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So what's going to be the results of this so called Peace dividend?

MrT

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Hello there, long time lurker, first time poster as they say, so my first post is a spot of a challenge.

The Cold War instead of ending when it did thanks to Mr Gorbachev being a realist, has continued through to 18th October 2012, NATO forces are now in the process of being reduced, so think back to 1990....so given that it has lasted an additional 22 years with lots of kit coming and going what do each nations forces look like, operate with and how are they going to get cut? Eg is the UK currently operating 3 replacement Mini carriers flying Sea Harrier FA3? Or are they using some form of CVF? Regarding frigates and destroyers, did the UK try to keep as near to 50 or let that slide? We can certainly bet that the numbers will get cut but which where and how? (I am presuming the UK has or is getting 12 advanced AD destroyers no guarantee they look like the Type 45 though, anyone think there are 24 or so type 23s built or is there some successor ASW frigate that replaced the type 22? )

With regards to programmes anyone think that the A12 is in service or did the A6F proceed? Did FOAS happen? Did the RAF end up getting some F119s? Go for it!
 

Grey Havoc

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Well, with regards as systems that would/could have made it into service in this alternate timeline, here's a quick few examples;

Sea systems: the NFR-90 frigate and W-Class SSN [Royal Navy].

nfr90_marriott.jpg


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________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Ground systems: The Panther Anti-Tank/Anti-Helicopter system, and quite possibly it's Challenger I based counterpart:

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We might have even seen this German anti-aircraft laser system in service from around the mid-nineties:

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The 'LAV-75' and the Expeditionary Tank are other prospects.

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expeditionary_tank.jpg



Not only the G11 would have gone into service, but the M-11 rifle could have been adopted by the US (even become NATO standard?).

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_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Air systems: If the Cold War had continued, the Germans might persuaded the US to allow the MBB Lampyridae to proceed, giving the Luftwaffe a very handy asset.

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The Scaled Composites/Beech ATTT (AT-3) would have also probably made it into USAF service for special operations.

ATTT01.jpg


ATTT.jpg




I'll put some more possibilities in another post.
 

F-14D

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MrT said:
Hello there, long time lurker, first time poster as they say, so my first post is a spot of a challenge.

The Cold War instead of ending when it did thanks to Mr Gorbachev being a realist, has continued through to 18th October 2012, NATO forces are now in the process of being reduced, so think back to 1990....so given that it has lasted an additional 22 years with lots of kit coming and going what do each nations forces look like, operate with and how are they going to get cut? Eg is the UK currently operating 3 replacement Mini carriers flying Sea Harrier FA3? Or are they using some form of CVF? Regarding frigates and destroyers, did the UK try to keep as near to 50 or let that slide? We can certainly bet that the numbers will get cut but which where and how? (I am presuming the UK has or is getting 12 advanced AD destroyers no guarantee they look like the Type 45 though, anyone think there are 24 or so type 23s built or is there some successor ASW frigate that replaced the type 22? )

With regards to programmes anyone think that the A12 is in service or did the A6F proceed? Did FOAS happen? Did the RAF end up getting some F119s? Go for it!

Since the A-6F was canceled in in 1988 and the A-12 in 1991, the collapse of the Soviet Union somewhat later wouldn't have affected them The A-6F cancellation was the wrong decision for the right reason, while the A-12 was the right decision for the Wrong reasons; not sure it ever would have been practical.

When postulating about how today would look if the Cold War kept going, you've got to take into account what the "other side" would be doing. In some areas they were making great progress For example, the new Yasen class subs, Severodvinsk and Kazan being the first two, that have us so concerned were actually designed in the late '80s for deployment in the mid '90s. What would our navies look like if we had to contend with say, 10 of these boats at sea?
 

uk 75

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Interesting hypothesis.


I assume that the Soviet Union in this scenario continues to invest heavily in its military programmes and that the economic collapse the 90s is avoided.


The continued build up of an effective Soviet submarine fleet (see the two programmes in the Cold War series on BBC2) would have been the main driver for NATO naval and seaborne nuclear forces. The US would have deployed its replacements for the Los Angeles class faster and the UK its W class (or Astute).


The British economy would have remained the main driver for our armed forces and there were lean times in the 90s.


The RN would have had to put most of its money into the submarine forces and into ASW assets (more Merlin helicopters). The three Invincibles would have been maintained and their replacements more focussed to ASW work in the North Atlantic than the global commitments of the post-Cold War world.


BAOR presumably would not have gone to the Gulf as it is unlikely that the Kremlin would have let Saddam invade Kuwait unless it was part of a wider gambit to confront the West. Its equipment scales were already planned and there was little money left for new kit other than planned multinational programmes.


