Robotic Welding to Enhance Manufacturing of the Krab Howitzer Turrets

Image Credit: Jerzy Reszczyński
Image Credit: Jerzy Reszczyński

Huta Stalowa Wola facility announced that it has begun a process, the goal of which would be to implement robotised welding technology at its manufacturing plant. The new capabilities are going to be utilized for the purpose of manufacturing elements of the Krab self-propelled howitzers, Rak self-propelled mortar or new ZSSW-30 remote control turrets.

Bernard Cichoki, President at the HSW S.A. company, emphasized the fact that introduction of the new technologies is one of the key elements, within the scope of maintaining the company’s competitive advantages. The attained benefits are said to extend to the PGZ Group as a whole as well. – It’s a new era for us – Cichocki said – We know the realities related to competition on the domestic and foreign markets, hence we need to place a major emphasis on modern technologies, to be able to meet the growing market requirements. Only such significant changes within the scope of processes, expertise of our staff, experience and the state of art solutions can allow us to attain competitive advantage over domestic and foreign manufacturers of similar products, effectively and in a longer run – HSW President noted.

HSW officials stressed the fact that robotised welding systems would be used to manufacture Krab howitzer and Rak mortar turrets, as well as the ZSSW-30 remote control turrets. Furthermore, the welding robots would also be used in the production process pertaining to command vehicles, infantry fighting vehicles (Borsuk) or Rak self-propelled mortars based on the M120G tracked chassis.

The company noted that all elements, up until now, were being welded in a conventional manner, with the use of modern welding tools. Employment of robotised tools would increase quality, efficiency and repeatability of the welding processes. This should have a good impact on on-time delivery of the orders placed by the Polish military. The above impact is also going to influence the export capabilities. HSW suggests that automation is one of the most effective methods used to enhance the process domain in any facility.

Employing a robotised welding station is viewed as a huge step forward by us, which will be even more pronounced when placed against the background of the welding technologies employed in the Polish defence industry. Not only will this be an advantage for us, as the HSW company, but it will also be beneficial for the whole PGZ capital group – Cichocki stressed.

HSW is currently involved in several of the modernization programmes pursued by the Polish military. The company is also developing elements of the Regina fire units and Rak self-propelled mortars. Furthermore HSW is working on a ZSSW-30 remote control turret (in collaboration with WB Electronics), Borsuk IFV or Kryl self-propelled howitzer system.