US military, technology, arms, tactics

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 04 Nov 2018 21:27

Singha wrote:What is the point of a 500km tracking if still subject to earth curvature los limit?

At 500km out its radar floor height will be quite high and vlo bogies can still sneak around

The height of the mast mount aint changi


AEGIS Baseline 9.0 that is currently operational ushered in concurrent IAMD for the US Navy i.e. the BMD ships (Destroyers and Cruisers) upgraded with BL-9 can perform both the Ballistic Missile Defense, and Maritime point and Area Defense mission concurrently.

Meanwhile, the capability to execute exoatmosheric intercepts has increased dramatically both in terms of the threats (Target missile performance), all out range, and altitude coverage. SM-3 Block 1B, and SM-3 Block 2A increase that dramatically.

Another point that is often overlooked is that with the upcoming induction of the SM3 IIA, the US Navy will be able to cover pretty much all of LEO as far as an ASAT capability/role is concerned and with ships deployed around the world this opens up a lot of flexibility as a retaliatory action if someone starts to attack US space assets. SM3 IA has already demonstrated real ASAT capability more than a decade ago but this is not something they talk about very often but it isn't hard to do the math if one counts the number of fielded interceptors and number of available cells on DDGs available for growth.

Also, not sure where the 500km figure comes from as it is not an accurate representation when you are talking about a higher power 5000+ T/R module GaN S-Band face and an overall >50% increase in Power Supply relative to DDG-51 Flt. II. Best estimates for Ballistic Missile Warhead (RCS 0.03 m2) detection capability of the SPY-1 is around 300-350 km. The SPY-6 was required to track half the RCS at twice the range so you can develop a rough sense of what ranges it can get you if you hold warhead RCS constant.

You are looking at a 14 foot wide antenna and a 4th generation AESA ( 37 RMA SPY-6) compared to a 12 foot wide PESA (SPY-1) .

Image

Currently, the DDG can use forward deployed AN/TPY-2's for cuiing SM3's and are able to Launch SM3s on Remote before a ballistic Missile comes into the field of view of their SPY-1 radars (or it may not come into its FOV ever and the PIP is calculated and communicated to the interceptor by cooperative engagement). In the future with the SPY-6, with greater range, the reliance on forward deployed TPY-2s will be reduced as organic capability will be enhanced.

Additionally, with AEGIS Baseline 9 and beyond the US Navy now has NIFC-CA so the interceptor performance need not be restricted to SPY-1/6 radar horizon limitation as Launch on Remote, Forward Pass and Cooperative Fire Control level targeting is possible with the EA-18G, F-35C, E-2D and even with other forward deployed sips (Using E-2/EA-18G as gateways). CEC and NIFC-CA are the reason why the US Navy is buying 70 E-2Ds; It is not just to provide AEW to the Carrier Strike Group but to enable cooperative targeting using SM6 and future interceptors. Expect the "gateway" TTNT capability to also come on the Triton's via later upgrades.

Using NIFC-CA and either MADL (F-35) or TTNT data-link (EA-18G and E-2D) the Aegis ships with BL 9 can launch SM6 missiles even if the intended targets are outside their radar's horizon. This capability has already been fielded and it has been demonstrated on multiple occasions (Google - NIFC-CA).

The US Navy is now looking to a larger SM6 by upgrading its main motor to match the diameter of the SM3 Block 2A which should take its maximum range against subsonic or low supersonic targets to beyond 450-500 km for OTH targeting and should allow it to provide terminal defense against IRBM class missiles vs MRBM capability fielded with the existing SM6 missiles.

Finally, the US Navy and the Missile Defense Agency was ordered by the US Congress to demonstrate intercept capability of the SM3 Block IIA against a simple ICBM (exact language of the mandate below)

US 2018 Budget wrote:...not later than December 31, 2020 conduct a test to evaluate and demonstrate, if technologically feasible, the capability to defeat a simple intercontinental ballistic missile threat using the standard missile 3 block IIA missile interceptor.


^ If the Congress demands this capability from US Navy's deployed ships then one logical way to achieve this would be to require the much larger 69 RMA AMDR on the future large surface combatant which the US Navy has just begun working on for fielding in the next decade.

Singha wrote:May have some use in tbmd but how so vs sea skimmers and low flying manned platforms ?


The sea skimming threat will only partially be dealt with the SPY-6 and its of shoots. There is a dedicated X-Band radar for that, and the US Navy also plans on fielding a new GaN X-Band Radar (AN/SPQ-9B replacement) as an upgrade to this capability so that it can buddy up with SPY-6 and its derivatives on all destroyers and frigates. Although both radars are multi-mission, there is usually a distinction in terms of the specific missions they perform to support BMD, Point and fleet Area defense needs and other duties (ATC, Periscope detection.. etc).

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 05 Nov 2018 06:09


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby UlanBatori » 05 Nov 2018 08:54

Hi BrarjiL Inspired and serious question. Can u tell me if USAF planes carry 200-230GHz (anywhere in there) mmwave systems? How about USN (I know they must.. but not specific types of ships). Also if ur allowed to, power capabilities of either a/c systems or ship systems. Need to be able to estimate something in the aam admi civilian dunia. Best handhold I can see is to say: hey, xyz mil system uses this with so much power, so efficiency achievable is at least ......

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby UlanBatori » 05 Nov 2018 08:57

brar_w wrote:shiny black baby dancing

Vely vely intelesting, Reminds of of Philadelhia wind tunnel in the cold late nights of December 1996.... (they don't believe in heating).

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 05 Nov 2018 09:24

^ Not aware of many RF systems at that end of the spectrum that are currently deployed though some could be in testing as R&D/S&T programs. I know Raytheon was working on something in the 200+ GHz range for a SOCOM program a few years ago but don't remember which one. I don't have anything on power generation capability on combat aircraft though I am sure something exists out there as a baseline capability to substitute for a generic fighter or type of ship. Will try to see if I can find something that can help ballpark.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 09 Nov 2018 17:23

Jane's IDR update on the Next Generation Jammer - Mid Band. Interesting bit that the AN/ALQ-249 pods and the associated Ram Air Turbine will generate (and require) more than 6 times the amount of power generated by the pods they are replacing (ALQ-99).

Feel the noise: Next Generation Jammer brings electronic attack into the digital age
Jane's International Defence Review
30-Oct-2018
Richard Scott


The US Navy’s AN/ALQ-249 Next Generation Jammer will introduce high-power AESA technology and advanced software-based jamming techniques to disrupt and degrade hostile air-defence and ground communication systems. Richard Scott
reports

Two-and-a-half years after being contracted for the engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) phase of the US Navy’s (USN’s) AN/ALQ-249(V)1 Next Generation Jammer Mid-Band (NGJ-MB) system, Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems is now deep into systems integration activities, with pod flight testing due to start before the end of 2019.

The NGJ-MB development represents the first part of the USN’s long-term plan to augment, and eventually replace, the AN/ALQ-99 Tactical Jamming System (TJS) carried by the EA-18G Growler.

In big handfuls, AEA provides sanctuary to the carrier air wing – together with joint and coalition assets – by degrading the ‘red’ (hostile) kill chain, and so enabling the ‘blue’ (friendly) force to accomplish its mission. “This is absolutely a weapon system, and a very complicated one,” said Captain Michael Orr, Airborne Electronic Attack Systems and EA-6B Programs Office (PMA-234) programme manager in the Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR). “It’s a very important capability – one that not everybody understands.”

The primary job of the EA-18G is to jam radar and communications targets to support suppression of enemy air defences. The current variant of the AN/ALQ-99 TJS, evolved from the EA-6B Improved Capability III programme, incorporates mid-band and low-band jamming pods. In performing the AEA role, EA-18G aircraft are capable of carrying up to five jamming pods, two under each wing and one under the fuselage. Each jammer pod contains a ram air turbine generator, two selectable transmitter modules with associated antennas, and a universal exciter that is interfaced with, and controlled by, the onboard system and aircrew.

