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Poland Buying Korean Tanks?


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#1 Markus Becker

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Posted 28 January 2020 - 1019 AM

Looks like it.

 

https://militarywatc...-9-billion-deal

 

Why no Leo II has been asked over on our FB site. Was it that we weren't willing to share technology or didn't the Poles want to buy from us? Which I'd get considering a certain pipeline. 


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#2 JasonJ

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Posted 28 January 2020 - 1029 AM

800 K2s sounds quite formidable.


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#3 Special-K

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Posted 28 January 2020 - 1106 AM

I saw this last night:

 

https://www.armyreco...ttle_tanks.html

 

 

 

The South Korean Defense Company Hyundai Rotem is planning to partner with the Polish government to develop and produce 800 K2 Black Panther main battle tanks (MBTs).

According to Hyundai Rotem, the official project could be announced in the first half of this year. The total project will be divided into two stages to produce a total of 800 main battle tanks.

According to previous reports, the Polish government partnered with Hyundai Rotem to produce next-generation tanks is scheduled to start in 2023. In 2016, Poland has already inked a deal with South Korea for the purchase of 120 K-9 self-propelled howitzers. Poland could be the first foreign customer for the K2 Black Panther MBT.

The K2 Black Panther is a new generation of main battle tank (MBT) designed, developed and manufactured in South Korea by the South Korean Company Hyundai Rotem. The K2 was unveiled for the first time to the public during the Defense Exhibition ADEX at the Seoul Airport in October 2009.

The main armament of the K2 Black Panther consists of a German-made Rheinmetall 120-mm/ L55 smoothbore gun produced under license in South Korea. The gun is fitted with an automatic loader which ensures the loading of projectiles on the move even when the vehicle moves on uneven surfaces. The 120mm gun can fire about 10 rounds per minute.

The layout of the K2 Black Panther MBT is conventional, with the driver's compartment at the front, fighting compartment in the center and engine and transmission at the rear. The armor on the Black Panther consists of an unknown type of composite armor and an Active Defense System utilizing Explosive Reactive Armor blocks.

The K2 Black Panther was previously motorized with an MT 833 diesel engine from Tognum, but the latest version of the tank is now fitted with a license-built German MTU 883 diesel engine and Renk transmission system. The K2 can run at a maximum speed 70 km/h on surface roads while being able to maintain speeds up to 48 km/h on off-road conditions.

 

 

 

 

I wonder what advantages the K2 has over its competitors that Poland would choose it over them - especially with any logistical advantages that more Leopards might have.  

 

-K


Edited by Special-K, 28 January 2020 - 1112 AM.

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#4 Ssnake

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Posted 28 January 2020 - 1133 AM

I wonder what advantages the K2 has over its competitors that Poland would choose it over them - especially with any logistical advantages that more Leopards might have.

 

Defense deals of these proportions are rarely (if ever) based on technological merits alone. There is very likely a strong political element in that decision, and I wouldn't be surprised if that element started with an N and ended with "ordStream II".


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#5 bd1

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Posted 28 January 2020 - 1318 PM

french and germans could not synchronize their tank projects with poles?

 

https://www.defence2...polish-industry


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#6 Daan

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Posted 28 January 2020 - 1356 PM

It is of a rather conventional design for a vehicle touted as representing a 'new generation' of MBT, which could potentially face truly new design concepts such as the T-14.


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#7 lastdingo

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Posted 28 January 2020 - 1511 PM

K-2 was optimised for the uneven terrain, with hydropneumatic suspension helping with the maximum gun elevation and depression.

The Poles rather need something to deal with woodland (and 120 mm L/55 doesn't come to mind when thinking about 'tanks in woodland').

 

Moreover, they BADLY need better pontoon / amphibious pontoon vehicle equipment. Theirs is Cold War vintage that was meant to support T-72's weight only.

The British M3 Amphibians that used to be in Germany may soon be gone to their island and be unavailable in the first days of conflict.

Many Polish army bases are in the West of the country, behind the Vistula river. Others are too close to Kaliningrad Oblast and could be hit in the first minutes of conflict with artillery.

 

https://defense-and-...forces-siy.html

https://defense-and-...9/bridging.html

 

An actual investment in 800 MBTs would (if it happens) signal either that

  1. the Polish army bets on KE for AT work,
  2. the Polish army bets on manoeuvre warfare,
  3. the Polish army wants to expand very much or
  4. there's something corrupt going on

Not long ago there was a move for an infantry-centric national guard IIRC. The Polish economy grew very much during the last decade.

Maybe it's #3.


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#8 lastdingo

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Posted 28 January 2020 - 1515 PM

It is of a rather conventional design for a vehicle touted as representing a 'new generation' of MBT, which could potentially face truly new design concepts such as the T-14.

Tanks have followed combat aircraft in that they are nowadays rather defined by their electronics.

T-14 is supposed to get many fancy electronics, but the only things it offers that you cannot emulate with a K2 is the all-or-almost-nothing approach to armour protection; maximum protection for crew capsule, turret likely vulnerable to IFV autocannons. That's not decisive IMO.


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#9 Daan

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Posted 28 January 2020 - 1627 PM

I find the crew capsule in the hull of the T-14 a rather attractive design element. With current sensor technology (i.e. Iron Vision) the crew is likely able to a get as good or even superior situational awareness compared to a traditional layout, is moreover located hull down in its entirety and then also completely separated from the main gun ammunition storage. The conventional K2 design has the bulk of its ammunition in the hull, with no hard separation from the crew. I thought the Syrian videos of T-72s and Leopard 2s blowing up or cooking off completely after ATGM hits were rather sobering. Of course an active protection system may prevent legacy ATGMs from touching any AFV, but it may not be foolproof especially against future systems.  


