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Posted: 8/15/2005 1:21:09 AM EDT
Proposing High-Tech Destroyer With Long-Range Guns
By John J. Lumpkin Associated Press Writer
Published: Aug 15, 2005
ap.tbo.com/ap/breaking/MGBM9HEBECE.html
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Navy, seeking a greater role as the United States wages wars far inland, is pushing an expensive, experimental destroyer it says will be able to bomb targets well away from shore.
The Navy is trying to improve its ability to conduct fire support - using heavy guns to assist Marines or soldiers ashore, much like land-based artillery does. The frequency of such naval fire support missions have declined during conflicts of the last half-century, and the Navy has turned to expensive cruise missiles instead of guns to hit targets farther inland.

The proposed destroyer, called the DD(X), would fill a gap opened with the removal from service of the last battleships more than a decade ago, Navy officials contend. But the DD(X) has its critics, who say the Navy is betting on technologies that aren't fully developed and argue the ship is too expensive.

The first DD(X) is projected to cost $3.3 billion, but sister ships would be cheaper, the Navy says. Since 2004, however, the Navy's estimated costs per ship have gone up almost 50 percent for ships built after the first of their class, the Congressional Research Service says.

One proposal before Congress would cap the price per ship at $1.7 billion, forcing the Navy to redesign the DD(X) to something smaller and probably less capable.

The Navy also has reduced the number it wants to buy, from between 16 to 24 down to between eight and 12, prompting fears that the military won't give shipyards enough work and force one to close, the congressional researchers reported recently.

One group wants to see the World War II-era battleships USS Iowa and USS Wisconsin make a comeback, arguing their ability to bombard targets inland with their massive 16-inch guns is unmatched in the fleet. The vessels are inactive but could be returned to service with sufficient investment.

But Navy officials say they don't want the battleships returned to active duty, and there are proposals in Congress to turn them into museums.

Current cruisers and destroyers mount only 5-inch guns with a range of about 15 miles. The guns of the Iowa and Wisconsin can hit targets 30 miles distant with unguided shells carrying 1,900 pounds of high explosives.

The Navy says the guns of the DD(X) will far exceed the capabilities of those on the battleships and the current fleet.

The ship would carry two 155-millimeter guns that fire rocket-propelled rounds. Current test versions of the gun have hit targets 68 miles away. The Navy hopes to reach 96 miles. Navy officials also talk about an electromagnetic rail gun, possibly available by 2020, that can hit targets 350 miles away.

Where the battleships fire unguided shells and destroy targets though massed firepower, rounds from the guns of the DD(X) will be guided by satellite positioning data, like many modern aircraft bombs and missiles, and be far more precise.

The first DD(X) isn't expected to join the fleet until 2013 or so, presuming it continues to receive funding. The Navy also is working on a rocket-propelled shell for its current warships, but that is unlikely to be ready until 2010.

The Navy makes other big promises regarding the DD(X): It will be stealthy and as difficult to detect as an attack submarine; it will have a radar able to pick out targets from along crowded coastlines; it will be heavily automated and need only a small crew.

The ship will also carry at least one helicopter, unpiloted drones, small guns to fight off attacks by small boats, and surface-to-surface and surface-to-air missiles.

Many of those who are pushing the return of the battleships as an alternative to DD(X) are members of the United States Naval Fire Support Association, a group of retired military and security officials, who say the absence of battleships exposes ground troops to significant risks.

"The highly effective and versatile battleships are an incredible bargain and should be readied for rapid reactivation, instead of being turned into museums," William L. Stearman, a Navy veteran and the group's executive director, wrote in an e-mail. "Our constantly dwindling fleet could use their massive infusion of firepower and their commanding presence, so effective as an awesome, massive visible show of force where we want to get people's attention and respect."

But Rear Adm. Mark J. Edwards, the Navy's surface warfare chief, says the Navy doesn't want the battleships back for several reasons, most notably the 1,300 to 1,500 crew who are required to operate each one. Plans for the DD(X) call for a crew of 150 or fewer, making the ship far less expensive to operate.

Navy officials also prefer the precision and range of the new destroyer's guns over the raw destructive power of the battleship's.
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 1:36:36 AM EDT
I wonder when was the last time that our troops wished they had navy fire support? Looks like the navy is trying to fill a role that is not needed.
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 1:42:00 AM EDT
It seems that the DDX design is way overpriced. And we know the battleships are antiques that can't survive against modern anti-ship weapons.

