The company, South Korea's largest air carrier and logistics giant, held a ceremony in Busan, to mark the delivery of an F-15 air-superiority fighter jet to the U.S. Air Force, and outlined its goal to play a leading role in the global aerospace sector.
It started maintenance work in 1978 by repairing and overhauling planes operated by the South Korean and U.S. military. It has a maintenance tech center built on 707,866 square meters of land in Busan, 453 kilometers southeast of Seoul. This facility has a factory space of 266,180 square meters and employs some 2,700 people.
"This facility is the largest depot maintenance center in the country and the only one used by U.S. military aircraft in the Asia-Pacific region," the company said. It stressed that its prowess in maintenance and experience gained in the license production of aircraft in the past, gives it a unique position that can ensure growth of its aircraft industry sector as a whole.
Korean Air started by carrying out maintenance work on C-123 cargo planes, 500MD helicopters, and F-5 and F-4 jets but has since moved onto repairing high-performance KF-16 and F-15 aircraft.
A partnership with the United States military began in 1979, with local engineers conducting maintenance work on F-16, F-15, KC-130Js tankers and A-10 ground attack aircraft.
The company has also successfully assembled light helicopters and jet fighters as well as the UH-60s and KF-16 jets used by the South Korean Air Force.