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Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Contains threads on Royal Navy equipment of the past, present and future.
RetroSicotte
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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby RetroSicotte » 19 Feb 2020, 13:28

Tempest414 wrote:but there are people here who say T-31 will be running around doing nothing important and that a OPV can do its job which is bollocks

The Type 31 cannot engage in frontline combat. It simply is not capable of it.

If it cannot be in a role where it might get shot at, then its only role is to conduct peacetime ops.

People might claim this nebulous, hilariously over-specific vague role of "Higher risk areas where the risk is higher than nothing but not actually that high, if it's far away from home, and also something that no other escort is needed in, but has a need to be close to shore", but that is so overspecified that it's effectively irresponsible to base 25% of your escort fleet solely around expecting to do.

You don't need Artisan, CAMM, 3x rapid guns and a near 6,000 ton warship to chase pirates. But similarly, a ship with only 12 CAMM and 3 guns is incapable of fighting on the frontline. It's a solution looking for a problem, and one the USN has already harshly encountered and since deviated from.

what is a credible warship in your eyes ?

The only conclusion the RN came to was that they wanted a one for one replacement for type 23 They then failed to manage the project

They had the money taken away from them. They don't make cash calls. They identify the requirement. That was at least 19 credible fighting ships. To be capable of engagement on the frontliner at Royal Navy standards, you would expect it to at least match the Type 23 GP in context of its era. As such, a T26 without the towed sonar. Which funnily enough is exactly what the Royal Navy identified is what it needed.

To mark a minimum below that, would have been a transitional evolution of the T23 GP end-of-life capability to a new hull. Such a Type 31 would have been:

- 127mm Mk45 Mod 4 Medium Gun
- At least 32x CAMM
- At least 8x AShM
- At least some form of ASW on-board weapon
- Acoustically quietened
- Hull Sonar

Additional fit to match the progressive increase in escort capability may have included CIWS, the boat bays, or using 2 Mk41 modules to mount the AShM/ASW weapons, but that is the baseline that it had to meet to create an equivalent in context to the increasing requirements of the age.

Funnily enough, that pretty much comes to being what the Royal Navy noted. Also funnily enough what the French Navy has found (FTI is pretty much just a cheaper FREMM). Also what the Italian Navy has noted (PPA having varying levels of fit). Also what the USN has noted (With FFGX). Also note how every single ship designer who put up designs for T31 seemed to be broadly of the idea that it would match that level, with some variance (number of CAMM, 127 or 76) until suddenly, they all got caught off guard by just how low it all was.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 19 Feb 2020, 13:32

RetroSicotte wrote:
donald_of_tokyo wrote:I agree escorts of RN is too few, but WHEN talking about world trend as saying "escorts gets larger", it must be paired with the fact that "AND decrease in number".

But not anywhere near the rate of the Royal Navy's decreases for any serious navies out there, since they now have fewer planned than even France or Italy.
No objection here.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Jake1992 » 19 Feb 2020, 13:52

donald_of_tokyo wrote:
RetroSicotte wrote:
donald_of_tokyo wrote:I agree escorts of RN is too few, but WHEN talking about world trend as saying "escorts gets larger", it must be paired with the fact that "AND decrease in number".

But not anywhere near the rate of the Royal Navy's decreases for any serious navies out there, since they now have fewer planned than even France or Italy.
No objection here.


The real reason for this isn’t so much the increased cost of escorts but more to the fact that over the last 20 odd years the MOD budget has been cut in nearly half in real terms. Back in the late 90s the budgets was around 3% of GDP, if measured the same way today it comes in at around 1.7%.
Escorts numbers dropping by just over a third is to be expected with that size in cuts.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby SD67 » 19 Feb 2020, 14:41

Personally, I don’t believe 5 T26s are going to be cut, it would mean closure of the Clyde and nowhere to build the T46 or whatever it’s called. We’ll get 8 t26s then there’ll be a transition to a t45 replacement which will probably be synced up with the RAN’s Hobart class replacement.

If there are cuts needed I’m guessing we’d move to a mainly overseas build of FSS, drop some of the t23 Lifexs and / or sell an LPD.