So why don't we just develop those guns and mount them on Arleigh Burke Class destroyers? That way you use a good and proven ship that doesn't cost a fortune and get the weapon you want at the same time.
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 1:42:30 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 1:43:29 AM EDT
I'd think it would be a bit cheaper to just duck tape a 155mm howitzer on the deck of existing ships.
Either that or just park a Paladin on the deck.
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 1:44:15 AM EDT
Keep in mind the Navy is trying to find a mission. Currently, the Navy is still in the mindset of the "Cold War", IE large Naval Battles fought on the high seas. The problem is, that is not the case. Their is one large naval threat and that is the Chinese Navy.

The number of ships in the Navy is dwindling from 600 ships to less than 275 and still looking to cut back more. It cost money to keep ships running.

Naval gun fire support was an excellent tool back in the days. With the advent of precision munitions and several delivery platforms such as the MLRS, Howitzers with RAP rounds, and Close Air Support I do not know if the Naval Gunfire will be an effective tool. Only time will tell. Hopefully it will.

Max
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 1:47:54 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/15/2005 1:48:45 AM EDT by Charging_Handle]

Originally Posted By Specop_007:
I'd think it would be a bit cheaper to just duck tape a 155mm howitzer on the deck of existing ships.
Either that or just park a Paladin on the deck.



Exactly my thoughts. It seems to me that if there is a need here, it is long-range precision fire. We can update current ships with these guns and some of the other self defense goodies much cheaper than we can build a few DDX's. IMHO, the gun's range is the ship's selling point anyway and is more important than having a "stealthy" ship. We can have that without the DDX pricetag.
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 6:38:41 AM EDT
The guns are nothing new, the ammo is, and it can likely be fired ou of any 155mm naval gun.

But all these billions being spent on DD(x)'s is rediculous, spend a 1/3 to update the current fleet and the rest for......ammo, or they could just save money.
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 6:51:26 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Specop_007:
I'd think it would be a bit cheaper to just duck tape a 155mm howitzer on the deck of existing ships.
Either that or just park a Paladin on the deck.



Now where's the glamour in that?

What we need is a nice, new, shiney system. Not some cobbled together thing.[/sarcasm]
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 6:56:13 AM EDT
Ever since the Army debuted the MLRS system in the late 1980s, the Navy has considered a similar system for some ships. However, the standard MLRS rockets would not provide the range the Navy is looking for (and neither would the 155mm), and a guided missile would be too expensive for the Navy to consider.
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 7:31:54 AM EDT

Originally Posted By FunYun1983:
The guns are nothing new, the ammo is, and it can likely be fired ou of any 155mm naval gun.

But all these billions being spent on DD(x)'s is rediculous, spend a 1/3 to update the current fleet and the rest for......ammo, or they could just save money.



The guns are in fact of an entirely new design by United Defense. They are fully automated. I don't believe the ammo is usable in any other 155 gun. IIRC, the only ammo currently planned for this weapon is the GPS rocket propelled round. I was stunned when I learned that the Navy wasn't planning on employing any of the huge inventory of standard 155mm ammo.

FWIW, I and a couple of my colleagues we wrote the test plans for the DD(X) multifunction radar that test the radar's ability to track incoming and outgoing rounds.

I agree with you on the ridiculousness of the current DD(X) spending. I don't work directly on that program any more...but it bothered me when I did...
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 8:11:43 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/15/2005 2:04:36 PM EDT by vito113]
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 8:12:39 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/16/2005 9:56:37 AM EDT by NH_AR_Shooter]
I wish they would just stop talking about it and makeup their freakin minds...one way or the other.

Also, if we're only going to build a handfull now, whats the point?
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 8:39:38 AM EDT

Originally Posted By NH_AR_Shooter:
I wish they would just stop talking about it and makeup their freakin minds...on way or the other.


Q. How do you make a giraffe?
A. Ask a committe to design a horse.
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 1:15:39 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/15/2005 1:17:03 PM EDT by COLE-CARBINE]

Originally Posted By LWilde:

The guns are in fact of an entirely new design by United Defense. They are fully automated. I don't believe the ammo is usable in any other 155 gun. IIRC, the only ammo currently planned for this weapon is the GPS rocket propelled round. I was stunned when I learned that the Navy wasn't planning on employing any of the huge inventory of standard 155mm ammo.

FWIW, I and a couple of my colleagues we wrote the test plans for the DD(X) multifunction radar that test the radar's ability to track incoming and outgoing rounds.

I agree with you on the ridiculousness of the current DD(X) spending. I don't work directly on that program any more...but it bothered me when I did...



Maybe of some interest.....
DDX INFO LINKAGE...
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 1:58:55 PM EDT
The naval 155 can shoot standard 155 rounds, however range would be seriously reduced. The 155 ERGM for vertical 155 is similar to the 155mm howitzer ERGM however if I remember right, the land based one is smaller, lighter and base bleed vice, RAP.

