Future missiles

Discussion in 'The Fleet' started by nuts_mcauliff, Jul 18, 2008.

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  1. Ok. I'm by no means an expert being TA but wouldn't it make sense for the Navy to go for Aster 15 to support the Type 45 on the FSC / C1 Type 23/23 succesor. Wouldn't this lead to savings ease of logistics etc
  2. These are utterly pointless projects… expensive vanity developments of the worst kind.

    You are indeed right. ASTER 15 will do this job perfectly and is a world leader in it's class.

    The anti surface capabilty can be done perfectly well with HELLFIRE and PENGUIN. Both missiles are in service and world class.
    • Like Like x 1
  3. The problem being, if we keep the Aster for the T22/23 replacements it will be so out of date by the time the hulls are ready.

    They have not even been looked at yet. Expect it to be at least 2020 or later before new hulls might appear in the current climate.

    We would then have fallen into the same old process of new ships with old equipment as we have in the past.

    Trying to balance the two is the trick
  4. Nope, ASTER is cutting edge stuff and can be updated. In 2020 it will still be an outstandingly capable SAM and there is no intention of replacing it in the T45's.

    Same with HELLFIRE and PENGUIN, both class leading missiles with a sound history of capability developments.

    THis new 'el cheapo' SAM that MDBA want's to develop is little to do with what we actually need, and lots to do with selling into an export market.
  5. With O-S on this. The US have kept the basic SM1/2 missile viable for decades, spending most of the money on either the CS or the bit that goes bang.

    AIUI CAMM is some sort of amalgam of all the "best" features of MBDA current SAM portfolio, nailed together to avoid the £1m a pop ASTER.
  6. Forgot to say but the articles from Janes.

  7. ASTER30 is excellent, but ASTER15 is *very* expensive for a point-defence fit. We can barely afford enough ASTER for even six T45s, let alone a decent-size fleet of FSCs (and the expensive bit is the dart, not the booster). Also, ASTER needs the whole PAAMS suite, which also rules out a decent-sized fleet of FSCs on cost grounds.

    The drive on CAMM is twofold. Firstly, Sea Wolf, Rapier and ASRAAM all go out of life at the same time, and there's a chance for some useful saving by developing one system and adapting it to three jobs (and then seeing what else it can achieve). Secondly, CAMM as a system is designed to be *cheap* which means we have more hope of a useful number of ships with a decent loadout each. It's basically a case of run with CAMM - where we can have significant influence on the system design - or buy off-the-shelf and hope it does what we want, which still remains an option if CAMM doesn't deliver.

    There are definite advantages to commissioning a system rather than buying MOTS, though: when you funded development you can talk to the design authorities, get some scenarios run in their simulators, and generally get a useful working relationship. Buy an overseas system, and you get a black box which you're not allowed to open, and much less interest and support.
  8. In terms of the MOD acquisition lifecycle this is quite early, and quite low cost. That said, I'm surprised that there isn't another candidate bidder in the package as well. During the assessment phase it makes sense to have some competition; noting that actually there isn't much potential competition in the UK at the moment, in this market.

    Part of the assessment phase is the requirement to demonstrate that this is a viable direction to go, so they'll need to present a number of options. I don't recall where the gateway reviews fit, but the business case needs to demonstrate, pretty robustly, that this route is more cost effective than others, potentially including the Aster solution for the afloat short range segment of the requirement.

    I can see some value in the assessment phase, and there is potential value in a modularised solution package, but I also recognise the risk that it might end up just not being ideal for any of the roles it's supposed to fulfill.

  9. Then Quad Pack ESSM is a better option.
  10. Except it's a semi-active system, so you're back to Sea Wolf with limited channels of fire. ESSM is a good system, but it's been around for a while - it may be a little long in the tooth by 2015 or so.

    Now, come decision point, CAMM has to show itself as adequate compared to systems like ship-launched Mica, ESSM, a mooted active ESSM variant, and so on. But CAMM is (if development goes anywhere near plan) compact, affordable, and can handle raids that would saturate ESSM.

    The other issue is the usual one - if we buy ESSM, can we get the covers off to find out how it works in interesting circumstances? Or do we get sold a sealed black box on a basis of "it works, trust us"?

  11. Then buy VL MICA…
  12. Which may, or may not, work; come in on cost and time; meet our requirements; and give us access to some important design parameters.

    CAMM may or may not work as advertised, but there's no particular magic attached to the other contenders that make them guaranteed to meet the RN's needs either. Taking it through the assessment phase keeps options open: otherwise, we lose UK-based design capability which becomes a problem if we want to modify any of the foreign contenders.
  13. correct me if wrong but is not Thales a French electronics firm?same one that is putting all the electronics in our new carriers.
    Can't we build a bloody missile or develop software without depending on the French?
    I remember at Whale Island there was a whole room full of discarded missiles developed and discarded at great cost.
    I would have preferred to buy the Yank ones than from the French,we don't need their help we can do it ourselves if we try.
    Having said that one of my sons was there when they tested a new missile from a Harrier on a Scottish Loch,everyone was in smiles till it homed in on a Post Office van driving around the shore!
    Failsafe came in very quickly and the MOD went to lunch.
  14. Thales UK, it's part of the Thales group, which is French, but it's constituted as a legal entity in the UK. I'm not sure of the ownership model.
  15. chieftiff

    chieftiff War Hero Moderator

    I get the impression Thales is France's version of BAe, they have fingers in every pie, I've a friend working for Thales Training & Simulation - part of the Thales Group that includes rail, management consultancy, electronics, weapons, aviation, land etc etc, you can almost map it to BAe's model.

  16. Unlike us, the French have a long track record of designing and making extremely good missiles that work as advertised on the box…
  17. seafarer1939 wrote:

    The LMM is a Thales Air Defence Ltd (formely Shorts Missile Systems) product which will be designed and built in Belfast, Northern Ireland, UK, by UK engineers. Like BAE Systems, Thales is an international conglomerate of various companies. Just because the company is called Thales shouldn't unfairly start ringing alarm bells, as was the case during the design phase with the two new carriers.
  18. more from janes

  19. Levers_Aligned

    Levers_Aligned War Hero Moderator

  20. FlagWagger

    FlagWagger Book Reviewer

    As a UK engineer (now located outside the UK) I fear for the UK's long-term capability at engineering large-scale systems; yes Thales UK is UK based, however the parent company is not. Should the parent company "catch a cold" in their own country then the UK subsidiaries can suffer - just look at what happened to Alsthom in Birmingham (the bloody French again), the Alsthom turbine generator business in Leicester (would that be the French?), not to mention the rail industry in Derby (ok, that was the Canadians, but the French speaking part!). The UK has sold out its engineering industry (not to mention the utilities like gas and electric) to the highest bidder in favour of short-term profit and customer is now paying the price :( There's probably an element of survival in Thales' proposed missile - without new products, the Thales UK arm looks vulnerable and you can guarantee that the UK subsidiaries wil be cut before any French ones! If you want an clear example of the iniquity just look at the reports that UK customers of a French electric company are paying more for their power than French customers of the same company.

    Just because the company is called Thales shouldn't unfairly start ringing alarm bells, as was the case during the design phase with the two new carriers.[/quote]

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