MILMAG Defence & Space 02/2020 »

MILMAG - The Military MagazineAdditional Krab SPHs for the Polish Army - MILMAG - The Military Magazine

Additional Krab SPHs for the Polish Army

PGZ's press release

The Polish Arms Inspectorate of the Ministry of National Defense signed an annex to the agreement of December 2016 with HSW S.A., under which the Company will produce and deliver another two 155 mm Krab self-propelled howitzers and accompanying vehicles. By the end of 2022 HSW will hand them over to Toruń Artillery and Armaments Training Center together with other vehicles, including the command vehicle, the ammunition vehicle and the vehicle for repair of weapons and electronics. The order’s value will amount to about PLN 100 million. The amount was saved thanks to HSW’s internal performance audit regarding the REGINA project. By decision of the ordering party, the money was used to purchase additional weapons.

The Polish Army ordered additional 155-mm self-propelled Krab gun-howitzers and auxiliary vehicles. / Photo by: mjr Artur Pinkowski, 11 LDKP

– The implementation of long-term programs is something that all the companies associated in PGZ care about. This allows for other involvement of our plants, more optimized in terms of cost and use of manufacturing capacity. That is why, among other things, we are striving for the ministry to include a longer time horizon and larger quantities of equipment in its purchasing plans. The REGINA program is a good example of this. The savings obtained, which the Ministry of National Defense can allocate to the ordering of additional equipment, are the effect of a program planned for years – emphasizes the President of PGZ S.A., Andrzej Kensbok.

In early December 2020, HSW S.A. completed this year’s supplies of self-propelled Krab howitzers to the Polish Army. The last of this year’s howitzers and specialist vehicles received by the 23rd Silesian Artillery Regiment in Bolesławiec will form the first and second battery of the REGINA Division Fire Module (DMO). It is the second of four Division Fire Modules contracted in HSW by the Ministry of National Defense in 2016 as part of the operational program – Modernization of Missile and Artillery Forces.

Within the framework of the Autumn and Winter deliveries, artillerymen from Bolesławiec received a total of 16 units of 155 mm self-propelled Krab howitzers, 8 command vehicles, 4 ammunition vehicles and a weapon and electronics repair vehicle. In 2021, HSW will equip the artillery regiment in Bolesławiec with a complete Division Fire Module, which will consist of three batteries with 24 self-propelled Krab howitzers, 11 vehicles of the command subsystem (2 command and staff vehicles, 9 command vehicles) and 7 vehicles of the logistics subsystem (6 ammunition vehicles and one vehicle for weapons and electronics repair).

In 2020, HSW trained about 130 soldiers and artillerymen, future users of self-propelled howitzers and the whole family of specialist accompanying equipment.

The agreement for the supply of four Regina Division Fire Modules (a total of 96 self-propelled Krab howitzer fire units together with specialist vehicles) was signed by HSW with the Arms Inspectorate on December 14, 2016. It is the largest contract in history addressed to the Polish arms industry for the supply of armaments to the Polish Armed Forces. Deliveries under the contract are to be completed in 2024.

– I am glad that the implementation of the REGINA program is going smoothly and according to plan. This is very important for our plant, because it guarantees stability and work for years to come. The fact that apart from the equipment going to the units, we are also training soldiers to use it, which is also important. This way, we are improving the process of operation of Krab howitzers, which is an equipment of the highest quality,” stresses the President of the Management Board of HSW S.A., Bartłomiej Zając.

The first REGINA Division Fire Module was delivered to the 11th Mazurian Artillery Regiment as early as 2017 on the basis of the implementation agreement concluded between Huta Stalowa Wola S.A. and the Arms Inspectorate of May 12, 2008. The total number of guns provided for, in both agreements, is 120 pieces.

The self-propelled Krab howitzers are the main weapons of artillery regiments within the Land Forces. They serve in the 11th Mazurian Artillery Regiment from Węgorzewo (16th Pomeranian Mechanized Division), 5th Lubuskie Artillery Regiment from Sulechów (12th Szczecin Mechanized Division) and 23rd Silesian Artillery Regiment from Bolesławiec (11th Lubuskie Armored Cavalry Division).

HSW manufactures 155 mm barrels for the Krab howitzer and 120 mm barrels for self-propelled Rak mortars. In 2020, HSW has made further investments in modern machinery in the area of barrel processing and manufacturing, which is to increase the processing capacity of these key elements of the guns. The company is able to produce barrels from caliber 30 mm up to caliber 155 mm and up to 9 meters in length.

At the beginning of 2020, Huta Stalowa Wola launched a robotized production line in the new hall designed for welding the bodies of Krab howitzer chassis and infantry fighting vehicles and tower systems.

– We are systematically increasing our production competences, which allows us to provide an increasingly wide range of services. In addition to the Krabs mentioned above, the Rak mortars have also become the showcase of our company. They’re about to be joined by the first AFVs Borsuk. Thanks to good management of the production process and the potential we have, we fulfill our obligations in a timely manner and at high level – says HSW President Bartłomiej Zając.

The President of HSW S.A. emphasizes that the company has focused on the highest quality of its products, high level of user service and timeliness and compliance with the delivery schedule. Production and deliveries were carried out in accordance with the concluded agreements. Another annex for additional equipment production, which has already been signed, is proof that the adopted rules and strategy of the plant are beneficial.

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