Poland Moving Forward on Mi-24 Helicopter Modernization

Poland has formulated plans for the modernization of its Soviet-legacy fleet of Mil Mi-24 “Hind” attack helicopters. The aim is to reach out to potential vendors from July through September with Requests for Information (RFIs) in the hopes of winnowing down the best possible solution to extend the service lives of these aging helicopters.

The Polish Land Forces’ current inventory consists of a mix of Mi-24s procured from the former Soviet Union beginning in 1979, plus supplementary units provided from legacy former East German stocks and sold to Poland in 1995 by Germany at the symbolic cost of a single deutschmark. Two of these German Mi‑24Ds were immediately cannibalized for spare parts.

Polish Mi-24D.  Source: Cezary Piwowarski

Since that time, Poland has mothballed around a third of its Mi-24 fleet with the intention of procuring a new fleet of attack helicopters (32 units) under the so‑called Kruk (Raven) program. The Boeing AH-64 Apache and Bell AH-1Z Viper are considered likely options to win the Kruk bid.

In parallel to the Kruk procurement program, Poland has sought to modernize the Mi-24 fleet in order to retain the helicopters in service through at least 2022, when the first new-build models would ostensibly arrive. The modernization initiative is aimed at improving the weaponry on the Mi-24s while ensuring that a capability gap does not emerge during the Kruk acquisition period.

About Daniel Darling

Dan Darling is a senior analyst covering both the Europe and Asia-Pacific regions for Forecast International's International Military Markets group.

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