The RAF would have received Eurofighters sooner and ran on its Phantoms/Tornados longer. The Harriers would have remained at the same strength. A replacement for the Harrier/Jaguar force would have emerged from the US Marines requirements as now. If the US had developed the A12 as an F-111 replacement we would probably have bought some to replace Tornados allocated to Theatre nuclear strike.


A more aggressive Soviet Union might have pushed the West in areas like South Africa where it was out of step with local freedom fighters. Mandela would have received continued East Bloc backing and civil war intifada style would have come to Southern Africa. Mugabe would have shown his anti-West credentials sooner.


Islamic fundamentalism would have still emerged but whether its focus would still have been the West ?


Some initial thoughts


UK75
 

JFC Fuller

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It was planned that 2 squadrons of Buccaneer (in the AShM carrier role), 3 Squadrons of Jaguar and 4 Squadrons of Phantom (2 in RAFG and 2 in the UK) would run on until the Typhoon replaced them; the replacement of the Buccaneers being indirect as they would have been replaced by Tornadoes displaced from the GR force by the Typhoon.

Harrier at that time included 2 front-line FAA Squadrons and 3 RAF squadrons- however, two of those (the RAFG squadrons) had three flights so in terms of aircraft it was four squadrons so there was six STOVL squadrons in all. JSF would likely have happened the way it actually has (perhaps faster and with slightly different specs though) and this would have replaced all the Harriers in UK service but probably not anything else.

The Tornado replacement would have been coming into focus.

The RN was ASW focussed anyway.
 

Grey Havoc

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F-14D said:
...When postulating about how today would look if the Cold War kept going, you've got to take into account what the "other side" would be doing. In some areas they were making great progress For example, the new Yasen class subs, Severodvinsk and Kazan being the first two, that have us so concerned were actually designed in the late '80s for deployment in the mid '90s. What would our navies look like if we had to contend with say, 10 of these boats at sea?

Certainly Sea Lance and probably eventually Deep Lance [RUM-125 & UUM-125] would have been deployed by the USN. The USN's 'heavy' torpedo program (originally intended as part of the Seawolf's armament) would have likely been reactivated. With regards as to the Seawolf class itself, at least 12 of the class would have made it into service. The Centurion program (what became the Virginia class SSN in OTL) would have probably led to a much different outcome. With both a heightened threat and much different economic conditions (e.g. the Soviet Union hasn't fallen, oil prices don't begin a mostly downwards trend), we could well see the start of a full scale program to develop a FFGN. The P-7 program and likely the SV-22 would have gone ahead. Also the Navy's efforts to develop a satellite to detect and nuclear submarines via their reactor's neutrino emissions would have continued.

For the Royal Navy, Super Ikara development and deployment would have likely been fully funded. Staff Requirement (Sea) 6646, calling for the procurement of 66 examples of what was to become the Merlin HM.1 would have been unchanged. Type 23 frigate procurement plans could have seen a modest increase. On a more extreme note, the nuclear armed Tigerfish (Mark 24-Mod-1-N) might well have been sanctioned!


JFC Fuller said:
RN: Probably a fleet of 18 SSNs, 8-10 SSKs, 50 frigates/destroyers and 3 carriers. There is no real reason to think T45 would have looked any different though the Astute would be the W-class and built much earlier, but may or may not have ended up looking very similar. I suspect the carriers would have come out a bit smaller 40-50,000 tons but with a better radar and self-defence outfit (perhaps full Sea Viper) but there probably would have still been three of them. With 24 Type 23s constructed the RN would then have been looking for a Type 22 replacement which would probably not have been that much different from the Type 26 of today (aside perhaps from the mission bay).

The Asute Class and Type 45 would have not existed in this alternate timeline, at least not as we know them. An A-Class might exist as a Vanguard class based SSGN (studies were underway as of 1992), while the Horizon destroyer might have been given the 'Type 45' designation in RN service (12 of the 'Samson' variant). There is evidence to suggest that the Horizon effort would have been formed even with a successful NFR90 program.

horiz.jpg

An artists impression of the RN "Sampson" Variant of the Horizon Destroyer issued in 1996 (Naval Matters website)


Going back to the Soviet naval threat, it wouldn't have just been the Yasen class that NATO would have to worry about. For example the fifth unit of the Kirov class would have not been cancelled, along with the last four units of the Slava class cruiser (increasing the size of that class to 8). Even worse, a 'revived' Soviet Union might have been able to find the resources for at least two more Kirovs. The Ul'yanovsk CVN (eventually joined by her sister) would have entered service, along side the three units of the Tbilisi (Kuznetsov) class carriers, with all that implied. (The Freestyle, whenever it reached service would also been a major headache, giving the existing V/STOL carriers a far greater punch.) The Project 11990 Anchar DDGN would have been built in some numbers to help protect the new carriers. At least seven examples of the Neustrashimyy class frigate would have been completed, probably more (20+?). The Sierra III class SSN would have been built in numbers (2-3 at least). A large scale production version of the Mike SSN, with the originally planned reactors, is quite possible in this timeline. With Gorbachev gone, so would probably be things like the INF treaty, meaning that a new SSGN class armed with the SS-N-24 could also be expected to proceed. The seventh Typhoon SSBN would have been completed, along with further examples.

