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AGM-183A ARRW

Dilandu

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My IMHO, that US military is repeating with hypersonic the sane mistake, as with ballistic missiles until 1957. They are trying to run it as usual weapon developement program, with decentralized, competing efforts. But this time the problem is too big & complex for any service to solve it by itself. Considering that most current US hypersonic problems are relics of bygone Pax America era (when end results weren't a top priority, since military and technological superiority was assumed to be a fact), they just may not be salvageable.
 

sferrin

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Just goes to show the unpredictable nature of testing especially when we don't test these high end systems at the cadence we ought to so that we have experienced government-industry teams.
That's my biggest gripe right there. It's not that I think we should be completely reckless but damn, some people need to get over their pathological fear of risk. Gotta break eggs, etc.
 

bring_it_on

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My IMHO, that US military is repeating with hypersonic the sane mistake, as with ballistic missiles until 1957. They are trying to run it as usual weapon developement program, with decentralized, competing efforts. But this time the problem is too big & complex for any service to solve it by itself. Considering that most current US hypersonic problems are relics of bygone Pax America era (when end results weren't a top priority, since military and technological superiority was assumed to be a fact), they just may not be salvageable.

I don't see much evidence backing up that assertion at all. The work is being coordinated by a dedicated Hypersonic team that sits at the OSD-R&E office led by Mike White IIRC.

There are three distinct efforts (along with a lot of lower level S&T investment, infrastructure and academia investments) that the DOD is pursuing under its new rapid prototyping authorities. One is the lower risk common glide body and the other are the tactical boost glide, and the scramjet/HAWC efforts. The common glide body was developed and funded centrally and continued to mature as a joint effort that was to be utilized by all three hypersonic customers (Army, Navy, and USAF) each with some modification to the overall weapons system to suite their unique needs. All three matured their designs with the USAF backing away only after completing its design reviews so that it could re-start if it wanted to get back into the HCSW game. So it was ONE effort with each customer leveraging the work for their own weapon system needs. Currently it is a SINGLE effort to develop and test the hypersonic weapon that will be fielded in 2023 and 2025 with the Army and Navy respectively.

The other programs, Tactical Boost Glide, and the HAWC, are also a joint DARPA-USAF efforts that started back in the 2014 time-frame and as a follow on to the X-51 programs. I think DARPA and USAF split the investment evenly with the USAF being the logical transition partner once the development work was done and the technology mature. As that has progressed, particularly with TBG, DAPRA has already started to think beyond the current scope of the effort - roping in additional vendors (Raytheon) and even beginning to do some preliminary work on a naval application for the TBG vehicle . Meanwhile, the US Army / USMC variant of the TBG effort (demonstration) is also progressing under the OpFires multi-phase effort so that could be a viable late 2020's/early 30s Medium range fires option for either of those services if they think it is what they need.

All these are development, prototyping and demonstration programs that will field a limited number of operational systems. Formal acquisition programs, to acquire the capability will follow. But neither is at that stage yet. These are anything but "usual weapon development programs".
 
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Josh_TN

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I think there is some confusion in that 'hypersonic' is a general term encompassing completely different efforts. The air breathing effort essentially has nothing in common with boost glide efforts outside perhaps thermal management - the propulsion, manufacturing, flight profile, etc is completely different. There are a couple of efforts for large scale air breathing hypersonic engines for UAVs and other larger aircraft, but those are rather different technical challenges compared to disposable air breathing missiles. The boost efforts are separated into two glider types, with one deemed lower risk which has been tested and is going into production and another still attempting to achieve its first test launch (ARRW). TBG is the DARPA effort that produced the glider for ARRW; OpFires is another DARPA effort that uses the TBG glider but is trying to introduce a novel throttleable solid booster to have more medium range flexibility (possible Medium Range Capability replacement for SM-6/BGM-109). About the only argument that could be made for duplication in my mind is that using two glider types is a bit redundant, but it hardly seems unreasonable considering the disparate Chinese and Russian research efforts (and operational systems).
 

totallyaverage

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This isn't the first time a test was aborted because of some sort of anomaly with the test article or failure to proceed further. This won't be the last time either. Much rather this then some sort of catastrophic failure with a major system. Find the fault, fix and get back on the range. Simple. Additional test vehicles are on order.

Pointing this as some sort of major failure ("Broken ARRW" clickbait headlines :rolleyes:) shows a complete lack of seriousness. Those type of failures will come (part and parcel of cutting edge development and testing) over the next 4-5 years as they go through dozens of tests. I wonder what the headlines will be then.

Hey man, you can't take a realistic, facts based point of view. On this forum, pure emotion and pessimism are the only acceptable points to form a response from.
 

sferrin

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This isn't the first time a test was aborted because of some sort of anomaly with the test article or failure to proceed further. This won't be the last time either. Much rather this then some sort of catastrophic failure with a major system. Find the fault, fix and get back on the range. Simple. Additional test vehicles are on order.

Pointing this as some sort of major failure ("Broken ARRW" clickbait headlines :rolleyes:) shows a complete lack of seriousness. Those type of failures will come (part and parcel of cutting edge development and testing) over the next 4-5 years as they go through dozens of tests. I wonder what the headlines will be then.

Hey man, you can't take a realistic, facts based point of view. On this forum, pure emotion and pessimism are the only acceptable points to form a response from.
Sorry "man" but the "facts" in this case don't warrant optimism. :rolleyes: Yeah, stuff happens, but failing the simple stuff, multiple times, is Keystone Cops level performance. Specifically, which shining star should we point to for optimism? Exactly.
 

