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09:49 AM, February 14, 2020
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S Korean Navy Selects Thales to Replace Defective Sonar on Warship
Thales Sonar 2087 fitted on UK Royal Navy's Type 23 frigate

South Korea has selected Thales' sonar system to be fitted on its naval rescue ship, six years after the old one was found to be of substandard quality.

"The Defense Acquisition Program Administration is now putting a sonar system made by Thales Group in the Tongyeong, which is to be completed this week," a Navy officer was quoted as saying by Yonhap on Thursday.

"Then the Navy will test it until early March," the official added.

The Navy's 3,500-ton Tongyeong ship was mobilized for search and rescue operations following the deadly sinking of the Sewol ferry in April 2014. It was then that the sonar system onboard the boat was found to be unfit for military operations.

Investigators later found corruption cases involved in the course of selecting its parts suppliers.

Although built in 2012, the South Korean navy took delivery of the ship only three years later owing to concerns over the ship's quality. Except for hull-mounted sonar systems and remotely operated underwater vehicles, however, the ship turned out to have met military requirements, so the Navy accepted it in 2015 and has put it into operation.

"The new sonar system is expected to enable the ship to fully carry out its due role," another official said.

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