In this alternate timeline, the "reasonable sufficiency" and "defensive doctrine" policies would have been discredited with Gorbachev's fall. In the case of the Soviet Navy this would mean that efforts to regress it from a Blue-water force to a slimmed down Green-water navy would be dropped and that the Navy would be more assertive (and aggressive) worldwide than it been under Gorbachev. Feeding into this would be new units such as the Project 1077 Squadron Radar Picket Ship and Project 1080 ballistic missile cruiser.

index.php


uk 75 said:
...A more aggressive Soviet Union might have pushed the West in areas like South Africa where it was out of step with local freedom fighters. Mandela would have received continued East Bloc backing and civil war intifada style would have come to Southern Africa. Mugabe would have shown his anti-West credentials sooner...

To better support their 'fraternal allies', the Soviets might even have finally gotten around to building shelved projects like Project 717:

717-line1.gif

717-line2.gif

[IMAGE CREDIT: GlobalSecurity.org]​
 

Hood

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A topic I've often thought about in a what-if way. Of course we have to assume that the Soviet Union manages to pull off some kind of economic reform to prevent collapse and that the satellite countries didn't get lured away by Western loans. We also know that the West has suffered at least two economic recessions during that time and programmes like the F-35 running along technological progress timelines are unlikely to have progressed much quicker.

UK - It's not hard to image that some kind of Nott Review would have presented itself at some point during the mid-90s and late-00s. Unless defence spending as % of GDP rose the services would still face a stretch of resources. All sixteen T23 would be completed (all with Type 2031Z) along with the T22 BIIIs and perhaps even the BIIs being extended in service. A replacement would probably have begun earlier and we'd be seeing the first hulls by now. T45 would go ahead, at a billion a pop would more than six be built? I could see eight but not twelve. Two CVF seems most likely but a medium-sized STOVL design might have been more attractive. I agree the W Class SSN would have been built during the late 1990s. Typhoon would have been a bit sooner given that West Germany might have more incentive not to try and reduce the numbers and investment, numbers would have been closer to the original requirements for the partner nations. FOAS would be further along by now, perhaps as a two-seater Typhoon mod for speed. F-35 for the FAA, as a Harrier replacement perhaps so but I can't imagine the RAF parking most of its F-35 fleet next door to the IGB where they could be easily nuked/ overrun by armour. Nimrod might well have limped on but perhaps pressing needs might have meant its replacement with P-7 much earlier. Army maintains its heavy armour etc.

USA - Would the DDX be built? A couple of older CVNs retired today would still be around as would most of the Los Angeles fleet. More Seawolfs and perhaps the Virginias not appearing until now as an advanced type. Ohios still in service with perhaps a joint US-UK replacement on the way. The SSGN conversions would still be very valuable. More F-22s, F-35s entering service but neither would be that quicker into service unless the red tape was cut somewhat. More CV-22s, RAH-66 would have survived probably. Perhaps more advanced F-16 Blocks would have appeared sooner and been exported to Europe (a quick NATO programme for the smaller member states). A dozen more B-2s perhaps a possibility. Generally I think the US Armed forces wouldn't look much different from today beyond being slightly larger. The emphasis on ABM would have much stronger and would have provoked a Soviet response in some form.

USSR - Tbilsi and Ul'yanovsk completed and perhaps a couple of sisters for Ul'yanovsk to replace the older Kievs. No more Kirovs, but a quartet of Anchars perhaps. Four Slavas. More Udaloy IIs with the Neustrashimyy and Gepard as mass-produced types. Some kind of stealth frigate design would have appeared by now too. Perhaps the Vladivostock's would have appeared too, obviously not Mistrals but some kind of home design along similar lines. Yasen SSNs and Sierras with Passats and Bars as the main SSGN and SSBN types. Numbers of all vessels might fall as rationalisation focuses on smaller numbers of advanced types. The MiG 1.44 would have entered service by 2010, the PAK FA might be a couple of years ahead, also a long-range MiG interceptor to replace the Tu-128 Fiddler. The T-60S might have appeared by 2010, more Blackjacks but probably a bulk of Mig-29 and Su-27/30/34 series would be the main strength. Newer transports like the An-70, An-140 and Il-214 would have appeared sooner.