AN/AWW-14(V)

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On Hyfly they had low battery voltage cause at least one of the failures, and on the X-51 they failed a test because one of the fins didn't work

Sources reported an ARRW failure in late December, chalking it up to “dumb mistakes;” one reported that a technician failed to follow a checklist and another reported an improperly fastened control surface. Michael White, the principal deputy for hypersonics in the Pentagon’s directorate of research and engineering, seemed to confirm these reports in his panel remarks.

problem with fins was repeated twice, if they are not competent in assembling - replace them by new people

sounds like they run its every day and that's why they are tired, I can't think of this behavior of ground services for example at the atomic tests
need more personal responsibility and control checks from the high lever officer
 
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bring_it_on

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This isn't the first time a test was aborted because of some sort of anomaly with the test article or failure to proceed further. This won't be the last time either. Much rather this then some sort of catastrophic failure with a major system. Find the fault, fix and get back on the range. Simple. Additional test vehicles are on order.

Pointing this as some sort of major failure ("Broken ARRW" clickbait headlines :rolleyes:) shows a complete lack of seriousness. Those type of failures will come (part and parcel of cutting edge development and testing) over the next 4-5 years as they go through dozens of tests. I wonder what the headlines will be then.

Hey man, you can't take a realistic, facts based point of view. On this forum, pure emotion and pessimism are the only acceptable points to form a response from.
I wasn't talking about this forum but the media coverage and headlines. On a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being a minor bump in the road in the road and 10 being a potentially program ending calamity, this is probably, based on what has been released, a 3 - something you work through and get back in the coming weeks and repeat. If we are going to go full "Broken ARRW" (as the TWZ did), I wonder what is in store for when the higher level failures occur which are bound to happen at some point given the technology we're trying to master and field. We have to be realistic here. The program wants to field an operational 1,000 mile ranged hypersonic weapon in about 4 years from contract award. That is a pretty rapid pace given we have exactly ZERO such weapons currently. This is some major acceleration so expect a few bumps along the way (both minor and major).
 

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Assuming the AGM-183A goes into production I wonder what it will be called? Anyone else think that Skybolt II would be a good name?
Like JASSM, AMRAAM, THAAD, etc. it'll probably be "ARRW" until the end of time. (If they ever fly the thing.)
A good point however given the similarities between this missile and the Skybolt I can see it happening.
 

sferrin

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Assuming the AGM-183A goes into production I wonder what it will be called? Anyone else think that Skybolt II would be a good name?
Like JASSM, AMRAAM, THAAD, etc. it'll probably be "ARRW" until the end of time. (If they ever fly the thing.)
A good point however given the similarities between this missile and the Skybolt I can see it happening.
They have pointy front ends and fins on the back. That's the end of their similarities. Could just as easily call it Bullpup.
 

bobbymike

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Assuming the AGM-183A goes into production I wonder what it will be called? Anyone else think that Skybolt II would be a good name?
Like JASSM, AMRAAM, THAAD, etc. it'll probably be "ARRW" until the end of time. (If they ever fly the thing.)
A good point however given the similarities between this missile and the Skybolt I can see it happening.
They have pointy front ends and fins on the back. That's the end of their similarities. Could just as easily call it Bullpup.
Now eventually using retired Minuteman IIIs when they eventually (hopefully) get replaced by the GBSD would be a nice Skybolt II :D
 

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Pointing this as some sort of major failure ("Broken ARRW" clickbait headlines :rolleyes:) shows a complete lack of seriousness. Those type of failures will come (part and parcel of cutting edge development and testing) over the

I would agree with you, if problem arises during hypersonic flight. But booster not even igniting?

And has this occurred previously over decades of weapons/prototype development and testing? Will this occur in this future? Things go wrong in testing. That will always remain true. It could be minor, "dumb mistakes", non-serious issues, or it could be serious design faults that lead to catastrophic failures that put some major strain on the viability of the project. A "No test" is nothing like the latter unless it is due to some major oversight in design (which we don't know about). The sensationalization in the media is not warranted at all. They went up, things didn't go as planned and they came back without testing. They didn't destroy the vehicle that will make fault finding harder. Now find and fix the errors and get back.
IMO if they can't even get it to come off the rail after MULTIPLE attempts it does not speak very highly of their competence. I guess it's better than doing a HyFly (or was it X-51) in which the thing separated from the pylon and fell into the ocean like an inert bomb.
This was actually the first attempt to release an ARRW. All previous tests were captive carries. On the other hand, HAWC and TBG have been released and failed to operate as expected.
 

bring_it_on

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Pointing this as some sort of major failure ("Broken ARRW" clickbait headlines :rolleyes:) shows a complete lack of seriousness. Those type of failures will come (part and parcel of cutting edge development and testing) over the

I would agree with you, if problem arises during hypersonic flight. But booster not even igniting?