Naval MLRS didn't really go anywhere because of range and N-ATACMs lost out to Standard-booster based land missile. The problem with N-ATACM was the propellant gas was too corrosive for Naval use and it would require a different rocket motor than the ground, with all the Standard booster around it was a low cost solution.
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 3:51:18 PM EDT

Originally Posted By STLRN:
The naval 155 can shoot standard 155 rounds, however range would be seriously reduced. The 155 ERGM for vertical 155 is similar to the 155mm howitzer ERGM however if I remember right, the land based one is smaller, lighter and base bleed vice, RAP.

Naval MLRS didn't really go anywhere because of range and N-ATACMs lost out to Standard-booster based land missile. The problem with N-ATACM was the propellant gas was too corrosive for Naval use and it would require a different rocket motor than the ground, with all the Standard booster around it was a low cost solution.



The ammo choice must be because of a recent decision. Before I left the program a year ago, the only round the ship would carry was the ERGM. I thought that was sheer madness...but then programmatic and political forces completely beyond my humble control were at work. I also figured that PEO Ships had not consulted with the Marines.
Link Posted: 8/15/2005 7:48:41 PM EDT
If the technology is proven. Why not simply upgrade the Battleship's 16 Inch Guns?
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 5:28:24 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/16/2005 5:31:16 AM EDT by KlubMarcus]

Originally Posted By Charging_Handle:
It seems that the DDX design is way overpriced. And we know the battleships are antiques that can't survive against modern anti-ship weapons.

Yes, the DDX costs too much. You can upgrade several existing battleships for the price of one DDX.

The battleships we have will cost less to just retrofit with guided missiles for long range precision strikes and still have the big guns for cheaper area shelling. Plus, battleship armor is so thick that it will continue to function even if a stray missile/torpedo happens to get past the picket boats. One hit on a puny DDX and it's going under!

The solution, let the Marine Corps have the battleships as a strike and fire support platform. Just imagine a Marine Expeditionary Unit plus one battleship! Mu ha ha ha! Oh yeah, battleships can cruise faster than transport ships so they can escort them all the way.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 6:02:00 AM EDT

Originally Posted By mtchristman:
I wonder when was the last time that our troops wished they had navy fire support? Looks like the navy is trying to fill a role that is not needed.



The USMC has continuously listed current NGFS capabilities as inadequate for at least 10 years
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 6:06:48 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 6:12:44 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/16/2005 6:12:55 AM EDT by NimmerMehr]
Battleship reactivation. Current range of main battery is 30 miles. Not far enough for inland bombardment

Proposed 155mm gun with 64/96 mile range, not yet proven/developed.

Keep the BBs mothballed.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 6:21:22 AM EDT
Why doesn't the Navy read threads like these? Lots of sensible advice in here.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 6:52:46 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/16/2005 6:54:40 AM EDT by LWilde]

Originally Posted By The_Beer_Slayer:
i'm not sure this is needed. close air support and air superiority belong to the us. i am hard pressed to beleive naval guns can out do the precision and speed of air power in the regard.



And THAT is one of the core arguments against the DD(X). Look up the CRS Congressional report on the DD(X) and you will see this.

Look...I'm a retired Surface Warfare Officer...aka a "Black Shoe". I spent nearly my entire career in destroyers and guided missile destroyers. I cringe at the thought of losing this important platform.

That said, I am also a realist and a taxpayer. Why should we build a $2.0B ship (and that price is argueable right now...) if a squadron of F/A-18s (or other TACAIR) can do the job? For the unitiated, one of the critical requirements for naval fires missions is rapid time on target for the ordered ordnance. I'm not at liberty to provide the numbers but it is on the order of minutes from the request for fire support from the grunts to impact. An orbiting fighter bomber can deliver a PGM very quickly...and well beyond the range of the DD(X)'s guns.

Finally, we must ask ourselves, how littoral is littoral? Are we really going to make another assault on a defended beach with seaborne infantry? Are we really going to need the DD(X) for this mission? Virtually all of the targets in Iraq and Afghanistan are out of reach of the DD(X)'s guns. If it has other missions, is the current design optimized for them?

Do we continue simply for the technology support and transfer to other new platforms? That is one argument...but I don't think it is a viable one.

Anyway...with the war sucking the life out of all programs, this one is at serious risk right now.

