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PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:09 pm 
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A 250 pound bomb is a small bomb - also in combination with a slow aircraft. A Harpoon has a 488 pound warhead, some versions a 794 pound warhead, likely with a much more powerful explosive, and hits the target with a much higher velocity.

Anyway: both can destroy the sensors of a ship and therefore disable also a battleship.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:19 pm 
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The power of the Harpoon or Exocet is much higher than a Kamikaze: different explosives, different speeds, much more dangerous fuel etc.

A small anti-ship missile absolutely equivalent to a kamikazee. The Exocet, for example, weighs 1500 lbs whereas the Japanese Zero, as an example, weighed over 6000 lbs. Much bigger impact! Most aircraft carried one or two 250/500 lb bombs which contributed to the damage. No lightweight shaped charge is going to penetrate battleship armor!

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But for sure a Harpoon and Exocet can harm a battleship: its most essential parts for modern warfare (sensors!) are not armoured at all.

Given the degree of redundancy built into ships, the odds of anything short of many, many hits taking out all of a ship's sensors is vanishingly small. To the best of my knowledge there has never been a case of a ship being blinded by losing all its sensors. The statistical probabilities of any given impact hitting a sensor is very low. In addition, for its main function, a battleship doesn't even need sensors - at least not the exposed ones. A battleship has incredibly powerful optical sensors which are heavily armored and protected. Further, in a modern setting, a battleship can take spotting from a UAV!

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Yes, these were all very weak weapons by modern standards

Battleships were built to absorb 16", 2500 lb armor piercing shells. There is very little today that even remotely approaches that level of destructive power.

Torpedoes are the same today as in WWII. The standard US Mk14 torpedo had a 643 lb warhead. Today's US Mk48 heavyweight torpedo has a warhead of 650 lb. They're identical!

In WWII, we used 250/500/1000/2000 lb bombs. Today, we use the exact same bombs with a laser guidance package attached!

Only when we get to the very largest supersonic missiles might we begin to be able to say that we have more powerful weapons and even then I'm not sure - no one has ever done an explosive comparison that I'm aware of. Your claim of weaker weapons in WWII is clearly false.

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The firepower of an Arleigh Burke in the early 1990s was superior to a modernised Iowa class ships: count the number of potential Tomahawk launchers: 90 VLS vs. 32 Mk 141 ;)

This could not be more false. The explosive power of a 16", 2000 lb shell is much greater than a Tomahawk and a battleship carries around 1200 shells versus the maximum of 96 on a Burke. The typical loadout for a Burke appears to be around 30 Tomahawks, as demonstrated in the recent Tomahawk attack on the Syrian air base, so the Tomahawk loads are identical for the battleship and the Burke. In addition, the battleship has 1200 AP/HE 2000 lb shells! To claim that a Burke has more firepower is just plain false.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:02 pm 
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1.) I am not a weapon expert. But the claim that an dedicated warhead of an anti-ship missile is equivalent to much slower aircraft with a bomb below (with likely a much weaker explosive) appears to me very unrealistic. And a reminder: most of a battleship was not armoured including most of its superstructure and therefore most of its modern sensors.

2.) The claim that today an ship could fight based only on its optical sensors is bizarre. Already in Second World War the loss of radar (e.g. Scharnhorst's) reduced the fighting capability to something near zero. Radars are very exposed and can be easily damaged even by splitter - so that easily all radars could be disabled by one hit, especially if the masts are very close together (as in the Iowa class).

3.) Battleship armour was notoriously weak against bombs theoretically much weaker than the shells the armour was designed against. And this were bombs, which had much weaker explosives than the ones used today (the weight is not equal to its explosive power). All battleship armour used in World War Two could be also defeated by shells used then and was defeated, including very heavy armour (e.g. on Bismarck). If today armour is ships would be widespread, armour-piercing warheads would be designed, which easily can defeat any armour - that is the reason why no armour except of splitter armour is used today.

