155mm Self-Propelled Howitzer on tracked armored chassis - Poland
The KRAB is a 155mm self-propelled howitzer designed and manufactured in Poland by the Defense Company HSW (Huta Stalowa Wola) in cooperation with BAE Systems and OBRUM. The first prototype of the Krab was completed in 2001. The first version of the Krab used a chassis designed by the Polish Company Obrum and the engine of the PT-91 Twardy main battle tank. The latest version of the Krab is based on the chassis of the South Korean K9 self-propelled howitzer fitted with an AS-90M Braveheart turret with a 52-caliber gun and WB Electronics “Topaz” artillery fire control system. The KRAB can be ready to fire in less than 1 minute and leaves its firing position in 30 seconds. In December 2016, the Polish Company Huta Stalowa Wola (HSW) signed a contract for the delivery of artillery vehicles to the Polish Army for a total amount of around €1 billion for the purchase of 96 KRAB 155mm self-propelled howitzer armored vehicles. On December 28, 2021, the Polish armed forces have finalized the reception of the 96 KRAB 155 mm self-propelled howitzers. In May 2022, Poland announced the delivery of 18 Krab howitzers to Ukraine. On June 1, 2022, it was announced that Poland signs an agreement with Ukraine for the sale of 60 Krab 155mm howitzers. On June 9, 2022, Ukraine announced the deployment of the Polish-made Krab for combat operations in Ukraine. In July 2022, Poland confirmed the signature of an agreement with Ukraine for the delivery of 60 KRAB howitzers. On July 31, 2022, Poland announced the delivery of the first batch of eight KRAB howitzers to Ukraine which is part of the contract signed between Poland and Ukraine. On September 6, 2022, Poland announced a new order of 48 Krab howitzers for its armed forces.
KRAB 155mm self-propelled howitzer variants:
- No variants at this time
The KRAB 155mm self-propelled howitzer is fitted with the turret of the British AS90 (Braveheart) 155 mm self-propelled gun. The turret is mounted at the rear of the tracked chassis. Turret traverse is through a full continuous 360º and weapon elevation is from -3.5° to +70º. Elevation and traverse drives are both electric and operate at a rate of 10º/s. Full manual controls are provided in case of an electrical system failure. The main armament of the KRAB consists of one 155mm 52 caliber designed and manufactured by BAE Systems. The gun can fire all standard 155mm NATO projectiles with a range from 4.7 to 40 km. An automated loading system enables the gun to fire with a burst rate of three rounds in fewer than ten seconds, an intense rate of six rounds a minute for three minutes, and a sustained rate of two rounds a minute. The vehicle can carry a total of 40 shells and 48 charges, with 29 rounds in the turret and 11 in the chassis. For its self-protection, the left hatch on the roof turret is fitted with a 12.7 mm machine gun which can be used against air and land targets. Four 81mm smoke grenade dischargers are mounted on each side at the front of the turret.
|Design and protection|
The KRAB 155mm self-propelled howitzer uses the turret of the British AS90 (Braveheart) self-propelled howitzer and the South Korean self-propelled howitzer K9 chassis. The turret is of all-welded steel construction which provides protection against the firing of small arms and shell splinters. The hull is also of all-welded steel armor construction providing the same protection as the turret. The commander has a hatch on the right side of the turret roof. There is a second hatch on the left side of the roof turret. One more hatch is also available on the left side of the turret. There is a large door opening to the right on the rear of the chassis for access and ammunition resupply and mounted on either side of this on the outside are two integral armored containers that can be used to store supplies and other equipment. The KRAB has a crew of five with the driver position on the left side at the front of the chassis and four people in the turret.
|The KRAB 155mm self-propelled howitzer uses the chassis of the South Korean K9 self-propelled howitzer. Presumably, the KRAB will use the same engine as the K9 that consists of an MTU MT 881 Ka-500 water-cooled diesel developing 1,000 hp at 2,700 rpm coupled to an Allison Transmission X1100-5A3 automatic transmission with 4 forward and 2 reverse gears. The hydro-pneumatic suspension consists on each side of six dual rubberized road wheels with the drive sprocket at the front, idler at the rear, and three track return rollers. The KRAB with the K9 motorization can run at a maximum road speed of 67 km/h with a maximum cruising range of 650 km. The KRAB is able to negotiate a gradient up to 25° and side slopes to 20°. The vehicle can traverse a vertical obstacle of 0.8 m and a trench of 2.5 m. It can ford a depth of 1 m without preparation.|
|Standard equipment of the KRAB 155mm self-propelled howitzer includes night vision for the driver, direct fire sight, NBC protection system, automatic fire suppression system, and a laser range-finder. The vehicle also integrates a navigation system and a DD-9620 terminal providing target information. The muzzle velocity measuring system above the main gun feeds information to the fire-control system. The ZZKO TOPAZ fire-control system controls the turret, gun layer computer, and other subsystems. The KRAB is also fitted with an auxiliary power unit for the turret to ensure the use of onboard electrical and electronic equipment during the shut down of the main diesel engine.|
|One 155mm 52 caliber gun, and one 12.7mm machine gun||Protection against the firing of small arms and artillery shell splinters|
|Poland, Ukraine||52,140 kg|
|Night vision for the driver, direct fire sight, NBC protection system, automatic fire suppression system, navigation system, fire control system, and a laser range-finder.||650 km|
|5||Length: 7.44 m; Width: 3.40 m; Height: 3.0 m|
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