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Deterrence

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Re: Deterrence

Postby sudeepj » 02 Mar 2017 06:15

shiv wrote:
sudeepj wrote:1. Its HEU, not weapons grade,

What is the exact meaning of this?


Its merely a wiki search away, not going to engage in the nonsense anymore.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby shiv » 02 Mar 2017 06:25

sudeepj wrote:

Even a hundred people being shot (such as in the 26/11 attacks) will slow down the economic output of a city. Why not just deploy jihadis at a larger scale then and call it 'credible minimal NFU...'?
Your idea. Not mine

sudeepj wrote:Most Indian cities have large populations compared to the west. Even little towns have populations exceeding 50-100,000. There is a lot of spare capacity in sheer manpower, to apply to a post nuke scenario. Ill posit that let alone neighboring areas, large cities themselves will have the ability/spare capacity to manage a 20KT strike and continue.


You still have not stated what will happen to a country that takes such hits on 50 cities


sudeepj wrote:You have a singular inability to see the scenario past week 1 of a nuke strike..

With respect - you have not even stated what will happen on day 2 and are extrapolating stuff about elimination of a civilization
Last edited by shiv on 02 Mar 2017 06:29, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby shiv » 02 Mar 2017 06:26

sudeepj wrote:Congratualtions! you have discovered that an Idli is flatter than a laddu.

Wiki has discovered that. I have been stating that for a decade now. When you found out is not part of the discussion

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Re: Deterrence

Postby shiv » 02 Mar 2017 06:29

sudeepj wrote:Let it go sir.. your physics is tenuous.

Of course sir. Of course.

Your knowledge of these matters is impressive
sudeepj wrote:Easily answered.
1. Its HEU, not weapons grade, so the weapon is safer for the user. No chances of accidental criticality.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby shiv » 02 Mar 2017 08:24

Added for my own reference
http://nuclearweaponarchive.org/Nwfaq/Nfaq1.html
A possible variation on the staged radiation implosion design is one in which a second fission stage is imploded instead of a thermonuclear one. This was actually the initial concept developed by Stanislaw Ulam before he realized its possible application to thermnuclear weapons. The advantage of this approach is that radiation implosion speeds are hundreds of times higher, and maximum densities tens of times greater, than those achievable through high explosives. This allows achieving higher yields than is practical with high explosive driven fission weapons, and the use of lower grades of fissile material. If some fusion fuel is included in this second fission stage to boost yield, a sort of hybrid two-stage boosted weapon design results that blurs the distinction between two-stage fission and classic Teller-Ulam thermonuclear weapons. The TX-15 "Zombie" developed by the U.S. was originally planned to be a two stage pure fission device, but later evolved into this sort of hybrid boosted system. The Zombie was tested in the Castle Nectar shot (13 May 1954 GMT; Bikini Atoll; 1.69 Mt), and was fielded as the Mk-15.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby sudeepj » 02 Mar 2017 22:04

shiv wrote:
sudeepj wrote:Let it go sir.. your physics is tenuous.

Of course sir. Of course.

Your knowledge of these matters is impressive
sudeepj wrote:Easily answered.
1. Its HEU, not weapons grade, so the weapon is safer for the user. No chances of accidental criticality.


HEU is 20% enriched, Weapons grade is 85+%. The critical mass of a weapons grade spheroid (which could be imploded) is much much lower than HEU. To get a really large bang from a CE imploded weapons grade pit, you need to put in more material. (Remember the max efficiency of boosted devices..) More material means chances of accidental criticality are higher. An accidental explosion can create local areas of criticality and generate a yield in excess of a KT. Even a levitated pit breaking lose and coming in contact with the surrounding shell can cause criticality. High yield, CE imploded fission weapons are therefore considered unsafe and not used by *any* nuclear power that has the capability to build radiation imploded weapons.

Cut out the snark.
Last edited by SSridhar on 05 Mar 2017 07:01, edited 2 times in total.
Reason: Removed the last line. No need for personal attacks.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby ramana » 02 Mar 2017 22:07

sudeepj, Also consider the critical mass of both heavy metals U235 and PU.

And now, now, no need to get personal.
I know both of you having met personally.

Lets not go there.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby RoyG » 03 Mar 2017 05:48

I've done some fresh thinking wrt the latest ABM tests in relation to our incremental force build up on the border, cold start, and Pakistan's tac nuke strategy:

+ Prahaar and AAD use the same canister system. This means we can easily deploy ~ 1kt nuclear tipped Prahaar at forward operating bases alongside AAD or in place of it and Pakistan won't be able to tell the difference.

+ If we preemptively exercise cold start, we can salvo fire 1-2 nuclear tipped Prahaar missiles along w/ ones sporting conventional warheads overwhelming any existing/future AD systems and striking their bases housing Nasr system.

+ This amounts to dominating Pakistan at the first rung of the escalation ladder by at least partially degrading any sort of nuclear response to IBG's crossing the IB should they decide to do so.

+ This gives our formations more deployment flexibility on Pakistani territory by forcing the PA to shift their systems further West to avoid being eliminated in a first strike.

+ This also forces the PA to use counter-value assets on our bases to maintain response parity making it very expensive for them. It also gives our actual AAD and PDV systems a chance to destroy them away from the cities.