4.) 16" guns are short-range weapons without any relevant value in a high threat environment. It is a weapon system, which is useless except on those cases that there is no relevant defence of the target. That means that the main weapon system of the modernised Iowa class were Tomahawks and Harpoons - and there they had no advantage of an Arleigh Burke destroyer (which can load up to 96 Tomahawk today - for sure typically much less are loaded).

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 1:31 pm 
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Maxim,

I think Bob is also overlooking the potency of ICBMs/SLBMs or even tactical nukes against a surface fleet that includes a battleship, regardless of how many AAW escorts the BB may have, it only takes one nuclear-tipped ballistic missile to get through to destroy a fleet.

Let's not forget electro-magnetic pulse/EMP. Or even dedicated EMP weapons. Say for example, we have a CVBG and an ARG/amphibious ready group accompanied by BBs that are both steaming towards the same destination. A nuclear cruise missle hits the CVBG first, and even if the ARG is not within the area directly affected by the explosion, wouldn't the EMP from the blast knock out most of the AAW defenses of that ARG? Thus allowing follow-on strikes by nuclear or conventional weapons that would make the BBs and their escorts a sitting duck?

Operation Crossroads, which saw the target battleships IJN Nagato and USS Arkansas sunk by nuclear explosions, as well numerous other ships, shows that a battleship's armor is not proof against nuclear blasts. The old battleships USS New York, USS Nevada and USS Pennsylvania were also so heavily damaged in those same tests that each had to be disposed of as target ships or eventually sank on their own.

What about the threat of anti-ship ballistic missiles (ASBMs)? Are these not only faster than cruise missiles, but less likely to be intercepted by a battleship's escorts' AAW defenses? Whether or not these ASBMs are conventionally or nuclear armed, one can only imagine the impact of such as a projectile that has a velocity many times that of the cruise missiles or ASMs he's thinking of. And wouldn't battleships' armor belts be subject to eventually becoming "time expired" after all those years in mothballs?

Thus, the anti-ship ballistic missile (ASBM), such as China's "carrier-killer" missiles mentioned below, is another potent threat that the modernized Iowa class battleships are ill-equipped to face or withstand if hit. The battleship had its heyday decades ago, but today is the age of digital warfare, cruise missiles and other threats.

US Naval Institute

Quote:
Report: Chinese Develop Special "Kill Weapon" to Destroy U.S. Aircraft Carriers

Advanced missile poses substantial new threat for U.S. Navy

U. S. Naval Institute
March 31, 2009

With tensions already rising due to the Chinese navy becoming more aggressive in asserting its territorial claims in the South China Sea, the U.S. Navy seems to have yet another reason to be deeply concerned.

After years of conjecture, details have begun to emerge of a "kill weapon" developed by the Chinese to target and destroy U.S. aircraft carriers.

First posted on a Chinese blog viewed as credible by military analysts and then translated by the naval affairs blog Information Dissemination, a recent report provides a description of an anti-ship ballistic missile (ASBM) that can strike carriers and other U.S. vessels at a range of 2000km.

The range of the modified Dong Feng 21 missile is significant in that it covers the areas that are likely hot zones for future confrontations between U.S. and Chinese surface forces.

The size of the missile enables it to carry a warhead big enough to inflict significant damage on a large vessel, providing the Chinese the capability of destroying a U.S. supercarrier in one strike.

Because the missile employs a complex guidance system, low radar signature and a maneuverability that makes its flight path unpredictable, the odds that it can evade tracking systems to reach its target are increased. It is estimated that the missile can travel at mach 10 and reach its maximum range of 2000km in less than 12 minutes.

Supporting the missile is a network of satellites, radar and unmanned aerial vehicles that can locate U.S. ships and then guide the weapon, enabling it to hit moving targets.

While the ASBM has been a topic of discussion within national defense circles for quite some time, the fact that information is now coming from Chinese sources indicates that the weapon system is operational. The Chinese rarely mention weapons projects unless they are well beyond the test stages.