Oh...I do not advocate bringing back the BBs. That is a non-starter for many reasons.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 8:19:51 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 8:51:42 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/16/2005 4:40:26 PM EDT by KlubMarcus]

Modern directed energy anti ship missile warheads will punch through the armor of a Battleship with ease… Modern mines and torpedoes will break their backs if they come into contact with them, think Russian Kilo and German IKL Class SSK's that are widely available on the word market
So that means the DDX will be more vulnerable to such weapons. Just park a battleship, put a picket line of escorts around it and pound away with heavy guns and missiles that a battleship can carry with ease!
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 9:39:28 AM EDT

Originally Posted By LWilde:

Look...I'm a retired Surface Warfare Officer...aka a "Black Shoe". I spent nearly my entire career in destroyers and guided missile destroyers. I cringe at the thought of losing this important platform.

That said, I am also a realist and a taxpayer. Why should we build a $2.0B ship (and that price is argueable right now...) if a squadron of F/A-18s (or other TACAIR) can do the job? For the unitiated, one of the critical requirements for naval fires missions is rapid time on target for the ordered ordnance.

Finally, we must ask ourselves, how littoral is littoral? Are we really going to make another assault on a defended beach with seaborne infantry? Are we really going to need the DD(X) for this mission? Virtually all of the targets in Iraq and Afghanistan are out of reach of the DD(X)'s guns. If it has other missions, is the current design optimized for them?

Oh...I do not advocate bringing back the BBs. That is a non-starter for many reasons.



Even though I don't always agree with you and Vito, you two, and a few others here, at least know of what the hell you speak.

When it comes to Joint fires TACAIR can do the job with speed and precsion (as Beer Slayer said). There is one more dimension in that equation though, and that is persistance. NGFS has a lot of it, USA/USMC artillery has a lot of it, TACAIR does not. To relate it to Civil War era warfare, TACAIR is much more like mounted cavalry than artillery. Great for the quick strike and shock value, but not really set up for prolonged efforts.

Is the value of that persistance worth the price tag of DDX? Great question. A missing element of these calculation is life-cycle costs. Today, 2/3 of the cost of a ship over its lifetime is the cost of the personnel assigned - pay, benefits, retirement, medical, child care, etc. Cutting the crew size dramatically SHOULD (loaded conditional term for sure) reduce the life-cycle cost of the ship.

As far as making another assault on a defended beach - who knows? It certainly isn't current USMC doctrine. STOM emphasizes maneuvering directly to the objective. Statistically, an overwhelming majority of likely objectives are within 100 miles of a coast line. Afghanistan and Iraq, no. Other areas in the arc of instability - certainly.

As far as USN surface ship building priorities go, I put this one behind the LCS. Currently we are using trememdously expensive multi-mission ships doing VBSS. The closest analogy that I can come up with is using an M-1A2 to do parking ticket enforcement. One way to lessen the cost would be to dumb down the ship, but there are FO/GOs out there who think that if everything is not broadband net-centric it shouldn't be built. Get DDX more in line with the original arsenal ship concept.

Finally, concur on the non-reactivation of the BBs. Love 'em just like I love looking at P-51s and B-17s, but there time is long past.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 9:52:31 AM EDT
We have these discussions regularly.

Too many here are enamored by the big-wing Navy concept, its about as bad as the big gun advocates were in Mitchell's day.

There is a place for large, well protected well armed ships in the Navy, and a new Battleship would be prudent although not necessary at this point. We will have to make do with what we have.

But the battlewagons will sail again...
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 11:09:07 AM EDT

Originally Posted By H46Driver:

Originally Posted By LWilde:

Look...I'm a retired Surface Warfare Officer...aka a "Black Shoe". I spent nearly my entire career in destroyers and guided missile destroyers. I cringe at the thought of losing this important platform.

That said, I am also a realist and a taxpayer. Why should we build a $2.0B ship (and that price is argueable right now...) if a squadron of F/A-18s (or other TACAIR) can do the job? For the unitiated, one of the critical requirements for naval fires missions is rapid time on target for the ordered ordnance.

Finally, we must ask ourselves, how littoral is littoral? Are we really going to make another assault on a defended beach with seaborne infantry? Are we really going to need the DD(X) for this mission? Virtually all of the targets in Iraq and Afghanistan are out of reach of the DD(X)'s guns. If it has other missions, is the current design optimized for them?

Oh...I do not advocate bringing back the BBs. That is a non-starter for many reasons.



Even though I don't always agree with you and Vito, you two, and a few others here, at least know of what the hell you speak.

When it comes to Joint fires TACAIR can do the job with speed and precsion (as Beer Slayer said). There is one more dimension in that equation though, and that is persistance. NGFS has a lot of it, USA/USMC artillery has a lot of it, TACAIR does not. To relate it to Civil War era warfare, TACAIR is much more like mounted cavalry than artillery. Great for the quick strike and shock value, but not really set up for prolonged efforts.