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#10 lastdingo

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Posted 29 January 2020 - 0803 AM

A T-14 would very likely be much easier to mission kill in battle than a K2.

 

The Poles need a tank for the Great patriotic War of 2030 against Russia. Crew survival is second to mission effectiveness for that.

 

The comparison would be like

One mission-ready T-14 and two partial spares kit T-14 (firepower killed by some weak threat that shredded the poorly protected turret)

vs.

Two mission-ready K2 and one K2 wreck with dead crew

 

The latter is more useful for national defence and may very well end up with less KIA total, for the effective 2nd tank could save infantrymen lives or the lives of other tankers.

 

 

The extreme emphasis on protection for the crew is borne from stupid wars of occupation where almost nobody was convinced that the mission was worth KIAs.

The matter is completely different when you're defending your nation for real. The lives of 800 MBT crews would be a footnote in that context.


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#11 Markus Becker

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Posted 29 January 2020 - 0812 AM

The Poles need a tank for the Great patriotic War of 2030 against Russia.

 

Or to commemorate the 90th anniversary of the German invasion in style. ;)


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#12 Daan

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Posted 29 January 2020 - 0843 AM

Such calculations are of course all speculation. Given that the T-14 is radical new design and the first of its generation, teething problems hampering its serviceability may naturally very well occur. What concerns me is not the specifics of the T-14 as such, but its overall concept: the crew in a well protected hull capsule with access to ample information from the vehicle's own sensors and data link, an unmanned turret with auto-loader and extra protection provided by an APS. Unfortunately, such a concept is not available in the West, as tank development there has mostly stalled and armies must content themselves with piecemeal upgrades to 40 year old designs. 

 

I disagree with your renunciation of efforts to specifically limit crew casualties, not only from a moral perspective but also in the interest of preserving expensive and well-trained personnel. 


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#13 lastdingo

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Posted 29 January 2020 - 0852 AM

The T-14 has so many vulnerable yet important components on the turret surfaces (sensors, smoke dischargers, APS dischargers, APS sensors) that there's little point in armouring it against 57 mm or more. Even the spraying by a 30 mm autocannon stands a very good chance at firepower killing a T-14. That's quite inevitable by the concept.

 

So it's safe to say that T-14 will be firepower killed and thus mission killed fairly easily. APS will not help against that.

It's also rather safe to say that no army would have plenty stocks of spares or even spare turrets. They would prefer to add the relatively modest extra cost of buying the hull and engine as well and have something to show. A firepower-killed T-14 would very likely be no T-14 for the rest of a weeks- or months-long hot conflict.


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#14 Daan

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Posted 29 January 2020 - 0920 AM

Having lots of sensitive equipment mounted externally is of course not a prerogative of the T-14 or a similar design with a hull-mounted crew capsule. Updated western legacy designs have also meanwhile grown veritable gardens of equipment on their turrets. Whilst a proper hosing of 30 mm or a nearby artillery shell may not penetrate the turret's armor, it may well badly damage the optics, RWS, APS and external communications, thus producing a mission kill.  


Edited by Daan, 29 January 2020 - 0924 AM.

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#15 lastdingo

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Posted 29 January 2020 - 0935 AM

The T-14's crew is much more dependent on the electronic sensors, though. The TC cannot simply open a hatch and lock 360° around. The gunner has no non-electronic optical backup sight.


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#16 Daan

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Posted 29 January 2020 - 1347 PM

True indeed, an auxiliary sight is an advantage in emergencies. However, such a tank could hardly be called fully mission capable.


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#17 Stefan Kotsch

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Posted 29 January 2020 - 1502 PM

It should be noted that the commander and gunner both have fully functional sights.  In this case, the waiver of a (third) auxillary sight is acceptable.


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#18 Interlinked

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Posted 29 January 2020 - 1856 PM

I'm reminded of an anecdote where the firepower of a BMP-2 was tested against a BMP-1. The BMP-2 fired 24 HE rounds at a T-72 and destroyed all of the sights and vision devices on the tank, and ripped off the anti-aircraft machine gun.

This can happen to any tank, and it's now even easier with airburst ammo. Or a Toyota with a ZU-23-2 on its flatbed. So IMHO, a T-14 really doesn't really have a significantly higher chance of suffering a mission kill from lesser threats compared to any conventional tank.
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#19 Corinthian

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Posted 30 January 2020 - 0320 AM

A T-14 would very likely be much easier to mission kill in battle than a K2.

 

The Poles need a tank for the Great patriotic War of 2030 against Russia. Crew survival is second to mission effectiveness for that.

 

The comparison would be like

One mission-ready T-14 and two partial spares kit T-14 (firepower killed by some weak threat that shredded the poorly protected turret)

vs.

Two mission-ready K2 and one K2 wreck with dead crew

 

The latter is more useful for national defence and may very well end up with less KIA total, for the effective 2nd tank could save infantrymen lives or the lives of other tankers.

 

 

The extreme emphasis on protection for the crew is borne from stupid wars of occupation where almost nobody was convinced that the mission was worth KIAs.

The matter is completely different when you're defending your nation for real. The lives of 800 MBT crews would be a footnote in that context.

 

I have a feeling that the T-14 will be given add-on armour modules for its turret when war happens.


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#20 lastdingo

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Posted 30 January 2020 - 0426 AM

I have a feeling that the T-14 will be given add-on armour modules for its turret when war happens.


Many of the important turret components are on the outside because they require it for their function. You cannot really armour a sensor's lens, a radar's antenna, a smoke discharger's muzzle, an Afghanit muzzle and so on.

What you can do is you can treat the exposed parts as consumables and stock them up accordingly.

Military bureaucracies won't do that. 200 tanks to show and play with (including lots of jobs for officers) is much better to them than 100 tanks with appropriate spares stocks.


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