Armed Forces

Polish Ministry of Defence: Homar Programme Is Making Progress. Precision Guided Ammunition for the Krab Howitzers.

First example of the Krab howitzer, with the K9 chassis - MSPO 2015 Defence Exhibition. Image Credit: J.Sabak
First example of the Krab howitzer, with the K9 chassis - MSPO 2015 Defence Exhibition. Image Credit: J.Sabak

The Armament Inspectorate told us that negotiations pertaining the acquisition of the Homar multiple rocket launchers have been already initiated. The Inspectorate also makes steps towards acquisition of precision guided ammunition for Krab and Kryl 155 mm self-propelled howitzers.

According to the spokeswoman of the Armament Inspectorate, Lt. Col. Małgorzata Ossolinska, negotiations with the Contractor, regarding the procurement of the selected elements of the equipment for a division-sized unit which is to be using the Homar multiple rocket launchers, are currently in process. The talks have been started on 9th February this year, however no choices have been made, when it comes to the foreign partner, whose assistance would be provided to the Polish industry, within the scope of the described programme.

Currently, as the available information suggests, signing the contract is planned to happen in 2016, while the first deliveries are expected to start in two years. In March last year it was assumed that the contract would be signed by the end of 2015. This did not happen, due to the fact that the programme was delayed. According to the information we have received from Małgorzata Ossolinska, working as a spokeswoman for the Armament Inspectorate: “The shift of the date when the negotiations started is caused by the fact that the Contractor submitted a request, according to which the consortium was not ready to place the initial offer and start the negotiations” At the moment, the negotiation process has already begun.

Head of the Polish Armament Inspectorate, Brig. General Adam Duda, announced, at the end of September 2015, that two offers are being considered within the framework of the Homar programme, namely: a US offer, based on the HIMARS system using the GMLRS and ATACMS rockets and missile; and an Israeli offer, most probably including the LORA tactical ballistic missiles and EXTRA rockets for the multiple rocket launchers. Homar system is expected to be delivered by a consortium led by the Huta Stalowa Wola [Stalowa Wola Metalworks] facility, in collaboration with Wojskowe Zakłady Uzbrojenia [Military Armament Works] based in Grudziądz, Mesko SA and WB Electronics companies, cooperating with a foreign partner.

The Armament Inspectorate is also making steps regarding acquisition of precision-strike artillery ammunition for the 155 mm “Krab” and “Kryl” self-propelled howitzers. The related deliveries are going to be preceded by a cost-effectiveness analysis, based on the basis of the accuracy tests of the high explosive 155 mm rounds acquired back in 2015, including the rounds with systems that adjust the projectile trajectory.

Lt. Col. Małgorzata Ossolińska, Spokeswoman for the Armament Inspectorate

Lt. Col. Ossolinska, in the statement provided to, also announced that the Armament Inspectorate is in the process of acquiring 155 mm precision-strike munitions for the self propelled howitzers, “Krab” and “Kryl”. The deliveries of such rounds are expected to be carried out after a cost-effectiveness analysis is carried out, with consideration given to the results of a 2015 test programme involving the high explosive artillery rounds.

Within the scope of the Homar Programme, the Polish Army is going to receive land-based multiple rocket launch systems, capable of striking targets at distances of up to 300 kilometres. Most probably, the prospective Homar weapons system is going to use a variety of rockets, including tactical missiles with a range of up to 300 kilometres, and short range rockets, for the multiple rocket launch system.

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Introduction of the Homar launchers will significantly expand the capabilities of the Polish Rocket and Artillery units, allowing that component of the Army to attack targets deep behind the enemy lines, located even 300 kilometres from the firing position. During the development of the Homar launcher, experience gathered during the Rak, Regina and Langusta programmes is going to be used, also within the area pertaining the electronic and fire control systems. At the moment, WR-40 Langusta launcher may be used to attack targets at the maximum distance of up to 42 kilometres. At the same time, the Polish Army still operates the obsolete BM-21 Grad system.

Procurement of guided munitions, making it possible to adjust the trajectory of the projectile during its travel towards the target, for the “Kryl” and “Krab” systems, would vastly expand their combat capabilities, also within the scope of conducting precision strikes against single-point targets or armoured vehicles, including the main battle tanks. The precision-guided ammunition is more expensive, in comparison with the standard high-explosive rounds, hence the calculations carried out by the Armament Inspectorate.

Nevertheless, utilizing this type of projectiles enables the weapons system operator to limit the number of rounds required to destroy the target. This type of projectiles usually also has a longer range, in comparison with its conventional counterparts. Making full use of the capabilities offered by the new “Krab” and “Kryl” artillery systems will only be possible after the guided ammunition is acquired.