Is the value of that persistance worth the price tag of DDX? Great question. A missing element of these calculation is life-cycle costs. Today, 2/3 of the cost of a ship over its lifetime is the cost of the personnel assigned - pay, benefits, retirement, medical, child care, etc. Cutting the crew size dramatically SHOULD (loaded conditional term for sure) reduce the life-cycle cost of the ship.

As far as making another assault on a defended beach - who knows? It certainly isn't current USMC doctrine. STOM emphasizes maneuvering directly to the objective. Statistically, an overwhelming majority of likely objectives are within 100 miles of a coast line. Afghanistan and Iraq, no. Other areas in the arc of instability - certainly.

As far as USN surface ship building priorities go, I put this one behind the LCS. Currently we are using trememdously expensive multi-mission ships doing VBSS. The closest analogy that I can come up with is using an M-1A2 to do parking ticket enforcement. One way to lessen the cost would be to dumb down the ship, but there are FO/GOs out there who think that if everything is not broadband net-centric it shouldn't be built. Get DDX more in line with the original arsenal ship concept.
Finally, concur on the non-reactivation of the BBs. Love 'em just like I love looking at P-51s and B-17s, but there time is long past.



Great insight. The only thing I'll add is the USN's arsenal ship is now the SSGN conversion of the Ohio Class submarines... now that is money well spent!

Link Posted: 8/16/2005 12:10:23 PM EDT

Originally Posted By COLE-CARBINE:

Great insight. The only thing I'll add is the USN's arsenal ship is now the SSGN conversion of the Ohio Class submarines... now that is money well spent!

www.defenseworld.net/images/features/newrolesforsubmarines/OHIO%20class%20%20SSGN.jpg



Definitely money well spent, but not a full realization of the concept of the arsenal ship.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 12:19:06 PM EDT
Didn't the navy screw around with this concept about 20 years ago? I'll swear I read an article on it.

Build the gun. Put it on an existing hull.

Or better yet, build the gun and give it to the Army/Marines. Imagine how it's use would cut down on friendly fire incidents from TacAir.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 12:47:36 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Phil_A_Steen:
Why doesn't the Navy read threads like these? Lots of sensible advice in here.


To be honest, there are at least two professional Naval Officer discussion boards discussing many of the same issues, and the Flags keep an eye on them.

BBs are a non-starter. True you could POSSIBLY upgrade them for the price of the DDX program, but the problem is maintaining them. The manpower costs alone are staggering.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 12:49:15 PM EDT

Originally Posted By KlubMarcus:

Modern directed energy anti ship missile warheads will punch through the armor of a Battleship with ease… Modern mines and torpedoes will break their backs if they come into contact with them, think Russian Kilo and German IKL Class SSK's that are widely available on the word market
So that means the DDX will be more vulnerable to such weapons. Just park a battleship, put a picket line of escorts around it and pound away with heavy guns and missiles that a battle can carry with ease!



DDX wouldn't be vulnerable to such threats thanks to its LO technology.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 12:52:03 PM EDT

Originally Posted By H46Driver:

Originally Posted By LWilde:

Look...I'm a retired Surface Warfare Officer...aka a "Black Shoe". I spent nearly my entire career in destroyers and guided missile destroyers. I cringe at the thought of losing this important platform.

That said, I am also a realist and a taxpayer. Why should we build a $2.0B ship (and that price is argueable right now...) if a squadron of F/A-18s (or other TACAIR) can do the job? For the unitiated, one of the critical requirements for naval fires missions is rapid time on target for the ordered ordnance.

Finally, we must ask ourselves, how littoral is littoral? Are we really going to make another assault on a defended beach with seaborne infantry? Are we really going to need the DD(X) for this mission? Virtually all of the targets in Iraq and Afghanistan are out of reach of the DD(X)'s guns. If it has other missions, is the current design optimized for them?

Oh...I do not advocate bringing back the BBs. That is a non-starter for many reasons.



Even though I don't always agree with you and Vito, you two, and a few others here, at least know of what the hell you speak.

When it comes to Joint fires TACAIR can do the job with speed and precsion (as Beer Slayer said). There is one more dimension in that equation though, and that is persistance. NGFS has a lot of it, USA/USMC artillery has a lot of it, TACAIR does not. To relate it to Civil War era warfare, TACAIR is much more like mounted cavalry than artillery. Great for the quick strike and shock value, but not really set up for prolonged efforts.

Is the value of that persistance worth the price tag of DDX? Great question. A missing element of these calculation is life-cycle costs. Today, 2/3 of the cost of a ship over its lifetime is the cost of the personnel assigned - pay, benefits, retirement, medical, child care, etc. Cutting the crew size dramatically SHOULD (loaded conditional term for sure) reduce the life-cycle cost of the ship.