“The ALQ-99 is the mainstay of naval aviation for electronic warfare,” said Capt Orr. “And it will continue to be so even as we field the Next Generation Jammer [NGJ] ... NGJ will augment ALQ-99. They will fly together and I expect that ALQ-99 will stay in service for the life of the platform. Which specific pods we keep, and when we divest of them relative to NGJ, that’s something we will look at as we go.”

NAVAIR’s aim is that the AN/ALQ-249 pod, working with the organic AN/ALQ-218 receiver system and off-board assets, should deliver a significant enhancement to the EA-18G’s AEA capabilities while at the same time reducing operations and sustainment costs. The NGJ-MB system consists of two pods per aircraft (one pod per wing).

At the operational level, the need to introduce a step change in jamming capability is being driven by a series of threat developments, notably extended range integrated air-defence systems, digital radar processing techniques, and coherent/low probability of intercept radars. Also, rapid threat change has demanded a more agile and responsive architecture.Accordingly, NGJ-MB is intended to expand the current AN/ALQ-99 mission set to include non-kinetic attack against a full spectrum of agile and adaptive communications, datalinks, and non-traditional radio frequency (RF) targets. This demands a technical solution that is more precise in its jamming effects (regarding frequency range, coherency, pointing accuracy, spatial coverage, techniques, equivalent isotropically radiated power [EIRP], spectral purity, time, and polarisation), provide the ability to effectively engage enemy threats from increased stand-off distances, over a wide frequency range and field of regard, and deliver increased capacity (number of jamming assignments) against enemy targets.

In short, the performance expectations of the NGJ-MB system push the limits of power generation and jamming capability while constraining the materials and components to stricter size and weight requirements than the previous systems. Speaking at the Farnborough International Airshow in July 2018, Travis Slocumb, Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems’ vice-president for electronic warfare systems, said the company’s NGJ-MB solution has been engineered step-by-step to integrate gallium nitride (GaN)-based active electronically scanned array (AESA) antennas, an all-digital receiver and multi-channel techniques generator within a non-proprietary MOSA architecture. “Step 1 is to convert from free space, from airflow, to prime power using a state-of-the-art ram air turbine,” he said. “Then step 2, design a structure that meets the weight, size, and aerodynamic performance requirements for the Growler mission.

“That’s been a challenge. The weight constraint, and the weight-constrained design on this programme, has been something that’s been a focus for the whole team for the past several years, but we’ve managed to get there.

“Step 3, design and develop a powerplant and front-end – in this case based upon AESA technology – that supports the mission from an EIRP perspective [and that] gives you the polarisation, the coverage, and the agility you need to counter the threat.”

Step 4 is about all-digital technique generation, and software-based system design, according to Slocumb. “So this is basically a software-based radio as a jammer that supports future upgrades [and] future threats. [It means] as the threats evolve, we can meet the challenge through software upgrades on a regular basis … the architecture is open [and is] based upon published open standards to support third-party development.

“We’re now in system integration,” said Slocumb. “We’ve gone through acceptance testing of the ram air turbine, we have our spread benches up and running, we have our arrays in calibration and test [and we’ve] started to integrate the pod for initial chamber testing. And we’ve also successfully performed fit checks to make sure the mechanical design is sound.

“Last but not least, we’re working with our [NAVAIR] customer on finalising the mission system and aeromechanical test programme.”

Structures remain a key focus area. “[You need a] form factor that can go under the wings of a small tactical fighter, and land repeatedly on an aircraft carrier,” said Capt Orr. “It’s a really challenging environment, so structures are a really big deal.”

On 27 September 2018 Raytheon received a USD183.5 million EMD contract modification incorporating structural analysis and structural design efforts related to NGJ-MB static and fatigue requirements. This effort includes final redesign output and the manufacturing implementation of that redesign into the NGJ-MB EDM pods to be used in system developmental testing.

CPI Aero, based in Edgewood, New York, has been sub-contracted by Raytheon for the pod structural housings. In late August 2018 the company announced that it had been awarded a contract modification valued at USD12.5 million, bringing the total value to CPI Aero for the EMD phase to more than USD19 million. The most recent contract covers work-scope changes associated with these earlier contracts, including additional systems integration efforts that will be performed during CPI Aero’s build-up of the pod assembly. CPI Aero expects to complete its work for the EMD phase systems in late 2019.

Other key NGJ-MB sub-contractors include General Dynamics (radomes), Abaco Systems (processor cards), and Honeywell (ram air turbines). The ram air turbine, which provides prime power for NGJ, is based on a design originally developed and tested by CFD Research (demonstrating repeatable 65 kW performance levels). “You’ve got to take airstream and produce power, and lots of it,” noted Capt Orr.

Initial operating capability (IOC) is currently scheduled for 2022. According to latest budget documentation, a contract award for seven system demonstration test article pod shipsets is expected in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2019 (FY 2019), and these to be used for final developmental test efforts and operational test.

Image


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 11 Nov 2018 05:08

USAF fighter pilots participate in ‘Red Flag’ Alaska missions from home base for the first time
Jane's International Defence Review
07-Nov-2018


US Air Force (USAF) Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcon pilots participated from their home base in ‘Red Flag’ Alaska exercises earlier this year for the first time using Northrop Grumman’s Live, Virtual, and Constructive Experimentation, Integration, and Operations Suite (LEXIOS).

Phil Guy, Northrop Grumman Mission Systems manager of business development, told Jane’s on 5 November that, while the company previously had connected C2ISR simulators to ‘Red Flag’ in Alaska from their home stations, this was the first time they connected fighters. Guy said fighter pilots from Misawa Air Base, Japan, participated in ‘Red Flag’ Alaska exercises in August and October. L3 Technologies provided the F-16 simulators.

Guy said on 7 November that it is more challenging to connect simulation fighters to live exercises compared with C2ISR simulators because the fighter simulators require a more advanced solution. Fighter simulators, he said, need the ability to detect, target, engage, and kill live aircraft, which is more advanced than a C2ISR platform that just needs to be able to see the live aircraft. Fighter simulators require a more integrated solution that enables the more advanced messages to be interoperable between the live environment and the simulated environment.

‘Red Flag’ Alaska is a series of Pacific Air Forces field training exercises for US forces, providing joint offensive counter-air, interdiction, close air support (CAS), and large force employment training in a simulated combat environment. LEXIOS is the hardware and software that enables Northrop Grumman to connect the ‘Red Flag’ live training environment at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, to the USAF’s Distributed Mission Operations Network (DMON). DMON, of which Northrop Grumman is the prime contractor, enables simulators to train together at full-up capability.

Northrop Grumman in previous ‘Red Flag’ Alaska exercises had seven different simulator sites joined at the same time with live aircraft. For the August and October exercises, the company had a handful of different sites networked.

LEXIOS has successfully supported numerous range integration exercises, including the biennial ‘Northern Edge’ in 2015 and 2017, and ‘Red Flag’ Alaska annually from 2013 to 2018. Northrop Grumman is working on a contract to provide a LEXIOS gateway capability for ‘Northern Edge 2019’ and assumes it will be under contract for ‘Red Flag’ in Alaska for 2019. ‘Northern Edge 2019’ is expected in a few months into the year.

Northrop Grumman declined to say its LEXIOS security measures, but said that LEXIOS enables all USAF simulators to participate at their full-up security levels. LEXIOS also provides multiple levels of security.

Martin Amen, Northrop Grumman director of secure network operations, told Jane’s that the opportunity to have virtual and constructive integrated with live was not well accepted when the company started integrating these technologies four years ago. Now, everyone wants all three integrated together.

“We see that as a big success as we have evolved this technology and everyone has started to accept this paradigm of operations of not just live training but also having virtual and constructive,” Amen said. “Today, you probably wouldn’t fly or train without it.”

