Poland to Select New Attack Helicopters – 4 Candidates Possible
The market analysis regarding the “Kruk” assault helicopters programme takes six companies into account, including four companies which manufacture assault rotorcraft: Airbus, Bell, Boeing and Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI). The proceedings aim at developing tactical-technical requirements regarding the successor of the Polish Mi-24 Hind helicopters, nicknamed “Hockey” by the Polish soldiers.
The proceedings have been started on 8th July this year, and they are related to changes that have been planned in the Armed Forces modernisation programme due to the Ukraine crisis. Initially, the new assault helicopters were to be introduced in 2020, but now the timeline has been changed and the helicopters are to be plausibly procured in 2017-2018.
Until 16th October we have been waiting for responses to the request regarding the helicopters. (…) Currently we hope that arrangement of the feasibility studies regarding the initial tactical and technical specification related to the assault helicopters will be completed in mid-2015. The conclusion regarding acquisition of this type or armament is to be achieved within 30-40 days from the beginning of the study. Procedures of acquisition will be started around September 2015. - As General Sławomir Szczepaniak, head of the Armament Inspectorate stated.
Preparation procedure, which is to be finished in mid-2015, will consist of two stages. Firstly, on the basis of the market analysis Operational and Technical Requirements will be investigated. Next, probably in a mode of a technical dialogue, possibilities of realising the task will be examined in a form of a Feasibility Study. Next the initial technical and tactical requirements will be defined, so that the tender may be started.
In accordance with the information obtained from the Armament Inspectorate by Defence24.com, despite the initial declaration of 10 companies after issuing the RFI (Request For Information), only 6 of the bidders did respond:
- Airbus Helicopters together with Heli Invest Services;
- Bell Helicopter Textron Company;
- Boeing Company;
- Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI);
- BIT S.A.;
- Non-Iron Metals Institute (Instytut Metali Nieżelaznych)
That means that all the helicopters such as Bell AH-1Z Viper or Boeing AH-64E Apache Guardian, or European Airbus Helicopters Tiger and Turkish derivative of the Italian AW-129, T-129 ATAK, will probably be included in the proceedings.