As far as making another assault on a defended beach - who knows? It certainly isn't current USMC doctrine. STOM emphasizes maneuvering directly to the objective. Statistically, an overwhelming majority of likely objectives are within 100 miles of a coast line. Afghanistan and Iraq, no. Other areas in the arc of instability - certainly.

As far as USN surface ship building priorities go, I put this one behind the LCS. Currently we are using trememdously expensive multi-mission ships doing VBSS. The closest analogy that I can come up with is using an M-1A2 to do parking ticket enforcement. One way to lessen the cost would be to dumb down the ship, but there are FO/GOs out there who think that if everything is not broadband net-centric it shouldn't be built. Get DDX more in line with the original arsenal ship concept.

Finally, concur on the non-reactivation of the BBs. Love 'em just like I love looking at P-51s and B-17s, but there time is long past.



Wow, for a brown shoe you're smart. Must be a helo pilot or 'shoes in the air, as I call 'em.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 12:58:15 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Johninaustin:
Didn't the navy screw around with this concept about 20 years ago? I'll swear I read an article on it.


ERGM has been around for about a decade now. I remember 15 years ago reading about a type of gun that used a gas propellant and an electric charge to get extended range. Proposals for full-filling the USMC's NGFS requirment have been around for ever, most of them never being realized. The 5"/62" is one example.

I've been an advocate of the position the Navy should convert to a 155mm gun. When the USMC decries it as inadequate the response would be why does the USMC not have anything bigger then?

If we decide that NGFS is an outdated requirement then we need to convert to a rapid fire gun, like the 127mm Oto Molera(sp?) which fires 80 rounds per minute. It would be more suited to the ship's self-defense role.

On the other extreme, the LCS's 57mm Bofors is quite the little gun. IMO it's superior to the 76mm gun we field now.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 1:07:54 PM EDT

Originally Posted By dport:

Originally Posted By KlubMarcus:

Modern directed energy anti ship missile warheads will punch through the armor of a Battleship with ease… Modern mines and torpedoes will break their backs if they come into contact with them, think Russian Kilo and German IKL Class SSK's that are widely available on the word market
So that means the DDX will be more vulnerable to such weapons. Just park a battleship, put a picket line of escorts around it and pound away with heavy guns and missiles that a battle can carry with ease!



DDX wouldn't be vulnerable to such threats thanks to its LO technology.



Something else I'll throw out there...I saw mention here recently of the new carrier class(CVN-21) possibly having some form of "electromagnetic armor". Prolly very similar to what BAE/UD are working on for armored vehicles. I'm sure it's all paper theory at this stage but it does fit in with the concept of the electric zonal system. Food for thought.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 1:10:37 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 1:10:40 PM EDT
First off sticking a land system on a ship ain't gonna work. Please engage yer grey matter before making such statements. When a gun is fired from land the platform is stable and stays in one place. A ship is moving on all 3 axis at the time. It's rolling (which stabilzation can help)and pitching (which is not contollable exceept by pointing in a better direction) which and you can maybe control the yaw by having a good helmsman.

None of the land gun systems have any roll, pitch or yaw correction capability as built.

Do we need a 16" rifle capability? Not really. AND Looking at an existing BB gun system each shot is much cheaper , as a net cost, if you look at the gross costs, manning, preservation of the ship, spares, etc, probably isn't compared to a maverick or other precision guided munition.

NGFS, since we don't have enough carriers for every contingency, a good platform to support until we get the Army or Marine artillery, (or planes in the area) is a good thing. Having a ship with 8" guns loitering ready for a call for fire would be nice for the grunts. Especially since the rounds can be on the way quicker than a plane can get there.

So the question comes down to the platform.. Why not a "Monitor" type vessel? (thinking early 20th century not mid 19th century. They basically had one or two turrets with big guns, minimal armor, and propulsion.

Dumb it down, make it a battery on a barge (so to speak), don't give it AAW, ASW, ASUW missions, make it a gun platform period. You do need the fire control system, but you don't need tomahawk, and harpoon, and 20 5", and bunches of 40mm and 20mm. Same thing for missile carriers. Make a barge with 4 or 5 VLS modules. Park it near a CG and they can shoot and be controlled by the CG.

Yes it's heretical. So was my sugestion at Pensacola to hang Phoenix on S-3s. They aren't dogfighters but what the heck they can drag them up to altitutde and shoot them a hundred miles.

Now the days of landing against opposed beaches are probably gone, but you do need port facilities for the big ships used in heavy supply now. You can do some over the beach, but that gets slow fast,

But once they are in the port area you still need fire support and you probably don't need a carrier hanging around.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 1:16:21 PM EDT

Originally Posted By PaDanby:
So the question comes down to the platform.. Why not a "Monitor" type vessel? (thinking early 20th century not mid 19th century. They basically had one or two turrets with big guns, minimal armor, and propulsion.