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 15 Nov 2018 04:35

Lockheed gets $6B downpayment to start F-35 block buy


WASHINGTON — The Pentagon took the first steps toward initiating a block buy for future F-35 orders on Wednesday, amending the department’s existing contract vehicle to allow international customers to buy the 12th, 13th and 14th lots together.

In order to drive costs down, the F-35 joint program office has advocated grouping together international orders — and possibly the U.S. services later down the road — in order to allow prime contractor Lockheed Martin and its suppliers more time and resources to make investments.

Wednesday’s contract modification immediately obligates $6 billion to Lockheed and sets a cap of $22.7 billion for the U.S. services’ order of low rate initial production lot 12 (LRIP 12) as well as LRIP 12, 13 and 14 for international partner countries and foreign military sales customers.

“This contracting funding strategy provides stability and a steady production rate over a defined period of time which enables industry to plan and make investments that reduce overall cost and achieve greater manufacturing efficiencies,” the JPO said in a statement.

The contacting action will help fund a total of 255 jets, including:

64 F-35As for the U.S. Air Force in LRIP 12
26 F-35Bs for the U.S. Marine Corps in LRIP 12
16 F-35Cs for the U.S. Navy in LRIP 12
89 F-35As and F-35Bs for international partner nations in LRIP 12, 13 and 14
60 F-35As for Foreign Military sales customers in LRIP 12, 13, 14
Long lead parts for lot 14


That sum also includes F-35s for the U.S. military added to the budget by Congress in fiscal years 2018 and 2019: a total of 20 jets for FY 18 to be delivered in Lot 12, and 16 planes in FY19 that will be delivered in Lot 13.

LRIP 12 aircraft deliveries are set to start in 2020 — a key year for the F-35 program, in which the Pentagon expects to see prices for the conventional takeoff and landing F-35A model reach $80 million per plane. Lots 13 and 14 will be delivered in 2021 and 2022, respectively.

“This Undefintized Contract Action will provide critical funds to ensure F-35 production and cost reduction efforts remain on schedule as we partner with the F-35 Joint Program Office to finalize the formal contract agreement,” Lockheed said in a statement.

“The acquisition approach for Lots 12-14 will deliver significant cost savings and is critical to achieving our joint goal of an $80 million F-35A for aircraft ordered in 2020. This is a smart approach for the taxpayer, the warfighter and for industry.”



^ This announcement does not include USAF, USN and USMC Lot-13 and Lot-14 aircraft. Those orders will come in annual batches so you can look at another 100+ aircraft for the US in LOT-13 and LOT-14 each. While international partner nations and FMS customers can order in quantity (pool batch purchases) to save cost, US services have to do it annually till at least LOT-13 until the program receives its Milestone-C.

All in, you are looking at close to (could be more than) 500 aircraft LOT-12 - LOT-14 production run. This will take the total production out to above 1000 by late 2022 - early 2023.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 17 Nov 2018 19:35

USAF Launches Effort To Certify Nuclear-Capable F-35 |Aviation Week | Aerospace Daily & Defense Report


The U.S. Air Force has launched a five-year development and certification effort to modify the Lockheed Martin F-35A to employ a refurbished nuclear gravity bomb.

An $83.1 million contract awarded on Nov. 15 calls for completing development, integration, certification and testing of a “dual aircraft capability” for the F-35A by February 2024.

The F-35A is expected to join NATO’s extended deterrence mission with the Boeing F-15E. After being modified to receive a B61-12 nuclear bomb, the dual-capable F-35A will replace the Lockheed Martin F-16 now performing the same mission.

The B61-12 is the product of a billion-dollar effort by the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) to refurbish 400-500 bombs delivered in the 1960s with more reliable electronics and a Boeing-designed guidance system in a new tail-kit assembly.

The NNSA announced in June that the B61-12 completed system qualification tests with the release of two inert bombs by a Northrop Grumman B-2A bomber at the Tonopah Test Range in Nevada.

The tests keep the program on tract to complete the first production unit of the refurbished nuclear bomb in fiscal 2020.

Meanwhile, Lockheed can begin adapting the F-35 to accept the weapon with a variable yield up to 340 kilotons.

The Air Force’s latest budget justification documents for fiscal 2019 provide some details. The dual-capable modification adapts the F-35’s wiring to support a new “mission select switch” and a “nuclear consent switch.” The new features are included in the F-35’s design within the Block 4.1 follow-on modernization program.


A 2016 memorandum by the Nuclear Weapons Council—a joint body of the Defense and Energy departments—says the Air Force plans to deliver the nuclear-certified F-35A in fiscal 2025.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby abhik » 18 Nov 2018 00:44

NAWCWD China Lake Ranges 2018: Montage of weapon tests (more accurately stuff blowing up)

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 18 Nov 2018 05:54

GE exec. on their B-52 re-engine proposal/plans. Since they are looking for a commercial engine, and the fact that the engine count will remain at 8 to eliminate the need for weapons testing, this will be one of the largest commercial jet engine acquisition contracts in recent history if not ever with a total of 608 engines to be procured over the next decade plus.


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Manish_P » 21 Nov 2018 09:56

Pilot error, incorrect data caused F-22 to crash, skid on takeoff


An F-22A Raptor crashed and skidded on its belly during a botched takeoff in Nevada in April because its pilot was using the wrong takeoff data and prematurely retracted his landing gear, according to an Air Force investigation.

The accident investigation board report, which was posted online Thursday, concluded that pilot error was to blame for the April 13 crash at Naval Air Station Fallon.



The Raptor’s takeoff and landing data — which is used to set the speed for rotation, or when the pilot pulls back on the stick to lift the plane’s nose, and set the takeoff pitch attitude and takeoff speed — was calculated for a 10,000-foot runway at sea level, which are conditions at Elmendorf, the report said.

However, NAS Fallon is 3,934 feet above sea level, and its runway is 13,961. What’s more, the takeoff data was calculated for an 80-degree day, but the temperature on the day of the mishap was 46 degrees.

This meant that the pilot raised his F-22′s nose and attempted to take off at airspeeds that were 16 or 17 percent lower than what they should have been. The report said the F-22 momentarily became airborne, but didn’t have enough lift to stay in the air.



Another pilot had created line-up cards earlier in the week for the Fallon sortie and three other cross-country sorties, assuming Elmendorf conditions at 80 degrees, but did not re-calculate the takeoff and landing data for each airfield.

The crash also highlights common takeoff mistakes F-22 pilots make, the report said. Every F-22 base except Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada is roughly at sea level, the report said, so their pilots frequently lift the nose up too early upon takeoff.

“There is a clear trend of rotating early among a significant number of F-22 pilots, including the [mishap pilot], despite being aware of computed” takeoff and landing data, the report said.



The F-22′s powerful engines, which produce more thrust than any other current fighter engine, also create “organizational overconfidence” in pilots and leads them to assume the high thrust will get them airborne.

The F-22 community “takes it for granted that we have a lot of power, and that this jet will generally take off from any runway that you want it to take off from,” one unnamed pilot told investigators.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Singha » 21 Nov 2018 10:11

even with a very solid triad and 1000s of n-missiles and soon hypersonic global strike missiles, why does usa want additional insurance policy of 500 gravity n-bombs dating back to 60s?

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 21 Nov 2018 10:28

Because barring completion of Trump's other tactical nuke plans which are unlikely to see the light of the day (The LRSO will likely be developed but not fielded/acquired), these are the only tactical nukes they have and they are important to NATO allies as well. Belgium will operate the dual mission F-35's, and Germany will likely have B-61 weapons delivery a requirement for its Tornado replacement whether that sees them buying the F-35, upgrading the Tornado, or seeking the nuclear capability on a Typhoon variant.


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Vips » 23 Nov 2018 10:21


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 04 Dec 2018 17:10

Article dates back to September of this year so it is possible that the transfer to the USAF may have happened by now. Plan is still to declare the radar operational by mid-2019. Meanwhile, Lockheed has completed site survey in Australia for a potential second radar if the USAF decides to exercise that option.