+ Coupled w/ effective counterforce targeting due to <10 m accuracy and limited to ~1-5 kt coupled w/ IBG's taking only shallow bites of territory we may even be able to neutralize any sort of movement up the escalation ladder by dominating them at the first rung.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby shiv » 04 Mar 2017 17:20

sudeepj wrote:
HEU is 20% enriched, Weapons grade is 85+%. The critical mass of a weapons grade spheroid (which could be imploded) is much much lower than HEU. To get a really large bang from a CE imploded weapons grade pit, you need to put in more material. (Remember the max efficiency of boosted devices..) More material means chances of accidental criticality are higher. An accidental explosion can create local areas of criticality and generate a yield in excess of a KT. Even a levitated pit breaking lose and coming in contact with the surrounding shell can cause criticality. High yield, CE imploded fission weapons are therefore considered unsafe and not used by *any* nuclear power that has the capability to build radiation imploded weapons.

Thank you for being specific. Not sure why you weren't the first time I asked. Have you any references to point out that nothing higher than 20% U235 is used as tamper around the fusion fuel in a secondary. I have not seen any. In fact I have not even seen any references about the mass of tamper in a secondary and the idea that it could exceed criticality. Or even a reference that a cylindrical geometry of a tamper amounting to a near critical mass would become easily critical. To me these details are simply not available online. But you are rolling it off as if you have been making weapons yourself which is not convincing to me.

It appears that you seem to have forgotten (or not realized at all) that your "easily answered" post was about a tamper in a secondary, and not the configuration or fissile material mass of a primary. And you are telling me about large near-critical masses in a primary. The original posts still exist and I have linked them above in case you should want to refresh your memory. I could charitably say that this was an inadvertent misunderstanding on your part and not a deliberate moving of goalpost.

In these discussions everyone posts what is already online and weapons designers don't post so I would like to see proof. Even Wiki will do because they have cross refs that can be checked. All the physics you have posted is available online but like I said I have not seen the 20% figure as an upper limit. Will provide a reference if you want. Or is your guesswork being passed as fact? Are you going to say it was guesswork now that I have asked? You did that once before.

Ultimately the yield in boosted fission weapons as well as in staged implosion weapons is large mainly because of fission caused by high energy fusion neutrons and not because fusion provides the yield. I repeat that even a design that uses staged implosion to simply compress another mass of fission fuel would also give a very large bang and still not be this magical 'thermonuclear weapon". That is what is meant by the idea that the line between boosted weapons and thermonuclear weapons has been blurred. The true "hydrogen bomb" does not exist. Your anger and irritation do not make anything any more convincing. You and I are reading the same references and that is pretty obvious.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby disha » 04 Mar 2017 23:49

shiv wrote:Ultimately the yield in boosted fission weapons as well as in staged implosion weapons is large mainly because of fission caused by high energy fusion neutrons and not because fusion provides the yield. I repeat that even a design that uses staged implosion to simply compress another mass of fission fuel would also give a very large bang and still not be this magical 'thermonuclear weapon". That is what is meant by the idea that the line between boosted weapons and thermonuclear weapons has been blurred. The true "hydrogen bomb" does not exist. Your anger and irritation do not make anything any more convincing. You and I are reading the same references and that is pretty obvious.


Daktaar saab nailed it.*

The fusion 'fuel' in a TN or a Sloika or a FBF is not to provide fuel to the bang but making the fission reactions very efficient. In a FBF., few 10s of grams of tritium is utilized. All of it packed into a small ping-pong ball equivalent** Again it is about bringing as many as possible atoms to fission in the shortest time possible. In that sense, fusion 'fuel's like LiD and Tritium are mere catalysts that make the fission efficient. In the process they also burn up., but the ratio of fusion energy to fission energy is very low. In efficient TU's the yield output of fusion fuel is mere 15% of the total yield output. Of course changing the staging process., creating a fission-fusion-fission stage to yield 50 MT equivalent will result in variations of fusion yield to fission yield.

This also means in essence you can have a supercritical mass which is supercritical at normal density of Pu or HEU which only if compressed to a particular density will go supercritical but stay sub critical by design (my design: thin cylindrical rods of plutonium separated by enriched LiD with a neutron absorber placed in the hollow of the cylinder., withdrawn during arming and filled with tritium gas for example)

Tsar Bomba was a designed for 100 MT and tested to 57 MT., and the U tampers were replaced by lead tampers eliminating the fast fission stage and hence had mostly fusion energy., that is at the other end of the spectrum.***

In that sense all TU designs are [fusion boosted] fission boosted fusion boosted fission...

Point is once the underlying physics & mathematics is understood., it is just a "simple" engineering step to design and field a weapon. The need to test or field a MT yield war head is pure fetish. In fact a MT yield war head generally does not get used and creates the affect of overtly-offensive-deterence! It does not scare the enemy., but will allow the enemy to brand you as a maniac. Which is what US successfully did to FSU.

*Of course he has a knack of putting several thoughts in simple words.
** As attested by somebody in the know. Yes all the tritium in a FBF is confined in a ping pong ball size container which is replaced regularly in armed weapons sitting in missile silos.
*** Tsar bomba (57-100 MT) was a 2700 kg 8mtrs by 3mtrs behemoth which even the mighty GSLV MkIII would be hard pressed to carry it for pinpoint delivery back to a target.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby shiv » 07 Mar 2017 08:30


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Re: Deterrence

Postby ShauryaT » 07 Mar 2017 22:49

^If above is true and no reason not to believe so, confirms what was expected. No one arms their missiles with a single 20 KT or 200 KT. They pack it with the maximum the missile can wield and with the technology levels the nation can afford.