(...SNIPPED)

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 2:19 pm 
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maxim wrote:
. All battleship armour used in World War Two could be also defeated by grenades used then

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16" guns are short-range weapons without any relevant value


Now you're just making humerous though utterly ridiculous statements. There's no point discussing this further. I've made my points for those who care to read.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 2:24 pm 
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Haijun watcher wrote:
I think Bob is also overlooking the potency of ICBMs/SLBMs or even tactical nukes against a surface fleet that includes a battleship,

This is the height of irrelevance. If susceptibility of a battleship to nuclear weapons is a reason to discard battleships than there is no justification for any ship, aircraft, tank, infantry, submarine, or military in general.

This also has nothing to do with the cost and combat effectiveness of the battleship which is the actual topic of discussion.

I'll pass on any further discussion of this!

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 4:09 pm 
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Haijun watcher, read this as obvious you don't know what you are talking about as those 2 battleships were sunk in test baker which was an underwater explosion not the earlier test alpha that was a mid air explosion. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Crossroads
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DF-21

maxim, you do realize that a grenade is an infantry weapon that cannot even stop a tank unless dropped into the crew compartment thru an open hatch. a grenade thrown at any ship regardless of type will just scuff the paint & maybe do a bit of damage to a wooden deck. American battleships were armored from in front of the 1st main gun turret to aft of the last main gun turret from below the waterline to & including the maindeck.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 4:16 pm 
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DavidP wrote:
Haijun watcher, read this as obvious you don't know what you are talking about as those 2 battleships were sunk in test baker which was an underwater explosion not the earlier test alpha that was a mid air explosion. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Crossroads


Baker test was an underwater nuclear explosion. So what? My argument was about nuclear weapons in general, whether they donated underwater or in the air, if you read my whole post carefully.

You can argue that Nevada, Pennsylvania and New York survived those explosions since they remained afloat, but they had heavy radiation for weeks afterward. Not exactly habitable or usable for a crew, is it?

During the Cold War, even Soviet Foxtrot class subs had tactical nuclear warheads on their torpedoes for attacking port cities, while NATO forces had nuclear depth bombs used for ASW at one point.

Furthermore, neither you nor Bob addressed the threat of ASBMs, which can also be conventionally-armed, not necessarily nuclear-armed.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 4:32 pm 
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the only reason those ships were sunk by the us navy torpedoes & gunfire was they did not have the capability to wash off nuclear, biological & chemical materials off those ships which are now built into all warships. battleship armor only time expires after it rusts away so that is 12" plus of steel armor plate that has to rust away on an iowa class. read that 2nd link I posted. a certain pm of Canada said there is no use for manned fighters & bombers now that the missiles are here now & that was in the 50's but what is still around, those same manned fighters & bombers.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 4:35 pm 
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carr wrote:
Haijun watcher wrote:

This also has nothing to do with the cost and combat effectiveness of the battleship which is the actual topic of discussion.



Wrong. The topic is about cheaper, realistic alternatives to getting the US Navy back to 355 ships. Your discussion about the relevance and effectiveness of battleships (specially the modernized Iowa class) in a modern threat environment, is tangential to the topic at best.

Even though Trump did hint in passing about reactivating the Iowa class in his campaign rally on the USS Iowa museum last year, it is very unlikely your Congress will allocate the money to reactivating warships that are more than 70 years old.
--------------------
Furthermore, you never addressed the threat of ASBMs I mentioned in that long post I made on the previous page, which can also be conventionally-armed, not necessarily nuclear-armed.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 4:56 pm 
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but the iowas even tho more then 70yrs old have a lot less in service use compared to the b-52 bombers that are about 62yrs old.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 6:23 pm 
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DavidP wrote:
Haijun watcher, read this as obvious you don't know what you are talking about

Dude....that's a little harsh. You can disagree with someone without turning it into an attack.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 11:31 pm 
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DavidP wrote:
maxim, you do realize that a grenade is an infantry weapon

My mistake: in German the same word is used for shell and grenade. I was talking about the ammunition used by for large guns. Those could defeat all armour in Second World War, including the strongest heaviest armour. Armour was designed to defeat shells fired from a certain range - it can be defeated by shells fired from shorter or longer ranges. World War Two demonstrated that all kind of armoured ships could be sunk - which is the main cause why afterwards no armoured ships were built anymore.


