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Author Topic: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?  (Read 24496 times)

Offline uk 75

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Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« on: February 28, 2015, 04:19:07 am »
The usual crew of retired military and political types are warning that the UK is not able to meet its defence requirements with the present budget and kit.


Given the collective expertise on this board what advice would you give the Prime Minister who takes over in May after the election?


I find the present situation eerily similar to that in the 60s when we were having to balance our Continental NATO commitments with the various crises out of area.  Then it was a no-brainer, NATO dictated what we spent money on in the 70s and 80s.  Today I am not so sure.

Online zen

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #1 on: February 28, 2015, 10:40:30 am »

I think the idea we have to revise the BAOR into the BAOV (V for Vistula) is a thorny one. On the one hand our contribution should properly be dwarfed by the US and Germany, and frankly the likes of Poland and Romania.
On the other hand we have to show we're all in it together and ready to fight and die with them on the frontline.


Problem is this distracts us from the real support we can and have to give. Which is essentially "we've got your back Germany" in dealing with threats external to Europe (with the likes of France) and in securing the western side of Europe. Which is mainly a naval mission.


We have to remain the bridge that binds the USA and Canada into NATO.


So in this light, while we can and should improve the Army and certainly expand it beyond it's current scale.


Above all this means the Deterrent, keeping our enemies from risking nuclear weapons use and our allies from betraying us.
Beyond that more SSN, and an increased Frigate fleet would help secure the sea (with attendant increases in helicopter forces).
We can produce a third variant of the Type 26 aimed at AAW, rather than try to build more Type 45's and fund the further development of Aster missiles with France and Italy. Both for AAW ships and I think it's time to regain that sort of SAM capability on land.


A return to maritime patrol aircraft is also needed, curious rumbles about looking at Japan's new machine.

Offline JohnR

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2015, 05:09:17 pm »
I believe the most urgent need is to renew our maritime patrol capability; my knee jerk preference is for the Kawasaki PX.
 
Next we need to improve our air defences. Firstly we need more AWACS; I do not believe that six is sufficient to offer proper coverage of the UK, undertake overseas deployments and allow for maintenance and upgrades. Secondly, deploy additional fighter squadrons (achieved by not retiring the Tranche 1 Typhoons).  Thirdly, by procuring a long ranged SAM system, either the Aster 30 based system or equivalent US system.
 
For the navy I agree that there is a need of additional AAW escorts, but I believe it makes more sense to produce additional T45's rather that waste time and money on designing a T26 variant.  We should also return to a force level of 12 SSN.  I also believe there is a case for acquiring a number of smaller SSK's for use in the North Sea and Channel.
 
For the Army, I would like to see the cuts in manpower reversed, keep the BAOR, and bring all the Chally 2's back into service. FRES and the Warrior update seem to be covering all the other tracked vehicle needs to date.  I would also suggest that there is a need to improve the army's air defence capability.  Although they are due to replace Rapier with CAMMS, I believe they should also have a medium range system. The system that would appear ideal to me is NASAM which could be purchased largely off the shelf (my choice for the chassis would be the one developed for Shielder.
 

Offline GTX

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2015, 06:28:00 pm »
I believe the most urgent need is to renew our maritime patrol capability; my knee jerk preference is for the Kawasaki PX.



I would think the USN/RAN solution of Tritons/Poseidons would make more sense.

Offline Geoff_B

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #4 on: March 01, 2015, 12:43:46 am »
I believe the most urgent need is to renew our maritime patrol capability; my knee jerk preference is for the Kawasaki PX.



I would think the USN/RAN solution of Tritons/Poseidons would make more sense.

Yeap Japan has touted the P-1, but the MOD preference is P-8/GlobalHawk mix as shown by the fact two thirds of Project Seedcorn intended to retain MPA crew skills are embedded in the USN programme. I suspect they are looking at the Australian package as a basis for a similar UK deal should the SDSR2015 and new govt sanction it.

Offline alertken

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #5 on: March 01, 2015, 12:52:45 am »
zen: your thoughts are compelling. A stronger Army and Navy, for our Western Approaches/flank Tasks could only be fitted into a 2-3% of GDP (beyond that, those running for Office will stumble) if we rethink the big ticket items. Successor,  Astute SSN, CVF, T-26, FRES, F-35. We can't do all of this. Choose, wisely, and role-share. We do this, Ally does that. We now appear to have an identity for the nominal rogue-Formed Force Threat.

Offline Kadija_Man

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2015, 01:09:32 am »
I suspect that the real need is simply for more money.   Money for primarily manpower and secondarily for equipment for them to use.  Without the political will to spend you won't get much...

Online zen

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #7 on: March 01, 2015, 03:11:12 am »
Points.