With Space Fence and LRDR, Lockheed has now delivered or is working on the two largest GaN based Phased Array radars in the world and will be scaling the latter for Japan's AEGIS Ashore installation as well so getting back into the AEGIS game after loosing out on the SPY-6 contract to Raytheon.

LRDR is currently slated to be complete by mid 2020.

USAF to begin testing Space Fence by end of 2018

Image

Lockheed Martin has completed construction of its Space Fence radar on Kwajalein Island in the Marshall Islands and has been tracking space objects using the full-up radar as the company prepares to hand over testing to the US Air Force (USAF) later in 2018.

Space Fence, designed to track space debris in low earth orbit (LEO) and geosynchronous earth orbit (GEO), conducted its first track in February using a smaller-sized aperture as part of a risk-reduction effort. Lockheed Martin has scaled up the radar and has been tracking space debris full-up since May, Matt Hughes, manager of Space Fence business development for Lockheed Martin, told Jane’s
.
“We have been receiving operationally relevant data and our goal has been to use that data in the integration and test phase that we are in currently to shake out the remainder of requirements that we have to verify,” he said.

Once Lockheed Martin works through the remaining items to integrate and the remaining requirements to verify, it will transition Space Fence to the air force for development, test, and evaluation (DT&E). That effort will be led by the USAF’s 45th Test Squadron out of Eglin Air Force Base, Florida.

Upon completion of DT&E, Space Fence will move into operational T&E (OT&E) led by the Air Force Operational Test and Evaluation Community.

“We are looking to turn this capability over to the air force in mid-2019,” Hughes noted.

A cornerstone of Lockheed Martin’s risk-reduction effort has been to stand up an integration test bed in Moorestown, New Jersey. There, Lockheed Martin built a small piece of the large array that is on Kwajalein. The test bed provided a place to conduct early integration and testing of Space Fence’s hardware, software, and firmware. The company was also able to verify 60% of its system-level requirements before setting foot on Kwajalein, Bruce Schafhauser, programme director for Lockheed Martin’s Space Fence, told Jane’s
.

“It has all come together now in an operating system and we have another 40% of the system-level requirements to verify on the island before we turn it over to the government for their seven months of testing,” Schafhauser said.

Although the radar will be operated from the Space Fence Operations Center in Huntsville, Alabama, a team of maintainers will remain on Kwajalein to tend to the radar and operate it from the island if necessary. Those maintainers were also able to take advantage of the integration test bed to check things associated with false detections as well as how maintenance of the radar should be done, Hughes added.

“We were able to work with the air force to bring them into the integration test bed and […] walk through technical manuals associated with how to maintain the system,” he said. “Doing that early and often from a prototype standpoint has reaped benefits on the back end in terms of schedule certainly, but also everyone being on board with how it is going to be maintained.”

The integration test bed also gave the air force an opportunity to do early runs of the test cards that it plans to use, and gave cyber-security personnel time to do cyber-risk assessments on the prototype before they got to Kwajalein, Schafhauser said.

Space Fence is divided into transmit and receive sections. From the transmit side, it represents the world’s largest phased-array radar. It contains 36,000 elements each with a high-powered amplifier using gallium nitride, which allows for greater efficiency, higher output, and a higher duty cycle, Hughes said. The receive side has more than 86,000 elements, each doing element-level digital beam forming, he added.

“That provides us tremendous capability to be able to work transmit and receive in concert; ultimately receiving thousands of beams at one time,” Hughes said. “As objects [10 cm in size] come through the fence in LEO, we will be able to catch almost all of [them], and that radar architecture allows us to do a lot of things simultaneously.” For example, users can simultaneously operate Space Fence and task volumes of objects from LEO all the way up to GEO anywhere within the field of regard.

“We are able to form initial orbit determinations, very accurate orbits, because we are able to track all the way out to the field of regard. The more accurate track of an orbit you have the better you can predict where it is going to be. Ultimately then you can shrink down your covariance on conjunction assessments and try to avoid collisions and really decrease the number of false alarms,” Hughes said. “When [satellite] owner/operators have to move out of the way based on certain conjunction assessments, that costs money and it takes time. We are trying to help accurately catalogue objects and we are able to do that through that radar architecture.”

Building a second Space Fence in Western Australia is still a possibility, Hughes noted. The USAF exercised an option on Lockheed Martin’s contract for a site survey in Western Australia. That effort has just completed.


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 04 Dec 2018 17:39

Lockheed Martin to deliver LRDR software following successful tracking event

Image

Lockheed Martin’s Long Range Discrimination Radar (LRDR) searched, acquired, and tracked satellites during a closed loop satellite track demonstration at the company’s Moorestown, New Jersey facility.

Completion of this event on 27 August was an indication of how mature LRDR is, Chandra Marshall, LRDR programme director for Lockheed Martin, told reporters on 16 October.

The hardware design and software design that Lockheed Martin has in place show that the programme is ready to move forward into full rate production at the end of 2018, she added.

“We will actually deploy our team to start doing installation of cabinets and cables and that sort of thing in the spring and will continue with that installation and integration in support of [deployment] in 2020,” Marshall said.

The tactical software used for the event leveraged about 3 million lines of code from the company’s Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) system with a small portion the LRDR programme added for areas specific to LRDR.

“We will be delivering the final software build to the US Missile Defense Agency (MDA) at the end of October for the LRDR programme,” Marshall said.

Since the LRDR contract award in 2015, Lockheed Martin has rapidly built up LRDR systems in Moorestown and proved out the radar technology prior to fielding it in Clear, Alaska, she added.

At the Solid State Radar Integration Site (SSRIS) Lockheed Martin built in Moorestown, the company has been testing a scaled version of the final LRDR. While the height of the radar is representative of what will be deployed to Clear, Alaska, the actual radar will be five times wider and will have two faces. However, all the backend processing used for the closed loop track event will be shipped to Alaska next year for installation into LRDR.

SSRIS is a scaled version of the final LRDR radar and will continue to be utilised for Solid State Radar (SSR) development, Lockheed Martin said.

In July 2018, the Japanese Ministry of Defense said it selected SSR for two land-based Aegis Ashore ballistic missile defence (BMD) systems.

Although much of the inner working of LRDR is classified, Marshall noted Lockheed Martin has been able to demonstrate it is very easy to update from a software perspective to support future missions.

“We were able to have LRDR defend against three additional threats [beyond] what we were contracted to do,” she said.

The type of threats, however, is classified.


Once the LRDR is operational and takes over the GMD mission, the plan is to bring the 60+ ft diameter SB-X into dry dock for upgrade and overhaul. The plan will likely involve replacing its 45,000+ X-Band T/R modules with new GaN based TRIMMS similar to those on the AN/TPY-2 and upgrading its processor as well likely bringing it to the same standard as the upgraded TPY-2 and AMDR radars. SBX was always a testbed that was put into operational use so it is possible that also gets a more thorough overhaul given it will be aiding the LRDR years out into the future being the only X-band radar in the GMD mission area.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Singha » 04 Dec 2018 18:13

is japan using its own Gas/Gan tech and electronics for its ABM radars on land ? or just buying some american system?

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 04 Dec 2018 18:32

Singha wrote:is japan using its own Gas/Gan tech and electronics for its ABM radars on land ? or just buying some american system?


