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They are used by the Armed Forces: Polish “Krabs” will receive an improved South Korean K9 Thunder gun

Natasha Kumar By Natasha Kumar May15,2024

They are used by the Armed Forces: Polish

South Korea's Hanwha Aerospace intends to strengthen its presence in the European defense market with a new export agreement to integrate the Korean gun K9 Thunder on Polish Krab tracked armored chassis. This development was confirmed during the meeting of Polish and South Korean defense industry leaders in Warsaw on May 10, 2024.

Details

The partnership was formalized in a letter of intent signed by Hanwha Aerospace and Huta Stalowa Wola, part of the Polish state defense group PGZ. This agreement provides for future cooperation and export of components for the K9 Thunder and Krab howitzers.

PGZ noted that the cooperation will explore the possibility of adapting the Krab chassis for the Korean variants of the K9A2 and K9A3. Previously, success was achieved in combining the Korean chassis with the Polish Krab turret system.

ACS “Crab” — is a self-propelled tracked howitzer that was produced in Poland with the help of BAE Systems and Samsung Techwin from 1997 to 2006. The new artillery system, which went into production in 2008, is used by the Polish and Ukrainian ground forces.

“Crab” weighs 48 tons and is 12.1 meters long, equipped with a 155 mm cannon that can fire projectiles at a maximum distance of 40 kilometers using Excalibur-type ammunition. This ACS has high mobility, reaching speeds of up to 60 km/h on roads thanks to its STX Engine/MTU Friedrichshafen MT881Ka-500 diesel engine, which produces 1000 horsepower. It has a magazine of 40 rounds distributed between the turret and the hull, and is equipped with an advanced aiming system from WB Electronics Topaz FCS.

In addition, the Krab is armed with a WKM-B .50 caliber machine gun as an additional armament. The robust construction includes steel armor up to 16 mm thick, as well as hydropneumatic suspension that improves the ability to overcome a variety of terrain. A crew of five can operate the howitzer at a steady rate of two rounds per minute or eighteen rounds in three minutes during rapid fire.

Future improvements for the K9 series include the K9A2 modification, which will feature a fully automated turret, and the more advanced K9A3 model, which will include a 58-caliber gun, further automation, artificial intelligence improvements and is expected to enter the market in the early 2030s.

Cooperation between Poland and Korea is long-standing and continues to strengthen, and Poland increasingly purchases Korean military equipment, as evidenced by this new contract between the two countries.

Natasha Kumar

By Natasha Kumar

Natasha Kumar has been a reporter on the news desk since 2018. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Times Hub, Natasha Kumar worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my natasha@thetimeshub.in 1-800-268-7116

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