And has this occurred previously over decades of weapons/prototype development and testing? Will this occur in this future? Things go wrong in testing. That will always remain true. It could be minor, "dumb mistakes", non-serious issues, or it could be serious design faults that lead to catastrophic failures that put some major strain on the viability of the project. A "No test" is nothing like the latter unless it is due to some major oversight in design (which we don't know about). The sensationalization in the media is not warranted at all. They went up, things didn't go as planned and they came back without testing. They didn't destroy the vehicle that will make fault finding harder. Now find and fix the errors and get back.
IMO if they can't even get it to come off the rail after MULTIPLE attempts it does not speak very highly of their competence. I guess it's better than doing a HyFly (or was it X-51) in which the thing separated from the pylon and fell into the ocean like an inert bomb.
This was actually the first attempt to release an ARRW. All previous tests were captive carries. On the other hand, HAWC and TBG have been released and failed to operate as expected.

I haven't heard anything about TBG release. Could you point to your source on that? Lockheed's HAWC test flight failure has been written about and is linked on the previous page. If I recall correctly, TBG kind of got rolled into ARRW so that they could test the glider along with the ARRW AUR since it had an aggressive timeline. AUR testing for it (ARRW) that includes glider separation and flight is/was scheduled for early FY22 (October/November 2021) with additional testing to happen in early to mid 2022.
 

Kat Tsun

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On Hyfly they had low battery voltage cause at least one of the failures, and on the X-51 they failed a test because one of the fins didn't work

Sources reported an ARRW failure in late December, chalking it up to “dumb mistakes;” one reported that a technician failed to follow a checklist and another reported an improperly fastened control surface. Michael White, the principal deputy for hypersonics in the Pentagon’s directorate of research and engineering, seemed to confirm these reports in his panel remarks.

problem with fins was repeated twice, if they are not competent in assembling - replace them by new people

Yes, I'm sure someone with no experience in the technical assembly of a hypersonic missile is going to be better than someone with mild amounts of experience who got something wrong once.

Zero-tolerance (or three strikes, or what-have-you) for minor failings is never a bad management practice, after all.
 

TomcatViP

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You know sometime ppl try to go fast in their design by bypassing properly drafted product assembly documentation and user notice.
Some even think that having a completed 3D model is enough to go...
We shouldn't go hard on the crew without further elements, especially when repeated failures at launch could point toward a systemic event.
 

sferrin

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You know sometime ppl try to go fast in their design by bypassing properly drafted product assembly documentation and user notice.
Some even think that having a completed 3D model is enough to go...
We shouldn't go hard on the crew without further elements, especially when repeated failures at launch could point toward a systemic event.
Some people actually work in the biz and understand what it takes to put an aircraft together. It isn't THAT difficult. Factor in the importance and expense of these tests and failures as basic as this are a complete joke.

Signed "Someone who spent the morning working MRB"
 

jmnpet

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Pointing this as some sort of major failure ("Broken ARRW" clickbait headlines :rolleyes:) shows a complete lack of seriousness. Those type of failures will come (part and parcel of cutting edge development and testing) over the

I would agree with you, if problem arises during hypersonic flight. But booster not even igniting?

And has this occurred previously over decades of weapons/prototype development and testing? Will this occur in this future? Things go wrong in testing. That will always remain true. It could be minor, "dumb mistakes", non-serious issues, or it could be serious design faults that lead to catastrophic failures that put some major strain on the viability of the project. A "No test" is nothing like the latter unless it is due to some major oversight in design (which we don't know about). The sensationalization in the media is not warranted at all. They went up, things didn't go as planned and they came back without testing. They didn't destroy the vehicle that will make fault finding harder. Now find and fix the errors and get back.
IMO if they can't even get it to come off the rail after MULTIPLE attempts it does not speak very highly of their competence. I guess it's better than doing a HyFly (or was it X-51) in which the thing separated from the pylon and fell into the ocean like an inert bomb.
This was actually the first attempt to release an ARRW. All previous tests were captive carries. On the other hand, HAWC and TBG have been released and failed to operate as expected.

I haven't heard anything about TBG release. Could you point to your source on that? Lockheed's HAWC test flight failure has been written about and is linked on the previous page. If I recall correctly, TBG kind of got rolled into ARRW so that they could test the glider along with the ARRW AUR since it had an aggressive timeline. AUR testing for it (ARRW) that includes glider separation and flight is/was scheduled for early FY22 (October/November 2021) with additional testing to happen in early to mid 2022.
TBG #1 flew in early Dec 2020. First stage lit and it headed down-range as planned...
HAWC #1 flew in Jun 2020. Unable to attempt release (see the comments on the AvWeek article site)
HAWC #2 was released around 1 Mar 2021. Did not function as planned
 

bring_it_on

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Pointing this as some sort of major failure ("Broken ARRW" clickbait headlines :rolleyes:) shows a complete lack of seriousness. Those type of failures will come (part and parcel of cutting edge development and testing) over the

I would agree with you, if problem arises during hypersonic flight. But booster not even igniting?

And has this occurred previously over decades of weapons/prototype development and testing? Will this occur in this future? Things go wrong in testing. That will always remain true. It could be minor, "dumb mistakes", non-serious issues, or it could be serious design faults that lead to catastrophic failures that put some major strain on the viability of the project. A "No test" is nothing like the latter unless it is due to some major oversight in design (which we don't know about). The sensationalization in the media is not warranted at all. They went up, things didn't go as planned and they came back without testing. They didn't destroy the vehicle that will make fault finding harder. Now find and fix the errors and get back.
IMO if they can't even get it to come off the rail after MULTIPLE attempts it does not speak very highly of their competence. I guess it's better than doing a HyFly (or was it X-51) in which the thing separated from the pylon and fell into the ocean like an inert bomb.
This was actually the first attempt to release an ARRW. All previous tests were captive carries. On the other hand, HAWC and TBG have been released and failed to operate as expected.