Japan is buying a Lockheed SSR derivitive (SSR is the test-bed for LRDR) with the AEGIS software so an American radar closely related to the LRDR and sharing most of the same hardware and a lot of the same software (only difference being that it will be much smaller in size to fit the AEGIS ashore OML). It like the SSR, and LRDR will be a GaN radar and will likely also be something that current AEGIS Ashore sites use as an upgrade as the more capable SM3 IIA enters full rate production and is available in larger quantities. The Missile capability in that case likely exceeds the current SPY-1 radar (without regional TPY-2's to tee it up). Japan is essentially creating a radar system, combat system pair that does not exist yet so they are likely aiming for a capability beyond what they could have gotten with the standard AEGIS SPY-6 combination which is still a radar designed around the size, weight and power constraints of the DDG-51 Flight III destroyer.

https://news.lockheedmartin.com/2018-10 ... tion-Radar
Last edited by brar_w on 05 Dec 2018 17:19, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 05 Dec 2018 17:18

Here's an article covering Japan's pick. This will be the most capable AEGIS ashore site in the world, exclusively utilizing SM3 IIA missiles which are the highest capability weapons in the SM3 family. They'll also have the most powerful and capable radars on any AEGIS (including the DDG-51 Flight IIIs) The IIA as per some reports is capable of MDD against Ballistic Missiles much more capable then IRBM class and the US Congress has ordered the Missile Defense Agency to study the feasibility of performing an ICBM class target intercept by the end of 2020. Not until the US Navy fields its Large Surface Combatant (late 2020s at the earliest) or upgrades its existing AA batteries would they have the sensor capability that Japan is going to put up with its 2 AA units.

The Japanese Ministry of Defense said on Monday it selected Lockheed Martin [LMT] to provide its Long Range Discrimination Radar (LRDR) for the country’s two future Aegis Ashore missile defense sites.

The Japanese government disclosed its plans to boost missile defense, including adding two Aegis Ashore sites, last August (Defense Daily, Aug. 18, 2017). The ministry was evaluating Lockheed Martin's LRDR and Raytheon's [RTN] SPY-6 Air and Missile Defense Radar (AMDR) in two stages focusing on basic performance, backward support, expenses, and delivery date.

The ministry said both companies passed the first stage, but Lockheed Martin’s LRDR ultimately scored higher in the second stage and was ranked as cheaper to procure. It said each of the Aegis LRDR radar systems is expected to cost about $1.2 billion.

The LRDR is also called the Solid State Radar (SSR) and is a scalable Gallium Nitride (GaN)-based radar. It completed a critical design review in 2017 and is planned to be operational in Alaska in 2020 for use in the U.S. Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system. The SPY-6 is being developed to upgrade the Navy’s Aegis destroyers and will be a main feature of the Arleigh Burke-class Flight III ships.

http://www.defensedaily.com/japan-choos ... ore-radar/


The two US owned and operated AN/TPY-2's in Kyogamisaki and Shariki will likely stay in Japan indefinitely and provide both early warning but also better discrimination to the future AEGIS Ashore and even down to Japanese Patriot batteries. While Japan is going down the Aegis Ashore path which is much cheaper (for a given defended area) than THAAD, I don't rule out them buying a few TPY-2s themselves to enhance the capability of both their AA batteries and mobile Patriot units given that unless they configure their Aegis Ashore sites for IAMD (which seems unlikely as they seem to want to maintain them as BMD capability only) they will still feel the need to shore up some of the shorter ranged ballistic missile defense capabilities against sea or sub launched missiles for example and TPY-2s are capable of helping out in that area given that they are interoperable with both the AA in forward based mode and with Patriot in terminal or forward based modes.

Image

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 05 Dec 2018 20:19

brar_w wrote:
Singha wrote:well intelligent swarm or not, a few well placed 76mm airburst rounds or SAM warheads will blow them out of the sky. all the better if they shoal together like fishes. so attacking well defended targets may not be so hot, perhaps confusing radar may be, but MALD and manned SEAD platforms have the power and sensors 1000x better than 6 inch drones!

if the target is weak might as well drop a bomb or missile on it, than try elaborate swarm tactics


Drone swarm by its very nature needs to be intelligent and synchronous and with the ability to coordinate as I mentioned. Calling anything else a swarm is not a very accurate use of the term especially when a collection of flying aircraft or UAVs is labeled as a swarm. Regarding how swarming with micro-drones can help in mission success there is stuff out there that you can read. Moreover, swarming tactics aren't limited to small drones either. Lets avoid doing that here before the mods delete posts.


Here is an illustration of the Gray Wolf, a near-mid term USAF cruise missile weapons system being worked upon by Lockheed and Northrop with a down select expected in the short term. Idea is to rapidly develop sensor, comms and warhead payloads and allow swarms of lower cost (compared to $1+ Million dollar JASSM) missiles to both coordinate and synchronize to defeat targets. The "swarming" portion of it, in terms of how the various sensors on these weapons coordinate, mission-plan, and re-organize if elements in the swarm are lost, or target capability changes is what is scalable from the hundreds of drones launched by an F/A-18 in the video posted earlier which was more for a collaborated ISR CAS type role. The challenge is in creating an intelligent swarm that is able to collectively result in better performance even though most of the sensors and comms nodes are being pulled off the shelf.

Image

Image

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 06 Dec 2018 17:38

I believe this is the first time a GaN based AESA radar has been deployed by land forces in a major NATO exercise...

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ORLAND, NORWAY
11.03.2018


Marine Air Control Squadron (MACS) 2 deployed an AN/TPS-80 Ground/Air Task Oriented Radar (G/ATOR) during Exercise Trident Juncture 18 at Orland, Norway, Nov. 3, 2018. The exercise enhances the U.S. and NATO Allies’ and partners’ abilities to work together collectively to conduct military operations under challenging conditions. The G/ATOR is capable of providing extended aerial surveillance in an expeditionary environment. MACS-2 is with Marine Air Control Group 28, 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing. (U.S. Marine Corps video by Lance Cpl. Cody Rowe)

https://www.dvidshub.net/video/638863/m ... t-juncture

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Singha » 07 Dec 2018 09:53

Emals is fixed but bomb elevator problems dog the uss ford

https://www.bloombergquint.com/business ... wo-carrier

Shows how simpler stuff can trip people up

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 07 Dec 2018 20:18

Singha wrote:
Shows how simpler stuff can trip people up


The deal breakers as far as getting the ship into service and out on its first operational mission (current target window for first deployment is late 2021 - mid 2022) was always going to be either the EMALS/AAG combo or the DBR all three of which are going OK and there does not appear to be any showstoppers at this point in testing. EMALS has accumulated around 800 installed launches and over 747 EMALS/AAG at sea launches and recoveries and the pace at which they have gone through this has been much faster than what they had initially planned for in their testing master plan.

The elevator design changes will be worked upon and they will be installed but I don't think it is in any way a threat to the ship missing any major operational milestones at the moment so it is more of a nuisance than a serious threat to schedule but yeah given its a first of class vessel and is packing a significant amount of technology and new designs they would be pretty OK if the elevators are the most serious schedule concern to them at this point given other possible challenges that they could have encountered.

Obviously, you don't want anything to ever be misaligned in terms of scheduled delivery and as far as re-design requirement is concerned but they are probably comfortable having retired most of the risk on the most expensive and technically challenging sub-systems on the ship. Better to have these things discovered and sorted out on the first in class ship than to have to redesign systems once you have a number of carriers in the fleet.

Of the 11 total elevators, two have been produced – with one completing test and certification, and the second nearly done with its testing – Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition James Geurts said Tuesday at a Senate Armed Services seapower subcommittee hearing.

Geurts said the industry team was making progress to get all 11 elevators built and installed while Ford is still in PSA – a maintenance availability expected to last until the summer of 2019 – but some of the certification may not be completed before Ford heads back out to sea for more testing.

Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) asked about the elevators during the hearing and noted that, when faced with technical challenges on other new technologies in the Ford-class design, the Navy set up independent review teams to find and field solutions quickly.

“I am likely to do an independent review team, not on the immediate construction for CVN-78 but looking at the longer-term sustainability, resilience, reliability, to make sure we’re in a position to support those elevators to the long-term, that we’ve got all the training, all the reliability built into those,” Geurts told the senator.
“We’ve done some mini independent reviews for the 78 elevator design” and wouldn’t need to launch another full-scale review due to a team already tackling the elevator construction and installation for Ford.