It is interesting that China conducted a series of tests in 94-96, presumably to validate their future warhead designs. While at about the same time Indian scientific leadership was claiming that no tests were "needed". Fortunately, the leadership was overridden by the nuclear policy board at BARC, led by AN Prasad, where a majority of scientists did see a need for a test and hence 1998.

I guess, even after the ability to put 10 warheads, they still retain a single 5.5 MT option!!

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Re: Deterrence

Postby ramana » 07 Mar 2017 23:04

Shaurya, Last night NPR had a segment on World Affairs Council with a retired SD expert. Chaz Freeman.
He was saying China has 45-60 ICBMS as minimal force for deterrence. Rest are regional. He thinks they will double the numbers as Trump rearms and deploys ABM.

So India will face higher numbers.
Nukes are expensive and can bankrupt.
Ombaba committed $1T over several decades for rearm.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby disha » 08 Mar 2017 00:35

^Once you commission a warhead and an ICBM in., you just do not decommission it overnight. You keep it around for its 'deterrence' value. The 5.5 MT once are 'city busters'., very inaccurate and mostly for strike back., no country would like to lose any city even LA to a nuclear bum., however big or small it is. This is not some July 4 Independence day movie where the Prez is happy to lose LA to get rid of one alien dish.

The US nuclear SSBN strike back capability has 16-24 missile complement with accuracy enough for first-strike if needed., and each carries MIRV around 100-500 KT. Chinese are also shifting towards smaller, accurate and reliable to deliver warheads.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby ramana » 08 Mar 2017 00:44

Disha, Have you thought about 'grapes are sour' folktale?

KS garu had the following reasons for settling for fission based nukes:
- 1974 test was weaponized as an aircraft bomb by late 1980s thanks to Hamlet to do or not to do mindset of Nehru Gandhi family.
- Any new test would upset the US led NPT structure and bring down the wrath of Khan on India.
- US did not have objections to an aircraft based deterrent which in effect is a regional deterrent and wont knock down P-5 club.
- After POK-Tests and controversy over the results, his logic did not change. As its not here nor there. So stick to the known.

To stick to KS prescription like KS Smriti in a changing world is suicidal.

After receiving feedback he agreed that IUCNA does not prohibit a future PM from testing if it was felt needed at that time.

He wanted IUCNA to get out of the London Group of sanctions imposed after 1974 test.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby disha » 08 Mar 2017 09:06

Ramana'ji my response was for Shaurya'ji.

Currently the focus should be on delivery platforms and improving the strike back quality. We need at least 3 SSBNs on constant patrol (that means at least 6 SSBNs to be commissioned) each carrying at least 4 rounds of 3-MIRV (or 12 bums) IRBM. A total of 36 50-100 KT warheads. IRBM needs to be very accurate.

Improving the yield or rather the efficiency of the bums is a ongoing process. It needs to be constantly researched and improved and testing strategies need to be kept ready in case a window opens up or a statement needs to be made. But not for the reason for a "big bum" but for the reason of the most "sexy (technically) bum" which a human can achieve and is at the pinnacle of technological achievement.

However for demonstrable proof of such technological achievement., one does not need to have a bum blast! Rather come up with implementations of nuclear rocket thrusters. Heck as a nation we have not created and operationalized a radio-isotope thermoelectric generator. Leave alone dreaming or designing next generation nuclear rocket thrusters. Where is the dream to build a nuclear thrust rocket that goes at Warp-0.1 ? That is 1/10th the speed of light?

It is almost 2 decades since Shakti-II and year after year., a caterwaul starts about our incapability of a big bum! Okay., we do not have a big bum and hence incapable., now can we move forward? How can we prove that our nuclear technology is advanced? Or even if we prove that we are the only nation that has nuclear propulsion that takes us around at 1% speed of light we will still caterwaul of our bums?

IUCNA was important., all the shitty-bitty/emptyPT/yenyessJi 3-4 letter word treaties had curtailed our economic growth and made us dependent on oil. The dolt nehru dynasty did not realize that cheap energy is basis for a civilization. Any civilization. They forgot the story of agni or prometheus. They forgot that to make textile, grow food, supply clean water, build roads, transport goods, provide services, produce medicines, educate people - all of it requires cheap energy. Till 1974 they did nothing and from 1975-95 India had 2 lost decades. At the same time 1975-1995 are two decades in the past. We survived those two decades without a big bum! What we cannot survive is costly & curtailed energy.

With IUCNA, we can now start building our nuclear reactors and start powering our homes. In effect, IUCNA has bypassed NSG.

---

I realized again (and again) that China is in NSG but not in MTCR and India is in MTCR but not in NSG. This is a monkey trap for China. Without MTCR., China does not have any wherewithal to develop next generation delivery platforms. It will not have any wherewithal to counter next generation delivery platforms. In both aspects it is severely curtailed and with every passing year, it is falling behind.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby shiv » 08 Mar 2017 10:10

I though a discussion would come up about that post.

It is claimed that there is a 5.5 megaton warhead. But China has only ever tested 4 megatons once and 3 megatons 2-3 times. The last time was in the 70s. How do they get 5.5 megatons without testing?

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Re: Deterrence

Postby shiv » 08 Mar 2017 10:26

disha wrote:^Once you commission a warhead and an ICBM in., you just do not decommission it overnight. .