I haven't heard anything about TBG release. Could you point to your source on that? Lockheed's HAWC test flight failure has been written about and is linked on the previous page. If I recall correctly, TBG kind of got rolled into ARRW so that they could test the glider along with the ARRW AUR since it had an aggressive timeline. AUR testing for it (ARRW) that includes glider separation and flight is/was scheduled for early FY22 (October/November 2021) with additional testing to happen in early to mid 2022.
TBG #1 flew in early Dec 2020. First stage lit and it headed down-range as planned...
HAWC #1 flew in Jun 2020. Unable to attempt release (see the comments on the AvWeek article site)
HAWC #2 was released around 1 Mar 2021. Did not function as planned

Is there a source for #1 and #3?
 

Kat Tsun

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You know sometime ppl try to go fast in their design by bypassing properly drafted product assembly documentation and user notice.

Yes, but this is nothing new. You have to rush if you want to have a new thing done on a tighter-than-normal schedule. I'm sure the Apollo guys felt the same pressure.

OTOH people here are saying that two test flights, a decade apart from each other, with fin failures on launch are somehow related is a bit reaching. After all, the people involved in X-51 and AGM-183 assembly and flight line are not the same people. Might as well suggest that the four inch flight is related to this "string" of failures, since it involved tail fins, bypassing proper assembly documentation, user notice, and a launch failure.

If the men who went to the Moon can commit the great sin of fin-related test flight failures from something as basic as "connecting a cable that was noticeably longer than it should be" because "they had a Army Redstone cable instead of a Mercury-Redstone cable", I think it's possible to cut today's generation a bit of slack. Even the legendary greats committed the same mistakes.

Whether or not HAWC and AGM-183's failures are related remains to be seen, but it's possible there's some sort of common failure in the designs I guess. Lockheed-Martin is involved in both, and AFAIK the provides the booster for AGM-183. Perhaps there's some common mechanical component that is failing, that usually is the case with these sorts of minor failures.

What's bizarre is that people are allowed to openly publish articles and op ed's on this stuff instead of it being kept quiet and internal IMO, but that's whatever.

The very fact that the test flights are proceeding is inherently good, because it means that faults will be ironed out.

Arguably there's an open question where there might be less time scheduled than is needed, perhaps, if AGM-183 runs into something really genuinely bad like the booster needs to be entirely redesigned. But the USA has good, powerful rockets and knows what all the good fuels are, so it's more a matter of looking at a list of rocket fuels than any real experimentation; all of which was done 60 years ago. It's also why AGM-183 is a boost-glide rocket carrying a relatively low tech glider and why HAWC is a tech demonstrator instead of a weapons program.
 
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sferrin

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Yes, but this is nothing new. You have to rush if you want to have a new thing done on a tighter-than-normal schedule. I'm sure the Apollo guys felt the same pressure.

OTOH people here are saying that two test flights, a decade apart from each other, with fin failures on launch are somehow related is a bit reaching.

Who said that?

The very fact that the test flights are proceeding is inherently good, because it means that faults will be ironed out.

Like they were on HyFly, X-51, and RATTLRS?
 

Kat Tsun

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X-51 and AGM-183's fin-related problems were dropped in the same post by someone, as if they were related or something, and not separated by about a decade.

Anyway yes, all those tech demonstrator programs were successful and delivered what they promised. The fact that they were handled primarily by NASA and DARPA should tell you immediately what the intent was. Or did you think the USAF was interested in making a super slow Mach 3 engine into a cruise missile when it had been spending the last 15 years looking into Mach 6+ scramjets and boost-glide weapons?

I'd imagine X-51 in particular has probably proven quite good at informing the HAWC development group, and maybe in 10 years the USAF will have an operational air-breathing hypersonic missile, but that's probably a tad optimistic. For now, AGM-183 will have to suffice.

Either way, there are plenty of open questions about whether dual combustion ramjets (HyFly), or proper scramjets (X-51), or other more exotic forms of propulsion like rotating detonation engines, are the way forward for air-breathing hypersonic weapons. Which is partly why DARPA funds so many programs simultaneously: it's looking a lot of cutting edge technology at the same time.

That said, RATTLRS appears to have been a total jobs program TBH. I honestly don't know what a Mach 3 missile would achieve these days. OTOH maybe they were looking at a potentially cheaper engine for a supersonic maneuvering target drone. RATTLRS' YJ-102 would potentially be a good powerplant for something simulating supersonic missiles like Brahmos or Granit. But that's just going back to YJ-102's roots in the Navy's SLAT.
 
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tequilashooter

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If anything I am looking forward to new VLS for ships or to use existing VLS to use scramjets. Eventually other superpowers will have decent ABM capabilities for their ships. I am still shocked air launched hypersonic projects seem to be more of a priority than having hypersonic missile projects for the U.S. Navy.
 

Kat Tsun

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The Navy has plenty of airplanes, and will soon have the same airplanes as the Air Force. I don't see why it makes sense to make a missile just for boats when the USAF, USMC, and USN are all using basically the same aircraft as far as weapons are concerned. Everyone benefits equally from a missile that can be carried by F-35.
 