On the t26 v t31 piece - the entire budget for T31 would only pay for one t26. Weve all crunched the numbers. The batch 1 t26 is 3.7 billion for 3, not including R&D or long lead items. The two are not comparable. You could scrap the entire t31 program and we’d still have 8 t26s. The navy are making the best of a bad job.
In terms of the future of Rosyth theres eventually going to have to be a Sandown / Hunt replacement, and Appledore is closed. They’ve got a decade to drum up some work.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Lord Jim » 19 Feb 2020, 14:48

The T-31 ships are going to be the Navy's equivalent of the Army's Ajax vehicle, in that they are going to be a platform looking for a role. At best they are second tier warships only suitable for maritime patrol and security duties. There is a parallel to the German Navy's F125 Baden-Wurttemberg class frigates, but at least they were designed for such a role and are marginally better equipped.

In an ideal world the T-26 programme will be extended by at least one more ship and then dovetail into the T-4X programme which should use the hull of the T-26, even retaining its low acoustic signature to produce an all round warship that is very capable of AAW.

The RN could do itself a few favours by clearly pointing out the unsuitability of the T-31 for frontline duties by assigning it to roles such as the Falklands, Caribbean and in UK waters, and not deploy it to stations such as the Gulf or assigned them to the Carrier Group. No money should be spent on any programmes to up arm or improve the ships systems, as there will not be enough funding available to turn the T-31 into a viable top tier platform, and any funding would be far better spent elsewhere. It needs to be shown to all that fourteen top tier escorts will not allow the Royal Navy to carrying out the number of tasks that are assigned to it by the Government.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 19 Feb 2020, 14:52

SD67 wrote:Personally, I don’t believe 5 T26s are going to be cut, it would mean closure of the Clyde and nowhere to build the T46 or whatever it’s called. We’ll get 8 t26s then there’ll be a transition to a t45 replacement which will probably be synced up with the RAN’s Hobart class replacement.

If there are cuts needed I’m guessing we’d move to a mainly overseas build of FSS, drop some of the t23 Lifexs and / or sell an LPD.
Agree. This means, T31 cost may kill LPD-R, as I suggested.
On the t26 v t31 piece - the entire budget for T31 would only pay for one t26. Weve all crunched the numbers. The batch 1 t26 is 3.7 billion for 3, not including R&D or long lead items.
When 3.7B GBP were announced, it was said it included all the cost already payed for the 3 T26s. Not only the new fresh money. It was stated many times. So, I understand this point is not true.
The two are not comparable. You could scrap the entire t31 program and we’d still have 8 t26s. The navy are making the best of a bad job.
I do not understand here. As you misunderstand 3.7B GBP, may be you come to this conclusion. But, anyway, T31 program is now 2B GBP. If you add this 2B GBP to the 3.7B GBP, you can add at least 2 more T26, for sure. Even 3 possible.
In terms of the future of Rosyth theres eventually going to have to be a Sandown / Hunt replacement, and Appledore is closed. They’ve got a decade to drum up some work.
None of them are escort. If these ships counts, then Babcock was already building HMS Echo, Enterprise and Scott, as well as 6 OPVs for Irish Navy. But it has not much related to escort building. Yes, Rosyth can build MHC (if ever the hull part exists), but it means they lose escort building skill.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby SD67 » 19 Feb 2020, 15:33

Donald - san I don’t know where you get either of those figures from, the t26 line in the 10 year equipment plan is 4.5 billion for three - that figure includes the add- ons. And do you have a link to the actual t31 contract? I’ve tried to find it.

I am very very sceptical that we could get more than 1 t26 for the t31 program in practice bearing in mind the treasury would round down not up and BAE would price gouge if they had a total monopoly.

Alternatively as a yardstick - the Hunter program is 35 billion Aud = 18 billion GBP, for 9 units. I know it’s not apples to apples as Hunter is a better equipped ship but my point is that whichever way you slice it T26 is not cheap.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby abc123 » 19 Feb 2020, 15:47

SD67 wrote:
On the t26 v t31 piece - the entire budget for T31 would only pay for one t26. Weve all crunched the numbers. The batch 1 t26 is 3.7 billion for 3, not including R&D or long lead items. The two are not comparable. You could scrap the entire t31 program and we’d still have 8 t26s. The navy are making the best of a bad job.


