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Mesko, a Polish defense company, unveils plans for the next-generation Piorun air defense system, featuring enhanced capabilities and improved parameters. Collaboration with South Korea and the US is also expected to expand production capacity.
Polish defense company Mesko’s Vice President of Development, Przemysław Kowalczuk, announced the development of the next-generation Piorun air defense system. In an interview with Radio Plus Radom, Kowalczuk mentioned that the new system would incorporate insights gained from the Ukrainian Armed Forces, offering superior performance.
Enhanced Capabilities and Proven Effectiveness
Introduced in 2019, the Piorun air defense system is an upgraded version of the Grom system, based on the Soviet 9K38 Igla. The Piorun has successfully engaged advanced Russian helicopters like the Ka-52 Alligator.
The Piorun employs a proximity-fused fragmentation warhead for target destruction, guided by a third-generation seeker head with infrared (IR) and ultraviolet (UV) sensors. Future iterations may incorporate a fourth-generation seeker head with thermal imaging for improved engagement of small drones.
Introducing the Grzmot: A Promising Development
Dr. Przemysław Kowalczuk also mentioned the Grzmot system, a larger air defense platform with an extended range. It aims to replace the modernized Osa-AKM-P1 “Żądło” systems in service with the Polish Armed Forces. Initial in-house testing for the Grzmot is expected within 18 months, with full development taking several years.
Mesko plans to collaborate with South Korea and the United States, expanding production capabilities in the next 2-3 years. This expansion will meet the demands of the Polish Ministry of National Defense and fulfill foreign contracts. Recent orders from Norway indicate growing international interest in the Piorun system.