Exports - This would be a big change. No ex-Soviet carriers or licence-built Soviet designs would have been likely unless Sino-Soviet relations had thawed. Would we be seeing such a powerful Chinese military today or something cobbled together from Western bits and pieces like the early 1990s? The same goes for India which has received several Russian-built ships, weapons and aircraft, including joint ventures which seem less likely if the Cold War had continued. Less surplus ships and aircraft across the world generally, would sensitive technology preclude sales of F-15s, F-22s and F-35s as widely as hoped for/ achieved today? For Soviet-client states, including nations like India mentioned above, would they have continued to tolerate the purchase of less-sophisticated export kit from the USSR as the technological gap widened. For budding powers like India and China, they would have wanted top-drawer stuff and not some degraded MiG without spares and might have brought western kit in bigger numbers much sooner.
 

Hood

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Yes, I know 24 T23 were planned for but since only 16 were ordered, the last three in 1996 from Yarrow, which commissioned in 2000-01. Swan Hunter finished their last T23s in 1994. If we say Swan Hunter were kept in the programme and could build as many T23s as Yarrow did between 96-01 that would bring us to 22 ships. The final two would commission around 2003-04. Industrially this might have been possible but any T26 to replace the T22s would have to wait for the T45s to be completed first. My doubts stem from the fact that practically none of the post-war frigate and destroyer classes have ever met their initial planned numbers since the 1950s (21-22 T22 were planned in 1972). If there were 3 carriers then I'm sure 12 T45 would be built. I'm not sure how CVF might have turned out, but I would back your hunch on three STOVL carriers optimised for ASW.
Whether Britain could have sustained a 50 escort fleet and all those RAF squadrons and BOAR units is open to question. The fact Nott etc. happened in 1981 signifies that the defence cut trend remained even at the height of the Cold War and military size has gone down ever since 1945. A twenty-year plateau in reductions and yet buying procuring large amounts of high-tech (more capable) systems at the same time seems very unlikely, even with projected savings from privatising support services etc. Given the political argument that Britain owes vast sums today and the large sums of expenditure cuts across the board since 2010 it seems unlikely 4-5% GDP on defence would have been politically acceptable or economically possible.
 

F-14D

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Commenting on Hood's scenario, I'd see the US situation as somewhat different.

No CVN has been retired except for Enterprise. If the Cold War had continued, she'd probably have been kept on for a few more years and then retired. However, more CVNs would have been built to get the numbers up to 15. Come to think of it, if we were building more CVNs, maybe Enterprise would actually have gone away earlier. There would be more LA class subs left, but not most of them, as hull life is hull life for an SSN...and there would have been more Seawolves, and probably something other than Virginia in the works. Although the SSGNs are great, the way we got them was that four SSBNs had to be retired for START purposes. Not positive that would have happened, but distinctly possible. .

A-12 still would have been cancelled, but AX or A/FX probably would have survived. If so, there would be no F-35, but there would be an ASTOVL. Also, more F-22s. Doubtful there would be a Super Hornet, but there'd either be a NATF or advanced F-14s, with a successor in design, rewinged A-6s holding the line until AX-A/FX got here.

At least in my mind's blurry eye.
 

Grey Havoc

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A quick post with a few more likely/possible naval units for the NATO side (with an interesting dark horse thrown in, see if you can figure it out!).

SV-22:
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(h/t Jemiba & Triton)

Striker class Arsenal Ship:
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index.php

(h/t Matt R.)

Sea Wraith series corvettes -

Sea Wraith I:
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Sea Wraith II:
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index.php

(h/t flateric)


And here is our dark horse:
index.php
 

MrT

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My word, some interesting ideas out there! I did always wonder about heavy TRIGAT. I could never understand why Hellfire wasn't acquired with a suitable launcher, maybe mounted on Warriors?
I think the 50 escort ships would have been hard to achieve, short of perhaps bulking out with some super cheap escort a la lengthened castle class with towed array as shown in rebuilding the RN.
I hadn't realised that A12 had been cancelled. I have heard a rumour that the RAF were looking at getting around 50 or so F119, any thoughts about that? (For the life of me I can't recollect where I saw that).
 

Grey Havoc

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MrT said:
My word, some interesting ideas out there! I did always wonder about heavy TRIGAT. I could never understand why Hellfire wasn't acquired with a suitable launcher, maybe mounted on Warriors?
I think the 50 escort ships would have been hard to achieve, short of perhaps bulking out with some super cheap escort a la lengthened castle class with towed array as shown in rebuilding the RN.
I hadn't realised that A12 had been cancelled. I have heard a rumour that the RAF were looking at getting around 50 or so F119, any thoughts about that? (For the life of me I can't recollect where I saw that).

