sides to prevent damage from explosions in and outside of the ship. This system for a destroyer is not seen anywhere else in the world."
The Aegis radar and weapons control system also allows the ability to gather three-dimensional information for anti-aircraft, anti-ship and anti-submarine operations.
[Reporter : Kim Na-ri, firstname.lastname@example.org
Ulsan] "The ship has extra meaning, as its weapon system includes technology that was developed here in Korea."
The 7,600 ton destroyer can carry 300 crew members and approximately 120 missiles and torpedoes including domestically developed ship-to-ship missiles and torpedoes as well as a vertical missile-launch system and ship-to-surface cruise missiles.
[Interview : Lee Sang-gab, Captain
Seoae Ryu Seong-ryong] "The Seoae Ryu Seong-ryong can support battles in air, land and sea. It will become the best combat ship, especially in defending the South from any aggressions by the North."
South Korea has built three Aegis destroyers since 2004 to bolster its defense against its unpredictable neighbor.
The first and second ships were commissioned in 2008 and 2010.
The Seoae Ryu Seong-ryong, which is named after a leading scholar during the Joseon Dynasty, will be put into service in late 2012 after a year of test operations.
Kim Na-ri, Arirang News, Ulsan.