Polish Armed Forces conducted first combat use exercise of Warmate loitering munitions in late May this year.
The exercise took place at the Nowa Deba military training range on 30 May and included operators from 21st Podhale Rifles Brigade and 3rd Podkarpacka Territorial Defence Force Brigade, as well as representatives of the Armed Forces General Command.
The event was the first occasion for newly certified operators from the Polish Territorial Defence Force to present their skills and combat engagement procedures, which they have developed and matured over the past couple of months.
The exercise scenario included elimination of enemy reconnaissance and diversion teams. In the first phase, targets were detected, identified and tracked by the Fly Eye mini UAS designed for close-range observation and data collection.
Next, two Warmate loitering munitions were launched with intent of eliminating hostile forces. Both platforms, armed with EO-fragmentation charge warheads, managed to hit predetermined targets.
Last month’s exercises were overlooked by the president of Poland, Andrzej Duda, the minister of national defence, Mariusz Blaszczak and the president of the system’s manufacturer, WB Group, Piotr Wojciechowski.
‘We are pleased and very proud that we could support Polish soldiers in this collaborative exercise of two branches of the armed forces,’ said Wojciechowski.
In 2017 Poland ordered 100 sets of Warmate loitering munitions, each consisting of 10 platforms. The agreement was worth around 100 million Polish Zloty ($27 million).
Deliveries commenced shortly after and the first batch of 20 Warmates was handed over to the 3rd Regional Logistics Base in Krakow by December 2017. In April 2018 the first group of operators finished combat training and certification.
According to Tomasz Badowski, communications director at WB Group, additional 80 Warmates should be handed over to the Armed Forces by the end of June. Badowski added that the timeline for further deliveries should be determined in due time.
It is expected that Warmate loitering munition sets will be handed over first to units stationed in Eastern Poland, including Territorial Defence Force Brigades.