Air Force

Polish Air Defence Specialists Engage in IBCS Training

Photo. Polish MoD

The Polish soldiers are currently engaged in training involving the IBCS air defence C2 system, procured within the framework of the first phase of the Wisła air defence programme.

The IBCS training was mentioned by Lt. Col. Krzysztof Płatek, Spokesperson for the Armament Agency. The undertaking is to involve 20 Polish troops, probably hailing, above all, from the 3rd "Warszawska" Missile Air Defence Brigade - that unit, more specifically, one of its squadrons, would be the first user of the IBCS system. The photo attached to the press release issued by Spokesman Płatek shows that the undertaking also involves the Deputy Head of the Armament Agency and the Polish MoD's plenipotentiary for the air/missile defence, Col. Michał Marciniak.

Read more

IBCS is an air defence management system introduced by the US Army and the Polish Armed Forces. Poland is the first export user of this solution. Northrop Grumman, meanwhile, is acting as the key contractor. The assumption for IBCS is to adopt the "any sensor, best shooter" principle.

Thanks to the fact above, the air defence assets integrated with IBCS may also make use of a variety of sensors and data fusion. For instance, the IBCS-integrated US Patriot batteries will be able to use data fed from the Sentinel radars. The Polish Patriot systems will be allowed to use data fed from the Bystra radars - expected to be integrated within the IBCS network. Furthermore, if cheaper assets come alongside the Patriot missiles (CAMM-ER in Poland, IFPC in the US), then they could be used to destroy targets detected by the Patriot radars, provided they enter the range. This will significantly increase the capabilities of the air defence assets.

In the longer run, further components of IADS would be plugged into IBCS, such as the Polish SPL passive detection system, P-18PL active radar, or the Sajna multifunctional fire control system developed for the Narew programme. In the US, datalink capability involving the F-35A has been preliminarily tested, the same applies to cooperation between the IBCS and ground-based rocket artillery systems. This will further enhance the system's capabilities, especially when it comes to multi-domain operations.

In Poland IBCS would be a cornerstone for both phases of the Wisła programme - phase II involves more Patriot systems with LTAMDS radars, and also IBCS would become a part of the Narew SHORAD solution. The IBCS's configuration will match the detailed requirements of the Polish Armed Forces, also through the use of domestically developed C2 assets (communication nodes for Phase I of the Wisła programme have already been contracted).

Read more

The use of that system will require an approach different from the one associated with conventional air defence systems (even ones that are relatively more modern than the standard Patriot system - the differences have been mentioned by the Americans themselves). The soldiers operating the system will have the whole network at their disposal. This whole network of air defence assets will be managed via a set of homogeneous battle command stations, using a homogeneous communications network. Hence the need to conduct specialist training. The Polish air defence specialists can get acquainted with this modern system right now, getting to know the principles of its operation.