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Surface Ships Need More Offensive Punch, Outlook

sferrin

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Navy mulling BMD mission for unmanned surface vessels
The Navy is considering tasking its new unmanned surface vessels with the ballistic missile defense mission, a move that could free up guided-missile destroyers and push the service toward the more distributed fleet it is seeking

Unfortunately any enemy attack would start with, "Step 1. Sink all USN BMD vessels we've been trailing 24/7/365."
 

TomS

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Unfortunately any enemy attack would start with, "Step 1. Sink all USN BMD vessels we've been trailing 24/7/365."

And how does that change if the platforms are unmanned? Manned or unmanned, the BMD shooters are always going to be high-priority targets.

I mean, this isn't my favorite idea, but it doesn't really change the calculus too much. It does possibly let you improve engagement geometries, so the sensors and launch platform locations can both be optimized.
 

sferrin

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Unfortunately any enemy attack would start with, "Step 1. Sink all USN BMD vessels we've been trailing 24/7/365."

And how does that change if the platforms are unmanned?

Manned at least you know there's somebody following you and can defend yourself, instead of being a blind, defenseless expensive basket of eggs.
 

shin_getter

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Is the USN arrogant enough to believe it can fight China without getting people killed? Adding humans to ships do not constraint ship operations significantly (unlike, say, air ops) nor add much cost or impose harsh design difficulties.
 

aonestudio

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Upgraded Pacific Fleet Udaloy Frigate 'Marshal Shaposhnikov' go to sea trials.

Russian Battlecruiser 'Pyotr Velikiy' launch of the SS-N-19 Shipwreck cruise missile.
 

Josh_TN

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Is the USN arrogant enough to believe it can fight China without getting people killed? Adding humans to ships do not constraint ship operations significantly (unlike, say, air ops) nor add much cost or impose harsh design difficulties.

I think the main issue isn't lives but cost. An unmanned ship doesn't have to be built to the same specs as manned one - you basically are giving up on D/C and speed. That said I don't believe in armed, unmanned platforms. The MUSV makes a sufficiently cheap and disposable sensor platform, but I think the LUSV with actual armaments should be lightly or at least optionally manned. Seems to me too much can go wrong with absolutely no one at the wheel.
 

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I can’t help but look at that huge flat deck and see hundreds of VLSs loaded with hypersonic missiles
 

Bhurki

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I can’t help but look at that huge flat deck and see hundreds of VLSs loaded with hypersonic missiles
If you're talking about truck mounted c-hgb(assuming guidance and launch are fully contained within the truck based system since it is made for a manuevering army, needing no external support from the ship itself, other than deploying the system itself), then why not use PM3 and PM5 group support vessels to launch them. They are a lot more inconspicuous, cheaper and don't take away from the dedicated capability that LHA ships provide.
 

jsport

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Smaller nations usually invest more in survivability features and trade endurance for extremely high speed to improve their odds of getting into attack position before they are sunk. They also commonly employ tactics to make their ships difficult to track in peacetime by exploiting maritime geography and blending into commercial traffic to avoid a preemptive strike.
 

Josh_TN

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There are no organic weapons in the initial requirement. That doesn't mean the 40' or 20' unit couldn't contain something that goes bang. But I suspect the first ships will test whether the platforms can be reliable in terms of connectivity and propulsion, and if they work well enough, test whether the concept is in fact useful. The entire concept is leading edge and it isn't clear it will be successful; the first buy is probably focused on proof of concept rather than worrying about what caliber of gun is best.
 

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jsport

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bobbymike

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Pentagon moving ahead with new Navy fleet plans
Deputy Defense Secretary David Norquist, charged with overseeing a controversial study on the future force structure of the Navy, said today a series of analytical wargames led the Pentagon to develop plans for three notional fleets which he intends to discuss next week with Defense Secretary Mark Esper
 

Grey Havoc

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I'm getting a bad feeling about this...

Elsewhere:
 

apparition13

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The Army's Kuroda subclass of the Frank S. Besson class Logistics Support Vessel seem to me to fit this requirement. All you'd have to do is cover the vehicle deck to add a heli-pad.
 

TomS

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The Army's Kuroda subclass of the Frank S. Besson class Logistics Support Vessel seem to me to fit this requirement. All you'd have to do is cover the vehicle deck to add a heli-pad.

The Philippines Bacolod class are basically Bessons with a helipad. But they really fall short of what the Commandant is asking -- 12 knots vice 19 knots, and no troop berthing.

But I'm still wondering why they can't use the TSVs for this. They might need some retrofitting but it's got to be faster and cheaper than new builds.
 

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