jua
Joined: March 17th, 2005, 3:54 am

September 11th, 2018, 1:28 pm #51

Isn't it a bit of a circular argument to say these would be for when airpower was unavailable knowing that any fighter with a guided rocket could sink it? If you have air superiority, it seems to me you can launch AShMs from aicraft. Four missiles = 1-2 tactical aircraft or one MPA. If you don't have control of the air, your small boats are doomed. If we're talking about the SCS, which we are since no one else is a legitimate competitor, I don't see where you would base these and I don't see how they would be effective firing subsonic cruise missiles in small batches. A type 54 frigate could probably engage a dozen subsonic weapons and survive. You'd have to round up a half dozen of these things or coordinate a ToT strike from different angles to make them effective, and they're still vulnerable.
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Joined: June 22nd, 2007, 10:58 pm

September 14th, 2018, 5:32 pm #52

jua wrote: Isn't it a bit of a circular argument to say these would be for when airpower was unavailable knowing that any fighter with a guided rocket could sink it? If you have air superiority, it seems to me you can launch AShMs from aicraft. Four missiles = 1-2 tactical aircraft or one MPA. If you don't have control of the air, your small boats are doomed. If we're talking about the SCS, which we are since no one else is a legitimate competitor, I don't see where you would base these and I don't see how they would be effective firing subsonic cruise missiles in small batches. A type 54 frigate could probably engage a dozen subsonic weapons and survive. You'd have to round up a half dozen of these things or coordinate a ToT strike from different angles to make them effective, and they're still vulnerable.
Personally, I wouldn't say their value is for when "airpower was unavailable".  Seapower has a different set characteristics from airpower.   In many ways, they are complementary.

A surface squadron in peacetime can persist longer than airpower, and can exert influence in ways airpower can't.    Airpower is transient.  It comes, stays for a little while, and leaves.   Seapower stays for days (or weeks).  Seapower can conduct FONOPs, conduct MIO, and other surface missions.  

Seapower conducting forward presence could find itself in a fight with little warning.  Vessels need to be able to respond on their own.  They can't wait hours for airstrikes to be coordinated and launched.

I wouldn't want use a flotilla of small combatants offensively against a main Chinese task force, but such a task force would still have to respect the potential of a large number of them.  

The key is fighting combined arms.  
Last edited by BSmittyVA on September 16th, 2018, 10:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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jua
Joined: March 17th, 2005, 3:54 am

September 14th, 2018, 5:35 pm #53

I don't think a FAC is a very persistent seapower asset. Perhaps compared to aircraft it is, but endurance is relatively short. There has to be a better way to show the flag than a single purpose, short endurance vessel that is likely incapable of performing its singular mission.
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Joined: June 22nd, 2007, 10:58 pm

September 14th, 2018, 5:52 pm #54

jua wrote: I don't think a FAC is a very persistent seapower asset. Perhaps compared to aircraft it is, but endurance is relatively short. There has to be a better way to show the flag than a single purpose, short endurance vessel that is likely incapable of performing its singular mission.
I agree.  I'm not in favor of the old single-focus FAC.  I think we'd be better served with "fighty" patrol vessels that have endurance and can do MIO as well as missile combat.
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jua
Joined: March 17th, 2005, 3:54 am

September 14th, 2018, 6:22 pm #55

Use the LCS for the role then. All they need is NSM and they fit that part, and they have little practical use outside that.
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Josh

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Joined: June 22nd, 2007, 10:58 pm

September 14th, 2018, 7:23 pm #56

jua wrote: Use the LCS for the role then. All they need is NSM and they fit that part, and they have little practical use outside that.
Except there will only be a handful of LCSs, and they have limited range and endurance themselves.  Not exactly a flotilla swarm.  
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Joined: October 1st, 2017, 5:39 pm

September 16th, 2018, 10:24 pm #57

Small ships are extremely vulnerable to air attack as Argentina discovered in the Falklands. Air launched missiles would destroy them very quickly. No AAA gun they could carry would provide defense and they could not mount adequate SAM defense with enough reloads to be effective.
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Joined: October 1st, 2017, 5:39 pm

September 16th, 2018, 10:30 pm #58

No matter how fast it will still be much slower than aircraft and missiles. Air launched weapons will have the range advantage over any AA weapon feasible for such small craft.
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Joined: June 22nd, 2007, 10:58 pm

September 17th, 2018, 12:40 pm #59

Odysseus wrote: Small ships are extremely vulnerable to air attack as Argentina discovered in the Falklands. Air launched missiles would destroy them very quickly. No AAA gun they could carry would provide defense and they could not mount adequate SAM defense with enough reloads to be effective.
Combined arms.  Tanks are also very vulnerable to air attack, yet everyone still relies on them.  Don't send small combatants somewhere without an adequate air defense plan.  
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Joined: December 25th, 2004, 12:37 pm

September 19th, 2018, 5:14 pm #60

The old torpedo boat, and the motor torpedo boat have both grown wings and taken to the sky. Now called fighter jets. They can attack enemy ships, and even land targets. The Super Hornet class and now F-35C class.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-J327A using Tapatalk

Ride Lyft.
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