Most recently, on January 4, 2021, the South Korean Navy officially commissioned its second Daegu-class frigate – the ROKS Gyeongnam (FFG-819).


The Daegu-class frigate is the product of the FFX Batch-II program, with only two frigates commissioned the South Korean navy: the lead ship is the ROKS Daegu FFG-818, the second one is the ROKS Gyeongnam FFG-819. Two more ships were launched, ROKS Seoul in November 2019, and ROKS Donghae in April 2020. As planned, a total of eight frigates will be built, with the final goal of 20-22 frigates in the ROKN.

The Daegu-class is an improved variant of the Incheon-class frigate, capable of detecting or attacking targets such as ships and submarines significantly improved, to defend itself from aircraft and guided missiles, compared with existing frigates and patrol combat corvettes.

Daegu-class frigate
Daegu-class frigate


Daegu-class frigates are quite compact in size. The standard displacement of the FFX Batch II is 2,800 tons, and full load of 3,593 tons. She is 122m long (400 ft), the beam is 14m (46 ft) and the draft is 34m (13 ft).

According to the manufacturer, the survivability of the Daegu class has been maximized because it has a stealth design. Inheriting the Incheon-class hull design, however, the weapon system and superstructure were significantly changed on the Daegu-class frigates.

The hangar and a hellicopter deck on stern has been enlarged to support the operation of a 10-ton helicopter. Supported types include the Westland Super Lynx or AW159 utility types, serve as anti-submarine or anti-surface ship roles. Helicopters can assist in sea resupply, Search & Rescue missions, and in Over-the-Horizon reconnaissance work.


FFX-II is the first South Korean warship to be fitted with DRS Hybrid Electric Drive system, coupled with Rolls-Royce MT-30 gas turbine engine for Combined diesel-electric or gas integrated full-electric propulsion.

This combination helps to maximize fuel savings while providing enhanced performance. The ship can reach a top speed of 30 knots, a cruise speed of 18 knots, and a range of 4,500 nmi. Korean frigates can accommodate 140 sailors.


ROKS Gyeongnam and her sisters are equipped with a 16-cell Korean vertical launching system, to deploy K-SAAM – Korean Surface to Air Anti Missile, Hong Sang Eo anti-submarine missile, and Haeryong SSM-701K Sea Dragon tactical land attack cruise missiles. They also carry torpedo launchers for anti-submarine warfare and eight SSM-700K Haeseong anti-ship missiles. All these missile systems are designed and produced by local company LIG Nex1. The gun systems consists in a Mk 45 mod 4 naval gun system and a Phalanx Block 1B CIWS.


(Source: Wikipedia)

Type:Guided missile frigate
Displacement:2,800 t (empty), 3,592t (full load)
Length:122 m (400 ft)
Beam:14 m (46 ft)
Draft:4 m (13 ft)
Propulsion:Combined diesel-electric or gas 1 × Rolls-Royce MT30 gas turbine 4 × MTU 12V 4000 M53B diesel engine 2 × Leonardo DRS electric motors
Speed:30 knots (56 km/h; 35 mph) (max) 18 knots (33 km/h; 21 mph) (cruising)
Range:4,500 nautical miles (8,000 km)
Sensors and
processing systems:
SPS-550K air search 3D radar SPG-540K fire control radar SQS-240K hull-mounted sonar SQR-250K towed array sonar system SAQ-540K EOTS Hanwha Systems SAQ-600K IRSTs Naval Shield Integrated Combat Management System
Electronic warfare
& decoys:
LIG Nex1 SLQ-200(V)K Sonata electronic warfare suite SLQ-261K torpedo acoustic counter measures MASS decoy launchers
Armament:1 × 5 inch (127 mm)/L62 caliber Mk 45 Mod 4 naval gun 1 × 20 mm Phalanx CIWS 2 × triple torpedo tubes for K745 Blue Shark torpedo 8 × SSM-700K Haeseong Anti-ship Missile 32-cell K-VLS for: Haegung K-SAAM quadpacked in 4 per cell Haeryong VL-Tactical Land Attack Missiles K-ASROC Red Shark
Aircraft carried:Super Lynx or AW159 helicopter
Aviation facilities:Flight deck and enclosed hangar for one medium-lift helicopter


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