S. Korea Deploying 1,000-Kilometer Cruise Missiles


Founding Member
Regular Member
Feb 19, 2009
South Korea began deploying 1,000-kilometer-range surface-to-surface cruise missiles in the field earlier this year, according to missile developers and military sources Monday.

The missile, a modified variant of the Hyunmoo missile, is capable of reaching as far as Beijing and Tokyo, as well as hitting key targets in the entire North Korean territory, they said.

It is the first time that the development and deployment of the long-range cruise missile, dubbed Hyunmoo-III, have been confirmed. Previously, the government neither confirmed nor denied the cruise missile development in an apparent move not to provoke tensions with China and Japan, as well as North Korea.

The Hyunmoo is a ballistic missile, developed by the state-funded Agency for Defense Development (ADD) and LIG Nex1, a leading missile developer in South Korea, with a range of 180 to 300 kilometers.

"Production of the Hyunmoo-III missile began earlier this year at LIG Nex1 facilities in Gumi, North Gyeongsang Province, and the missiles have been delivered to an Army unit," a source told The Korea Times on condition of anonymity.

The Hyunmoo-III can hit targets with a margin of error of plus or minus five meters aided by a Terrain Contour Matching (TERCOM) system, according to the source.

Hyunmoo-II ballistic missiles, with a range of 300 kilometers, have been operational since last year, the source revealed, adding the ADD and LIG Nex1 began developing the 1,500-kilometer-range Hyunmoo-IIIA cruise missile recently.

In an effort to help thwart North Korea's increasing asymmetrical capability of missile and nuclear weapons, the Seoul government has pushed for developing long-range cruise missiles since 2006, when the North test-fired the Taepodong-2 intercontinental ballistic missile and subsequently conducted its first nuclear test.

Seoul's development of a long-range cruise missile doesn't violate guidelines restricting the country's missile technology.

South Korea restricted its missile range to 300 kilometers in a 2001 agreement with the United States, which declared at the same time it would support South Korea's membership in the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR).

The MTCR is an informal and voluntary regime of more than 30 countries that seeks to limit missile proliferation by restricting exports of missiles that have a range of 300 kilometers or more, and capable of delivering a 500-kilogram payload.

The regime, however, only applies to high-velocity, free flight ballistic missiles, excluding the slower, surface-skimming cruise weapons.

The cruise missile, dubbed a "flying bomb," is a guided missile that uses a lifting wing and most often a jet propulsion system to allow sustained flight. The self-navigating cruise missile travels at supersonic or high subsonic speeds and flies in a non-ballistic very low altitude trajectory to avoid radar detection.

Only a few nations, such as the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Russia, China and Israel, possess advanced long-range cruise missiles.

Since Pyongyang test-fired an ICBM last April and subsequently conducted a second nuclear test a month later, South Korean authorities have raised the need of revising the missile range guidelines.

The Hyunmoo ballistic missiles are capable of striking Pyongyang and Shinuiju in North Korea in the case of war, as well as short- and medium-range missile sites in Shinsang-ri, South Hamgyeong Province and Gitaeryeong, Gangwon Province.

But the missiles can't hit North Korean long-range missile sites, including the Musudan-ri site in North Hamgyeong Province, located more than 300 kilometers from Seoul.

Against that backdrop, many defense analysts here say South Korea should be allowed to develop ballistic missiles with ranges of 550 to 700 kilometers to cover the entire North.

North Korea has deployed more than 600 Scud missiles with a range of 320-500 kilometers and 200 Rodong missiles with a range of 1,300 kilometers near the Demilitarized Zone dividing the two Koreas.

The reclusive state is also believed to be pushing ahead with the development of a 6,700-kilometer-range intercontinental ballistic missile capable of hitting the western part of the United States.


Senior Member
Oct 5, 2009
South Korea develops cruise missile: Reports

Seoul: South Korea has developed a long-range cruise missile capable of striking nuclear sites and military targets in North Korea, news reports said today.

The Hyunmu-3C missile has a range of 930 miles (1,500 kilometres), the Chosun Ilbo newspaper reported, citing the August edition of its sister magazine Monthly Chosun.

The new missile, if confirmed, would be the longest-range weapon in South Korea's arsenal. Missile-range limits have been agreed upon under an accord with the US, which has cited concerns over a possible regional arms race.

The surface-to-surface missile will be deployed along the border with North Korea beginning this year, the newspaper said. It has a 990-pound (450-kilogram) payload and can hit within 2 yards (meters) of its target, the report said.

Despite the agreement with the US, South Korea can develop long-range cruise missiles as long as the payload is under 1,100 pounds (500 kilograms).

The Hyunmu-3C missile would also have the capability of hitting parts of China, Japan and Russia.

Yonhap news agency carried a similar story. Both reports cited unidentified military officials.

A spokesman for the Defense Acquisition Program Administration said he could neither confirm nor deny the reports. He spoke on condition of anonymity citing policy. A Defense Ministry spokesman was not immediately available for comment.

North Korea already has long-range missiles. The Taepodong-2 has a potential range of more than 4,100 miles (6,700 kilometres), putting Alaska within striking distance.



Senior Member
Sep 5, 2009
Wonder when we will see a long range version (probably 1000-1500 km) of the Brahmos in our arsenal !!

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