MSPO 2022: First batch of crowdfunded Warmate loitering munitions arrives in Ukraine
Frontline units in the Ukrainian Armed Forces have received their first batch of 20 crowdfunded Warmate loitering munitions made by Polish company WB Group.
Announcing the news on 6 September, Ukrainian digital transformation minister Mykhailo Fedorov revealed that 20 more Warmates will be provided to frontline units this month as Ukraine pushes to liberate areas in the Kherson and Kharkiv oblasts from Russian occupation.
A crowdfunding effort via Monobank raised UAH64 million ($1.73 million) for the acquisition of the Warmates.
The 1.17m-long Warmate can carry a 1.4kg anti-personnel or anti-armour payload. It has a maximum range of 12km and mission endurance of up to 50 minutes, according to Shephard Defence Insight.
Its setup time is approximately 10 minutes.
WB Group CEO Piotr Wojciechowski told Shephard during the MSPO exhibition that the Ukrainian Armed Forces have used 'over 150' Warmates to date, and the company regularly delivers new loitering munitions to Ukraine.
'Importantly, now Ukrainian armed forces do not need entire systems but only effectors, which shows how effective the whole system is,' he added.
WB Group also receives user feedback from Ukraine that could help the company implement improvements (mainly software-related) to Warmate in future.
Wojciechowski said that the manufacturer expects to produce 500 Warmate systems in 2022, rising to 1,500 in 2023 to meet international and domestic demand. In previous years, 100 loitering munitions were sufficient to meet all customers' annual needs.
Additional reporting by Grzegorz Sobczak, Kielce
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