1. The simplest expansion of the Deterrent is increasing the supply of ready to use warheads. Anything else is a whole order of magnitude in terms of costs.


2. It will be difficult (expensive) now to increase the drumbeat of SSN production to include even one more Astute. So we should look at how we can extend one or more of the older SSNs lives. But we can increase the speed of Successor's arrival and reduce the gap before more SSN's are run off the line.


3. Japan's approach is speculative, but it does share a similar set of requirements. Prior to this, P8 was 'it' in the aftermath of Nimrod MRA4. Certainly I'm agnostic on which machine is best, but the rumble was proprietary elements of Nimrod MRA4 are considered something to retain and applicable to either machine. Though it's going to be harder leverage that onto P8, so the rumour suggested.


4. To my memory the limits of production capacity and the design preclude a 'cheap' increase in Type 45 numbers. At this stage is simpler to increase the production 'drumbeat' of GCS (Type 26)


5. The strongest case in the Army is fielding precision guidance kits on the large rocket systems. Ideally we'd gain this for ATACMs as well as MRLS.

Offline Michel Van

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2015, 04:23:52 am »
first get Royal Navy some planes for there Aircraft carrier*

while the F-35 is get more delayed and more expensive and less capable on this demands
it better Britain canceled the F-35 contract completely

Goes into UK museum and archive to get a Bristol Siddeley BS.100/9 vectored-thrust turbofan engine. (that was for supersonic VTOL Hawker Siddeley P.1154)
build with modern materials by Rolls Royce and get BAE build fuselage mabey based on older projects like Hawker Siddeley P.1216


* in the Alternate History.com Forum
was long running Joke about a independent Scotland with fleet of Aircraft carrier without airplanes.
in alternate timeline they buy the British WW2 carriers, but not look close into the contract small print,
UK so sell them the Carriers only... 
Unlit in real 2014, Great Britain put second larges Aircraft Carrier in world to Service without Aircraft...
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Offline Grey Havoc

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #9 on: March 01, 2015, 09:36:37 am »
As I mentioned in the 'Bundeswehr' sister thread, one can not be said to be seriously rearming if you don't re-establish your land mine and cluster munition capabilities as one of the very first orders of business.

As for a MPA, the P-8, even in it's P-8I guise, may be a dead end that you don't want to waste scare resources on. But licence production of the P-1 even as a interim measure presents it's own set of procurement challenges, especially given a rapidly deteriorating operational outlook together with British aerospace & defence industries that frankly have seen much better days.

If Great Britain is really desperate, the option discussed here might be a option, but, it is literally a desperation option, IMHO.
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Offline GTX

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2015, 10:11:33 am »
while the F-35 is get more delayed and more expensive and less capable on this demands
it better Britain canceled the F-35 contract completely



Any facts to back this up?

Offline GTX

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #11 on: March 01, 2015, 10:12:00 am »

As for a MPA, the P-8, even in it's P-8I guise, may be a dead end that you don't want to waste scare resources on.


Why?

Offline GTX

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #12 on: March 01, 2015, 10:13:24 am »
if you don't re-establish your land mine and cluster munition capabilities as one of the very first orders of business.



How about you first define the threat(s)/operational needs before jumping onto one weapon system or another...

Offline Michel Van

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #13 on: March 01, 2015, 12:50:49 pm »
while the F-35 is get more delayed and more expensive and less capable on this demands
it better Britain canceled the F-35 contract completely


Any facts to back this up?

So far i know the Aircraft carrier had to be equipped in Mai 2012 with F-35
but do problems with F-35 program delay in USA and British economy measure
the Aircraft carrier completion was delay to 2014, the date for the F-35 test on HMS Queen Elisabeth is now for 2020...

Source: Wikipedia, BBC, the telegraph and this forum.
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Online zen

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Re: Rearming the UK: What equipment? and how much?
« Reply #14 on: March 02, 2015, 02:17:01 am »
We have two 'neighbour' located threats of differing natures.


1. is the general Islamist trend that is raging along the south and eastern Med coastlines. In a military sense this can be dealt with 'expeditionary' forces as we have seen.  In this europe is still reliant on the US, which could be rectified.
Should something ever be done about Syria, it is Turkey that must lead.


2. The rise of Russian Nationalism and the Putin doctrine. We see a lot of revamping military forces and the stirring up of ethnic Russians in other states.


In hardware terms, Russia's surface fleet is deteriorating and their capacity to replace it is severely hampered.
Not so their submarine forces, which are being (albeit at lower numbers) sustained with new vessels.
However in terms of their doctrine of degrees of deniability the submarine is an ideal instrument for causing trouble.


We see their airforces are being developed and they have obviously worked hard on their army after Georgia.


In essence this is less like the 1930's and more like the century before.