Dumb it down, make it a battery on a barge (so to speak), don't give it AAW, ASW, ASUW missions, make it a gun platform period. You do need the fire control system, but you don't need tomahawk, and harpoon, and 20 5", and bunches of 40mm and 20mm. Same thing for missile carriers. Make a barge with 4 or 5 VLS modules. Park it near a CG and they can shoot and be controlled by the CG.


I find this amusing. If you trace the evolution of the DDX you'll notice that it has its heritage in the arsenal ship. What was the arsenal ship? Basically, a barge with a couple hundred VLS tubes. Well, since it was doing land attack anyway, why not throw a gun system on it? Well since it has a gun, and you have such an investment in missiles, and since the surface fleet is shrinking, ie fewer escorts, why not give it a self-defense capability?

Ever hear of mission creep? This is capability creep. Everyone has to add their $.02 worth, leaving a legacy, and justifying their end of tour award.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 1:17:16 PM EDT
Andy,
That's a kickass little gun. If we are only doing one thing right with LCS, IMO that gun is it.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 1:21:22 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Johninaustin:
Didn't the navy screw around with this concept about 20 years ago? I'll swear I read an article on it.

Build the gun. Put it on an existing hull.

Or better yet, build the gun and give it to the Army/Marines. Imagine how it's use would cut down on friendly fire incidents from TacAir.



Closer to 30 years ago. They put an 8" gun (FMC?) on the Hull. It worked relatively well as a concept put (and I'm betting it was $$$ primarily) the concept was never carried over to the modular CG and DDGs that are in the fleet noe. One of the major problems was that although it fit physically on the 5" gun platform it beat the hull structure up pretty badly. This may be why the later ships didn't get it, they weren't economically feasible to strengthen the hulls. It may have been too heavy for stability concerns. Plus the projected wars at the time were "air" wars with little amphibious action foreseen.

Going back to my Monitor concept you'ld build the hull around the gun rather than try and fit the gun into existing hulls or hull designs. Make it go 25 knots or so, but a single mission platform. "But it can't protect itself!!!", well neither can all the container ships, Pre-Po, MPSron ships, either.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 1:27:57 PM EDT

Originally Posted By dport:
Andy,
That's a kickass little gun. If we are only doing one thing right with LCS, IMO that gun is it.



Apparently DDX likes it too....



Oct. 25, 2004--United Defense Industries, Inc. announced today that the U.S. Navy has approved the 57-mm Mk 110 Naval Gun as the Close-In Gun System (CIGS) for the baseline design of the new DD(X) Destroyer program.

"Raytheon and United Defense conducted an exhaustive study before recommending the 57-mm gun as the best solution for the DD(X) destroyer CIGS mission," said Jim Schoppenhorst, United Defense program director for the DD(X) program.

DD(X) is the centerpiece of a family of ships that will operate within the construct of the Surface Combatant Navy to deliver a vast range of warfighting capabilities that are designed to maximize and revolutionize the combat capability of the Fleet.

The function of the Mk 110 Naval Gun is to provide key ship self-protection and attack capabilities. The Mk 110 will work in concert with other combat systems being developed by United Defense, such as the ship's 155-mm Advanced Gun System (AGS) and the MK 57 Vertical Launching System.

The Mk 110 Naval Gun Mount is the United States version of the 57-mm Mk 3 Naval Gun, built by Bofors Defence of Sweden, a wholly owned subsidiary of United Defense. In September of 2003, the Mk 110 Mod 0 was selected for service aboard the U.S. Coast Guard's new Maritime Security Cutter - Large (formerly the National Security Cutter), under the Coast Guard's Deepwater Program.

This versatile gun system is paired with the Bofors Defence family of 3P (Pre-fragmented Programmable Proximity fuzed) ammunition for combating aerial, surface, and ground targets. This ammunition, designated as the Mk 295 Mod 0, gives the Mk 110 Naval Gun increased tactical flexibility and ammunition effects
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 1:29:18 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 1:44:39 PM EDT
Here's my favorite part:


SIX-MODE PROGRAMMABLE ALL-TARGET 3P AMMUNITION

The different function modes of the 3P ammunition gives Bofors Naval Gun Systems the flexibility to combat a range of targets:

Gated Proximity Function, Gated Proximity Function with Impact Priority and Conventional Proximity Function for Air Defence
Time Function for combating small, fast, manoeuvring surface targets and concealed on-shore targets
Impact Function and Armour Piercing Function
BOFORS 40

