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Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

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

Postby Poiuytrewq » 29 May 2019, 09:08

ArmChairCivvy wrote:but I guess you said so, too, in your concluding sentence?
I maintain that a £250m T31 is a dangerous compromise but a £375m T31 is credible and would be a lot more use to RN in a conflict scenario. However, for basic maritime security tasks even a £250m T31 is OTT, especially if it's forward based.

Going forward mundane maritime security tasks are going to be increasingly common and do not require £1bn Frigates and Destroyers to perform them. In a conflict scenario OPV's are largely useless and to increase RN mass we need to ensure that all RN vessels can add something even if only in lower threat minor roles.

This is why I would like to see the T31 programme transition into a maritime security vessel programme whilst maintaining the £1.25bn budget. Five or Six basic 105m Leanders would be perfect and should be achievable for the budget available.

That would allow HMG/MOD/RN to take a breath and come up with a fully funded programme to build 12 or 13 credible Frigates.

Carrying on with current planning makes little sense either financially or strategically which is why I would like to see our new Defense Secretary push the reset button and give RN the 24 credible escorts that are really needed.

The reason this isn't happening is because it will require an additional £2bn-£3bn to sort it out. Personally I think that's a pretty modest sum to sort out the RN escort fleet for the next thirty years.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Tempest414 » 29 May 2019, 09:25

ArmChairCivvy wrote:An RFA would not only be short of sensors, but Phalanx would be the only weapon..


All RFA tanker and the Bays are fitted for 2 x Phalanx , 2 x 30mm , 4 x GPMG or mini-guns which is good way of saying keep off the grass

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Tempest414 » 29 May 2019, 10:33

Poiuytrewq wrote:I maintain that a £250m T31 is a dangerous compromise but a £375m T31 is credible and would be a lot more use to RN in a conflict scenario. However, for basic maritime security tasks even a £250m T31 is OTT, especially if it's forward based.

Going forward mundane maritime security tasks are going to be increasingly common and do not require £1bn Frigates and Destroyers to perform them. In a conflict scenario OPV's are largely useless and to increase RN mass we need to ensure that all RN vessels can add something even if only in lower threat minor roles.


The T-23s are running out of time and HMG and MOD have put them self in a corner for me I see some ways out of this mess with what is on the table. First lets open our eyes and see Type 31 as a stop gap frigate and at the same time look to grow the fleet slowly like so

1) drop the Type 31 program to 4 ships with a 320 million budget and as a stop gap ship go with A140 fitted like so

3d AESA radar
TACTICOS CMS
Hull mounted sonar
good soft kill defence system
Merlin capable hangar and Chinook capable flight deck
1 x refurbished Mk-8 gun , 2 x 30mm , 32 CAMM , 1 x Phalanx , 6 x GPMG/ Miniguns , FFBNW harpoon

2) Keep the the River B1's for UK EEZ and refit the B2's to carry off board systems like UAV's with I Master radar or unmanned MCM or RM raiding craft

3) Reset NSS around 3 yards to build tier 1 escorts and the new SSS , Amphib fleet plus MHPC over the next 30 years with the aim of building
as a base line

15 x escorts
16 x MHPC ( 8 x Venari 100 & 8 x PSV 90m )
2 x SSS
4 x 200m Enforcer LPD's
1 x 210m Enforcer LHD

This would allow the RN to operate

2 x Carrier groups of 1 x Carrier, 2 x T-45 , 2 x T-23/26 , 1 SSS , 1 Tide ( I know we don't have the Aircraft for 2 groups but if it kick off I am sure the US would be more than happy to flood the deck of the second carrier)
CASD supported by 2 x T-23/26 on TAPS
1 x Amphib group
1 x forward based global patrol group of 4 x T-31s & 5 RB2's
1 x EZZ group of RB1's

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Lord Jim » 29 May 2019, 10:47

I do not want to see the RN having to operate five combat vessels, because that what is says on the tin, that will put their crews in jeopardy if sent into a combat zone. I cannot see how with the current budget we can build five viable combat vessels at all. These vessels will be used in situation for what they were not designed for because of the "Can do", attitude of the RN, and the shortage of assets that exists. It is likely that they will at times cover duties normally assigned to the T-26 when the latter is in need of refit and repair. The Government cannot say they still have nineteen escorts and not use all of as such. Think where we have a T-23 now and substitute a T-31e for it.