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The Navy has plenty of airplanes, and will soon have the same airplanes as the Air Force. I don't see why it makes sense to make a missile just for boats when the USAF, USMC, and USN are all using basically the same aircraft as far as weapons are concerned. Everyone benefits equally from a missile that can be carried by F-35.
So those missiles will be carried externally? So everything is going to be Carrier Strike Group related?
 

sferrin

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X-51 and AGM-183's fin-related problems were dropped in the same post by someone, as if they were related or something, and not separated by about a decade.

Anyway yes, all those tech demonstrator programs were successful and delivered what they promised.

LOL. Okay, do you have any actual evidence of that? The BEST X-51 did was fly at Mach 5.1 (after being boosted to Mach 4.9 by the ATACMS booster). It did not reach Mach 6 as intended. It barely accelerated under scramjet power. It never did fly under power for the full 5 minutes as I recall. And that, the most "successful" flight, almost didn't happen. The people in charge were literally almost too scared to try. "What if we fail?" Well, you can't fail if you don't try I suppose.

HyFly was an abject failure.

RATTLRS went nowhere. (No, it wasn't suppose to be a "jobs program". It was supposed to be a Mach 3 cruise missile.) If you can't think of a use for that just look around. It's obvious.
 

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In regards to the X-51A and the problems it had the USAF should listened to Boeing's advice to produce 10 of the test-vehicles not just the four that were produced.
 

Kat Tsun

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The Navy has plenty of airplanes, and will soon have the same airplanes as the Air Force. I don't see why it makes sense to make a missile just for boats when the USAF, USMC, and USN are all using basically the same aircraft as far as weapons are concerned. Everyone benefits equally from a missile that can be carried by F-35.
So those missiles will be carried externally? So everything is going to be Carrier Strike Group related?

A VLS missile would need to fit within Mark 41's dimensions, which are pretty constrained for any sort of high performance supersonic missile.

So far the USN doesn't really have much of a better option than Tomahawk and possibly LRASM for higher end threats, but Tomahawk seems perfectly adequate for knocking out S-400s or whatever. Something like AGM-183 would too big to fit in current VLS and require making larger ones, or using some sort of external box, both of which have their own limitations. Bear in mind this is for a platform that goes slightly slower than an LA mid-week morning traffic, at best. So you've mostly negated the benefits of the hypersonic weapon.

Something like F-18E/F or F-35 is probably going to have to carry a hypersonic missile externally, yes. "Everything being Carrier Strike Group related" more or less summarizes the past 40 or so years of US Navy thinking about strike: it's an extension of the CVBG and its escorts. The escorts aren't lacking for strike at all nowadays, nor will they in the future, since Tomahawk is going to get the new Block V upgrade soon. I have no idea what ripping out Tomahawk cells and replacing them with ARRW cells will do, but giving ARRW or airbreathers to the carrier will give the CVBG more strike potential without sacrificing its existing strike load.

A CSG performing strike is not out of the question, but it would hardly be the first choice. The first choice would be B-21 with JSOWs, or B-52 with ARRW, or something similar. The Air Force is the ideal rapid response strike force because they have actually long ranged aircraft that can carry big weapons. If the USAF ever gets a internally carried, air-breathing hypersonic weapon, it will probably be sized for F-35 though. Which means the USN can use it. Which will be good.

Since the USN is unlikely to ever get a long ranged carrier aircraft in the near future (something comparable in performance, preferably better, than ATA) I don't see how that will change much. It's going to be Super Hornets and a handful of F-35C's for the next couple of decades.

Something like AGM-183 on a submarine would probably make the most sense in the future for the USN, as far as contributing rather than sitting on the sidelines. It should be relatively simple to put a few ARRWs in a VPM or something than finding room on an already overcrowded DDG's deck, or ripping out Mark 41 modules for a new VLS system, and a submarine is more likely to be in place to actually attack things, because US subs are fairly stealthy and can be expected to be able to get close to enemy shores.

X-51 and AGM-183's fin-related problems were dropped in the same post by someone, as if they were related or something, and not separated by about a decade.

Anyway yes, all those tech demonstrator programs were successful and delivered what they promised.

LOL. Okay, do you have any actual evidence of that? The BEST X-51 did was fly at Mach 5.1 (after being boosted to Mach 4.9 by the ATACMS booster). It did not reach Mach 6 as intended. It barely accelerated under scramjet power. It never did fly under power for the full 5 minutes as I recall. And that, the most "successful" flight, almost didn't happen. The people in charge were literally almost too scared to try. "What if we fail?" Well, you can't fail if you don't try I suppose.

HyFly was an abject failure.

RATTLRS went nowhere. (No, it wasn't suppose to be a "jobs program". It was supposed to be a Mach 3 cruise missile.) If you can't think of a use for that just look around. It's obvious.

X-51's JP7 scramjet propulsion is being continued with HAWC.

HyFly was a "failure" because it was an exotic engine system. Considering Boeing recently received funding to bring back the DCR engine for ground tests, although I doubt it will fly again, I don't really see how it failed at anything. It proved that the technology was too immature for use in a weapon. That's really all it set out to do, since it's DARPA. It would have been good if it had done more, but proving a technology requires more time to bake is a good result. It lets you eliminate the blind alleys.

OTOH RATTLRS was never going to transition to a weapon system. DARPA doesn't really fund that, that's the services' jobs.