..but after 30 years you have to start wondering whether the damn thing will work - with any Tritium having lost its fizzle and the surrounding electronics (wires/insulation etc) , explosives and chemicals constantly bombarded with radiation of Plutonium, Uranium, Polonium and what-have-you.

Even a plastic chair exposed to sun in your backyard degrades greatly in 3-4 years, becomes discoloured and brittle.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby disha » 08 Mar 2017 11:14

:-) They have to constantly reassemble the warhead., anew including the explosives & electonics & also recycle the Pu!

Polonium half life is 134 days., so over 30 years the polonium is useless unless replenished frequently.

Hence either the Chinese ppt is FUD or they are maintaining their big bums at a huge cost.

My rant was based on the assumption that such designs are still being kept around., which now I considerably doubt. All the more reason for the move towards smaller bums.

A big 5.5 MT bum will actually yield some 20-30 smaller bums!!

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Re: Deterrence

Postby ramana » 08 Mar 2017 12:25

Even Indian bombs are about 30 years old and probably undergoing refresh based on their design aging characteristics. POK II tested ten year old bomb in S2. Something to note.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby shiv » 08 Mar 2017 13:23

ShauryaT wrote:
It is interesting that China conducted a series of tests in 94-96, presumably to validate their future warhead designs!

All less than 95 kt. Why would they want fizzles in future given that they have their big bum? The answer is out there is anyone wants to grok.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby Rudradev » 09 Mar 2017 05:13

What do we know about THAAD? How is it different from conventional ABM defenses, other than the fact that its interceptor missiles are kinetic-only?

Is it within either our grasp or PRC's to design and implement something like THAAD? Is it a priority for PRC, and should it be a priority for us?

If we successfully implemented and deployed a THAAD-like system, how would it affect our deterrence calculus w.r.t. PRC and TSP? I ask because THAAD is apparently being deployed in the NoKo-SoKo context (i.e. to intercept missiles launched from a very near source and presumably with a very short flight time... similar to the threats we are likely to face).

Added Later: Two data points. (1) In 2012, Ashton Carter had referenced joint development of a BMD shield as a key point of expected defense cooperation between India and the US. (2) Very recently, after Trump became the POTUS, the PRC (amongst a long list of demands bloviated via their public "Global Times" mouthpiece) issued a warning to the US not to arm India with sophisticated weaponry.

The PRC has their knickers in a knot about the US THAAD being positioned in SoKo and possibly also Japan.

My sense is that the combination of Agni IV/V, K-4, established MIRV capability, and demonstrably advanced BMD would completely change strategic equations in Asia, and Beijing knows it. None of their fancy aircraft carriers or J-20s or anything else will matter once we acquire that. They will never be able to challenge India's territorial integrity after that, which is why they are now pushing towards CPEC development at breakneck speed (to present the world with a fait accompli and secure the multilateral buy-in of many nations into CPEC before we consolidate such capabilities).

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Re: Deterrence

Postby shiv » 09 Mar 2017 07:17

disha wrote:
Currently the focus should be on delivery platforms and improving the strike back quality. We need at least 3 SSBNs on constant patrol (that means at least 6 SSBNs to be commissioned) each carrying at least 4 rounds of 3-MIRV (or 12 bums) IRBM. A total of 36 50-100 KT warheads. IRBM needs to be very accurate.

Improving the yield or rather the efficiency of the bums is a ongoing process. It needs to be constantly researched and improved and testing strategies need to be kept ready in case a window opens up or a statement needs to be made. But not for the reason for a "big bum" but for the reason of the most "sexy (technically) bum" which a human can achieve and is at the pinnacle of technological achievement.

Some quotes from a recent Cranegie Endowment :shock: article by Gurmeet Kanwal
http://carnegieendowment.org/2016/06/30 ... -pub-63988
K.Subramanyam said:
“a force of around 60 deliverable warheads could meet adequately India’s need for a minimum deterrent.”13 For delivering these 60 warheads, Subrahmanyam advocated the development of 20 Prithvi missiles and 20 Agni missiles. The remaining 20 warheads were slated for delivery by air force bomber and fighter-bomber aircraft. Subrahmanyam argued that “if India were to develop a modest force of 20 Agni missiles, the India-China ratio in deterrence capability will still be higher than the present China-U.S. ratio.”14 He did not visualize the need for SSBNs armed with SLBMs. Nor did he make a major distinction between low-yield fission weapons and those in the thermonuclear class, instead emphasizing the importance of solid-fuel missiles: “Whether the warheads are of fifteen kilotons fission or 120-150 kilotons (thermonuclear warheads), both are bound to have a deterrent effect. . . . What is absolutely crucial for credible deterrence is the solid-fuelled missile of appropriate ranges. That is what India needs to concentrate on.”15


Jasjit Singh said:
The exact size of the arsenal needed at the end-point will need to be worked out by defence planners based on a series of factors. But at this point it is difficult to visualise an arsenal with anything more than a double-digit quantum of warheads. It may be prudent to even plan on the basis of a lower end figure of say 2–3 dozen (survivable) nuclear warheads by the end of 10–15 years. It is necessary to keep in mind the fact that with the passage of time, deterrence decay factors will lead to the requirement of a smaller arsenal rather than a larger one.16


Rasgotra:
Maharajkrishna Rasgotra, a former foreign secretary, held the view that “some 30 bombs of Hiroshima strength committed against five major targets in Pakistan, 60 deployed against eight to ten targets in China, and another 30 held in reserve for contingencies and deployment at sea, should adequately meet the needs of minimum deterrence. This number (120 warheads in all) allows for possible losses in an enemy first strike and leaves enough for a devastating counterattack.”17


Gen Sundarji
General K. Sundarji, a former Indian chief of the army staff and a perceptive military thinker, was perhaps the first analyst in India to write about the military aspects of India’s nuclear deterrence. He advocated a nuclear force structure of approximately 150 warheads mounted almost entirely on a Prithvi-Agni missile force.


