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Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Contains threads on Royal Navy equipment of the past, present and future.
serge750
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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby serge750 » 10 Aug 2019, 17:22

Unfortunately I think the armed forces due to lack of funds and the pound going down & other factors will just tumble from financial crises to another, I can't see the T31 cancelled as that would drop on paper the number of escorts, maybe cancelling the T31 would be a good option & selling of two of the older T23 that haven't been upgraded for short term savings in the RN.....can't see the F35 purchases getting even slower as they seem to be the main publicity for the MOD & in most peoples minds imo.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Repulse » 10 Aug 2019, 18:21

serge750, you are right that politically it would be difficult to cut the T31e, unless it is dressed up under something else - e.g. longer term aim to increase the number of real warships (T26s), or promise a new MHPC class to maximise the use of future unmanned technologies, or a mixture of both. Do that, and announce the FSS will be built in the UK, then they would probably get away with it, especially combined with a photo shoot of a CBG with F35Bs.
"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 Lord Jim » 11 Aug 2019, 01:20

The PR spin could be something along the lines of "We have reassessed the need and pace of new warship construction, having found that the newly reworked T-23s have a greater service life that is economically viable. We have therefore decided that the need on which the decision to build the T-31e no longer exists per see. We will review at a later date if there is a case for building additional T-26, or whether a new class, possibly linked to the eventual replacement of the T-45 should be pursued. However to encourage the growth and sustainability of our warship building capacity we have decided to bring forward the programme to build, based on a single platform, a successor to our existing survey and mine counter measures platforms...…….".

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donald_of_tokyo
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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 11 Aug 2019, 01:50

Or simply, "T31e competition sadly could not be concluded, because of NOT ENOUGH bid", to cancel or "reset" T31e.

I think Arrowhead 140 team and MEKO A200 team's foundation is collapsing, and they won't be able to execute their already submitted proposals. Even if the Ferguson and/or H&W are supported by government (i.e. "re-nationalize"), I think Cammell Laird (and BAE) will claim "it is not fair", because T31e program is competition.

#On the other hand, FSSS is NOT a competition within UK. It is a competition internationally, but the bid process is far from final, so it can be changed.

Otions are
- very thin possibility of another private company buying H&W AND Ferguson and agree to succeed T31e contract proposal.
- so-so possibility that MOD goes on, saying that "Leander was the best (actually the only) proposal" and select it.
- in addition to canceling or re-setting the program.

The last one is my favorite, because it will keep the Royal Navy stronger, healthyer and powerful (than building 5 T31e, forcing RN to send high-end escorts in extended readiness, to man them) :D

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Lord Jim » 11 Aug 2019, 04:52

One of the key parts of the paper the NSS was based on was that Competition has been a major cause of damage to UK industry including Ship Building. The Paper suggested giving work to yards that needed it as an alternative and also ensuring all vessels for the RN and RFA were built in UK yards. Interesting that these parts were actually not in the NSS as was the need for Governmental investment in the yards as well as the placement of orders on a more Drum Beat manner supported by Multi Year funding. As usual the Government picked the parts it liked and were cheap and left out most of those that actually made a difference.

Creating and Industrial Alliance like that done for the Carriers as also suggested, allowing a streamlined supply chain with work allocated to numerous locations removing the bottleneck of a single source manufacturing chain. Work would go to whichever yard(s) was most appropriate for the vessel at the time. Spreading the work would increase the number of skilled personnel in all fields as well as the number of jobs in the sector. But to work it would require orders and investment form Government to get things started until the yards are able to start generating other work. All of the above would drive down costs as it also removes the stop/start bottle neck as well and would make our warship manufacturing industry far more competitive, especially against European yards. We have a pretty good reputation when it comes to warship design, just look at the success of the T-26. If we want to generate jobs in manufacturing and encourage innovation and so on the defence sector is on or our strongest options but once again up front investment by Government is essential. And this is what the NSs is supposed to be all about.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Ron5 » 11 Aug 2019, 17:31

That is totally wrong.

