Poland plans to acquire Pirat new local-made anti-tank guided missiles

According to information published by the Polish Defense website "Defence24", on March 10, 2023, the Polish Deputy Minister and Secretary of State, Wojciech Skurkiewicz confirmed a plan to acquire PIRAT, the latest generation of Anti-Tank Guided Missile (ATGM) developed by the Polish Defense Industry in the framework of the PUSTELNIK program
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Polish-made Pirat ATGM Anti-Tank Guided Missile. (Picture source Army Recognition)

The Pustelnik program was launched by the Polish armed forces to acquire new anti-tank weapon systems to cover the gap between the anti-tank grenade launchers, and heavier ATGMs (Anti-Tank Guided Missiles), such as Spike-LR, or the Brimstone missiles that would be the primary weapon in the Ottokar-Brzoza program, an anti-tank combat vehicle.

The Pirat is an ATGM (Anti-Tank Guided Missile) jointly developed by the defense industry of Ukraine and Poland. Two versions of the missile have already been developed including the Pirat 1 and the Pirat 2.

The Pirat can be used against land and air targets and is able to destroy modern combat vehicles and tanks protected by conventional and reactive armor. The missile is also able to destroy aerial targets such as helicopters or aircraft flying at low speeds during day and night.

The Pirat missile was unveiled for the first time to the public during MSPO, a defense exhibition in Poland.

The Pirat-1 project is based on the Ukrainian R-3 Korsar missile offered by the KKB Luch company, nonetheless, the collaboration with Ukraine is focused primarily on the aerodynamic component. Pirat-1 is a light, portable shoulder-launched ATGM.

The Pirat-1 is an infantry version designed to reach a maximum firing range of 2,500 m and the missile can be fitted with three different types of 2.5-kg warheads including armor-piercing, thermobaric, and high explosive fragmentation. The missile would be capable of penetrating up to 550 mm of steel armor covered by ERA (Explosive Reactive Armor).

The Pirat 2 is a light short-range ATGM weapons system with a manually-launched missile that is self-guided after launch following the target-reflected laser beam trajectory. It features a higher velocity missile fitted with a HE (High Explosive) warhead.

Most of its tactical and technical parameters are similar to the Pirat-1 version. It is assumed though that the time-to-target for the missile, at the longest distance, would be shortened from more than 12 seconds, down to 5.5 seconds. Emphasis is going to be placed on the missile with the HE warhead. The said missile could be used to neutralize machine gun stations, points of resistance, gathering points for military units, logistics equipment, helicopters, or small vessels.