Go to contents

U.S. military code-names N. Korea’s ‘super-large multiple rocket launcher’ KN-25

U.S. military code-names N. Korea’s ‘super-large multiple rocket launcher’ KN-25

Posted September. 05, 2019 07:30,   

Updated September. 05, 2019 07:30


The U.S. Forces Korea (USFK) has code-named North Korea’s “super-large multiple rocket launcher” KN-25. The North test-fired the rocket launcher from Sondok, South Hamgyong Province toward the East Sea on August 24. Assessing the launcher to be a new short-range ballistic missile, which is 600 millimeters in diameter, the USFK reported the result of its analysis to the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command and Pentagon, while sharing it with the South Korean military.

According to multiple South Korean government sources, the USFK has reached a conclusion that the projectile launched from Sondok was different from the “new-type large-calibre multiple launch guided rocket system,” which was launched on July 31 and August 2. The USFK believes that the former is larger in diameter and longer than the latter, according to the sources.

Based on the photographs released by North Korea and intelligence gathered by surveillance satellites and radars, the USFK assessed the “super-large multiple rocket launcher” to be 600 millimeters in diameter and code-named it “KN-25.” The U.S. military conducts surveillance on the North’s new missiles and multiple rocket launchers by giving them “KN” (Korea, North) code names. Right after the North launched what appeared to resemble a Russian Iskander missile in early May, the USFK concluded that it was a new-type submarine-launched ballistic missile (SRBM), code-naming it “KN-23.” Considering that the “super-large multiple rocket launcher” showed a typical trajectory of a ballistic missile and flew much faster (6.5 times faster than the speed of sound) that the existing multiple rocket launchers, the USFK views it as a new-type SRBM and conducting further analyses.

In-Chan Hwang hic@donga.com