Brig Vijay Nair
Brigadier Vijay K. Nair suggested a force level of 132 nuclear warheads of different types, including weapons in the megaton range.19 For delivery, besides bomber and fighter-bomber aircraft, he recommended five SSBNs with sixteen SLBMs on each, and 48 ballistic missiles—twelve SRBMs and 36 medium-range ballistic missiles (MRBMs).He wrote: “India must ensure adequate reserves to provide fail safe assurance of her strategy and yet maintain an adequate force structure after hostilities cease. An additional reserve of two weapon systems is required for each planed autonomous strike and a minimum of 20 percent of the entire force structure should be available for post-strike security imperatives.” Out of a total requirement of 111 nuclear warheads for retaliatory strikes against Pakistan (seventeen targets) and China (eight targets), he felt that 37 warheads were required for strikes and an additional 74 as a “65 percent reserve for reliability.” He added another 22 as a “post-war reserve,” taking the total to 132 warheads.20


Rear Adm Raja Menon
Menon estimated that the modernized Chinese arsenal would comprise 596 warheads after 2010. He suggested that up to 2030 India should maintain an all-missile, land-based force of five regiments with twelve missiles each (survivability being ensured by concealment and rail-garrison mobility), with 50 percent of the missiles having up to four independently targetable warheads per missile. He felt that this arsenal would suffice to withstand the largest possible first strike launched by China and still leave enough missiles remaining to inflict unacceptable damage on China in a second strike. Menon was of the view that India would need a number of hardened silos “if the rate of degradation of the rail garrison missile force is judged to be too rapid.” Against Pakistan, he proposed a force of 200 cruise missiles, 36 of them nuclear tipped, because cruise missiles are the least provocative. He visualized the “handing over of Indian deterrence from the land-based force to the sea-based force . . . over a ten year period . . . [to be] completed by 2030,” and suggested a nuclear force of six SSBNs, each armed with twelve SLBMs. In his view, each SSBN should carry at least twelve missiles and, as India has ambitions to create multiple independently targetable reentry vehicles (MIRVs), each missile could, in the future, carry up to ten warheads with yields between 250 and 400 kilotons. Writes Menon, “Such a force would give India a warhead strength of 216 (6 x MIRV) in a pre-launch scenario and probably 380 warheads in a scenario with adequate strategic warning and with five boats deployed.


Bharat Karnad
recommends targeting each location with four warheads, each of which has a 3-kilometer circular error probable (CEP).25 As it would take time to build a plutonium stockpile, and to design and develop both the intermediate-range ballistic missiles (IRBMs) and the SSBNs necessary for this targeting plan, Bharat Karnad suggests that India’s nuclear arsenal be gradually built up over a period of three decades to a total of 328 nuclear warheads, as given in table 1.26


R.Subramaniam
R. R. Subramanian, a senior analyst at IDSA and a physicist by training, is of the view that India needs at least 425 warheads if the combined efficiency of the delivery systems is assumed to be 30 percent. At 30 percent efficiency—30 percent of weapons hit and destroy the targets at which they were fired—approximately 125 to 130 warheads could be counted upon to destroy their intended targets. Of these, he estimates that 25 to 30 would be needed to target Pakistan and about 100 would target China.30 To assume that India’s nuclear force would deliver an overall efficiency of only 30 percent is very pessimistic. However, in the absence of accurate factual information about important components of the nuclear force like the targeting and delivery systems, it is hard to contend that a higher efficiency estimate is any more realistic.31


Lt Gen Pahwa
Lieutenant General Pran Pahwa (retired) recommended in a study for the United Service Institution of India (USI) that India’s deterrence should be based on 182 warheads.32 He based his calculations on the assumption that China is likely to employ two warheads each to destroy every Indian warhead, with efficiency as high as 70 to 90 percent.33 10 to 30 percent of Indian warheads would survive a Chinese counterforce first strike. If India had 182 warheads, China would need to fire 364 warheads to eliminate India’s arsenal. Given a Chinese arsenal of about 200–250 warheads, a Chinese first strike would leave about 36 Indian missiles unharmed and an equal number of Chinese missiles unlaunched. Since the numbers remaining would be matched, China would be deterred from launching a first strike in the first place. This argument assumes a generous 80 percent success rate for China, and does not take into account the possibility that a Chinese first strike is likely to combine countervalue with counterforce targets.34

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Re: Deterrence

Postby ShauryaT » 09 Mar 2017 07:33

^99% of the article is a rehash of a year 2000 article by the author on IDSA. Also, some of the gurus such as K. Subramanyam and K. Sunderji had already revised their estimates from the one quoted in the article or early estimates. My suspicion (not confirmed) that the most hawkish of all in those times, RADM Raja Menon (retd) has tempered his view points now. Also, BK is the only one I know of, who has put an estimate of the cost structure to wield the force as per that table. Again, much of this is now 17 years old.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby ramana » 09 Mar 2017 07:55

Rudradev US strategic community does not count on ABM. It's a different bucket.
The primary role of nuke forces is to prevent crossing the threshold. ABM come into play after that.
So relying on combined forces means primary already broken.