There was the statement that ballistic anti-ship missiles would be not relevant - interestingly spend the US Navy a lot to develop a defence against those.

And again: a 16" gun with a range of 39 km is today a short range weapon. Even the smallest anti-ship missiles have ranges above 100 km. The current generation if Russian Kalibr missiles (3M54K) are described to have range of 440-660 km and final speed of Mach 2.9 (the kinetic energy from that speed is obviously different from a typical World War Two Kamikaze). Even the cheaper export version has a range above 220 km.

Anyway interesting: with the Iowa class or an similar high-end approach a 355 ship fleet would be very difficult to reach...

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2017 3:56 am 
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Even if the USN decided that it needed a battleship the amount of money to bring one into service would be enormous. How is the machinery? I guess that it needs a complete overhaul and perhaps even replacement. Even if it needs an overhaul I suspect it would cost more money than the potential usefulness of a battleship would warrant. And then you need specially trained engineering staff to operate and maintain it.

And that is just the machinery!

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2017 9:18 am 
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So...battleships. Here we go.

Admiral John Byng wrote:
Even if the USN decided that it needed a battleship the amount of money to bring one into service would be enormous. Even if it needs an overhaul I suspect it would cost more money than the potential usefulness of a battleship would warrant.
The battleships were all expected to be in service with 96 VLS tubes and extended range guided munitions to 100nm (11" and 13" RAP sabot) until a minimum of 2010. When they were prematurely decommissioned, each was heavily overhauled during deactivation, because the Navy knew it would need them in short order. Reactivating the ship would not cost much. It's literally hooking up shore power and turning the ship back on. It has already been estimated that both reactivating and modernizing the battleships would cost approximately $900 million a piece, and that was done by people who have no interest in bringing them back. So this brings us back to the same situation we had back in the 1980s. It cost a minimum of $328 million to bring back the New Jersey in 1982 and a little over $400 million for the Wisconsin in 1988. Currency conversion directly leads you to reactivating and modernizing the Iowa-class battleship is equivalent to the (under quoted) modern FFGs. So, a BB (a capital ship with an unrivaled striking power) instead of an FFG (with ineffective qualities at worst and limited capabilities at best).

Admiral John Byng wrote:
How is the machinery? I guess that it needs a complete overhaul and perhaps even replacement.
See above. It's in extremely good condition. When I went through the Wisconsin with NAVSEA inspectors on their nineth Ship Check, they expressed how impressed they were with how well everything had been laid up. One statement that suck with me was, "This propulsion plant is in better condition than some of the carriers. The overall ship is in better condition than most of the fleet."

We can discuss other concerns like spare barrels, new projectiles, new propellant, GFCS upgrades, etc later.

Admiral John Byng wrote:
And then you need specially trained engineering staff to operate and maintain it.
The USN currently has plenty of boiler driven plants ie LCCs and LHDs. No big deal. Sending Sailors to those schools and then having further training aboard the ships is no problem.

The age of the ships is also very subjective. How ships gain age are years of use and how they are preserved. The BBs have around 20 years of service. They were made to be 35 - 50 year ships. Easy day.

The battleships can be reactivated, modernized, and serviced with little problem.

