On October 14, in Torun, Mariusz Blaszczak, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of National Defense in the presence of President Andrzej Duda, the Head of the Polish Armed Forces, observed the tests of Polish PATRIOTS and other elements of the “Wisla” (Vistula) medium-range air defense system. The adoption and implementation of the WIS?A system in the Polish Armed Forces are conducted under the SICO (System Integration Checkout) procedure. As part of this process, Polish and American teams carry out an inventory of deliveries, final assembling military equipment, and testing the system. The head of the Ministry of National Defense emphasized that the creation of an integrated air-defense system is possible thanks to the cooperation with foreign partners and the efforts of the domestic armament industry.
“We have achieved the goal. Polish PATRIOTS are already being integrated, as we are commencing works that are to result in the creation of a multi-layer air-defense system. After 4 years of work, today marks the finish of our efforts. Today, everyone can see the launchers, radars, and the entire system with their own eyes. Yet, one of the most important of the system’s elements remains hidden – but is still extremely important. It is the heart of the system. I speak of IBCS battlefield control system, which guarantees network-centricity. The middle layer is PATRIOT, the lower is NAREW, and the lowest is PIORUN sets supplemented with the PILICA artillery set. All these activities come down to achieving one basic goal – ensuring safety over the Polish skies” – said Deputy Prime Minister Mariusz B?aszczak during his visit to Toru?.
As part of SICO, all delivered elements will be checked, example AN / MPQ-65 radars, EPP field power plants, ECS / RIU (Engagment Control Station / Radar Interface Unit) cabins, M903A2 launchers, and PAC-3MSE missiles, launch containers for training missiles, cryptographic equipment, special CSS 8×8 tractor units, transporters special TS EPP (Electrical Power Plan), TS LRPT (Large Repair Parts Transporter) and GMT transport and loading vehicles, command posts S-280 or IFCN radio lines. The first Patriot missile launchers, radars, and the entire system was handed over to the Polish armed forces. The sky of Poland is now ready to be protected with the Patriot, the NAREW which is the British CAMM air defense system, the PIORUN MANPADS, and the PSR-A Pilica, a Polish-made Very Short Range Air Defense (VSHORAD) anti-aircraft missile and artillery system.
In November 2017, the U.S. State Department approved a $10.5 billion sale of four Patriot missile defense systems to Poland. However, the high cost for the systems has caused some hesitation in Poland. In February 2018, Polish minister of defence Mariusz B?aszczak announced on Twitter that a reduced price was negotiated for the system. On March 28, 2018 the Ministry of National Defence signed the deal worth $4.75 billion for two Patriot Configuration 3+ batteries for deliveries in 2022. The purchase includes Northrop Grumman’s Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System (IBCS) and four fire units equipped with four AN/MPQ-65 radars, 16 launchers, four Engagement Control Stations, six Engagement Operation Centers, 12 IFCN Relays and 208 PAC-3 MSE missiles. In the Phase II, Poland plans to order six further batteries equipped with Raytheon’s LTAMDS 360-degree AESA radars and SkyCeptor interceptors, a variant of Stunner interceptor jointly developed with Rafael of Israel.