According to Defense 24, on Tuesday, 16 Warmates have been delivered to Ukrainian Special Operations Forces.
Warmate is a loitering munition developed by Polish defense contractor WB Electronics, which entered production for the first time in 2016. The manufacturer claims that the ammunition is a good alternative to anti-tank-guided missiles. These loitering munitions are used to hit lightly armored vehicles and other critically important enemy objects.
Since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, Poland has been among the most active suppliers of weapons to Ukraine. According to Defense 24, on Tuesday, 16 Warmates have been delivered to Ukrainian Special Operations Forces. Warmate is classified as a kamikaze drone, designed to destroy enemy targets at a greater distance and simplifies the process of detecting and hitting the target in comparison with the ATGM.
This is not the first time Poland has given Ukraine this weapon. Earlier, Ukraine received the Warmate drone for the first time and put it into combat in July 2022. The maximum take-off weight of this type of drone is only about 5.7 kg. It has a very modest maximum range, only about 30km with a maximum ceiling of 500 meters. Due to its light weight, the amount of fuel that Warmate carries is not much, at most it can only help them hover for about 1 hour.
The Warmate loitering munition has a length of 1 m, a wingspan of 1.4 m. It can be easily transported by one soldier using a backpack. It features a pair of foldable main wings swept rearward, and a pair of vertical, V-shaped tail fins.
According to Defense Blog, each Warmate UAV is equipped with an explosive warhead weighing about 1.4 kg. Depending on the specific mission, this warhead can be changed into many different types, the most common include high-explosive and thermobaric warheads. When attacking, the Warmate UAV will be controlled directly to the target and explode. The maximum speed of this drone is only about 140 km/h.
Although they do not have any outstanding features and do not have strong destructive power on the battlefield, the advantages of Warmate UAVs come from their production costs. Specifically, WB Electronics once offered to sell 1,000 loitering munitions of this type to the Polish army for only $12,000 each.
Since the Russian-Ukrainian conflict broke out, the superiority of drones has been demonstrated by both sides on the battlefield. Most importantly, this weapon is extremely cheap. For comparison, a modern Turkish-made TB2 UAV complex costs up to 2 million USD, while for the same amount of money can buy up to 100 suicide UAVs with similar features, such as Warmate.