The only problem would be brining back a 5 ship force instead of just 4. That would require brining either Indiana or North Carolina back. Either ship would have to be brought all the way up from WWII standards to modern. I imagine that would be twice the Iowa cost. I would prefer the North Carolina, because she has far more real-estate and could be similarly modernized far easier. Even then, reactivating and modernizing the North Carolina at $1.8 Billion would still be a great deal compared to a DDG-51 Flight II at $2.3 Billion...much less a Flight III. :heh:

So, is it worth it? Indeed it is. A BB is a replacement for a CVN in 9 our of 10 peace time scenarios and 8 our of 10 wartime. What does that mean? It means a CVN does not have to be committed to that area 8 out of 10 times. With the limited CVNs we have (10 instead of the 15 we need) that is remarkably useful.

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:54 am 
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But which sensors they would have got for that 900 mio $? With a 96 cell VLS they would be on level of an Arleigh Burke destroyer, but only, if the sensors would had a similar quality. Which would have been for sure not the case with a combination of SPS-49 and SPS-67...

And how realistic was extended range guided munitions?

The promised extended range guided munition for the 5" guns still does not exist - and for sure many navies mainly bought the BAe 5" L/62 because of the expectation that this ammunition will be available. Also there is no extended range guided ammunition for the 15.5 cm guns of Zumwalt either...

I would think that a modern frigate is much more versatile and for sure much cheaper to operate than the reactivation of any old ship - and for sure compared to reactivated battleship. The battleship's re-activation was already a gigantic destruction of money, especially compared to their time of active service. The OHP frigates at least served up to 30 years. And which peace time tasks a modern (NOT OHP or LCS) frigate cannot fulfil compared to a modernised battleship?

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2017 2:27 pm 
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maxim wrote:
With a 96 cell VLS they would be on level of an Arleigh Burke destroyer, but only, if the sensors would had a similar quality.

You have it backward! A Burke would barely rise to the level of a battleship in that one, specific category (number of VLS cells) only. In all other respects, such as overwhelmingly destructive 16" firepower, armor, survivability, endurance, range, speed, etc., the Burke would fall well short! Kind of irrelevant, really, as the Burke was designed for a different role. A Burke provides a vital defensive AAW role but has only a limited strike capability which is dwarfed by a battleship.

As far as striking firepower, Tomahawks do not use on-board sensors so that's a non-issue.

Quote:
And how realistic was extended range guided munitions?

The battleship's strike range far surpasses a Burkes. The entire VLS load of a modernized battleship is devoted 100% to Tomahawk strike. A Burke typically seems to have about a third of its VLS (around 30 missiles) devoted to Tomahawk strike. A battleships guns outrange and immensely out "firepower" a Burkes!

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I would think that a modern frigate is much more versatile and for sure much cheaper to operate than the reactivation of any old ship

A canoe is much cheaper to operate than a frigate. Should be drop all frigates in favor of canoes? As I stated previously, the only criteria is combat value. A canoe has no combat value and, therefore, no naval value. A frigate has some small combat value and, therefore, some small naval value. A battleship has immense combat power and, therefore, immense naval value. And so on.

Nothing, not even a carrier, delivers the combat value that a battleship does and a battleship is immensely cheaper to operate than a carrier.

Quote:
And which peace time tasks a modern (NOT OHP or LCS) frigate cannot fulfil compared to a modernised battleship?

A battleship is built for war, not peace. A navy exists for war, not peace. If all we want are ships to fulfill peacetime tasks, then we don't need frigates - a small Coast Guard-ish vessel can meet all the peace time requirements.

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 14, 2017 10:01 am 
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Ok, you want a ship without any self-defence capacity except of old-fashioned armour and without any relevant sensors. A large strike platform, which would rely on other ships to survive.

I would recommend this very cheap and economic to operate version:

buy a second-hand fast container ship, add four 64 cell VLS launchers (for sure only filled with Tomahawks), some 155 mm turrets (e.g. PzH 2000, range up to 56 km, i.e. better range or higher rate of fire compared to an old 16" gun), plus an armoured conning tower. Should be relatively cheap, because no expensive sensors have to be bought, optics and communication are sufficient in your opinion. It should be cheap to operate, perhaps can be made completely automatic and would have a similar combat value and therefore naval power than a Iowa class ship - i.e. non, except she would be protected by good AAW and ASW ships and/or aircraft.

