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A thick layer of haze above Seoul Airport in Seongnam, South Korea, made things look rather fuzzy for this year’s edition of ADEX 2015 (Seoul International Aerospace & Defense Exhibition). Flying displays for the official inauguration ceremony in the air had to be cancelled, and on the ground the prospects for some of South Korea’s ambitous military prospects were set straight.

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Where? Seoul, Seongnam Airbase, South Korea
When?20-25/10/2015

1ADEX F 15K 8296 10 ZEITLER 700 470 90
1ADEX F 15K 8296 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 15K 5881 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 15K 8192 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX Transport 5743 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX Transport 5749 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX Transport 5752 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85

The strength and variety of South Korea’s Air Force (ROKAF – Republic of Korea Air Force) could nevertheless be viewed during the opening fly-by on October, 27th, including 42 different aircraft. Highlights included the Boeing E-737 “Wedgetail” AEW&C flanked by F-16s, TA-50s and F-4E Phantoms. The latter unfortunately flew only during the training session the previous day.

11ADEX E 737 5776 10 ZEITLER 700 470 90
11ADEX E 737 5776 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
1ADEX C 130 CN235 8233 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX C 130 CN235 6661 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX CN295 KA 1 7885 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 16 5757 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
1ADEX F 4E 7922 10 ZEITLER 700 470 90
1ADEX F 4E 7922 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX E 737 F 16 8216 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 16 8287 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 5 8274 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX TA 50 7896 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85

The flying display of the KAI (Korean Aerospace Industries) TA-50 Fighting Eagle and even more its sales to Indonesia (TA-50 light attack variant) and the Philppines (FA-50 fighter variant) illustrated that Korea is on the right track regarding jet fighter development, however setting up the KF-X indigenous fifth generation fighter is however still another big step. Clearly the fight was on at ADEX to launch this ambitous project.

1ADEX Black Eagles 6867 Zeitler 700 470 90
1ADEX Black Eagles 6867 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX Black Eagles 7960 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX Black Eagles 8720 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX Black Eagles 8892 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX Black Eagles 8928 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX Black Eagles 8940 Zeitler 100 67 85
1ADEX KT 1 8885 10 ZEITLER 700 470 90
1ADEX KT 1 8885 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX KT 1 6834 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX KT 1 9088 Zeitler 100 67 85
1ADEX FA 50 8812 10 ZEITLER 700 470 90
1ADEX FA 50 8812 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX FA 50 8768 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX FA 50 8783 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX FA 50 9044 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX FA 50 9055 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85

The strong link between Korea and the US was furthermore highlighted in the static display as the U.S. Air Force was the strongest foreign air force to participate at ADEX 2015. An Osan-based F-16 and A-10 were seen on the ground as well as a KC-135 out of Kadena. It did support the F-22 Demonstration Team from Langley AFB, which used two Alaska-based Raptors for the journey to the Korean penninsula. Furthermore the C-17 Demonstration Team from Hickham was present and showed the Globemaster’s capabilities in the air.

1ADEX F 22 8025 10 ZEITLER 700 470 90
1ADEX F 22 8025 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 22 6079 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 22 6683 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 22 6703 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 22 6709 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 22 Static 5824 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
1ADEX F 22 Static 8093 10 ZEITLER 700 470 90
1ADEX F 22 Static 8093 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 22 5808 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 22 6058 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 22 Static 7967 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 22 Static 8377 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 22 Static 8437 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX C 17 8123 Zeitler 700 470 90
ADEX C 17 8123 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX C 17 8132 Zeitler 100 67 85
ZADEX C 17 7868 Zeitler 100 67 85
1ADEX So 9094 10 ZEITLER 700 470 90
1ADEX So 9094 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX So 6252 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX So 7849 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX So 8100 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX So 8340 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX So 9006 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ZADEX So 5839 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85

The C-17 transport aircraft was complemented on the ground by an Airbus A400M of the RAF with a crew from 70 Squadron and 24 Squadron based in RAF Brize Norton. The A400M brought the Royal Air Force Falcons Parachute Display Team to Korea, and its flight was at the same time an around-the-world trip with previous stop in Georgia and Malaysia. After the show in Korea ZM405 continued its journey eastwards with a first landing in Japan at the JASDF transport base Miho before crossing to Pacific towards the USA.

1ADEX So 9063 10 ZEITLER 700 470 90
1ADEX So 9063 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX F 16 9064 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX So 6159 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX So 9077 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX T 50 9097 Zeitler 100 67 85
1ADEX F 4E 6207 Zeitler 700 470 90
1ADEX F 4E 6207 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX F 15K 9069 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX F 16C 9080 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX F 5 6219 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX F 5 8005 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX FA 50 6150 Zeitler 100 67 85

After Airbus beat its rivals Boeing and IAI in June to win a 1.4 trillion won ($1.3 billion) contract to provide four A330 / KC-30B MRTT in-flight refueling tankers to the ROKAF by 2019, the A400M was however the only bigger European asset on the ground display, which focused mainly on the huge variety of South Korean Hardware.

ADEX C 130 8344 Zeitler 700 470 90
ADEX C 130 8344 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX CH 47 6192 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX CN235 8018 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX HS748 8324 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX KA 1 9090 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX A400M 6266 Zeitler 700 470 90
ADEX A400M 6266 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX A400M 7798 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX AH 64 8692 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX CH 47 6200 Zeitler 100 67 85
ADEX KC 135 7856 Zeitler 100 67 85
1ADEX Tanks 8464 10 ZEITLER 700 470 90
1ADEX Tanks 8464 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX Tanks 6113 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX Tanks 6124 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85
ADEX Tanks 8484 10 ZEITLER 100 67 85

Once again ADEX was a great opportunity to get a glimpse of ROKAFs hardware, it only needs to be hopes that it will not be so hazy again during future editions of this impressive presentation of military power.

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