Asked about his longer-term concerns on the elevators, Geurts told USNI News after the hearing that “it’s not with the immediate elevator design, it’s making sure we are positioned to support those elevators for the life of the class of ship. And so looking at making sure we’ve got all the right documentation, architecture, plans to deal with obsolescence of parts that might occur over time, reliability, things they may find once they get into the field. So really making sure we’ve got our long-term plan together. It’s not a lack of confidence in the immediate team to work the immediate design, it’s really – what I find these review teams are good at is looking longer term to make sure we’ve got the right strategic mindset to support that system.”

“On both the EMALS program, both the launcher and the (AAG) arresting gear, we’ve had over 747 both catapults and traps on the CVN-78 during its 81 days at sea.. … 24,000 cycle events of that equipment on our shore-based test site there. So we’re feeling pretty confident on both those systems, both on catapults and the arresting gear. Dual-Band Radar, again making good progress there, don’t see any major technical issues with that system as well.”

https://news.usni.org/2018/11/28/navy-t ... ll-pending


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Singha » 07 Dec 2018 23:51

it seems the zumwalt needs specially modified SPY3 X-band radar because fire control radars were removed, the SPY4 S-band did not come through on time (no DBR) and all the SM2/3 missiles to be used on it need special electronics to talk to the SPY3 . quite a bespoke gold plated white elephant to patrol the shores of maryland and oregon to deter piracy and russian subs . :twisted:

and 2nd of gerald ford class will not have DBR either but something more std.

if something like that had happened in UK or India it would be media and CAG all savagely ripping it . only murica can afford such white elephants and vast costs.

Wiki

Originally, the AN/SPY-3 active electronically scanned array primarily X band radar was to be married with Lockheed Martin's AN/SPY-4 S band volume search radar. Raytheon's X-band, active-array SPY-3 Multi-Function Radar (MFR) offers superior medium to high altitude performance over other radar bands, and its pencil beams give it an excellent ability to focus in on targets. SPY-3 will be the primary radar used for missile engagements.[77] A 2005 report by Congress' investigative arm, the Government Accountability Office (GAO), questioned that the technology leap for the Dual Band Radar would be too much.[6]

On 2 June 2010, Pentagon acquisition chief Ashton Carter announced that they will be removing the SPY-4 S-band Volume Search Radar from the DDG-1000's dual-band radar to reduce costs as part of the Nunn–McCurdy certification process.[34] Due to the SPY-4 removal, the SPY-3 radar is to have software modifications so as to perform a volume search functionality. Shipboard operators will be able to optimize the SPY-3 for either horizon search or volume search. While optimized for volume search, the horizon search capability is limited. The DDG-1000 is still expected to perform local area air defense.[34][78] This system is thought to provide high detection and excellent anti-jamming capabilities, particularly when used in conjunction with the Cooperative Engagement Capability (CEC). It is, however, not reported if the CEC system will be installed on the Zumwalt-class destroyers upon commissioning, but it is scheduled for eventual incorporation in the ship type.[79][80]

In that the Zumwalt class has no AN/SPG-62 fire-control radars that are used for terminal guidance for Standard and Evolved Sea-Sparrow Missiles (ESSMs) anti-aircraft engagements, the SPY-3 will generate Interrupted Continuous Wave Illumination (ICWI) rather than the Continuous Wave Illumination of the AN/SPG-62 fire-control radars. Significant software modifications are required to support the ICWI, transmit and receive link messages to the missiles. Standard Missile (SM)-2 IIIA and the ESSM slated for Zumwalt class require modified missile receivers, transmitters, encoders, decoders and a redesigned digital signal processor to work with the ship's system. These modified missiles will not be able to be used on Aegis class ships.[81] :-o

The SPY 3 had to be reprogrammed to do the volume search that the SPY-4 was supposed to have performed. With the duties of volume and surface search and terminal illumination there is concern that a large scale missile attack could overwhelm a radar’s resource management capacity. In such a case the radar may be unable to properly manage incoming threats or guide offensive missiles.[81]

The Dual Band Radar in its entirety (SPY-3 & SPY-4) is to be installed only on the Gerald R. Ford-class aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford. With the development of the AMDR (Air and Missile Defense Radar), it seems unlikely the DBR is to be installed on any other platforms, as it is on the DDG-1000 class, or in total, as it is on Gerald R. Ford. The Enterprise Air Surveillance Radar (EASR) is a new design surveillance radar that is to be installed in the second Gerald R. Ford-class aircraft carrier, John F. Kennedy, in lieu of the Dual Band radar. The America-class amphibious assault ships starting with LHA-8 and the planned LX(R)-class amphibious warfare ships will also have this radar

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 08 Dec 2018 00:18

These were programs which were re-shaped after the US Congress passed the Budget Control Act putting budget caps and forcing programs to re-assess some of these capabilities. I can post something more detailed later but the short of it is that the US Navy had a choice to either stick to two DDG-1000s and get 100% of the capability or take delivery of 80% of the sensor footprint and squeeze the third ship in. They chose to do the latter. They can always buy the sensor back and install it later during its operational life.

Singha wrote:Significant software modifications are required to support the ICWI, transmit and receive link messages to the missiles. Standard Missile (SM)-2 IIIA and the ESSM slated for Zumwalt class require modified missile receivers, transmitters, encoders, decoders and a redesigned digital signal processor to work with the ship's system. These modified missiles will not be able to be used on Aegis class ships.[81]


These are out of band systems. The DDG-1000-1002 do not have an S Band radar. But then neither of these 3 ships are AEGIS destroyers and this is not their role. So you need to get either illuminators or get missile comms link in band. I don't think this is an unreasonable thing to do. Adding a certified missile comms link is much cheaper than funding a large diameter radar just to avoid new comms links.

Furthermore, the SM2 is getting an active-seeker similar to the SM-6 so you can do away with the illuminators and just use the new comms links. But why would you use SM2s/SM6's or ESSMs meant for the DDG-1000/1002 on AEGIS destroyers? They don't even share the same VLS with the DDG-1000 class having the larger diameter systems which will likely be the next US Navy standard given Prompt Strike weapons being developed.

But these comms links and receivers are already operational with NATO users so it isn't like the US Navy is developing something new..they are just acquiring something for these missiles which they had developed for other users.

One of the reasons the AEGIS BMD mission was kept away from the Zumwalt was so that it would be more of an offensive platform, so its VLS loadout will be more heavily focused on TLAMs, hypersonic weapons and other offensive capability with the self-protection air-defense mission as opposed to the AEGIS's broader wide area all encompassing air-defense mission which eats into its VLS loadout.

Singha wrote:and 2nd of gerald ford class will not have DBR either but something more std.


It will have a better radar in the EASR which is a S-band GaN based Radar variant of the SPY-6 AMDR. The Dual-Band Radar was a standardized radar which was to be common on the DDG-1000 family and the CVN-21 Aircraft Carrier. It is a GaS X/S band radar system. Once DDG-1000 was cut to a three ship class the USDOD did not feel that it needed to sustain two different radar classes for decades just so that it can have a bespoke solution on 4-8 ships. A decision was made to re-allign the sensor programs so that the vast majority of the radars will be SPY-6 derivatives i.e. the CVN follow ons, L class ships and the FFG(X) frigate will share the EASR (Scaled SPY-6) and there will be two variants, a rotator and a fixed panel depending upon the application.

This is a sensible capability and I am not sure why you imply that an auditor would object. This was a sound decision made after budget cuts forced a reevaluation of strategy. Sticking with the DBR would have been more expensive, at par (at best) or inferior capability to the AMDR/EASR family and you would have had to sustain two software and hardware upgrade programs going forward. In fact, had the USN not done this they would have likely been attacked for not doing it by their auditors (IG and GAO).