BTW I too had come with numbers in BRM. Only can't find the article link.
It was 100 targets, two warheads, per target, plus 100 for reliability and a few more for pipeline. Total ~400

It was way before all these experts .

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Re: Deterrence

Postby ShauryaT » 09 Mar 2017 08:46

ramana: +1 on ABM. Good to invest in it but not to be confused with the primary deterrent. What guarantees S.Korea and Japanese deterrence is the US nuclear umbrella. But, that is also their problem, it is not in their control.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby Avarachan » 09 Mar 2017 10:09

disha wrote:IUCNA was important., all the shitty-bitty/emptyPT/yenyessJi 3-4 letter word treaties had curtailed our economic growth and made us dependent on oil. The dolt nehru dynasty did not realize that cheap energy is basis for a civilization. Any civilization. They forgot the story of agni or prometheus. They forgot that to make textile, grow food, supply clean water, build roads, transport goods, provide services, produce medicines, educate people - all of it requires cheap energy. Till 1974 they did nothing and from 1975-95 India had 2 lost decades.


It seems that in 1965, approximately, Prime Minister Shastri made the decision to test a nuclear weapon so as to make India a nuclear-weapon state (NWS) according to the NPT. That's why both he and Dr. Homi Bhabha were murdered by the CIA in January 1966. (The NPT was opened up for signature in 1968, and the cut-off date to conduct a nuclear test and be recognized as an NWS was 1967.) That's why the Indian government has proceeded so cautiously for the past few decades. This is also why Prime Minister Modi (BJP) has shown great respect for the legacy of Prime Minister Shastri (Congress Party).

By the way, I've noticed that a number of Indian-American members are importing the American mindset of viewing one's domestic political opponents as the nation's enemies into their analyses of Indian politics and history. This is foolish and dangerous.

In part due to this, the USA is drifting towards serious civil strife. This is well known. This should not happen to India.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby ShauryaT » 09 Mar 2017 21:16

Avarachan: If you seek to make the above charge that the CIA or some non-natural events by foreign parties were responsible for their deaths, from the realm of a conspiracy theory to the world of a credible charge, we need some extra ordinary proofs for these extra ordinary charges.

You are right about members confusing their political choices to be the same as policy choices, whereby the people making the choice becomes the most important factor. I pay my bills through selling things and a lesson learnt is people justify their emotional decisions using logic and that is what we do see many times by many members.

Hope you are doing well.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby Pratyush » 09 Mar 2017 21:34

One of the set on numbers quoted in the post above neatly ties in with the figures of usable missiles in the SFC I heard from a paan wala in Jan.

I will not confirm which one on an open forum.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby dinesha » 20 Mar 2017 13:08

Broadsword: After a Pakistani TNW strike, India can go for Pakistan's nuclear arsenal: Former NSA Shivshankar Menon
http://ajaishukla.blogspot.in/2017/03/a ... -will.html

Now Menon, in his recent book entitled “Choices: Inside the making of Indian foreign policy”, indicates that India’s threat of “massive retaliation” need not involve nuclear strikes against Pakistani urban centres (“counter-value”, or CV strikes). Instead, India’s “massive response” could take the form of targeting Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal (“counter-force”, or CF strikes), leaving that adversary with a greatly diminished capability of striking back at India.

In a key paragraph in his book, Menon --- who, as NSA, oversaw nuclear targeting policy --- analyses the meaning of a “massive” strike. He says: “There would be little incentive, once Pakistan had taken hostilities to the nuclear level, for India to limit its response, since that would only invite further escalation by Pakistan. India would hardly risk giving Pakistan the chance to carry out a massive nuclear strike after the Indian response to Pakistan using tactical nuclear weapons. In other worlds, Pakistani tactical nuclear weapon use would effectively free India to undertake a comprehensive first strike against Pakistan.”



Interesting debate going about about the same in the twitter. Extract..
Ajai Shukla‏ @ajaishukla
Former NSA @ShivshankaMenon says "massive response" after Pak TNW strike could be directed again Pak nuclear arsenal http://ajaishukla.blogspot.in/2017/03/a ... -will.html

Rajesh Rajagopalan‏ @RRajagopalanJNU Mar 18
@ajaishukla Possible that too much is being read into a stray, wrongly worded sentence. Remember his 2010 NDC lecture controversy?

Vipin Narang‏ @NarangVipin Mar 18
@RRajagopalanJNU @ajaishukla I read the para many times--it is not an error. He lays out the logic, and it is strong. But execution is prob

Shashank Joshi‏Verified account @shashj Mar 18
@NarangVipin I agree it's not an error. But I don't think this suggests it is now Indian policy. @RRajagopalanJNU @ajaishukla

Vipin Narang‏ @NarangVipin Mar 18
@shashj @RRajagopalanJNU @ajaishukla i don't think it can be. But suggestion that it should be from such an authoritative voice is important

Shashank Joshi‏Verified account @shashj Mar 18
@NarangVipin Yes, completely agree there. More than that, it's a suggestion it should *and might* be. @RRajagopalanJNU @ajaishukla

Gurmeet Kanwal‏ @gurmeetkanwal Mar 18
@shashj @NarangVipin @RRajagopalanJNU @ajaishukla Pakistani view: No Indian PM will launch MR for Pak use of TNWs agnst Ind army on Pak soil

Ajai Shukla‏ @ajaishukla Mar 18
@gurmeetkanwal Not just Pakistan's view. Mine too. And probably anyone's who's seen India's reactions @shashj @NarangVipin @RRajagopalanJNU

Rajesh Rajagopalan‏ @RRajagopalanJNU Mar 19
@ajaishukla @gurmeetkanwal @shashj @NarangVipin +1!