:thumbup:
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What's her position about heavily armed, well prepared and overmanned armies?
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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 19 Feb 2020, 15:48

SD67 wrote:Donald - san I don’t know where you get either of those figures from, the t26 line in the 10 year equipment plan is 4.5 billion for three - that figure includes the add- ons.
Thanks for the info. Great.
And do you have a link to the actual t31 contract? I’ve tried to find it.
No. It is all from media release. T31 is 1.98B GBP program including GFX (e.g. CAMM), while the build contract for Babcock is 1.25B GBP. This is what they say.
I am very very sceptical that we could get more than 1 t26 for the t31 program in practice bearing in mind the treasury would round down not up and BAE would price gouge if they had a total monopoly.
T26 "unit cost" = cost to add 1 more hull, (not the average cost), will surely be much cheaper than 1.98B GBP. Excluding all the initial cost, it will be a bit less than 1B GBP, even if the first 3 is for 4.5B GBP, not 3.7B GBP.

But, I understand your fear. Monopoly makes cost higher. But, again, all other countries are handling it. If only UK cannot do it, it means MOD/RN is very inefficient and fool, much much worse than other nation's MOD. Because, most of the other nations are going on with a single escort builder.
Alternatively as a yardstick - the Hunter program is 35 billion Aud = 18 billion GBP, for 9 units. I know it’s not apples to apples as Hunter is a better equipped ship but my point is that whichever way you slice it T26 is not cheap.
T26 is not cheap, I never said it is cheap. By the way, the "18 billion GBP, for 9 units" of RAN-T26 include rebuilding the shipbuilding industry. I do not know the reason, but Australia threw away the Melbourne yard, and moved to Adelede. Very inefficient approach Australia took, and they are paying for it, for whatever the reason.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Ron5 » 19 Feb 2020, 16:50


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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Ron5 » 19 Feb 2020, 16:54

Here's an interesting thread from a sometimes contributor here that puts a different perspective on RN escort numbers:

Sorry but I don't know how to do the twitter stuff properly

https://twitter.com/EngageStrategy1/status/1229857912903872513.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby SD67 » 19 Feb 2020, 17:02

donald_of_tokyo wrote:
SD67 wrote:Donald - san I don’t know where you get either of those figures from, the t26 line in the 10 year equipment plan is 4.5 billion for three - that figure includes the add- ons.
Thanks for the info. Great.
And do you have a link to the actual t31 contract? I’ve tried to find it.
No. It is all from media release. T31 is 1.98B GBP program including GFX (e.g. CAMM), while the build contract for Babcock is 1.25B GBP. This is what they say.
I am very very sceptical that we could get more than 1 t26 for the t31 program in practice bearing in mind the treasury would round down not up and BAE would price gouge if they had a total monopoly.
T26 "unit cost" = cost to add 1 more hull, (not the average cost), will surely be much cheaper than 1.98B GBP. Excluding all the initial cost, it will be a bit less than 1B GBP, even if the first 3 is for 4.5B GBP, not 3.7B GBP.

But, I understand your fear. Monopoly makes cost higher. But, again, all other countries are handling it. If only UK cannot do it, it means MOD/RN is very inefficient and fool, much much worse than other nation's MOD. Because, most of the other nations are going on with a single escort builder.
Alternatively as a yardstick - the Hunter program is 35 billion Aud = 18 billion GBP, for 9 units. I know it’s not apples to apples as Hunter is a better equipped ship but my point is that whichever way you slice it T26 is not cheap.
T26 is not cheap, I never said it is cheap. By the way, the "18 billion GBP, for 9 units" of RAN-T26 include rebuilding the shipbuilding industry. I do not know the reason, but Australia threw away the Melbourne yard, and moved to Adelede. Very inefficient approach Australia took, and they are paying for it, for whatever the reason.


A bit of background - the Melbourne yard is an inner city suburb called Williamstown (I grew up not far from there) It is now completely gentrified, cafes water front apartments etc. Expensive homes, noise restrictions, hipsters. Prime redevelopment opportunity

The Adelaide site by contrast was regeneration of kind of derelict land and Adelaide was hit much harder by the collapse of the Australian car industry.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Tempest414 » 20 Feb 2020, 09:30

RetroSicotte wrote:To mark a minimum below that, would have been a transitional evolution of the T23 GP end-of-life capability to a new hull. Such a Type 31 would have been:

- 127mm Mk45 Mod 4 Medium Gun
- At least 32x CAMM
- At least 8x AShM
- At least some form of ASW on-board weapon
- Acoustically quietened
- Hull Sonar

Additional fit to match the progressive increase in escort capability may have included CIWS, the boat bays, or using 2 Mk41 modules to mount the AShM/ASW weapons, but that is the baseline that it had to meet to create an equivalent in context to the increasing requirements of the age.