The NSS called for more competition to keep prices down. SJP's solution to shipyards going out of business was to suggest large steel box makers (of which there are a few in the UK) with zero experience of marine building, could build blocks at inland sites to be shipped to a final shipyard assembly place. In other words, he suggested replacing competition at the ship level to competition at the block level to open up more bidders.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Jake1992 » 11 Aug 2019, 18:01

Ron5 wrote:That is totally wrong.

The NSS called for more competition to keep prices down. SJP's solution to shipyards going out of business was to suggest large steel box makers (of which there are a few in the UK) with zero experience of marine building, could build blocks at inland sites to be shipped to a final shipyard assembly place. In other words, he suggested replacing competition at the ship level to competition at the block level to open up more bidders.


The problem with this approach is that if there is not sufficient orders then we see yard after yard going bust which in turn causes less competition, the opersate effect than is wanted. With the order books only being enough for 1 escort yard what you get is all but one yard going bust and a monopoly from there on.

The whole steal box idea was never going to work as for one they don’t have the expertise for naval quality builds and for two of there is only enough work for one escort yard then there isn’t enough to start handing over bits to these companies.

The whole NSS relied on magic export orders coming in, HMG now need to see that greater investment and orders are needed before the decline goes to far to maintain any strategic capability.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 11 Aug 2019, 18:46

Ron5 wrote:suggested replacing competition at the ship level to competition at the block level to open up more bidders.


Yup. More pre-fitting out was also called for. So more like duplo ships, rather than lego.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Lord Jim » 11 Aug 2019, 21:09

By a roundabout way we are on the same page in the multiverse here. A lot of what was proposed in the paper on which the eventual NSS was based didn't make it in. The idea of "Box builders" being the level competition took place has not been adopted for escort construction at present though could be an option for the T-31e. One of the keys in the paper though was to have an all encompassing "Alliance", resulting in what can only be described as friendly competition moving forward, with industry investing in order to find new ways of doing things better, fast and more efficiently and therefore aiding respective companies chances of winning work. But even the losers would still receive sub contractor work though not at the same level as the company which won a specific contract.

Traditional competition has led to a constant need to drive down costs. This has helped the MoD but has led companies to either go to the wall or be force to amalgamate through take overs. This has led to BAe being really the only viable complex warship builder left in the UK, with a few other yards able to construct smaller and/or less complex vessels. The short term gain of savings through competition Has resulted in long term damage to the country's warship building capacity. So a new approach is needed and that is part of the NSS. WE still have an opportunity with complex naval programmes, whereas it is too late of Air and Ground sovereign capacity, where we are basically left with either one main company w, in the case of the former, with little chance of a sovereign alternative, or we have lost the capability all together, only retaining minimal final assembly work as is the case with the latter.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 14 Aug 2019, 03:48

Sending fact attack crafts (or small corvettes) on Flo-Flo ship, will look like this? Will this work also for RN, if RN were ever to build a small corvette? Not sure. But, anyway, interesting industrial solution it is.


Image

1: The two crafts are 62.6m long, 700 t Ezzat class fast attack craft. (https://www.navalanalyses.com/2016/10/e ... -fast.html)

2: The Flo-Flo ship is 151m long vessel (https://www.roll-group.com/rolldock-hea ... /st-class/)


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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Repulse » 14 Aug 2019, 07:09

donald_of_tokyo, if the UK wanted to expand its forward global footprint to a scale not being discussed maybe. But I’d say that with our global B2 OPVs (Sloops) and future MHPCs being 90m+ long, then it’s not appropriate.

What is interesting is putting 20-30m Fast Patrol Craft into LPD/LSD docks and davits for Littoral Operations - the same craft of course being useful to patrol and protect BOT & UK waters.
"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 ArmChairCivvy » 14 Aug 2019, 09:00

Repulse wrote: putting 20-30m Fast Patrol Craft into LPD/LSD docks and davits for Littoral Operations

An excellent idea... to dampen down state piracy appetites (and keep some Apaches nearby - in Oman? - with engines churning and ready to go at a moments notice).

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Poiuytrewq » 14 Aug 2019, 09:21

donald_of_tokyo wrote:Sending fact attack crafts (or small corvettes) on Flo-Flo ship, will look like this? Will this work also for RN, if RN were ever to build a small corvette? Not sure. But, anyway, interesting industrial solution it is.
The Flo-Flo vessels are fantastically versatile and I expect we will see RN make use of them a lot more in the future.