:lol_pound:

If attacked with modern anti-ship missiles it would look similar to a defence-less battleship: wrecked superstructure, burning. Ok, perhaps the turbines of the battleship would be still running and it perhaps the battleship would not sink so easily. Perhaps even some of the 16" turrets of the battleship would be functional - but who would care about them? The ship would be a defenceless wreck, which could be easily sunk by normal bombs.

Remember perhaps this: Bismarck had to discontinue her mission because of one 14" hit in the weakly armoured foreship and was disabled by one torpedo hit at the stern. After that she was no longer able to fight back (with all the guns and sensors intact!). For sure she was still swimming after Rodney with some help of King George V destroyed her superstructure, turrets etc. including all heavy armoured parts above the waterline - but why should the fact she was not yet sunk be relevant? Her fighting capacities were already before nearly zero and she afterwards she could not even defend herself against the following torpedo attacks by cruisers (and therefore it also not relevant at all, if she was scuttled or sunk). Armour does not guaranty survival - and there are many examples of sunken heavily armoured battleships proving that.



Some more serious comments: a Tomahawk equipped battleship cannot have a greater strike range than a destroyer equipped with the same cruise missile. There are today even small corvettes equipped with long range cruise missiles. My comment referred obviously not to cruise missiles, but to extended range guided munition for the 16" guns mentioned by navydavesof ;)

Also my comment to the peace time role referred to a comment by navydavesof ;)

/edit: another small comment: the Iowa class fired its 16" guns only against very weakly defended targets on shore: the nearly defeated Japan in 1945, which had lost its fleet (the remains were immobilised by lack of oil) and the big majority of its properly trained pilots; North Korea, North Vietnam and Lebanon without any proper defence, and the nearly defeated Iraq in 1991. Those ships were never risked in an attack against well defended land targets, e.g. earlier in World War Two or even earlier in the (Second) Gulf War in 1991.

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 14, 2017 10:51 am 
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except for the Nimitz class carriers' flight deck that I presume is armored & maybe the inside of the hanger walls that might have Kevlar armor which the burkes & tico might have as remember reading that the ffg7 class was supposed to get Kevlar armor. none of today's anti-ship missiles are designed to take out an armored battleship nevermind the fact of not tested against a mobile floating target just a stationary target. the us navy was supposedly surprised how resilient the forrestal was to damage during it's sinkex. unless you have all the sensors grouped close together then you might be lucky to take out a sensor with a single missile & not affect the others.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 14, 2017 7:57 pm 
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maxim wrote:
Some more serious comments: a Tomahawk equipped battleship cannot have a greater strike range than a destroyer equipped with the same cruise missile. There are today even small corvettes equipped with long range cruise missiles. My comment referred obviously not to cruise missiles, but to extended range guided munition for the 16" guns mentioned by navydavesof ;)

Also my comment to the peace time role referred to a comment by navydavesof ;)

/edit: another small comment: the Iowa class fired its 16" guns only against very weakly defended targets on shore: the nearly defeated Japan in 1945, which had lost its fleet (the remains were immobilised by lack of oil) and the big majority of its properly trained pilots; North Korea, North Vietnam and Lebanon without any proper defence, and the nearly defeated Iraq in 1991. Those ships were never risked in an attack against well defended land targets, e.g. earlier in World War Two or even earlier in the (Second) Gulf War in 1991.


