Land Forces

Ex-Polish PT-91 Twardy tanks in Ukraine

Polish PT-91 main battle tank during exercise Saber Strike 18. U.S. Army photo.
Polish PT-91 main battle tank during exercise Saber Strike 18. U.S. Army photo.
Photo. Spc. Hubert D. Delany III /22nd Mobile Public Affairs Detachment

A video recently posted on Twitter may be the first evidence of ex-Polish PT-91 Twardy main battle tanks in use by the Ukrainian Armed Forces. The tanks were handed over by Poland as military aid. Unofficial reports suggest that Ukrainian crews are training on their new equipment.

The recording shows a number of PT-91 Twardy main battle tanks at an undisclosed Ukrainian training ground during a field exercise. It is currently unknown when this video was taken.

According to various sources, Poland has already transferred 30 to 60 of these tanks to Ukraine. Based on the pre-war table of organisation and equipment (TO&E) of the Ukrainian Land Forces, this would allow for the formation of one to two tank battalions. In addition to these PT-91s, Poland also handed roughly over 230 T-72M, M1 and M1R main battle tanks to the Ukrainians.

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Compared to the T-72M1 it is based on, the protection level of the PT-91 Twardy has been increased with ERAWA-1 and ERAWA-2 explosive reactive armour (ERA). It also features improved mobility courtesy of a 850 HP PZL Wola S-12U engine. In addition, the PT-91 features a digital fire control system (FCS) designated Drawa-T, which may be fitted with one of two types of thermal imagers: TES or KLW-1 Asteria.

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