Certainly the USAF were looking at a land based A-12 as a possible F-111 replacement in the deep strike role, although it was something of a 'shotgun wedding' insisted on by certain members of Congress, according to some reports. It's likely that the RAF had at least observer status in regards to that study (1989 or thereabouts).

Back to land based systems for NATO, in particular the US Army's Liberty battlefield air defense system (h/t sferrin):
index.php


index.php


http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,696.0.html
 

Avimimus

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It'd be interesting to see what the last generation of conventional tanks would've been like:

- The Leopard 3: http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,712.msg47745.html#msg47745


- Russian successor tank (T-195 derivative or perhaps a bigger gunned variant. Something like an updat e of these: http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,8240.0.html )


- UDES-20XX: http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,935.0.html
 

bobbymike

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Well at the very least we would still have 50 MX's and maybe 500-1000 SICBM's and a robust nuclear weapons R&D and production capacity.
 

Grey Havoc

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Some more goodies for the NATO side, based around the ADATS system (h/t GTX):
index.php
 

Grey Havoc

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Something else that would have been very important to NATO defence plans, the Leopard 3:
Leo3-Pyton-Zobel-S.JPG

http://nast-sonderfahrzeuge.de/fotosammlung/thumbnails.php?album=39
(Image is from a modeler's gallery about his attempt to create an accurate model of the Leopard 3 (PzKW-2000 'superheavy' proposal) as it would have looked if it had entered service. The artwork shown seems to date from around 1987 or thereabouts. With regards as to the model itself, it's not a bad effort at all, IMHO.)

Side-note: The HubschAbwKpfWs PYTON (Army nickname?) also shown was the rival design to the design that was actually selected for the Panther Anti-Tank/Anti-Helicopter system already mentioned in this thread and elsewhere.
 

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Grey Havoc

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Some of the stuff that was under development or proposed as of 1991: http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a239888.pdf
 

Grey Havoc

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Another might have been; a version of the C-17 with Rolls-Royce RB211-535 engines that would have likely found it's way into RAF service IMHO (h/t fightingirish).

index.php
 

Grey Havoc

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Back to the Soviet Navy, with the Project 1293 heavy missile cruiser:

index.php

(h/t Tzoli)​
 

bobbymike

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https://books.google.ca/books?id=CQYAAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA40&dq=next+generation+nuclear+weapons&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0CKEBEOgBMCFqFQoTCPPxn96_tcYCFQIYPgodcRQM3w#v=onepage&q=next%20generation%20nuclear%20weapons&f=false

Expectation of 16,000 deployed strategic warheads by 2000 :eek:

I remember the days it took 15 pages to talk about existing and future arsenal. Now it can be done in a paragraph.
 

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Via the Tank-net forums & the Tank and AFV News blog, the Spanish M-60A3E1 Cristobita upgrade:

1481711641-15000134-1317841691589079-5488358871086393468-o.jpg


de7e33f6cb435c7bbceb7c4a7ae6ae811bd70824d3bfd16ce87488db5c37aebc.jpg
 

Grey Havoc

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JFC Fuller said:
Whilst I am at it: unbuilt Vanguard/Trident support infrastructure that explains the giant hole visible next to Rosyth Dockyard that Babcock is attempting to turn into a container port. This was the RD57 proposal that was abandoned in favour of concentrating nuclear submarine refits and refuelling at Devonport after the end of the Cold War:

Of the available documents for the RD57 project, two dry docks, workshops, offices and support facilities on a site at the west end of the Base are mentioned. Under RD57 one dry dock was designed to measure 190 metres in length by thirty metres in width, and the other to be 150 metres in length by twenty-eight metres in width. The main dock cover was also designed to be an estimated fifty metres wide, forty metres high at the highest point and a maximum of 200 metres long. This structure would not only protect against weather but would support the overhead travelling cranes necessary to perform various tasks. Furthermore, the two dock covers were to be linked to support facilities located both between and at the west end of the docks. Initial plans dictated that the complex was to be enclosed by security fences, with road and rail accesses and carparks provided. This project was thought to require fifteen hectares for the development, five hectares of which was existing Ministry of Defence land. Support services to the complex under RD57 were also intended to involve substations, stand-by power generating facilities, a compressor house, plant rooms, a materials storage area, external plant areas and demineralised water facilities, with design and construction of the facility subject to a quality assurance programme addressing safety and reliability in all matters relating to nuclear safety.

Source: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/6551/1/2004JamisonPhd.pdf

Whats curious is that this was built to west of the existing dockyard. As built a large area of land was drained/cleared/reclaimed to the east of the yard to provide for future expansion, for some reason this appears not to have been used for the RD57 facility.