Maxim,
Here's a number of points to nitpick on:

1.) The assertion that members of the Iowa class only fired its guns in shore bombardment is wrong. The first two members in the class, USS Iowa and USS New Jersey, actually engaged enemy ships during the Operation Hailstone raids against the Japanese base in Truk lagoon in February 1944. The Iowa sank the Japanese light cruiser Katori while the New Jersey sank the Japanese destroyer Maikaze. There are numerous sources that confirm this such as Combinedfleet.com:

Quote:
During this engagement, CINC, Fifth Fleet, Admiral Raymond A. Spruance (former CO of MISSISSIPPI, BB-41) flies his flag aboard NEW JERSEY. She engages LtCdr Hagio Tsutomu's (former CO of URANAMI) MAIKAZE at 7,000 yards. MAIKAZE fires a spread of torpedoes that passes between NEW JERSEY and IOWA following in trail. Later, gunfire from MINNEAPOLIS and NEW ORLEANS starts a fire aft that probably explodes one of the destroyer's magazines. At 1343, MAIKAZE, still firing, sinks with all hands. NEW JERSEY sinks SHONAN MARU No. 15 with her port side five-inch battery.

40 miles NW of Truk. IOWA engages KATORI and fires forty-six 16-inch high capacity (non-armor piercing) rounds and 124 five-inch shells. She straddles KATORI with all eight salvos. KATORI launches a salvo of torpedoes at the Americans. Just after the IOWA's fourth salvo, KATORI starts to list to port. After being under fire for 11 minutes, the cruiser sinks stern first at 07-45N, 151-20E. Reportedly, a large group of survivors is seen where she sinks, but none are picked up. Later, Captain Oda is promoted Rear Admiral, posthumously.


2.) To add to your point about a "battleship not having a greater strike range than a frigate", Bob chose to omit the importance of aircraft carriers, whose air wings have a much greater range than than the battleship's 16-inch guns.

3.) Battleships may have concentrated firepower of their VLS tubes/TLAMs to add to the 16-inchers when it comes to shore bombardment, but concentrating enough CGs, DDGs and SSNs can yield similar firepower. Unlike battleships, submarines using their VLS to fire off Tomahawks offshore don't need the protection of numerous escorts; the submarines can rely on their stealth when submerged to remain undetected by the enemy, while a battleship requires a whole task group's protection from aerial, surface and sub-surface threats.

Lastly, despite what these battleship advocates continue to say about the merits and advantages of these leviathans, it is highly unlikely that any of the Iowa class will return to service. Most, if not all, have been relegated to museums.

As said, the topic is about cheaper, realistic alternatives to getting the US Navy back to 355 ships. The discussion about the relevance and effectiveness of battleships (specially the modernized Iowa class) in a modern threat environment, is tangential to the topic at best.

What's relevant to the topic include:
1.) possible reactivation of remaining mothballed Perry class FFGs and other ships in reserve such as early flight Ticonderoga class CGs (there's even been talk of reactivating CV-63 USS Kitty Hawk)

2.) the looming deactivation of 9 Ticonderoga class CGs over the 2020s and how the Navy can still get to 355 ships despite losing these cruisers.

3.) Whether the US Congress will fund more Littoral Combat Ships or go fully with the FFG (X) program; there is some resistance to abandoning the LCS program despite many officials' stated preference for the FFG(X). (the US Coast Guard's National Security Cutter program may be a good template for the FFG(X) )

4.) The issue of arming amphibs, such as the San Antonio class LPDs and their successors, with VLS to make them more potent in
ASuW, ASW and AAW and thus need less escorts.

5.) the Zumwalts- is only 3 enough? (perhaps an enlarged Zumwalt can be the template for an updated battleship design)

6.) the Columbia class SSBNs (Ohio class replacements)

7.) Smaller/Riverine combatants such as the Cyclones- do you need to build more?

8.) Integrating new technology such as drones, rail guns and lasers into a future fleet

9.) Ford class carriers- do you still build all of the class members? Or can't you achieve the same global presence with the America class LHAs which are effectively mini-carriers with F35Bs? Does the US Navy need to grow beyond the 10-11 carrier group requirement?

Food for thought.

_________________
"Haijun" means "navy" in Mandarin Chinese.

"You have enemies? Good. It means you stood up for something in your life."- Winston Churchill


Last edited by Haijun watcher on Sat Oct 14, 2017 9:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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