I strongly believe that if the RN has to remain within its current budget, it would do far better to give up on the idea of retaining nineteen escorts and build at least one more T-26 and settle with say fifteen. By the time we are half way through that construction programme the situation might have changes and a third class of escorts that are truly capable may be affordable and could follow on from the last T-26. This would also give the RN sufficient time to bring its manpower up to the allowed level or even to meet any funded increase. This would allow any forward deployed assets or those involved in a lengthy cruise to swap out crews far more readily than at present.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Tempest414 » 29 May 2019, 11:20

Like or not HMG / MOD have put them self in a corner with poor budgets and planning as I say we need to start looking at T-31 as a stopgap that is needed and fund it better by cutting the class to 4 ship. We should then get on with real planning and commit to our yards as said above and if funding improves these yards can ramp up and build more ships

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 29 May 2019, 11:37

Tempest414 wrote:Like or not HMG / MOD have put them self in a corner with poor budgets and planning

Yes, this is the real problem. More specifically the back-to-back renewal/ rebirth of carrier aviation and then Dreadnoughts
- the former is a joint capability
- the latter a sovereign capability.

Rearranging the budgets won't increase available resource, but at least would bring transparency to debate.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Repulse » 30 May 2019, 14:10

Bringing this over from the T26 News thread, but to make the design more sellable to the USN, could a shortened variant make commercial sense to BAE & HMG?

Big assumptions, but if by removing the Mission Bay and Chinook capable deck (@20m) could save say 10% on the cost. Replacing one of the 8 T26s with a B2 shortened version and using the T31 budget to buy 2 more T26 B2s.

This would allow a fleet of 10 B1/B2 T26s to be split as follows:

- 4 B1 T26s to support the 2 CVFs
- 3 B1 T26s allowing one to be deployed EoS
- 3 B2 T26s covering FRE/TAPs and northern NATO commitments.
"For get this quite clear, every time we have to decide between Europe and the open sea, it is always the open sea we shall choose." - Winston Churchill

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 30 May 2019, 16:26

Repulse wrote:Bringing this over from the T26 News thread, but to make the design more sellable to the USN, could a shortened variant make commercial sense to BAE & HMG?

Big assumptions, but if by removing the Mission Bay and Chinook capable deck (@20m) could save say 10% on the cost.
Are there any example in the past that a ship design is "shortened"? (Correct me if I'm wrong....)

As I see no such example, I think "shortening" will require complete redesign. Of course, arrangement and equipment orientation can be "re-used". CIC and Bridge design can also be reused. But, it won't make a big difference cost-wise to a completely new and hence much more optimized design, such as Venator 110.

In such case, detailed design and initial cost shall require 2 unit-cost equivalent cost (*1). And even if the unit cost of the shortened version is 30% less than T26, you need to pay 5 unit-cost equivalent money of T26, to build 5 "30% cheaper" ships.

This is good in view of design team training, and export promotion, so it is not completely mad idea. But, at least for RN, it sill not make good gain in its capability, I'm afraid.

*1: Naval is currently investing 300 engineers for FTI's detailed design, before the first steal cut coming 1 year from now. Detailed design is very expensive.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Poiuytrewq » 30 May 2019, 16:49

Repulse wrote:could a shortened variant make commercial sense to BAE & HMG?
If only it was that simple :D

One of the major problems would be the 21m beam dimension. Shortened to 125m or 130m it would be a LOT slower with the existing propulsion and if you change that effectively you have a new design anyway.

Building on the success of the T26 is a great idea. HMG should invest in a fully British owned design of the most capable Tier2 Frigate in the world. Unfortunately it seems very unlikely to happen, certainly under the current administration.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby shark bait » 31 May 2019, 09:29

donald_of_tokyo wrote:Are there any example in the past that a ship design is "shortened"?


I don't think there is. Unless its been accommodated from the beginning its a redesign of the hull, mechanical and electrical systems. It's more or less a new design with some common compartments.

I understand lengthening is fairly easy, but its not reversible.
@LandSharkUK

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Repulse » 31 May 2019, 10:00

I thought the Nansen Class design was a derivation on the Álvaro de Bazán-class frigate, the latter being 15m longer.
"For get this quite clear, every time we have to decide between Europe and the open sea, it is always the open sea we shall choose." - Winston Churchill

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 31 May 2019, 11:03

Repulse wrote:I thought the Nansen Class design was a derivation on the Álvaro de Bazán-class frigate, the latter being 15m longer.
Very different design, I think. Different power train, different width, different arrangement. I see almost no commonality in hull, although equipments are of similar origin (AEGIS). Similar to the difference between FTI and FREMM.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby NickC » 31 May 2019, 12:45

Mk 110 BAE Inc Bofors 57mm main gun

US Ammunition

Production - L3 won the US Navy contract for the 57mm Advanced Low-Cost Munitions Ordnance, ALaMO, in 2018, to counter boghammar threat of ~30 boats, ALaMO round gives guidance capability to take out gun errors to compensate even at max range of the Mk 110 which is only 10,000m/5.4nm and give accuracy of inches, L3 not divulging design they used, they did say their ALaMO round does not use fins or vanes as the BAE ORKA developed from the 3P who lost out to L3 for contract.