The point of RATTLRS was to test the YJ-102R, which was an evolved version of a SLAT competitor's engine from the early 1990's. It had more promise as a supersonic target drone but perhaps it was too expensive to produce, or more likely the services never identified a need for a relatively slow Mach 3 "missile" or whatever Lockheed-Martin was hoping they'd buy, when they had far better performing weapons on the horizon, like AGM-183. Or for that matter, better performing target drones, like GQM-163. That said, RATTLRS did complete its test cycle, the engine apparently worked fine.

However, this is hardly surprising, since the YJ-102R is essentially a slightly more fuel efficient form of a J58. Not exactly bleeding edge, nor was too much performance being asked of it. Not exactly sure why you're surprised no one in DOD picked up on a missile that was not much better than what has already been achieved by something like P-700 Granit in the 1980's, after decades of funding scramjet and Mach 5+ hypersonic weapons. The answer should be obvious.
 
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tequilashooter

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A VLS missile would need to fit within Mark 41's dimensions, which are pretty constrained for any sort of high performance supersonic missile.

So far the USN doesn't really have much of a better option than Tomahawk and possibly LRASM for higher end threats, but Tomahawk seems perfectly adequate for knocking out S-400s or whatever. Something like AGM-183 would too big to fit in current VLS and require making larger ones, or using some sort of external box, both of which have their own limitations. Bear in mind this is for a platform that goes slightly slower than an LA mid-week morning traffic, at best. So you've mostly negated the benefits of the hypersonic weapon.
S-400s are for ballistic targets, aircrafts, cruise missiles which the tomahawk falls in the category of that's like saying Kalibr is sufficient enough for an/spy-6 radar using SM-6, but AFAIK there is no Naval S-400 version that is operational yet, but eventually it will come later. China's DF-21 does not feature thrust vectoring capabilities that are found in Yars, Kinzhal or Iskander, in my opinion its not just that the Chinese lack the current defensive capabilities, but also offensive capabilities have to be worked on as well for them
Something like F-18E/F or F-35 is probably going to have to carry a hypersonic missile externally, yes. "Everything being Carrier Strike Group related" more or less summarizes the past 40 or so years of US Navy thinking about strike: it's an extension of the CVBG and its escorts. The escorts aren't lacking for strike at all nowadays, nor will they in the future, since Tomahawk is going to get the new Block V upgrade soon. I have no idea what ripping out Tomahawk cells and replacing them with ARRW cells will do, but giving ARRW or airbreathers to the carrier will give the CVBG more strike potential without sacrificing its existing strike load.

A CSG performing strike is not out of the question, but it would hardly be the first choice. The first choice would be B-21 with JSOWs, or B-52 with ARRW, or something similar. The Air Force is the ideal rapid response strike force because they have actually long ranged aircraft that can carry big weapons. If the USAF ever gets a internally carried, air-breathing hypersonic weapon, it will probably be sized for F-35 though. Which means the USN can use it. Which will be good.

Since the USN is unlikely to ever get a long ranged carrier aircraft in the near future (something comparable in performance, preferably better, than ATA) I don't see how that will change much. It's going to be Super Hornets and a handful of F-35C's for the next couple of decades.

US Navy with a google search states 490 ships and 11 of those are aircraft carriers and usually those aircraft carriers are surrounded with 6 ship platforms and usually more leaving more ships out. So I guess the Chinese and Russians have to only worry about is aircraft carriers since they are the only things that are equipped with aircrafts and those aircrafts are equipped with hypersonic missiles, is that correct? I am sure there are some users here that feel a little unsettled hearing that as much as they do with a preference of wanting to also have a nice amount of hypersonic missiles on land than having them limited to just on Subs. Make life easier for the Russians and Chinese :cool:
 

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Something like AGM-183 on a submarine would probably make the most sense in the future for the USN, as far as contributing rather than sitting on the sidelines.
The AGM-183 could probably be fired from a modified Ohio-class SSBN with suitable encapsulation for underwater launch.
 

Kat Tsun

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A VLS missile would need to fit within Mark 41's dimensions, which are pretty constrained for any sort of high performance supersonic missile.

So far the USN doesn't really have much of a better option than Tomahawk and possibly LRASM for higher end threats, but Tomahawk seems perfectly adequate for knocking out S-400s or whatever. Something like AGM-183 would too big to fit in current VLS and require making larger ones, or using some sort of external box, both of which have their own limitations. Bear in mind this is for a platform that goes slightly slower than an LA mid-week morning traffic, at best. So you've mostly negated the benefits of the hypersonic weapon.
S-400s are for ballistic targets, aircrafts, cruise missiles which the tomahawk falls in the category of that's like saying Kalibr is sufficient enough for an/spy-6 radar using SM-6, but AFAIK there is no Naval S-400 version that is operational yet, but eventually it will come later. China's DF-21 does not feature thrust vectoring capabilities that are found in Yars, Kinzhal or Iskander, in my opinion its not just that the Chinese lack the current defensive capabilities, but also offensive capabilities have to be worked on as well for them
Something like F-18E/F or F-35 is probably going to have to carry a hypersonic missile externally, yes. "Everything being Carrier Strike Group related" more or less summarizes the past 40 or so years of US Navy thinking about strike: it's an extension of the CVBG and its escorts. The escorts aren't lacking for strike at all nowadays, nor will they in the future, since Tomahawk is going to get the new Block V upgrade soon. I have no idea what ripping out Tomahawk cells and replacing them with ARRW cells will do, but giving ARRW or airbreathers to the carrier will give the CVBG more strike potential without sacrificing its existing strike load.

