Poland has approved a contract for the procurement of mini unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) under the country’s Wizjer program.
The Wizjer program was scheduled to identify drones for the military in 2016 but got delayed. Delivery of the systems is now expected to take place between 2024 and 2027.
Polish companies Polska Grupa Zbrojeniowa and Wojskowe Zakłady Lotnicze will deliver a total of 25 packages with four aerial platforms each, making it a total of 100 flying machines.
The contract is expected to cost 174 million Polish złoty ($42.89 million).
Tackling ‘Belarus Threat’
Referring to the situation on the border with Belarus, Polish Defense Minister Mariusz Błaszczak said that the UAVs would enhance the country’s ability to respond to this challenge.
Reports suggest UAVs are used on both sides of the Polish-Belorussian border.
“We are also dealing with the use of drones by the Belarusian side,” Defense Brief quoted Błaszczak as saying. “Drones are used for reconnaissance, and then officers of Belarusian services destroy the temporary fence to open the way to push migrants to the Polish side.”
The UAV systems are being developed for multipurpose roles including detection, identification, recognition, and indication of object coordinates. It will have a flight time of over three hours and a payload capacity of 1.5 kilograms (3.3 pounds).
The aerial vehicles will go to the battalions of the land forces, where soldiers will use them to observe the area in a radius of up to 35 kilometers (21.7 miles).
The drones can automatically take off with the use of a launch tube and land using a parachute and airbag.