The Korean submarine force was founded on June 1, 1990 with the 57th Submarine Squadron. In 1992, its first 1,200-tonnes Type 209 submarine, Chang Bogo-class, was acquired (KSS I program). The 57th Squadron was upgraded to the 9th submarine squadron on October 1, 1995. In 2007, it acquired its first submarine equipped with the Air Independent Propulsion (AIP) system, the Son Won Il-class (Type 214) displacing 1400-tonnes (KSS II program).
“For the past 30 years, submarines have supported the peace by completing their mission as national strategic unit of the Republic of Korea. Our Submarines have traveled a total of 2.8 million miles without any accidents in 30 years, a record among the major countries operating submarines. “
Commander Jung Seung-gyun, Chief of ROK Navy’s Submarine Force
On February 1, 2015, the 9th submarine squadron was upgraded to the “submarine command”, making South Korea the 6th largest submarine force in the world after the United States, Japan, France, the United Kingdom and India. In September 2018, Korea launched its own locally-designed and built 3,000-tonnes submarine “Dosan Ahn Changho” (KSS III program).