South Korea launched its first three-thousand-ton indigenous submarine, the Dosan Ahn Chang-ho, on Friday.

The launch ceremony took place at the Okpo Shipyard of Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering on the southern island of Geoje in South Gyeongsang Province.

The Navy said the latest technologies were employed in constructing the first mid-class naval submarine. It said the sub will serve as a new strategic weapons system to respond to a full range of threats and bolster the Navy's underwater defense capabilities. 

Named after a prominent South Korean independence fighter, the Dosan Ahn Chang-ho will be delivered to the Navy in December 2020 following trial tests. Its operational deployment is slated for January 2022. 

Unlike Korea's existing 12-hundred and 18-hundred ton subs that were built with technological assistance from German firms, the latest submarine is the first to have been designed domestically.

South Korea is the 15th country in the world to have designed a homegrown submarine.

[Photo : YONHAP News]