Representatives from six nations operating the K9 Self-Propelled Howitzer (SPH) developed by Hanwha recently gathered in Narvik, Norway, to share their experience, knowledge and know-how of operating the 155mm-52-calibre artillery system during the 2nd K9 User Club.
Six user nations including South Korea, Norway, Finland, Estonia, Poland and Australia participated in this year’s event, the first of its kind and among NATO countries, while Canada joined as an observer.
Several defence suppliers from Norway, Finland, Australia, Netherlands attended the K9 user community to present technologies enhancing industry partnership and collaboration over the K9 production and development.
Pasi Pasivirta, director of European business development for parent company Hanwha Aerospace, said in a company statement “The K9 users can learn from each other and share experience and know-how of operating the K9 self-propelled howitzer to get the best out of the equipment. In this regard the K9 User Club serves as the venue to find the most optimised operation and sustainment doctrine of the K9 system.”
Norway operates 24 K9s and 10 K10 ammunition resupply vehicles, with an additional contract signed in 2022 to procure four more K9s and 10 more K10s. Colonel Kjartan Søyland, head of the Norwegian School of Artillery and Army Air Defence, said in the Hanwha statement that “Compared to the old guns we had, now we increase or double the range of our artillery systems. The K9 is easy to use and easy to educate and train [on], which is the key strength of the K9 self-propelled howitzer. It also works well in snowy winter conditions.”