EnerStrat Consulting‏ @enerstrat Mar 18
@ajaishukla @ShivshankaMenon As an A-Corps offr, How will a tac attack be identified and relayed? How long do you think this will take? Tank rad protection adequate?

Ajai Shukla‏ @ajaishukla Mar 18
@enerstrat As part of an advancing Indian combat command, just about a squadron of tanks would be K-killed by a Pak TNW. @ShivshankaMenon

EnerStrat Consulting‏ @enerstrat Mar 18
@ajaishukla @ShivshankaMenon "just about"- that's 14 tanks isn't it? Do all tanks have Geiger counters? I read that only the T-90s do? I enjoy your writing btw .

Gen_Chohan‏ @strat_one Mar 18
@ajaishukla A counter force strike howsoever massive is bound leave residual capability with Pak. A mixed response best. @ShivshankaMenon

Ajai Shukla‏ @ajaishukla Mar 18
@strat_one So have your choice. You'd want them to strike back with full capability or residual capability only? @ShivshankaMenon

D Luther‏ @ldev2007 Mar 19
@ajaishukla @strat_one @ShivshankaMenon An Indian CF strike in response to Pak TNW will leave only a residual Pak capability for Indian BMD.

Gen_Chohan‏ @strat_one Mar 19
@ldev2007
Enemy needs to be punished too. CF must be mixed with some CV retaining some assets for later.
@ajaishukla @ShivshankaMenon

D Luther‏ @ldev2007 Mar 19
@strat_one @ajaishukla @ShivshankaMenon That is true but priority must be to eliminate/reduce Pak strike capability so Indian BMD can handle

RAJ‏ @rajfortyseven Mar 18
@ajaishukla No. "Comprehensive first strike" & rest of the para very carefully worded by @ShivshankaMenon And it is NOT only CF strike!

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Re: Deterrence

Postby Gagan » 20 Mar 2017 20:18

Taking out Pakistan's nuclear assets is a given if there is all out war. I don't think pakistan's use of TNW is needed for this.

What might be suggested, is that the Indo-Pak treaty on not attacking each other's nuclear sites may come under a cloud should one side use N weapons. That will give India a free hand to take out Kahuta, Kushab, Pinstech, and the other odd known Uranium enrichment sites.

BTW, does Pakistan list its uranium enrichment sites as Nuclear sites with India, under that treaty? If not, then those sites will be fair game for IAF or missile strikes.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby RKumar » 20 Mar 2017 20:48

After first strike, all treaty papers can be used to wipe my a*se. Who is going to read what a specific treaty says, response must come within minutes if not hours. Any wait longer than that we are giving chance to enemy for second/third strike.

Clean the mess with carefully pre-selected hand picked targets. Hit them hard, to completely destroy the enemy.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby ramana » 21 Mar 2017 01:39

dinesha, In the 70s the US also did trade studies on Counter Force vs. Counter value and found that casualties inflicted were quite close. So it doesn't matter.

Counter Force the diplomats prefer as it sounds humane!

BTW, SS Menonji is not very credible. He made flippant remarks on nuclear doctrine in a speech and when KS garu asked he said no one noticed.
So not much a sharp knife in my opinion.


It think someone of the twitter mentioned this.

Massive retaliation is the only doctrine Pakistan fears that is what deters them. /\

Any tit for tat retaliation as the Gurez loser, Kanwal wants is a non-starter.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby Gagan » 21 Mar 2017 04:52

China Has Been Transferring Nuclear Technology To Pakistan - Former Chinese Nuclear Engineer

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2cokhPjij_4

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Re: Deterrence

Postby SSridhar » 21 Mar 2017 15:34

India may abandon its 'no first use' nuclear policy: Expert - PTI
India may abandon its 'no first use' nuclear policy and launch a preemptive strike against Pakistan if it feared that Islamabad was likely to use the weapons first, a top nuclear expert on South Asia has claimed.

The remarks by Vipin Narang, an expert on South Asian nuclear strategy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, before a Washington audience was though a negation of India's stated policy of 'no first use'.

During the 2017 Carnegie International Nuclear Policy Conference, Narang said, "There is increasing evidence that India will not allow Pakistan to go first".

He said India "may" abandon the policy and launch a preemptive strike against Pakistan if it believed that Pakistan was going to use nuclear weapons or most likely the tactical nuclear weapons against it.


But, he pointed out, India's preemptive strike may not be conventional strikes and would also be aimed at Pakistan's missiles launchers for tactical battlefield nuclear warheads.

"India's opening salvo may not be conventional strikes trying to pick off just Nasr batteries in the theatre, but a full 'comprehensive counterforce strike' that attempts to completely disarm Pakistan of its nuclear weapons so that India does not have to engage in iterative tit-for-tat exchanges and expose its own cities to nuclear destruction," Narang said.

He said this thinking surfaces not from fringe extreme voices or retired Indian Army officers frustrated by the lack of resolve they believe their government has shown in multiple provocations, but from no less than a former Commander of India's Strategic Forces, Lt Gen BS Nagal.

