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SOUTH KOREA’S SUBMARINE-LAUNCHED BALLISTIC MISSILE (SLBM)

SOUTH KOREA’S SUBMARINE-LAUNCHED BALLISTIC MISSILE (SLBM)

Context:

On September 15, 2021, South Korea tested an indigenously developed submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM).

Key Highlights:

  • South Korea is the 1st country without nuclear weapons to develop such a missile system.
  • With this achievement, South Korea has joined only a handful of countries to have successfully developed an SLBM.
  • Other countries that have tested or developed SLBMs, are United States, Britain, France, North Korea, Russia, China, and India, which have typically designed them to carry nuclear weapons.

SLBM:

  • It is a ballistic missile capable of being launched from submarines.
  • These operate in a different way from submarine-launched cruise missiles.
  • Modern submarine-launched ballistic missiles are related to intercontinental ballistic missiles, with ranges of over 5,500 kilometres (3,000 nmi), and in many cases, SLBMs and ICBMs may be part of the same family of weapons.

SLBM Origins:

  • The 1st practical design of a submarine-based launch platform was developed by the Germans near the end of World War II including a launch tube that contained a V-2 ballistic missile variant and was towed behind a submarine, known by the code-name Prüfstand XII.

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