I would be amazed if adding a Flo-Flo capability wasn't seriously considered when the Points are due for replacment. A Flo-Flo vessel loaded with LCU's/LCVP's and mexefloates would be a great addition to the LitM group, especially if one of the LPD's stays in extended readiness.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 14 Aug 2019, 09:27

Poiuytrewq wrote: A Flo-Flo vessel loaded with LCU's/LCVP's and mexefloates would be a great addition to the LitM group


You could :) paint a hi-grade hospital (on a barge) white, drop it into the advertised location - as required by Treaties - and the grey part could sail on...

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Poiuytrewq » 14 Aug 2019, 09:36

ArmChairCivvy wrote:You could paint a hi-grade hospital (on a barge) white, drop it into the advertised location - as required by Treaties - and the grey part could sail on...
And still send DFID the bill?

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 14 Aug 2019, 10:32

Poiuytrewq wrote:
ArmChairCivvy wrote:You could paint a hi-grade hospital (on a barge) white, drop it into the advertised location - as required by Treaties - and the grey part could sail on...
And still send DFID the bill?
Pay per (day of) use 8-)

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donald_of_tokyo
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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 15 Aug 2019, 07:54

ArmChairCivvy wrote:
Repulse wrote:...What is interesting is putting 20-30m Fast Patrol Craft into LPD/LSD docks and davits for Littoral Operations - the same craft of course being useful to patrol and protect BOT & UK waters.
An excellent idea... to dampen down state piracy appetites (and keep some Apaches nearby - in Oman? - with engines churning and ready to go at a moments notice).
One idea, I agree. Size of these Fast Patrol Crafts can have a diversity.

- 9-12 m = can be carried on T26, T31 and River B2. Just an enhanced RHIBs. Very short range, <1 day endurance, or even be un-manned. Mother ship can defend herself, if in such threat.

- 20-30 m = can be carried on deck (with 30-50t crane) or well-dock (LPD/LSD). Short range (~500 nm) and a few days of endurance. In this case, how to defend the mother ship in high threat environment, is not easy though.

- 50-60 m = sent by Flo-Flo ship, and then deploy from front-line base (e.g. Bahrain, or the Flo-Flo ship located 200-500nm behind) to the theater (e.g. Hormuz Strait) by themselves. Medium range (~2000 nm), and an endurance of 7-14 days. Mothership is well away, and not protection is needed.

The first two categories do not need any AAW weapons. If attacked with hi-end ASM, just sink, but many crafts can be located. The 50-60m version may have a CIWS or even SAM, but will surely be very expensive.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 15 Aug 2019, 07:56

Poiuytrewq wrote:The Flo-Flo vessels are fantastically versatile and I expect we will see RN make use of them a lot more in the future.

I would be amazed if adding a Flo-Flo capability wasn't seriously considered when the Points are due for replacment. A Flo-Flo vessel loaded with LCU's/LCVP's and mexefloates would be a great addition to the LitM group, especially if one of the LPD's stays in extended readiness.
Point-class is very simple and cheap (to operate) cargo ship, RoRo. Flo-Flo ship is more specialist and be expensive to operate. Thus, I think Point's replacement will be just a RoRo ship of the day. The issue here will be how to "integrate" these requirements into LPD/LSD replacement programs, if the "littoral Fast Patrol Craft concept" works for tasks such as Hormuz strait now.

In another thread, we discussed possibility of using LSD as a mother ship for MCM drones. If littoral Fast Patrol Crafts are included in this program, it will form a flexible "littoral warfare group".

Say, merging amphibious operations (1+1 LPD, 3 LSD), MCM operations (12 MCMVs), and littoral patrol (new), how about

- Six 150m-class "Bay-2" like LSD (3 as Bay replacement and 3 as MCMV replacement) with
-- 3 amphibious teams (2x 30m-fast-LCU, 2x 15m-fast-LCVP, 2x 60m-slow-Mexefloats, and 2x 30m-Fast Patrol Crafts, each)
-- 2 logistic landing teams (2x 60m-Mexefloats, each)
(in HADR deployments, go only with reduced team size, say 1x 15m-LCVP and 2x 60m-Mexefloats, each)

-- 4 MCM teams (a full kit of UUV/USV/UAV-based MCM, each equivalent in capability to ~3 Hunts/Sandowns)

-- 2 Littoral Fast Patrol teams (4x 30m-Fast Patrol Crafts, each) to cover littoral patrol tasks, in collaboration with River B2 and escorts.