It also comes perhaps more importantly and authoritatively, from the highly-respected and influential former national security adviser Shivshankar Menon in his 2016 book 'Choices: Inside the Making of Indian Foreign Policy', the nuclear strategist said.

"Serious voices, who cannot be ignored, seem to suggest that this is where India may be heading, and certainly wants to head," Narang said.

"So our conventional understanding of South Asia's nuclear dynamics and who, in fact, might use nuclear weapons first and in what mode may need a hard rethink given these emerging authoritative voices in India who are not content to cede the nuclear initiative to Pakistan," he said, adding that this would mark a major shift in Indian strategy if implemented.

"In short, we may be witnessing what I call a 'decoupling' of Indian nuclear strategy between China and Pakistan."

Sameer Lalwani, senior associate and deputy director South Asia at the Stimson Center, an American think-tank, said Narang's remarks challenged the conventional wisdom of South Asia's strategic stability problem.

Based on recent statements and writings of high-level national security officials (serving and retired), Narang argued that India may be exhibiting a "seismic shift" in its nuclear strategy from 'no first use' to a preemptive nuclear counterforce allowing for escalation dominance or a "splendid first strike" against Pakistan, Lalwani said.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby kit » 21 Mar 2017 17:24

SSridhar wrote:India may abandon its 'no first use' nuclear policy: Expert - PTI
India may abandon its 'no first use' nuclear policy and launch a preemptive strike against Pakistan if it feared that Islamabad was likely to use the weapons first, a top nuclear expert on South Asia has claimed.

The remarks by Vipin Narang, an expert on South Asian nuclear strategy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, before a Washington audience was though a negation of India's stated policy of 'no first use'.

During the 2017 Carnegie International Nuclear Policy Conference, Narang said, "There is increasing evidence that India will not allow Pakistan to go first".

He said India "may" abandon the policy and launch a preemptive strike against Pakistan if it believed that Pakistan was going to use nuclear weapons or most likely the tactical nuclear weapons against it.


But, he pointed out, India's preemptive strike may not be conventional strikes and would also be aimed at Pakistan's missiles launchers for tactical battlefield nuclear warheads.

"India's opening salvo may not be conventional strikes trying to pick off just Nasr batteries in the theatre, but a full 'comprehensive counterforce strike' that attempts to completely disarm Pakistan of its nuclear weapons so that India does not have to engage in iterative tit-for-tat exchanges and expose its own cities to nuclear destruction," Narang said.

He said this thinking surfaces not from fringe extreme voices or retired Indian Army officers frustrated by the lack of resolve they believe their government has shown in multiple provocations, but from no less than a former Commander of India's Strategic Forces, Lt Gen BS Nagal.

It also comes perhaps more importantly and authoritatively, from the highly-respected and influential former national security adviser Shivshankar Menon in his 2016 book 'Choices: Inside the Making of Indian Foreign Policy', the nuclear strategist said.

"Serious voices, who cannot be ignored, seem to suggest that this is where India may be heading, and certainly wants to head," Narang said.

"So our conventional understanding of South Asia's nuclear dynamics and who, in fact, might use nuclear weapons first and in what mode may need a hard rethink given these emerging authoritative voices in India who are not content to cede the nuclear initiative to Pakistan," he said, adding that this would mark a major shift in Indian strategy if implemented.

"In short, we may be witnessing what I call a 'decoupling' of Indian nuclear strategy between China and Pakistan."

Sameer Lalwani, senior associate and deputy director South Asia at the Stimson Center, an American think-tank, said Narang's remarks challenged the conventional wisdom of South Asia's strategic stability problem.

Based on recent statements and writings of high-level national security officials (serving and retired), Narang argued that India may be exhibiting a "seismic shift" in its nuclear strategy from 'no first use' to a preemptive nuclear counter force allowing for escalation dominance or a "splendid first strike" against Pakistan, Lalwani said.


Have been saying it for a long time now ! .. only problem is the small nukes which can easily be put on trucks and moved around.. India will need to target the cities that can house such nukes as well as a preemptive move against a jihadi nuke :twisted:

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Re: Deterrence

Postby Gagan » 21 Mar 2017 19:11

This is going to be music to the ears to several people around the world. For different and then similar reasons altogether.
From Washington DC to Beijing, this is going to be welcomed! This is exactly what they all wanted all along.

They will be gently nudging New Delhi and moving their geo-political pieces to try and ensure this happens

My two naya paisa

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Re: Deterrence

Postby Gagan » 21 Mar 2017 19:14

Pakistan has a desperate need to refine it N weapons technology, after the failure of its tests. They are desperately looking to China to help them out with this. They are expanding their program to include Poo warheads, even try out boosting them.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby sudeepj » 21 Mar 2017 23:25

One problem for the nuclear "Expertery" is that India has not allowed any glimpse into the technical side of things to the West, only some doctrinal issues have been talked about. Most powers, even Pakistan, have been more clear about their technology. China, Russia and the US have exchanged visits by experts to the deepest part of their technological establishment.

Hence there are repeated attempts to project the Indian capabilities as diminutive, in the hope that the powers that be will be goaded into showing something.. anything!

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Re: Deterrence

Postby sudeepj » 21 Mar 2017 23:26

Gagan wrote:Pakistan has a desperate need to refine it N weapons technology, after the failure of its tests. They are desperately looking to China to help them out with this. They are expanding their program to include Poo warheads, even try out boosting them.


We know how to extract tritium from the heavy water irradiated in the CANDU type reactors. Where are the Paks getting it?


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