Edit: Examining the RD57 site on google earth it looks like the foundations of the two dry docks were built- there are two long concrete structures in the hole that match the lengths described above. Based on their location it would seem that the entrances to the dry-docks would be directly from the non-tidal basin which would explain the decision to build the facility to the west of the existing dockyard rather than the east.
 

Grey Havoc

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Our old friend, Project Thor, aka 'Rods from God':
thor-jpg.515494

(h/t fredymac)

Not to mention other space based goodies on both sides; by the mid 1990s the Outer Space Treaty would have been likely dead and buried.
 

zen

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Considering Type 23 for a moment.
The original plan seems to be 12 Batch I and then an initial order for 4 Batch II possibly with more Sea Wolf silos and a 5" gun, which presumably would either increase in numbers or serve as a stepping stone to either a Batch III or some new design.
This 4 was then downgraded to just more Batch I.
Under such circumstances it's possible that GWS.27 might be funded. That or perhaps ASAM-1 to the MSAM requirement.
 
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Grey Havoc

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The Hilton Gun Company HG40 under-barrel grenade launcher for the L85A1 (SA80) rifle:
1616777093005.png
Technical Specifications: Hilton HG40
Calibre: 40 x 46SR mm
Overall length: 388 mm
Barrel length: 310 mm (12.2”)
Weight: 1.5 kg (3.3 lbs)
Feed device: single-shot
Source
 

butch4343

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On the UK front one thing that hasn't as far as I can see being mentioned is the UK would have had a MRSAM capability that was shelved at the end of the Cold War, I believe studies were under way up until around 1993. Patriot would seem like the most likely option for the UK giving a limited tactical ABM defence as well.

One further question, would NATO have continued hardening airfields ect? I believe they might have, given that although pgms showed what they could do in Iraq, the Warsaw pact and laterally Russia have been less minded to use them, still relying largely on unguided dumb bombs even in Syria.

Oh and would ratheyon sentinel have entered service quicker than orgionally, give the need to provide a corps stand off radar capability? And would the dark star series of low observable drones have made it into service bearing in mind NATO needs a survivable all weather penetrative recconisance asset to detect and track soviet tank armies for follow on forces attack.

I belive the raf was going to run phantoms on until the 2000s with a ungrade program to give them a similar capability to the luftwaffe F4F ICE with AMRAAM capability and associate avionics. Typhoons were slated to replace 92 and 19 sqn in RAFG after the initial typhoon OCU stood up in the UK.

LRMPA's there's a dilemma for all involved, the p7 was canned because it didn't offer much more than a P3. So could the US have carried out a limited upgrade on the P3 and accelerated the P8 program? So that leaves us with the nimrod 2000 does it go ahead or does the RAF tie itself to the P8? I think the sensible option would have been to go with the P8 but politics would have probably seen us go with nimrod.

I find this a fascinating what if
 

A Tentative Fleet Plan

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And would the dark star series of low observable drones have made it into service bearing in mind NATO needs a survivable all weather penetrative recconisance asset to detect and track soviet tank armies for follow on forces attack.
DarkStar was a product of the peace-dividend, being a reduced capability version of a system called Tier III, which was in turn, a reduced capability version of the Advanced Airborne Reconnaissance System (AARS), intended for use by the NRO to provide 250ft wingspan, survivable, loitering UAV with intercontinental range, capable of tracking Soviet Road and Rail-Mobile ICBMs, and operating in concert with B-2s.
 
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A Tentative Fleet Plan

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And would the dark star series of low observable drones have made it into service bearing in mind NATO needs a survivable all weather penetrative recconisance asset to detect and track soviet tank armies for follow on forces attack.
DarkStar was a product of the peace-dividend, being a reduced capability version of a system called Tier III, which was in turn, a reduced capability version of the Advanced Airborne Reconnaissance System (AARS), intended for use by the NRO to provide 250ft wingspan, survivable, loitering UAV with intercontinental range, capable of tracking Soviet Road and Rail-Mobile ICBMs, and operating in concert with B-2s.
In addition to Strategic Reconnaissance, AARS may have also been intended for use as part of Outer Air Battle with the Navy cancelling Condor.