Link Posted: 8/16/2005 1:48:27 PM EDT
Thank God the Army has enough artillery to cover everybody's asses.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 2:57:17 PM EDT
The biggest problem is the Marine Corps has kind of a circular logic for why we need NSF. We want it in order to provide volume fire in support of assaulting forces, however our OMFTS and STOM concepts are built around not having to conduct an assault, but moving to the objective without having to force an entry. Hence if STOM is done, they don't not needing volume fire, but precision because the few targets will be ID prior to the commitment of the attack force. The precision fire can come from any source, be it TACAIR, CIFS or NSF (both missile and gun). If in fact volume fire is needed than this system or any other current system will be able to provide it fare enough in land to suite many of the CLF's requirement. Since the deep attack range is provided through the use of ERGM and other guided assets in NSF they will probably not be able to achieve the volume fires required for none known targets/suppression.



People need to get over the BBs, they are not coming back. Although there maybe limited usage for them for assault fire support (which since we don't really have a large amphibious assault capability anymore it may be irrelevant) they are man power hogs. The navy is already in the process of reducing man power, its future ships will be using automation to reduce crewing. If I remember right, even the newer Air Craft Carriers have smaller crews than older in the same class, the crew of a BB would fill out several other ships and probably every DD(X).
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 3:32:40 PM EDT

Originally Posted By COLE-CARBINE:

Originally Posted By dport:
Andy,
That's a kickass little gun. If we are only doing one thing right with LCS, IMO that gun is it.



Apparently DDX likes it too....

www.ddxnationalteam.com/img/brief/brief_ship.jpg

Oct. 25, 2004--United Defense Industries, Inc. announced today that the U.S. Navy has approved the 57-mm Mk 110 Naval Gun as the Close-In Gun System (CIGS) for the baseline design of the new DD(X) Destroyer program.

"Raytheon and United Defense conducted an exhaustive study before recommending the 57-mm gun as the best solution for the DD(X) destroyer CIGS mission," said Jim Schoppenhorst, United Defense program director for the DD(X) program.

DD(X) is the centerpiece of a family of ships that will operate within the construct of the Surface Combatant Navy to deliver a vast range of warfighting capabilities that are designed to maximize and revolutionize the combat capability of the Fleet.

The function of the Mk 110 Naval Gun is to provide key ship self-protection and attack capabilities. The Mk 110 will work in concert with other combat systems being developed by United Defense, such as the ship's 155-mm Advanced Gun System (AGS) and the MK 57 Vertical Launching System.

The Mk 110 Naval Gun Mount is the United States version of the 57-mm Mk 3 Naval Gun, built by Bofors Defence of Sweden, a wholly owned subsidiary of United Defense. In September of 2003, the Mk 110 Mod 0 was selected for service aboard the U.S. Coast Guard's new Maritime Security Cutter - Large (formerly the National Security Cutter), under the Coast Guard's Deepwater Program.

This versatile gun system is paired with the Bofors Defence family of 3P (Pre-fragmented Programmable Proximity fuzed) ammunition for combating aerial, surface, and ground targets. This ammunition, designated as the Mk 295 Mod 0, gives the Mk 110 Naval Gun increased tactical flexibility and ammunition effects



For the record, the guns in your pic on the foc'sle are the 155mm mounts. The 57mm auto cannons are aft, port and starboard.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 3:44:28 PM EDT

Originally Posted By LWilde:

www.ddxnationalteam.com/img/brief/brief_ship.jpg


For the record, the guns in your pic on the foc'sle are the 155mm mounts. The 57mm auto cannons are aft, port and starboard.



Yeah, I actually knew this, I just threw the pic in cuz' it came with the article. For shame, DDX thread without a pic!
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 3:50:47 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/16/2005 3:51:20 PM EDT by COLE-CARBINE]
Not sure if there are any pics of the DDX MK110, but here is a pretty close representation....prolly...

Link Posted: 8/16/2005 4:36:33 PM EDT

Originally Posted By dport:

Wow, for a brown shoe you're smart. Must be a helo pilot or 'shoes in the air, as I call 'em.



Qualified OOD underway, CDO inport, was a special evolutions OOD, and would have qualified TAO if I wasn't the ship's training officer and actually running all of the drills. I trained a lot of blackshoes in my 2 years of an aviation appreciation tour. Even taught most of them how to talk on a radio without reading a script.

STLRN - nice to see that somebody else FINALLY mention STOM on this board. Usually every argument on this board about the BBs forms around a USMC assault against a defended beach head. No matter how many times this squid mentions that is not USMC doctrine, it is normally ignored by the BB apologists - most of whom probably think that the Army should still be driving Jeeps and carrying Garands.
Link Posted: 8/16/2005 4:45:24 PM EDT
Tag for later reading.
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