In a step forward for national defence, the Polish Minister of National Defense, Mariusz Błaszczak, has approved a letter of acceptance with the US Army. 

This agreement marks Poland as the first international customer to enhance its WISA air and missile defence capabilities by introducing 12 lower-tier air and missile defence sensors (LTAMDS) and 48 Patriot launchers. Raytheon, an RTX business, will supply the advanced 360-degree LTAMDS radar.

Poland’s pioneering move

Poland’s acquisition aligns with the WISLA Phase 2 programme, building upon the completion of Phase 1, which saw the delivery and testing of four Patriot fire units. Raytheon’s collaborative partnerships with Polish industry played a role in Phase 1, with nine Polish suppliers contributing to the Patriot system. 

With the introduction of LTAMDS, Poland is set to complement the Patriot system with extended range and full 360-degree coverage, enhancing its ability to detect and defend against multi-threat attack scenarios.

Tom Laliberty, president of Land & Air Defense Systems at Raytheon, stated, “Poland’s expansion of its WISLA program will fortify the country’s security and defence against a range of air and missile threats. 

Poland will become the first country after the US to complement the combat-proven Patriot with LTAMDS, which provides extended range and full, 360-degree coverage to detect and defend against complex, highly coordinated, multi-threat attack scenarios.”

Following Poland’s announcement of its intention to spend 4% of its GDP on defence through the year 2023, what has followed is a variety of contract announcements, especially within the last couple of months. 

Headlining this is the announcement by the US Defence Security Cooperation Agency detailing the US State Department’s approval of a $12bn (50.2bn zlotys) deal for 96 AH-64E Apache attack helicopters, to fulfil Poland’s Kruk rotary programme.

Raytheon’s LTAMDS progress

Raytheon’s commitment to the Polish industry remains steadfast, with the introduction of an offset programme for Phase 2.

This program will enable Polish industry partners, including members of the PGZ group, to receive technology, equipment, and training for the production and maintenance of LTAMDS components. These partners are poised to become integral parts of the LTAMDS global supply chain.

Patriots are ground-based air defence capabilities capable of defeating advanced long-range cruise missiles, tactical ballistic missiles, and a full spectrum of air-breathing threats. It serves the air defence for 19 countries.

LTAMDS represents the next generation of air and missile defence radar for the US Army. Powered by Raytheon-manufactured Gallium Nitride, this 360-degree active electronically scanned array radar offers performance against various threats, from manned and unmanned aircraft to cruise missiles, ballistic missiles, and hypersonics. 

Raytheon’s ongoing development of LTAMDS for the US Army is marked by progress, with all six radars under contract now in production and undergoing simultaneous testing at various government and Raytheon test sites.

Some of Raytheon’s suppliers for the production of the radar have included Mercury Systems, which Raytheon selected to supply high-performance signal processing and RF solutionsOrolia to support the US Army’s LTAMDS radar programme with its low size, weight and power (SWaP), rugged time and frequency system, and Crane Aerospace & Electronics who have provided power units for the next-generation LTAMDS.