A CSG performing strike is not out of the question, but it would hardly be the first choice. The first choice would be B-21 with JSOWs, or B-52 with ARRW, or something similar. The Air Force is the ideal rapid response strike force because they have actually long ranged aircraft that can carry big weapons. If the USAF ever gets a internally carried, air-breathing hypersonic weapon, it will probably be sized for F-35 though. Which means the USN can use it. Which will be good.

Since the USN is unlikely to ever get a long ranged carrier aircraft in the near future (something comparable in performance, preferably better, than ATA) I don't see how that will change much. It's going to be Super Hornets and a handful of F-35C's for the next couple of decades.

US Navy with a google search states 490 ships and 11 of those are aircraft carriers and usually those aircraft carriers are surrounded with 6 ship platforms and usually more leaving more ships out. So I guess the Chinese and Russians have to only worry about is aircraft carriers since they are the only things that are equipped with aircrafts and those aircrafts are equipped with hypersonic missiles, is that correct? I am sure there are some users here that feel a little unsettled hearing that as much as they do with a preference of wanting to also have a nice amount of hypersonic missiles on land than having them limited to just on Subs. Make life easier for the Russians and Chinese :cool:

S-400 is so effective at stopping Tomahawk that the US Navy had no problem avoiding it entirely through decent route planning and up-to-date EOOB information.

I don't recall the Chinese or Russians having figured out a bulletproof solution to Tomahawk, so they seem to be in the same bucket as they were in the '80's. The only difference is the US stopped deploying nuclear warheads with Tomahawk, but it isn't going to suddenly start putting atomic bombs in AGM-183 either. If it needs to it can easily rearm the Tomahawks with nukes anyway, although that is rather implausible considering it has superior delivery systems nowadays.

In any hypothetical Second Pacific War the US Navy is going to be operating with multiple self-supporting carrier battlegroups. Probably far away from the South China Sea. And conducting long-range airstrikes to support USAF minelaying or air penetration operations. Meanwhile submarines operate forward, within the sea, until the PLAAF or PLANAF or whoever they're fighting has been attrited enough to allow the USN to drive forward. The submarines are the only thing that can operate in contested sea denial waters, so the PLANAF will have its hands full trying to sanitize the sea and the PLAAF will be driving off American and Allied air forces from its MPAs.

Really, the same thing they were planning to do in the Norwegian Sea in the early 1980's. Certainly much has changed since then, but nothing fundamental. Slightly faster missiles don't make much a difference in the end, they just mean you need bigger AEW. And the Russians and Chinese don't appear to have anything comparable to AGM-183 outside of the Strategic Rocket Forces/2nd Artillery Corps, with their newest potential non-strategic weapon being a warmed over Onyx (Brahmos).

Not sure what a "really fast missile" on "an air defense destroyer a few hundred miles away from the theater" adds to that equation. Perhaps the fear of a destroyer being in position to fire in two days' time will make the Chinese or Russians back down from something nefarious, like disrupting regional soybean production? I'm a tad incredulous at that idea. OTOH a flight of B-1s or B-52s at Anderson AFB with ARRWs is a bit more serious. Unlike a ship, an airplane can be in position to fire in a few hours and there's very little the PRC can do to stop it without drastically escalating to striking Guam with IRBMs for the sake of an underwater rock.

Something like AGM-183 on a submarine would probably make the most sense in the future for the USN, as far as contributing rather than sitting on the sidelines.
The AGM-183 could probably be fired from a modified Ohio-class SSBN with suitable encapsulation for underwater launch.

My understanding is the USN is looking at acquiring a few additional Columbias to fill the SSGN role, eventually.

These will probably carry ARRWs, or some similar boost-glide weapon, assuming the Block V 774's don't.
 
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Josh_TN

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The USNs hypersonic program is CPS using the SWERVE glider. It’s possible they will update the glider some time in the future but I suspect the two stage booster arrangement and diameter are fixed, so I can’t see AGM-183 being adopted. It would suffer a massive performance loss being launched from the surface.
 

bring_it_on

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If anything I am looking forward to new VLS for ships or to use existing VLS to use scramjets. Eventually other superpowers will have decent ABM capabilities for their ships. I am still shocked air launched hypersonic projects seem to be more of a priority than having hypersonic missile projects for the U.S. Navy.

The US Navy has 2 hypersonic weapons currently in the works in the IR-CPS and the new SM-6 variant (1B), both of which will be in service at or before 2025. Beyond that, there are a few things in the fire. DARPA, last year, was going to fund some early work on concepts for getting the Tactical Boost Glide glider onto ships. So perhaps that could be the next option though that would require a new AUR as the current ARRW booster would not be compatible with the MK41. The Navy is doing some work on an Air Launched hypersonic weapon program. The original DARPA/AFRL HAWC is roughly 20 ft. in length and thus incompatible with the AC's weapons elevators, requiring the Navy to either modify that design or seek some other solution. I'd much rather the Navy concentrate on fielding the 2 weapons that are the most mature in some decent quantity aboard ships, and submarines, before embarking on any other VLS launched hypersonic weapon.

