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Poland strengthens Ukraine with 18 Krab self-propelled howitzers

According to a tweet by the Defense of Ukraine dated December 2, 2023, Poland has delivered 18 AHS Krab self-propelled howitzers to Ukraine, thereby enhancing the Ukrainian artillery arsenal amid the ongoing conflict. This transfer comes from Poland's military stockpiles, a detail confirmed by the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense.
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Polish Krab self-propelled howitzers (Picture source: PGZ)

The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense expressed profound gratitude to Poland on Twitter, particularly highlighting the crucial role of the AHS Krab in enhancing Ukraine's artillery strength. The Krab, now an integral part of the Ukrainian military arsenal, has garnered a formidable reputation on the battlefield, especially against occupying forces.

The Krab is a 155 mm self-propelled howitzer, a system designed and manufactured in Poland. Combining technologies and components from several countries, the Krab represents a significant advancement in artillery systems.

The Krab was developed to meet the needs of the Polish armed forces for a modern and efficient artillery system. Its design is based on the integration of components from various sources. The turret is a licensed version of the British AS90 artillery, while the chassis is derived from the South Korean K9 Thunder self-propelled howitzer.

Equipped with a 155 mm, 52-caliber gun, the Krab is capable of firing shells up to a distance of 40 kilometers. This extended range allows the Krab to engage distant targets with high precision. The system is also fitted with a 12.7 mm machine gun for close defense. The vehicle weighs approximately 52 tons and can reach a maximum speed of 67 km/h.

In terms of protection, the Krab is designed to withstand impacts from small calibers and artillery shell splinters. It is equipped with a Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical (NBC) protection system, as well as an automatic fire suppression system, enhancing crew survival in intense combat conditions.

The Krab is capable of rapid firing, agile repositioning, and maintaining a sustained rate of fire. It can store a significant number of shells and charges, allowing it to remain operational for extended periods without the need for immediate resupply. The howitzer is also equipped with advanced technologies such as night vision for the driver, a direct fire sight, a navigation system, a fire control system, and a laser rangefinder. These features enhance the precision, responsiveness, and efficiency of the Krab in combat, allowing its crew of five to operate with maximum coordination and effectiveness.

Poland's support for Ukraine extends beyond the provision of the Krab howitzers. Since the beginning of the conflict, Poland has supplied various military equipment to Ukraine, including Piorun portable anti-aircraft missile systems, Grot carbines, PT-91 and T-72 tanks, Leopard 2 tanks, MiG-29 aircraft, Rak self-propelled mortar systems, and Rosomak infantry fighting vehicles.


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