It's not inconceivable that there would be a requirement for a "white world" spinoff of AARS, with capabilities closer to Tier III (as Dark Star was limited in range and loitering endurance by peace-dividend cuts). Something like Tier III would help provide the reconnaissance capabilities needed for Follow-On-Forces-Attack, as the system was intended specifically for the Battlefield-surveillance role, without the distraction of national intelligence tasks and so would hopefully avoid the gold-plating and high costs of AARS.
 

butch4343

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And would the dark star series of low observable drones have made it into service bearing in mind NATO needs a survivable all weather penetrative recconisance asset to detect and track soviet tank armies for follow on forces attack.
DarkStar was a product of the peace-dividend, being a reduced capability version of a system called Tier III, which was in turn, a reduced capability version of the Advanced Airborne Reconnaissance System (AARS), intended for use by the NRO to provide 250ft wingspan, survivable, loitering UAV with intercontinental range, capable of tracking Soviet Road and Rail-Mobile ICBMs, and operating in concert with B-2s.
Thats interesting , I always thought that Darkstar and Tier III were in effect the same thing. I didnt realise it was born from the AARS or that AARs was designed hunt mobile ICBMs, I think I shall need to google AARS

Thanks :)
 

butch4343

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And would the dark star series of low observable drones have made it into service bearing in mind NATO needs a survivable all weather penetrative recconisance asset to detect and track soviet tank armies for follow on forces attack.
DarkStar was a product of the peace-dividend, being a reduced capability version of a system called Tier III, which was in turn, a reduced capability version of the Advanced Airborne Reconnaissance System (AARS), intended for use by the NRO to provide 250ft wingspan, survivable, loitering UAV with intercontinental range, capable of tracking Soviet Road and Rail-Mobile ICBMs, and operating in concert with B-2s.
In addition to Strategic Reconnaissance, AARS may have also been intended for use as part of Outer Air Battle with the Navy cancelling Condor.

It's not inconceivable that there would be a requirement for a "white world" spinoff of AARS, with capabilities closer to Tier III (as Dark Star was limited in range and loitering endurance by peace-dividend cuts). Something like Tier III would help provide the reconnaissance capabilities needed for Follow-On-Forces-Attack, as the system was intended specifically for the Battlefield-surveillance role, without the distraction of national intelligence tasks and so would hopefully avoid the gold-plating and high costs of AARS.
Does that mean the end of the U2 in that case?
 

Elan Vital

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The ground forces would be very different from OTL and this would have a significant impact on exports, especially once the peace dividends happen.
Outside of generally more of the stuff that was in production in the late 80s and got production cut in the 90s OTL, there would be a lot of equipment that never entered service.

The pan-European TRIGAT missile most likely makes it in and would probably displace not only the modern MILAN and HOT sales but more importantly the Kornet and TOW ones. Europe would probably not use the Hellfire II and Spike as much as a result. America itself may replace the TOW, I believe there was a missile for that but even without it there's the ground Hellfire on Humvees and Bradleys.

ADATS probably is not cancelled and in general we may see more foreign sales of modern SAMs due to all those modern aircrafts flying around.

There wouldn't be cheap Abramses and Leopard 2s in the 90s but since way more tanks would be built there would be cheap Leopard 1s and AMX-30s, and the unit cost of some of the modern tanks would still drop substantially while they become reliable earlier(the Ariete and Leclerc would be way less expensive for ex, with over 600 of the former and maybe over 1400 of the latter). Indeed the Leclerc could enjoy a somewhat greater success as a result.

Once the Cold War ends we would therefore have a lot more of the modern tanks getting cascaded to other countries.

The UK is interesting because the way things were shaping up it seemed like the Challenger 2 was going to have a more limited run. Now most of the decisions happened in 1991 so it's unsure what exactly the British wanted to do in a cold war context, but it seemed like the Chieftain was going to stay a bit longer but with the L30A1 gun, and similarly the Challenger 1s were going to be upgraded with the same automotive/RAM-D components, gun and possibly the turret of the 2.
 

CV12Hornet

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Carriers: This means maintaining a 15-carrier fleet long-term instead of the immediate downsizing to 12 followed by further declines in more recent years. First, that means continued once-every-three-years acquisition of the Nimitz-class, and thus Ronald Reagan entering service in 2001 instead of 2003 and HW Bush in 2004 instead of 2008. Ranger now decommissions in 1996 once John C. Stennis is fully worked up; she's followed in the Forrestal class by Forrestal in 1999, Saratoga in 2002, and Independence in 2005. America is SLEPed after Constellation, and both are still in service as of 2012. John F. Kennedy, due to her design flaws, likely still is used as the operational reserve carrier.

Where things get tricky is what the US Navy does after the Nimitz class. The Kitty Hawks and Enterprise are going to age out in rapid succession over a five-year period, and even in the operational reserve role JFK wouldn't last all that much longer. An extra Nimitz to replace Kitty Hawk is, I think, likely; it can be slotted in the construction schedule if a Nimitz successor is laid down in 2006 as was originally planned. Thus, in the event of delays to that successor the US Navy still has 13 carriers until America's retirement in 2014/2015 and 12 until JFK's in 2018.

Carrier Air Wing: As F-14D mentioned above, the A-6F and A-12 programs are likely to never see the light of day. For strike, that means the A/F-X project, most likely. Starting in 1993, the aircraft has likely only recently achieved IOC in 2012, so naturally an interim solution is needed. A-6Es will suffice for the 1990s, as the USN is almost certainly going to complete the re-winging program in its entirety this time, but after that...