If they go through and modify the Zumwalt class to carry the IR-CPS then that will buy them some time until the new LSC is operational around the mid to late 2030's. It is going to take a fair bit of time to build up a decent inventory of IR-CPS and SM-6 1B rounds across the submarine and surface fleets. But at least we have a hot production line for the latter, and a factory being built or completed to support production at scale for the former. At some point you have to buy these things at a decent rate and build up an inventory. All of these programs are currently structured for rapid prototyping and prototype fielding. I'd like to see a few of them become formal programs of record and transition to acquisition phase before we start adding additional prototyping efforts on the plate.
 

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It really is unnecessary to mount CPS in a destroyer or cruiser type, IMO. I think the LUSV (or more ideally, whatever manned platform supersedes it) is the logical place to store giant long ranged hypersonics. CPS not only is too wide for current VLS cells, it also would require much more deck penetration - it is a much longer weapon. The best solution to my mind is using a large off the shelf commercial design with plenty of surplus volume and weight and then base far away from any potential threat. With a range measured in thousands of miles (and a minimum range likely measured in many hundreds), you can afford to keep such a platform in very benign waters outside the first island chain, or deep in the Atlantic, and still be well within range of your target set. The new oiler/station ship design is twenty knot capable and just starting to crank out replacements for the Kaiser class; it would be a natural fit to the USN and have ample space and weight allowances for as many CPS as you can afford to fit in it. Space and power for basic decoys and defenses are already included in the design. Bonus: visually on or ISAR, it easily could be mistaken for a medium tanker, or at a minimum an actual USN UNREP ship. Targeting it could be complicated.
 

tequilashooter

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S-400 is so effective at stopping Tomahawk that the US Navy had no problem avoiding it entirely through decent route planning and up-to-date EOOB information.

I don't recall the Chinese or Russians having figured out a bulletproof solution to Tomahawk, so they seem to be in the same bucket as they were in the '80's. The only difference is the US stopped deploying nuclear warheads with Tomahawk, but it isn't going to suddenly start putting atomic bombs in AGM-183 either. If it needs to it can easily rearm the Tomahawks with nukes anyway, although that is rather implausible considering it has superior delivery systems nowadays.
1. S-400 is located in Latakia, The strikes were carried around in Damascus. Are those areas super close or very far apart?

2. I could have just ended it on the 1st point but one sides claims all hit their target, the other states 71 out of 103 were intercepted. I would carry this conversation on to another thread but with these kinds of topics moderators and an admin will more than likely close it.

3. If you still believe the air defense is that ineffective Iran would have already had it and I dont think there would be a TAI-TFX thread in this forum either :p

Something like F-18E/F or F-35 is probably going to have to carry a hypersonic missile externally, yes. "Everything being Carrier Strike Group related" more or less summarizes the past 40 or so years of US Navy thinking about strike: it's an extension of the CVBG and its escorts. The escorts aren't lacking for strike at all nowadays, nor will they in the future, since Tomahawk is going to get the new Block V upgrade soon. I have no idea what ripping out Tomahawk cells and replacing them with ARRW cells will do, but giving ARRW or airbreathers to the carrier will give the CVBG more strike potential without sacrificing its existing strike load.

Yasen-Ms appear to currently have long reaching Torpedos in terms of ranges. For arguments for the favorability of this thread and you I will say that the newest and latest U.S. have a better stealth signature and SONAR technology. But depending on the areas of interests I dont think their nuclear reactor SONAR project will just be limited in the Arctic area and new satellite projects for better footprint tracking of ships where SONAR that can be placed anywhere in the ocean can cue satellites and sattlies will cue ships or subs with tracking data to target carriers. Russia would feel better just having to worry about SLBMs than having to worry about low flying maneuverable plasma nukes or conventional warheads. Thank god BIO and Ronny brought up USN missile projects I did not know existed.
Really, the same thing they were planning to do in the Norwegian Sea in the early 1980's. Certainly much has changed since then, but nothing fundamental. Slightly faster missiles don't make much a difference in the end, they just mean you need bigger AEW. And the Russians and Chinese don't appear to have anything comparable to AGM-183 outside of the Strategic Rocket Forces/2nd Artillery Corps, with their newest potential non-strategic weapon being a warmed over Onyx (Brahmos).
Not only to piss you off and maybe users on this thread but in terms of having anything similar to AGM-183 I heard they have claimed they had successful interceptions in Kasputin Yar with missiles that are suppose to simulate specifically AGM-183 and Deep Strike with S-400, S-350, Buk-M3s. https://topwar.ru/164483-neozvuchen...to-imitirovali-rakety-misheni-favorit-rm.html Sadly I dont know the maneuverability of how many Gs the Yars, kinzhal or iskander can pull in comparison to the AGM-183. But atleast they didnt say anything so far on intercepting hypersonic air to ground missile like GZUR to simulate HAWC.
 
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sferrin

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X-51's JP7 scramjet propulsion is being continued with HAWC.

HyFly was a "failure" because it was an exotic engine system. Considering Boeing recently received funding to bring back the DCR engine for ground tests, although I doubt it will fly again, I don't really see how it failed at anything. It proved that the technology was too immature for use in a weapon. That's really all it set out to do, since it's DARPA. It would have been good if it had done more, but proving a technology requires more time to bake is a good result. It lets you eliminate the blind alleys.

OTOH RATTLRS was never going to transition to a weapon system. DARPA doesn't really fund that, that's the services' jobs.

The point of RATTLRS was to test the YJ-102R, which was an evolved version of a SLAT competitor's engine from the early 1990's.

I was with you until that. The YJ-102R is a turbine engine. SLAT used a ramjet.
 

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