ALaMO cost ~50% more than standard non-guided round, but kill taking fewer rounds, mention of two ALaMO compared to fifteen standard rounds to take out boghammars which are a 'bunch of styrofoam'.

Research - DARPA, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency part of US DOD, funding the Multi-Azimuth Defense Fast Intercept Round Engagement System, MAD-FIRES, Raytheon awarded contract April 2018 cumulatively worth $51M, 10% Raufoss Norway. Mainly anti-air hit-to-kill shell for countering cruise missiles, anti-ship missiles, unmanned aerial vehicles.
"In February we did some rocket model tests so we were be able to launch the projectile under the gun propelled by the rocket motor. All of those tests were successful, they perform exactly the way that we expected them to test. It shows that the projectile, the flight control surfaces, and the rocket motor all integrated together. Later this year or next year we will put in all that together for more tests », Raytheon added. 

Looks similar in concept with similar capabilities to the Leonardo Dart round.

From <https://www.navalnews.com/event-news/sas-2019/2019/05/sas-2019-raytheon-progressing-towards-mad-fires-guided-round-testing/>

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby NickC » 01 Jun 2019, 13:53

Russia announced it will be developing a new advanced anti-ship missile specifically for its Su-57, a fifth generation fighter/attack a/c, a larger and faster Russian F-35, minimal info on missile, mention it will be active homing.

Have seen figures where stealth attack aircraft and missiles eg LRASM, with RCS will affect not only detection range but also burn through distance, a 10 dB RCS reduction will decrease detection range by ~44% and burn through distance by ~70%, a 20 dB RCS reduction will decrease detection range by ~68% and burn through distance by ~90% with shorter waveband radars.

In response to the fifth generation F-22/F-35 China and Russia continue to develop and deploy longwave band radars which able to cancel out stealth/RCS, eg the latest Chinese Type 052D destroyers fit an additional updated old style upgraded bedstead VHF radar, HJ-JM2, ~1.3m wavelength, limitation with the long waveband VHF it has a relative poor range resolution of ~900m.

RAF recently ordered a L-band radar (Spanish Indra Lanza Long Tactical Range 25), though a shorter wavelength range of ~30-15cm, both Leonardo and Thales Nederland with their new GaN L-band radars claim capable of detecting stealth fighters, do not specify range, QNLZ /PoW fitted with earlier version of the Thales Nederland SMART-L.

The cost of upgrading naval ships to counter new threats seems on ever increasing spiral.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 18 Jun 2019, 14:19

From T31 thread....
NickC wrote:
donald_of_tokyo wrote:
*1: In 57mm case, 3P ammo is standard, as I understand?



Think posted before L3 won the USN contract for 57mm Advanced Low-Cost Munitions Ordnance round, ALaMO :crazy: , beating off the BAE ORKA developed from the BAE 3P round.

ALaMO costing ~50% more than standard non-guided round, but kill taking fewer rounds, mention of two ALaMO used compared up to fifteen standard rounds required to take out Iranian boghammars which are a 'bunch of styrofoam'.

The L3 ALaMO round gives guidance capability to take out gun errors to compensate even at max range of Mk 110 gun which is only 5.4nm/10km and with claimed accuracy of inches, L3 not divulging design tech used, they did say their ALaMO round does not use fins or vanes as the BAE ORKA (as does the Dart/Vulcano and Madfires)

USN buying the BAE 3P for its AA capability?, but DARPA funding R&D, not the USN, for the Multi-Azimuth Defense Fast Intercept Round Engagement System, MAD-FIRES :crazy: 57mm round, Raytheon awarded update to their contract April 2018, cumulatively worth $51M, 10% Raufoss of Norway, uses a rocket motor, so maybe range 8km which understand what Leonardo claim with their 76mm Dart/Vulcan round?
Thanks. Well summarized, I think.

One thing to remark. 3P is a technology developed almost 20 years ago. It was very good ammo, and now most of the 40mm, 30mm ammo have similar capability.

ALaMO is good, MAD-FIRE is still in basic development phase, and both are the next generation rounds. Actually, as you said, these two guided rounds are basically the second generation technology = much smart, less cost, and shall be useful, than the 1st generation ORCA rounds.

