Polish MoD: Acquisition Plans Regarding New Armament for the F-16 Jets


Polish Ministry of Defence issued an approval concerning a potential acquisition of anti-radiation missiles, guided penetration bomb units and anti-tank subammunition pods, with the subammunition reacting to the detected objects automatically. The Ministry has also initiated an analytical-conceptual phase pertaining to acquisition of extra electronic warfare pods.

As we were informed by the media department of the Polish MoD, the Ministry approved a request concerning the acquisition of anti-radiation missiles. Throughout the market analysis that took place back in 2016, procurement of AGM-88E AARGM or AGM-88F HARM effectors was being considered. The procurement concerning the aforesaid ordnance for the F-16 would only be possible after proper funding is provided. However, we do not know whether we may expect deliveries to happen before 2022, in line with the current assumptions. The above means that the MoD’s funds allocated to acquire such ordnance could be insufficient, despite the continuously reiterated requirement to procure this type of armament.

The situation is identical when it comes to acquisition of penetration bombs for the Polish F-16 platform. According to the information we have obtained from the MoD, the procurement request has been already approved, nonetheless the acquisition would start only after proper financing is provided. Here, most probably, we are referring to the US-made BLU-109 or Israeli MPR-500 free falling bombs that may be integrated with a matched guidance system.

The MoD also assumed that the F-16 jets should carry “anti-tank subammunition pods with the subammunition automatically reacting to the detected threats”. However, the manufacturing of the armament in which the Polish Ministry of Defence remains interested has been suspended “due to international agreements”. This is because the complicated name mentioned above refers to anti-tank cluster munitions which are a subject to restrictions, concerning both production and use of such weaponry. Textron Defense Systems CBU-105D/B bombs are the armament of the above mentioned class, dedicated for the F-16.

In case of the electronic warfare pods for the F-16, an analytical-conceptual phase began. The solutions considered within that scope and the potential delivery deadlines would only be known after the aforesaid scrutiny comes to an end.