The EASR and AMDR are now quite mature. The first GaN based prototype test bed was installed and turned on by Raytheon in late 2012 so they have been running the test set for more than 6 years now, and the full sized radar test bed in Hawaii has also been running for a number of years now, tracking Satellites, ballistic missiles and even participating in a live BMD test. The radar maturity is much ahead of the ship and they are already in Low-Rate production to support the first Flight III destroyers (8 radar faces) and with EASR the L class ship and the second CVN. They have literally built capacity to deliver S-band radar faces across each year that match or exceed of every other defense application put together so bringing EOS in has made a lot of sense. Raytheon at LRIP will be supporting 2 destroyers (8 SPY-6 faces), 2 Frigates (6 EASR faces), and one L class ship (one face) a year with one carrier based radar delivered every three years so it has made sense to standardize to save cost.

Image

Singha wrote: quite a bespoke gold plated white elephant to patrol the shores of maryland and oregon to deter piracy and russian subs


And why would it patrol just those areas? It will deploy just as most destroyers deploy and it is quite likely that all 3 vessels will be committed to the Indo-Pacific region. Its first deployment is currently scheduled for 2021.

Moreoever, the DDG-1000 family will likely be the canvas for the Large Surface Combatant program which aims to put the first hull into construction by 2023-2025. It will basically be an AEGIS DDG-1000 variant with modifications that put it in between a destroyer and a cruiser. It can sustain the much larger 69 RMA AMDR compared to the DDG-51 Flight III where the growth is maxed out and it cannot sustain anything larger than the 14 foot 37 RMA AMDR.

Once the CGX program was terminated, the DDG-1000 class was always seen as a proof of concept for a future cruiser for which there is a short-medium term need. It is the only high performance ship design that the USN has (barring the much larger San Antonio-class) that has the electrical power and growth capability to field the 18 foot diameter SPY-6, plenty of room, cooling and electric power to pack a 300kW+ class DEW (DDG-51 is getting the 150kW system which max's out its capability) etc vaiant unless one looks at the much larger San Antonio-class. The DDG-51 Flight III has a lot of capability, the largest phased array AEGIS radar etc but it is at the end of the road and has no more room to grow.

More:

https://news.usni.org/2018/08/28/navys- ... -destroyer

The first to be tackled is the large combatant, Boxall told USNI News today. He noted the effort would be more like the move from the Ticonderoga-class cruiser to the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer – where the same combat capability was kept, but housed in a more suitable hull – rather than the move from the Spruance-class destroyer to the cruiser, which maintained the same hull design but added in new combat capability.

After the addition of the AN/SPY-6(V) Air and Missile Defense Radar (AMDR) to the DDGs’ Aegis Combat System to create the Flight III design, Boxall said the resulting warfighting capability is one the Navy can use for years to come.

“We have a new capability on that hull now, so everything’s going good – except for, as we look towards going further, we know we’ve maxed out that hull footprint,” Boxall said of the Arleigh Burke-class hull design, power-generation capability and more.
“So the key elements that we’re looking at in this work we’re doing on the requirements side is, keep the requirements about the same as DDG Flight III, but now look at what do we need a new hull to do.”.....


The USN wants to pay for the first Large surface combatant in 2023 so this will almost have to be based on an existing ship class and they really only have two ships that can meet those requirements. It is not a secret in most defense circles that the USN kept funding for the DDG-1000/1002 family to preserve industrial capability and prove out the technology for a future time when it could use it on a new ship class. With Trump/Mattis's new NDS they now finally have the authority to launch a program to field this capability and because they kept their investment on the family they have a significantly short lead time given they have hulls in the water going through the development---> test ----> discover -----> correct cycle.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Singha » 08 Dec 2018 18:50

5.0 out of 5 starsSuperb and very readable about the US Navy's highest leaders during WWII
7 February 2017 - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
“The Admirals: Nimitz, Halsey, Leahy, and King--The Five-Star Admirals Who Won the War at Sea”
by Walter R. Bornean

A must read for those interested in WWII US Navy history. This superbly researched and well written book is both a biography of the principal US Admirals and a narrative history of their involvement in World War II. There is not a lot of new material here for King, Nimitz and Halsey, but I was fascinated to learn the details of Admiral William Leahy, known to history as FDR’s adviser and the first Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. When Leahy reached the mandatory retirement age of 64 in 1939 (as Chief of Naval Operations – CNO) President Roosevelt sent him to Vichy as America’s ambassador. When the Nazis invaded Vichy France following the US invasion of North Africa, the president recalled Leahy to Washington and returned him to active duty as his chief military adviser and eventually, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs. For almost a year during 1944 and 1945 when both the President and his chief adviser Harry Hopkins were too ill to perform their duties, Leahy essentially served in the president’s stead in both foreign policy and military decisions.

Late in the war (1944) congress authorized five-star ranks in both the Army and the Navy to distinguish the highest commanders from the plethora of 4-stars at the time. Borneman explains (and I agree) that the forth 5-star Naval rank could have just as easily gone to Raymond A. Spruance who alternated operational command of the Pacific Fleet with Chester Nimitz. But Spruance was quiet spoken and shunned publicity – the opposite of Nimitz, the popular favorite of both enlisted personnel and reporters. Interestingly, Admiral King, the highest ranking officer in the Navy (who lacked nothing in self-respect to the megalomaniac Douglas McArthur) said on more than one occasion that Ray Spruance was the only man in the Navy smarter than himself.

Bornean’s analysis and critiques are spot-on and this is a very readable and informative book. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in American history.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 08 Dec 2018 19:33

Via SPF::

Here is an interesting announcement about plans to develop yet another variant of the SPY-6 radar that will be back fitted on the existing DDG-51 Flight II destroyers of which more than 70 have been delivered including two in the last 2.5 months. The USN estimates that they will procure the first SPY-6 variant for back fit on the flight II DDG-51's around 2023.

The Flight II destroyers can only accommodate a max of 24 RMA SPY-6 compared to the 37 RMA SPY-7 being installed on the Flight-III and the 9 RMA EASR going on the frigates, L class vessels and the CVN which will eventually cover the next Ford class CVN, and as a backfit on the Nimitz class carriers over time. Even the baseline zumwalt currently has 58 megawatts of "Unused" power available after accounting for its entire combat system and ship need. I would be surprised if they don't just build a cruiser out of it, or at least borrow its sub-systems for another class.

For context, a ship based on the Zumwalt is believed to be able to accomodate a 69 RMA SPY-6 variant and provide a SPY-1+25 dB of minimum sensitivity. That is the sort of capability 75 megawatts of power generation buys you in addition to being able to accomodate larger HEL's and railguns.

A brief overview of the SPY-6 variant mission requirements and array configuration is provided as follows:

1. AMDR (AN/SPY-6(V)1) is designed to meet mission performance and size, weight, and power - cooling (SWAP-C) requirements of the DDG-51 FLT III ships with AEGIS Baseline 10 (BL 10) combat system. The AMDR S-Band Radar will provide volume search, tracking, Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) discrimination, and missile communications in a wide diversity of environments and conditions. This variant includes 37 Radar Modular Assemblies (RMAs) per array, each which contain independent transmit and receive LRUs and provide SPY 1 +16 dB minimum sensitivity. There are 4 arrays per shipset.


2. AMDR Backfit (designation to be determined) is designed to meet mission performance and SWAP-C requirements of the DDG-51 FLT IIA ships with a variant of AEGIS Baseline 10 (BL 10) combat system, to be defined. The AMDR Backfit Radar will provide volume search, tracking, Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) discrimination, and missile communications in a wide diversity of environments and conditions. This variant includes 24 RMAs per array x 4 arrays per shipset.


3. EASR Rotator (AN/SPY-6(V)2) is designed to meet mission performance and SWAP-C requirements of the Landing Helicopter Assault (LHA 8+) hulls, Landing Platform/Dock (LPD 29+) hulls, and backfit onto CVN (Nimitz) and Landing Helicopter Docking (LHD) hulls. This variant includes a single array on a rotating platform with 9 RMAs.