- One LPH (as the 3rd flat-top)

- And no dedicated MHC-hull part (all money put on Bay-2).

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Lord Jim » 15 Aug 2019, 11:44

So I assume we would want any Bay 2.0 to have a loading dock similar in size to that of the Albions? That shouldn't be a problem as the Enforcer catalogue seems to have a design to suit all tastes and wallets. I also assume that these six platforms would replace both the Bays and the Albions. Seems to tie in with something I wrote in the Amphibious thread a while back.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Jake1992 » 15 Aug 2019, 12:08

Lord Jim wrote:So I assume we would want any Bay 2.0 to have a loading dock similar in size to that of the Albions? That shouldn't be a problem as the Enforcer catalogue seems to have a design to suit all tastes and wallets. I also assume that these six platforms would replace both the Bays and the Albions. Seems to tie in with something I wrote in the Amphibious thread a while back.


Could that be done on only a 150m platform as Donald has put forward ? I don’t think it could when you consider they’ll have to carry similar number of troops and equipment as the Albion’s and bays, and you’d think they’d also have helo hangers to not fill in to the same mistakes as we did last time.

Donald also appeared for them to replace all mcm vessels as well, IMO 6 wouldn’t be enough to cover all current mcm, Amphibious and aid roles.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Digger22 » 15 Aug 2019, 16:00

T26 comment, not news so here it is,
8 years to build a Frigate?
The same yard completed Lb03 and Lb04 in less time, with more metal than 3 T26.
QE was At sea in 8 yrs!
Please explain?

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Jake1992 » 15 Aug 2019, 16:52

Digger22 wrote:T26 comment, not news so here it is,
8 years to build a Frigate?
The same yard completed Lb03 and Lb04 in less time, with more metal than 3 T26.
QE was At sea in 8 yrs!
Please explain?


It’s a treasury set time table, at the moment the T26 build for 8 ships is being stretched out until the T45 replacement built is due to start.

You’d find that if we were still building 13 T26s the first of class would be in service a lot sooner, most likely with in 5 years odd with one every 18 months odd. This would require the MOD getting a good boost in funding though.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Lord Jim » 15 Aug 2019, 23:15

Well on Forces News, the Defence Sec. Ben Wallace came across quite well and he did state that one of his three top priorities was to get the Treasury to cough up more money for defence sooner rather than later and outside the CSR timetable. Yes we have heard it before but we also have a new Chancellor so maybe, just maybe.

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 17 Aug 2019, 09:30

"UK Armed Forces / Quarterly Service Personnel Statistics / 1 July 2019"

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.u ... 7-_SPS.pdf

Page.6 RN/RM Full Time Trained Strength (FTTS) is interesting.
- Requirement is 30600.
- Current number is 29090.

1: Still the gap is large, about 1510 shortage. It is ~1.5 times larger compared to the gap in July 2017. So the gap is getting worse.
2: At least in RN/RM, decrease in FTTS looks like stopped. Good.
3: On the other hand, "requirement" is rapidly increasing (main reason of the gap increase). Do anyone know what the reason is? (May be PoW?)

# By the way, British Army is facing serious problem... Requirement 82000, and FTTTS 74440 = 7560 shortage, and the gap-increase is even speeding up....

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Re: Current & Future Escorts - General Discussion

Postby Lord Jim » 18 Aug 2019, 00:06

Hopefully with most of the issues with the recruiting software etc. sorted things will start to improve and the pay rises should help a little bit. The current adverts on TV are pretty good for the services. Maybe they should put some more emphasis on the qualifications a person can gain from training whilst in the Military as possibly some might see it as a way to gain these without racking up debts like convention students. The fact they will get paid to learn should be a good temptation and help recruitment. How long we can hold onto them depends on what the Armed Forces has to offer later on.


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