So if Type 31 was to come into service fitted as it is and have a sonar 8 x AShM plus 12 to 24 CAMM added it would a credible warship as a 5" gun is does not make a escort as shown by the US FFGX opting for the 57mm. Also it has been shown that Type 31 can fit 2 Phalanx one each side of the rear 40mm as for anti ship missiles if not having these fitted makes a ship not a credible warship type 45 is done for as it will not have

127mm gun , 8 x AShM , any on board ASW weapons or be acoustically quietened

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby RetroSicotte » 20 Feb 2020, 15:07

Tempest414 wrote:So if Type 31 was to come into service fitted as it is and have a sonar 8 x AShM plus 12 to 24 CAMM added it would a credible warship as a 5" gun is does not make a escort as shown by the US FFGX opting for the 57mm. Also it has been shown that Type 31 can fit 2 Phalanx one each side of the rear 40mm as for anti ship missiles if not having these fitted makes a ship not a credible warship type 45 is done for as it will not have

127mm gun , 8 x AShM , any on board ASW weapons or be acoustically quietened

Pretty much. That would grant it a more enduring self defence level, permit it some form of awareness for ASW, plus some form of additional element. Be it Mk41, a bigger gun, additional CIWS, what have you.

The Darings lacking on board ASW is something I have openly critiqued in the past as a flaw of the ship.

The issue is that is reaching the "standard". It's very unfortunate that chasing the minimum possible level of credibility seems difficult at current, rather than maximising powerful capabilities.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Lord Jim » 20 Feb 2020, 15:36

Can a case be made that future Royal Navy Escorts will need to be "Jack of all trades, Masters of none", types rather then the current two specialised ones.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Jake1992 » 20 Feb 2020, 15:58

Lord Jim wrote:Can a case be made that future Royal Navy Escorts will need to be "Jack of all trades, Masters of none", types rather then the current two specialised ones.


Would you really want your CSG or SSBN protected by a vessel that isn’t a master in what’s needed ? Personally I wouldn’t and it’d end up degrading your big sticks

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Tempest414 » 20 Feb 2020, 17:52

Lord Jim wrote:Can a case be made that future Royal Navy Escorts will need to be "Jack of all trades, Masters of none", types rather then the current two specialised ones.


Jake1992 wrote:Would you really want your CSG or SSBN protected by a vessel that isn’t a master in what’s needed ? Personally I wouldn’t and it’d end up degrading your big sticks


For me there is a case for basing the type 45 replacement on a type 26 hull with a reworking of superstructure better suited to AAW this would allow a AAW ship with good to high ASW capability. I would also say a build program that added one more type 26 and then went straight in to a 9 ship Type 45 replacement would allow the build rate to speed and maybe the first one or two could come into service before the first of the T-45's went out i.e the third type 4x would replace the first type 45

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Jake1992 » 20 Feb 2020, 18:35

Tempest414 wrote:
Lord Jim wrote:Can a case be made that future Royal Navy Escorts will need to be "Jack of all trades, Masters of none", types rather then the current two specialised ones.


Jake1992 wrote:Would you really want your CSG or SSBN protected by a vessel that isn’t a master in what’s needed ? Personally I wouldn’t and it’d end up degrading your big sticks


For me there is a case for basing the type 45 replacement on a type 26 hull with a reworking of superstructure better suited to AAW this would allow a AAW ship with good to high ASW capability. I would also say a build program that added one more type 26 and then went straight in to a 9 ship Type 45 replacement would allow the build rate to speed and maybe the first one or two could come into service before the first of the T-45's went out i.e the third type 4x would replace the first type 45


Iv always said the T4X should be based on the T26 design with a 15m odd mid ship plug to allow extra Mk41s needed for AAW along with improved Sampson’s or what replaces it.

What I don’t agree with is having a fleet of vessels that are neither top tier ASW or top tier AAW but I half way house of each ie the “jack of all trades master of none”

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby RetroSicotte » 21 Feb 2020, 08:22

Bear in mind, a ship being able to do ASW or AAW when it's not its biggest role doesn't mean that its giving up its primary role.

