South Korea: New artillery brigade equipped with KTSSM ballistic missile

Ministry of National Defense of South Korea has approved a plan to create a new artillery brigade under a ground forces operations command to be inaugurated in October. This new military unit will be equipped with a new short-range ballistic missile system, dubbed as the Korea Tactical Surface-to-Surface Ballistic Missile (KTSSM).

South Korea New artillery unit equipped with KTSSM ballistic missile 925 002
New Korea Tactical Surface-to-Surface Ballistic Missile (KTSSM)at ADEX defense exhibition in South Korea, October 2017. (Picture source Army Recognition)

The goal of this unit is to have the capacity to destroy long range artillery systems in service with the North Korean armed forces. The Korea Tactical Surface-to-Surface Missile (KTSSM) has been developed to offer a a rapid-response missile able to counter fire of North Korean artillery systems, multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS), and short-range ballistic missiles.

The KTSSM (Korea Tactical Surface-to-Surface Missile) is a surface-to-surface tactical ballistic missile developed by the South Korean Agency for Defense Development (ADD) and the defense Company Hanwha. Four missiles can be launched almost simultaneously from a static launch platform. Missile is fitted 2 GPS-guided system and has a maximum firing range of 120 km. It can penetrate bunkers and hard dug-in targets several meters underground.

The KTSSM was unveiled for the first time to the public in October 2017 during the defense exhibition ADEX 2017 in South Korea. In October 2017, South Korea has announced a test-launch of the local-made surface-to-surface missile KTSSM. This new missile is developed in two the KTSSM-I and KTSSM-II. Both missiles use a propellant that is externally heated before it is passed through a nozzle. The missiles are launched from a fixed platform.

The KTSSM missile system is also capable to destroy Soviet-made Scud tactical ballistic missiles, or long-range surface-to-surface missiles fired from mobile launchers.

A statement was also published in October 2017, that KTSSM system is being delayed, with completion being postponed from 2019 to 2023 because the United States has yet to approve the purchase of more than 300 components, including a military GPS.