The spokesman of the Armaments Agency, Lt. Col. Krzysztof P?atek, announced the completion of the qualification tests of the BAOBAB-K truck-mounted scatterable mine-laying system developed by a consortium of Polish defense sector companies. The Polish Armaments Inspectorate (now Armaments Agency) awarded the PLN19.95 million (USD5 million) Baobab-K prototype development contract to HSW in December 2018. The platform is being developed by a consortium of Polska Grupa Zbrojeniowa (PGZ) subsidiaries HSW, Jelcz, and Belma; Poland’s Military University of Technology; and WB Group. BAOBAB-K is based on 8×8 JELCZ chassis with high mobility and payload capabilities. The vehicle is manned by 2 soldiers.
BAOBAB-K, the scattered mine laying vehicle is intended to set scattered antitank barrier minefields by engineering tactical level troops. The BAOBAB enables automatic laying of barrier minefields of different size, density and time of self-destruction. In automatic mode, the computer calculates the speed of the vehicle, launcher settings and adjusts the frequency of launching mines while driving. The minefield laying process is carried out automatically by using a control station. Additionally, minefield parameters and coordinates are recorded on digital maps and displayed on the computer screen and might be sent through radio communications to higher command level units. HSW can offer a tracked Baobab-G based on HSW’s hydro-pneumatic chassis.
The vehicle can carry 600 Belma MN-123.1 and MN-123.2 programmable anti-tank mines. BELMA is a Polish defence company located in Biale Blota. The MN-123 anti-tank mines are designed for creating minefield using the Engineering Mine Scattering System. The mine is actuated after detection of a vehicule outline moving above it or after a set self-destruction time has passed. The MN-123 mine is armed with a two-directional shaped charge and fitted with a self-destruction and a self-neutralisation system. Belma TMN and MZK-E Mine Throwers are designed for firing anti-tank scatterable MN-123 mines. The thrower can be used by subunits of engineering troops to create anti-tank minefields by scatting mines. Belma is the only manufacturer of anti-tank mines in Poland.
Huta Stalowa Wola (HSW) presented the final prototype of the Baobab-K truck-mounted scatterable mine-laying system on 1 February. WB Group-affiliated companies are delivering electromechanical systems, communications (RRC9311AP radios and FONET intercom), and TOPAZ Tactics minefield management systems, the latter of which allows the recording of minefield parameters and the co-ordinates of minefield corners on digital maps. All data is then sent via radio link to a higher command level. HSW SA is part of Polska Grupa Zbrojeniowa SA. The Polska Grupa Zbrojeniowa (PGZ SA) is a holding company established by the Polish government to unite Polish, state owned defence industry companies. The headquarters of this group is in Radom.