A T45 having some ASROC, or a T26 having some longer ranged missiles and a better radar does not damage their main role. As I see it, every main ship should have some form of capacity in the major roles, with their specialist area ramped up high.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Jake1992 » 21 Feb 2020, 08:31

RetroSicotte wrote:Bear in mind, a ship being able to do ASW or AAW when it's not its biggest role doesn't mean that its giving up its primary role.

A T45 having some ASROC, or a T26 having some longer ranged missiles and a better radar does not damage their main role. As I see it, every main ship should have some form of capacity in the major roles, with their specialist area ramped up high.


No but what was suggested above was a “Jack of all trades master of none” meaning it’s got an ok AAW fit or an ok ASW fit.
What you talk about to me is a AAW specialist multi role vessel or an ASW specialist multi role vessel, so it’s still a master of at least one role but can do others to a lesser degree.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 21 Feb 2020, 09:14

Jake1992 wrote: a AAW specialist multi role vessel or an ASW specialist multi role vessel, so it’s still a master of at least one role but can do others to a lesser degree.


This quote is not for the article itself https://www.savetheroyalnavy.org/type-2 ... struction/ but for the (sad) leading-in picture to it that marks the turning point: with no squadron leaders, no squadrons, no such numbers that would afford specialisation (T45s were conceived: specced and built, prior to that turning point)... which means several things:
- a single task force. And as it is a "one-shot option" it will need to be highly defended
- with the current type of fleet (specialisation) losing a single ship makes the above assumption evaporate
So therefore we will need a surface combatant mix that Jake & Retro are (in violent agreement :D ) promoting
- and to get there, we will need this Christmas' stocking fillers, i.e. the 5 presence ships
- and as for the above, I am happy that the RN chose the design that has great potential for Batch2
- and, further, once the mass obsolescense 'valley of death' is behind us, even the Batch1s can - cost effectively - be upgraded to real 'war fighters'

Ugh!
- Where's the emoticon, with hands crossed and with a feather as headgear :)

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Jake1992 » 21 Feb 2020, 09:43

ArmChairCivvy wrote:
Jake1992 wrote: a AAW specialist multi role vessel or an ASW specialist multi role vessel, so it’s still a master of at least one role but can do others to a lesser degree.


This quote is not for the article itself https://www.savetheroyalnavy.org/type-2 ... struction/ but for the (sad) leading-in picture to it that marks the turning point: with no squadron leaders, no squadrons, no such numbers that would afford specialisation (T45s were conceived: specced and built, prior to that turning point)... which means several things:
- a single task force. And as it is a "one-shot option" it will need to be highly defended
- with the current type of fleet (specialisation) losing a single ship makes the above assumption evaporate
So therefore we will need a surface combatant mix that Jake & Retro are (in violent agreement :D ) promoting
- and to get there, we will need this Christmas' stocking fillers, i.e. the 5 presence ships
- and as for the above, I am happy that the RN chose the design that has great potential for Batch2
- and, further, once the mass obsolescense 'valley of death' is behind us, even the Batch1s can - cost effectively - be upgraded to real 'war fighters'

Ugh!
- Where's the emoticon, with hands crossed and with a feather as headgear :)


To me that quote saying if we lose one specialised vessel the whole thing unravels so all need to be capable isn’t indicating we need a jack of all master of none but rather a master of all. The whole escort fleet need to have the AAW of a T45 and the ASW of a T26, now I’m all for that but that sort of vessel costs a lot so again a reduction in numbers.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 21 Feb 2020, 10:05

Jake1992 wrote: but that sort of vessel costs a lot so again a reduction in numbers.

You took my point one step further

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 21 Feb 2020, 10:06

I.e a step too far ;)

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Tempest414 » 21 Feb 2020, 10:12

Jake1992 wrote:Iv always said the T4X should be based on the T26 design with a 15m odd mid ship plug to allow extra Mk41s needed for AAW along with improved Sampson’s or what replaces it.


For me I don't see that the type 26 hull needs a 15m plug as it stands now it could be fitted with 64 Mk-41 VLS I think the hull as it stands with reworking of the superstructure for a AAW radar plus 64 VLS would work this would allow a AAW based type 26 to carry say

1 x 5" gun , 2 x 40mm , 2 x Phalanx , 32 CAMM , 32 long range AAW missiles , leaving 24 cells for other weapons as seen fit


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