Good thing is that 57 mm is continuously seeing big investment on its smart ammo. I think 57mm is more and more becoming attractive as the main gun of an escort (other than NGFS). I am personally not surprised even if the 114 mm gun of T45 be replaced with 57 mm gun. It will save a lot of weight and internal space, which means adding "XX" to T45 be more easy.

Here, "XX" can be
- CAMM on ExLS (say 12 or 18 cells for 48 or 72 CAMM)
- 16 cell Mk 41 for SM3
- CEC
- 2nd 57 mm gun aft, to completely replace 20mm CIWS.
and so on....

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 18 Jun 2019, 14:29

From New Zealand thread
R686 wrote:https://defence.govt.nz/publications/publication/defence-capability-plan-2019-infographic
https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/def ... 9-released
Interesring part of Navy.

investment decisions planned for 2028
offshore patrol Vessel Replacement
201. The Otago Class Offshore Patrol Vessels, HMNZS Otago and HMNZS Wellington, are expected to reach the end of their service lives in the early 2030s. The vessels
offer patrol capabilities in New Zealand and the South Pacific. The replacement vessels will maintain the Royal New Zealand Navy’s existing offshore patrol capabilities.
indicative dates:
Industry engagement commences – 2024 Request for tender – 2027
Introduction into Service – 2032
indicative capital cost:
From $600m–$1b

Remarkably, ANZAC replacement comes AFTER this item. So, Te Kaha and Te Mana will serve RNZN until ~2035. Even if NZ select T31, it is 8 years after the 5th T31 commissioning. On the other hand, it is "right after the 8th T26 hull commission". Not sure if NZ will take T26, but as their population and economy is quickly rising, we cannot predict the situation around 2030...

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Lord Jim » 18 Jun 2019, 19:05

But you are forgetting the deluge of export order the Government expect for the winner of the T-31e contest which will keep the vessel in production way past 2035. :lolno:

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 19 Jun 2019, 10:58

X-post from Future ASW thread ...
donald_of_tokyo wrote:"IXblue Unveils SEADRiX USV For Persistent ASW Missions" by Naval News. (Xav-san)

Supported by UK, it is a very promising approach. I like it.

https://www.navalnews.com/event-news/ma ... -missions/

DRiX is a 8m long, 10 days endurance USV, to be equipped with SEA's KraitArray TASS.

There are however a number of ideas, chief amongst which:
The use of a pack of DriXes, launched from a low-tech mother vessel (from a military stand point) such as a supply vessel. They are launched, form a line with a spacing between each dictated by the mission and local propagation conditions, and they cover a wide area for a long time (many days, including replenishment if needed).
The use of DriX+Krait Array individually, amongst a larger force. Launched from an escort vessel, it allows one to put extra sensors in the water, to clear a choke point or protect a given area (a CVOA for instance).
Multi static is quite complicated to achieve, but since it relies on multi platforms, yes, it could be an option in the future.


https://www.ixblue.com/sites/default/fi ... asheet.pdf
https://hiveminer.com/Tags/drix/Timeline
The system is very much "spot on" to my mind. As the USV has underside fin to deploy TASS and for stability, and top fin for situation awareness and telemetry, it is not good in the well-dock of Bay or Albion which are shallow.

It is Fitted with a LARS which can be installed in place of a traditional RHIB on any naval asset (also deployable using a deckcrane or an A-frame);, but T26 or T31 mission bay can handle this? (may be "folding" the under fin will be needed?)
Image

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Tempest414 » 19 Jun 2019, 11:19

donald_of_tokyo wrote: I am personally not surprised even if the 114 mm gun of T45 be replaced with 57 mm gun. It will save a lot of weight and internal space, which means adding "XX" to T45 be more easy.


Given that T-45 will be taken up with carrier escort the 114 mm gun will become less and less important. Also given that the Mk-8 has a range of 27 km and we are now seeing 76 mm with Vulcano guided round able to hit targets at 40 km maybe if we wanted T-45 to keep a NGFS role a 76mm might be a better option this could allow a T-45 to sit 20km out to sea and give anti air cover up to 120 km and NGFS up to 20km inland

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby RetroSicotte » 19 Jun 2019, 11:43

donald_of_tokyo wrote:Good thing is that 57 mm is continuously seeing big investment on its smart ammo. I think 57mm is more and more becoming attractive as the main gun of an escort (other than NGFS). I am personally not surprised even if the 114 mm gun of T45 be replaced with 57 mm gun. It will save a lot of weight and internal space, which means adding "XX" to T45 be more easy.

