Hanwha Defense to provide more K55A1 155 mm self-propelled howitzers to South Korea Army
South Korean Defense Company Hanwha Defense has signed a deal to provide the South Korean Army with the fifth batch of K55 A1 155mm tracked self-propelled howitzers, the company said on December 30, 2019. Valued at $118 million, the contract was signed between Hanwha Defense and the Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA). Delivery of the artillery is scheduled to be completed by October 30, 2022.
K55A1 155mm tracked self-propelled howitzer of South Korean Army. (Picture source Post Naver)
The K55 and K55A1 are South Korean variants of the American-made M109 tracked 155mm self-propelled howitzer, originally based on M109A2 with additional local specifications, this artillery is produced in South Korea under license by the Company Samsung Techwin.
K55 and K55A1 are fitted with NBC protection, automatic fire extinguishing system, and a modified ammunition reception module for K56 automatic ammunition resupply vehicle.
The improved version of the K55, the K55A1 is modernized with modern digital ballistic computers, multifunctional data display and controllers, GPS navigation and target acquisition system, wireless data link equipment, and upgraded fire control storage battery and power supply unit, to closely match the US military's modernization of the Paladin into the next-generation standard. Many improved technologies of the South Korean K9 Thunder were retrofitted on the K55A1. A total of 1,040 howitzers of these variants were produced.
The main armament of the K55A1 consists of one 155 mm 30 caliber length that can fire unassisted and assisted ammunition at a maximum firing range of 24 km. It has a maximum firing rate of 4 rounds per minute and can carry a total of 36 ammunition.
The K55 has a weight of 25 tons and is operated by a crew of 6. It can run at a maximum road speed of 56 km/h with a maximum cruising range of 360 km.