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Industry

Pilica+ Guarding the Polish Skies

Photo. Polish MoD/Twitter

The Pilica+ programme agreement was concluded on 4th October in Zamość. The event involved the Deputy PM, head of the Polish Ministry of Defence Mariusz Błaszczak, and Ben Wallace, the UK’s Secretary of Defence.

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The framework agreement signed by and between the Armament Agency, and the PGZ-Pilica+ consortium defines the conditions for the implementation of the executory agreements regarding the modification of six PSR-A Pilica systems, procured based on the agreement signed in November 2016, and upgrading them to the "+" standard, along with the delivery of another 15 systems in the new configuration (also known as PSR-A Pilica+). The delivery of the first system with new components is expected to happen in 2024.

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Pilica 2+ to Protect the Polish Patriot Systems

The Polish Armed Forces, broadly speaking the Republic of Poland, and we, in general, all need effective protection from airborne threats. Our safety can only be guaranteed by an integrated, multi-layered air defence system, based on proven know-how and technology, also from the domestic portfolio. The Pilica+ system fits that requirement well, soon it will become a part of the inventory of the Polish Air Defence units.
Sebastian Chwałek, President, PGZ Group

The implementation procedure for the Pilica+ programme follows in the footsteps of the Narew system project. It is aimed at diminishing the risks tied to the timely delivery of air defence systems to the Polish Armed Forces, and at guaranteeing project management (both on the military, as well as the industrial side) that would ensure success resulting on the grounds of tight collaboration and synergy. The assumptions adopted are to make it possible to leverage the Polish defence industry potential, when pursuing the remaining defence procurement programmes tied to the establishment of the Polish IADS.

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The Pilica+ system would include elements of the PSR-A Pilica solution - the command station, SHORAD radar, six fire units with tractors, communications subsystem, and logistics support assets - ammunition carriers and transport vehicles. The aforesaid configuration would be complemented with SHORAD SAM systems, and Bystra radars. Then, AAA systems with programmable munitions, and a counter-UAS system would also be integrated into the Pilica+ ecosystem. British-made CAMM missiles have been selected as the primary effector for the Pilica+ launchers.

Photo. Polish MoD/Twitter
At the design stage, we have envisaged an option to integrate different effectors in the Pilica system, such as large caliber AAA systems that could handle programmable rounds. Our expertise, and the ability to work with a foreign partner allow us to develop this perspective system, so that it can perform work assigned to both VSHORAD, as well as SHORAD class solutions.
Łukasz Malicki, Programme Director at PGZ S.A.

The Pilica+ systems would act as the primary air defence assets for the air defence units in the Air Force. The main purpose of those systems would be to fill in the gaps in the SHORAD/MRAD coverage at low, and very low altitudes, and to protect the Wisla MRAD assets.

The PSR-A Pilica+ systems would be able to conduct operations autonomously, across a broad range of weather conditions and with poor visibility, with the use of passive target recognition and tracking sensors, based on radar-derived data sent from the battery command station.

The system configuration assumes that a capacity to recognize and ID the targets would be available, along with a capacity to act against airborne threats, with the use of SAMs, and AAA. The rate of fire and range of the AAA element would also make it possible to act against surface targets. Thanks to the common data-sharing protocols, the system ensures data transfer and reception across a network formed by other air defence assets.

On behalf of the Polish defence industry, the project is pursued by the PGZ-Pilica+ consortium, formed by the following entities: PGZ S.A. (project leader), ZM Tarnów S.A., PIT-RADWAR S.A., PCO S.A., Jelcz sp. z o.o., Mesko S.A., OBR CTM S.A., WZU S.A., and WZE S.A.

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