You know, I hadn't thought of that, but I wouldn't be surprised.

The one thing to be wary of there is that T45 has dire anti-surface as is once the Harpoons are gone. Making it unable to immediately engage anything on the surface to even shorter range than now would be a crippling weakness.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Tempest414 » 19 Jun 2019, 12:15

A bit of fantasy here so sorry up front

but could it be a good move for the RN to move to a mix of 76 mm and 40 mm for both the T-45 and the T-31 and do away with the 114 mm the 30 mm and Phalanx on these ships to have a armament like so

Type 45
1 x 76 mm with HE , DART & Vulcano rounds for anti air & NGFS up to 40 km
2 x 40 mm with 3P for anti air and surface up to 7 km
48 x Aster
4 x 3 cell EXLS for 48 CAMM
8 x RBS 15 mk-3 for surface and land attack up to 300 km

Type 31 ( this could be a Leander )
1 x 76 mm with HE & Vulcao rounds for NGFS up to 40 km
2 x 40 mm with 3P for anti air & surface up to 7 km
24 x CAMM
8 x RBS 15 mk-3 for surface & land attack up to 300 km

As said before with a move to 40 mm this could open the door to the B2 Rivers being fitted with a 40 mm for better all round air & surface defence up to 7 km

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby RichardIC » 19 Jun 2019, 12:41

Tempest414 wrote:but could it be a good move for the RN to move to a mix of 76 mm and 40 mm for both the T-45 and the T-31 and do away with the 114 mm the 30 mm and Phalanx on these ships to have a armament like so


I've said it before but the Mk8 is a dinosaur - smart ammunition is the future and the Mk8 is never going to get it.

My preference as Mk45 is going to equip the T26 would be adopt the Mk110 57mm from the same manufacturer to ease the supply chain.

Mk45 - T45, T26, T31
Mk 110 - QE, T23, River B2

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby NickC » 19 Jun 2019, 13:14

RichardIC wrote:
Tempest414 wrote:but could it be a good move for the RN to move to a mix of 76 mm and 40 mm for both the T-45 and the T-31 and do away with the 114 mm the 30 mm and Phalanx on these ships to have a armament like so


I've said it before but the Mk8 is a dinosaur - smart ammunition is the future and the Mk8 is never going to get it.

My preference as Mk45 is going to equip the T26 would be adopt the Mk110 57mm from the same manufacturer to ease the supply chain.

Mk45 - T45, T26, T31
Mk 110 - QE, T23, River B2


Thoughts, one option, given that BAE Inc licensed Leonardo Oto Melara Vulcano 127mm round and proposed to USN to use variant of Vulcano projectile with the Zumwalt class AGS 155mm guns to replace the cancelled LM LRLAP round, would see no problem if RN kept their updated 114mm guns and procured the 76mm Oto Melara DART projectile round with an enlarged sabot.

It would be relatively cheap solution as to buying new system eg the short range Mk 110 Bofors 57 mm gun, fire control system and ammo with no NGFS capability, for same budget you could buy a lot of the DART rounds and still able to use standard 114mm shells when the expensive DART round not needed.

Possible that the 114/76 round would have longer range than standard 76mm Dart if projectile could withstand the higher g forces, though with limited explosive change in the small 14 lb projectile of very limited use in NGFS role (Army standard 155mm shell 100 lbs), would give some useful limited additional AA capability and an additional ant-ship capability at longer ranges, if actual current targeting info available from an UAV?, as beyond horizon if 40km range quoted is true. As always a compromise/trade off especially in AA role, my preference for a dedicated AA gun is the 1,000 rpm 35mm Oerlikon Millenium.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby RetroSicotte » 19 Jun 2019, 13:17

Tempest414 wrote:A bit of fantasy here so sorry up front

All good, thats what this thread is for.

but could it be a good move for the RN to move to a mix of 76 mm and 40 mm for both the T-45 and the T-31 and do away with the 114 mm the 30 mm and Phalanx on these ships to have a armament like so

Why remove the CIWS? Nothing you mention replaces its unique capability, or even fills the space it was in.

RichardIC wrote:Mk45 - T45, T26, T31
Mk 110 - QE, T23, River B2

QE is an interesting one for it, hadn't given much thought to that. Definitely a wishful thinking one!

Don't much see the need for such a big complex weapon on the Rivers though, given their role.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Repulse » 19 Jun 2019, 18:28

Why mk110 for the T23?

Can see the argument for the B2 Rivers as with the B1s still in place their role will be global rather than fisheries.
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