Well, I think the F-14D Quickstrike is the preferred option, and I think something the Navy can finagle. I will admit, this is as much "What I want to happen" as "What I think will happen"; the demise of the F-14D was a political problem and that tends to be harder to solve than the funding problems that are the root of most of the Peace Dividend cancellations. But it's doable, if the Navy can actually arrange a competitive flyoff between the F-14D and Super Hornet as was planned. Best marketing opportunity you can get.

That's not to say there won't be further Hornet developments. The long development time of the A/F-X means that Legacy Hornets are still going to be doing a lot of heavy lifting in the interim, and thus the US Navy is still going to be concerned with bring-back weight. There's scope for an F/A-18E/F that isn't the Super Hornet; the new wing and LERXs, potentially the F414 engine and the signature reduction measures, but not the fuselage stretch, since they have long-range strike aircraft already and don't need to shove a Hornet derivative in the role.

One last naval aviation program: the Common Support Aircraft, a concept that IOTL floated around for a while before quietly dying. The idea was to replace at least the C-2 Greyhound and E-2 Hawkeye with a common airframe, with consideration also given to the S-3 Viking, ES-3A Shadow, EA-6B Prowler, and KA-6D. With a Cold War funding environment this is more likely to go ahead; I'm not sure the Intruder derivatives would be included but the Viking and Shadow would be, as the US Navy could really use a new ASW aircraft that doesn't break its ASW systems constantly and it's doable to make a common airframe for all three roles, as the Greyhound/Hawkeye and Tracker/Tracer lines show.

Large Surface Combatants: To start with, the California and Virginia classes would get their refuelings and NTU upgrades; the Spruance-class get the full VLS treatment; and the Kidds and Flight I Ticonderogas are still extant as of 2012. The first priority, of course, is the Arleigh Burke program, to replace all the old steam-powered Terrier and Tartar vessels. The Flight I and II ships replace the Adams and Farragut classes. A Flight III would replace the Leahy and Belknap classes, as well as the older nuclear cruisers. That Flight III might be the large, 128-cell version, or it could be a minimum-mod like the OTL IIAs.

While the Burkes are a matter of just letting an OTL program play out to its intended extent, the next priority is to replace the Spruances, which by 2012 will be starting to go along with the Californias. These would be true Spruances: combination ASW/Strike vessels for open-ocean operations, rather than the inshore littoral ops of the OTL Zumwalts. This would be an overall much less technologically risky program, and isn't going to suffer the indignity of being truncated so badly, though I wouldn't be surprised if numbers are trimmed post-2012. Figure by 2012 the surface combatant fleet looks like this:

4 Virgina CGN
27 Ticonderoga CG
24 Spruance DD
3 Zumwalt DD
4 Kidd DDG
63 Arleigh Burke DDG

And yes, I expect the Iowas to be gone by then.

Small Surface Combatants: What's to be done with the frigate fleet is an open question I don't really have an answer for. The Knoxes are going to be aging out shortly; while the plan was apparently to re-task fleet combatants as they grew obsolete I don't think that's viable on age grounds and the US Navy needs large numbers of frigates in a continued Cold War environment.

Auxiliaries: Haven't done enough research on this. No comment.

Amphibious: The Amphibious Assault Ship fleet is in good shape. The Wasp-class is coming online and is the logical candidate to both expand the LHD/LHA force and replace the Iwo Jimas. Just need to accelerate procurement. Behind that are the dock landing ships; the Whidbey Island and Harpers Ferry classes are arriving to replace older ships, but a replacement for the Anchorage class is necessary.

But the biggest priority is the amphibious transport dock fleet. The Austin and Raleigh classes are aging fast, the Newport-class tank landing ships are wholly obsolete, and the Charleston-class transports are also aging out. IOTL this was done by consolidating all three types into the San Antonio-class, and it's likely what's going to happen again. It'll lead to headaches and teething problems, but hey, most of the rest of what I've done has been reducing teething problems so it all works out.

Submarines: An Ohio replacement is well outside the scope of this thread. Yes, they'll have been doing the design work by 2012, but the Ohios won't start aging out until the 2020s, so it's not a problem we need to be concerned with here.

When it comes to attack boats, pretty straightforward. The Seawolf run, however long it is, supplements the Sturgeon and LA boats, and then the Centurion program is as a Sturgeon and early LA replacement.

Weapons: Sea Lance is a weapon I agree would be brought forward. Same with the AIM-152 as a Phoenix replacement. Potentially the AIM-137, assuming the cost overruns still don't kill it. Otherwise, I don't know much about non-missile weaponry cancelled in this era.
 
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