4. EASR Fixed Face (designation to be determined) is designed to meet mission performance and size, weight, and power - cooling (SWAP-C) requirements of CVN (Ford) class carriers and Future Frigate (FFG(X)). This variant includes 9 RMAs per array and there are 3 arrays per shipset.

https://www.fbo.gov/index.php?s=opportu ... e&_cview=1
Last edited by brar_w on 08 Dec 2018 20:32, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 08 Dec 2018 19:56

Reading between the lines and reconciling this announcement with prior ones, one is pretty safe in assuming that this milestone represents the completion of a system wide CDR which means they are officially kick starting assembly of the first aircraft.

Blink and you’ll miss it: The B-21 bomber accomplishes another big review


WASHINGTON — The Air Force’s super-secret new bomber recently completed its critical design review, an Air Force official confirmed Dec. 6.

The official, who was not authorized to speak on the record on the program, offered no further details about the status of the B-21 Raider. However, Air Force officials had stated that the milestone was slated to occur by the end of 2018 — putting the program on pace to begin fielding aircraft around 2025.

During the Reagan National Defense Forum on Dec. 1, Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson told reporters that the program had recently accomplished a key review, although it was not immediately clear whether it was the critical design review.

She said that the program continued to move forward on budget and on schedule, and praised its steady progress, according to Military.com.

"It's a good example of how to run a major acquisition program well and why delegation of authority back to the services … works to get high quality and to do so quickly," Wilson said.

The Air Force has only sparsely released information about the Northrop Grumman-produced bomber, and details about the exact status of the plane’s development — such as whether a prototype exists or has been flown — continue to be shrouded in mystery.

The service plans on buying at least 100 B-21s, but airpower advocates are hopeful that the requirement will grow in light of the Air Force’s stated desire to grow its number of bomber squadrons from 9 to 14 by 2030.

The program is managed by the service’s Rapid Capabilities Office, a small shop separated from the Air Force’s larger acquisition apparatus that is able to use special authorities to more quickly develop and field new technologies.

Earlier this year, RCO head Randall Walden acknowledged that office has begun component testing and put a subscale model of the bomber through wind tunnel tests.


“From my perspective, this is about producing 100 bombers, not about just getting through development,” he added. “Development is a phase that leads into the fielding of this critical need. So my focus is getting the production started, but I can’t do that until we understand what the design looks like.”

In November, the service announced that it had picked Edwards Air Force Base in California to handle testing and evaluation of the advanced long-range strike bomber and Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma for depot maintenance of the B-21. Robins Air Force Base in Georgia and Hill Air Force Base in Utah will also play a role in sustaining the aircraft.


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Aditya_V » 09 Dec 2018 09:40

Have to admire the Americans, thier homeland is under no threat but keep investing and developing the best weapons. Something completely lost to Indians who to physically see the armed enemy before understanding danger

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 09 Dec 2018 19:43

Singha wrote:is japan using its own Gas/Gan tech and electronics for its ABM radars on land ? or just buying some american system?


More information on it in an article from yesterday. Doing a rough calculation based on the info given it seems that each LRDR face will be around 50 feet wide.

Here’s the latest on Lockheed’s massive long-range anti-ballistic missile radar


MOORESTOWN, New Jersey -- Lockheed Martin is on schedule to deliver its massive solid-state Long-Range Discrimination Radar in 2020, according to executives who spoke Friday with reporters here.

The radar, which is being developed and tested at Lockheed’s radar manufacturing facility in Moorestown for the Missile Defense Agency, is slated to be installed at Clear Air Force Station, Alaska. Construction on the facility began in September, according to a Lockheed press release.

The radar achieved a major technical milestone in October when it successfully tracked a satellite using its hardware and software working in conjunction. Ultimately the radar will be used in conjunction with ground-based interceptors to defend the U.S. from ballistic missile attacks.

The technology that is going into LRDR is opening up new lines of business for Lockheed, said Chandra Marshall, the LRDR program director.

“Not every application needs to be the size of LRDR, so it’s scalable from both a hardware and software perspective,” Marshall said.

The radar destined for Japan's AEGIS Ashore installation is a scaled-down version of LRDR, Marshall said. It's also technology Lockheed is hoping to bring to the new homeland defense radar in Hawaii, which should be awarded in the coming days.

Lockheed has developed the radar and the software concurrently, Marshall said, which has sped up fielding.

One of the key advantages of the radar, which is about 25-times larger than a AN/SPY-1 array, is that it can be maintained and fixed without bringing the array down.

“One of the unique things about this radar is the high availability,” Marshall said. “Unlike some radars in the field today, you can actually maintain the radar while it’s operating. You don’t have to interrupt the mission to maintain it.”

Lockheed accomplishes this by building the massive radar on a series of self-contained transmitter and receiver units that are grouped in blocks, which are in turn connected to a breaker. So if one unit in a block needs replacing, you can shut down a small section of the radar and switch it out while the rest of the radar continues to radiate.

The announcement for the Hawaii homeland defense radar should come in December, Marshall said.

“It ... leverages everything that we’ve done for LRDR and improves on it based on the different threats that we have to attack for HRD-H,” Marshall said.

If Lockheed can secure the HDR-H contract, it could mean two more contracts for homeland defense radars down the line. Lockheed is competing with Northrop Grumman and Raytheon for the contract that could be worth up to $4.1 billion.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 10 Dec 2018 07:40

Singha wrote:Is there footage of zumwalt class sailing through a north atlantic storm ?


The rough weather trials on the first in class ship were conducted in mid-2016 and again in 2017 under the supervision of INSURV. As I had mentioned earlier, the ship does not deploy operationally till 2020-21 so most footage available on it is from its builder trials or the occasional release of pics and footage from the US Navy.

Prior to those trials, the week long alpha-trials on the ship took place up to what would be Sea-State 5 in the Gulf of Maine. Those weren't deliberate but just the conditions the ship found itself in during alpha.

For their part, the US has released selected footage from sea trials, but of course they aren't expected to publish 100% of the footage they have gathered and you won't get actual PR from an operational deployment until some time. DDG-1000 is currently doing her Combat system qualifications which were supposed to be done by the end of the year clearing the way for full certification.



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BfmavvAXLR8


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Singha » 10 Dec 2018 09:23

front front in the fog, looks like a mobile iceberg or one of those alien things in Battleship film.
in the sunlight looks like a unmanned ship as complete lack of any humans on deck.

is the follow on to burke class going to use this new shape or retain the traditional ?

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 10 Dec 2018 09:31

The USNI article I posted earlier talks to that. Basically, the USN is going to decide in the next 6 months to a year about which direction to take in terms of a new Large Surface Combatant which is seen more of a Cruiser than a destroyer replacement although they are not calling it either at the moment. They are doing the analysis at this moment.

Having said that, there are only two realistic possibilities given that they want to contract the first in class ship in 2023-2025. Those two possibilities are a design based on the San-Antonio class or the Zumwalt class. The former is unlikely to have the speed to keep up with a carrier and will still require the latter's power system. The Zumwalt would require some modifications too, like replacing the AGS (which will happen anyways) with a High Energy Laser (and possibly EMRG at a later date), and replacing its combat system with a re-hosted DDG-51 Flight III AEGIS Baseline 10.0 with a larger AMDR. Basically, the USN wants a new hull with lots of power and re-host the new Burke's combat system on it.

I just do not see how they will choose something that is not either identical to the Zumwalt, or heavily influenced by its design. There is simply nothing out there that has hulls in water undergoing the sort of discovery--rectify--test loop as the Zumwalt, and nor anything else (conventionally powered) in that timeframe can put out 78 MW of power that the Zumwalt pumps out NOW without any other enhancements. The entire reason to keep a 3-ship production on going and not totally clip the program was to leverage the design for a future cruiser so it makes sense now to use up all that sunk R&D cost and get a quick cruiser replacement and save a decade of design, validation, test and debugging that usually comes with a fresh new design.

https://news.usni.org/2018/08/28/navys- ... -destroyer

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby krishna_krishna » 10 Dec 2018 19:28

brar_w wrote:
Singha wrote:Is there footage of zumwalt class sailing through a north atlantic storm ?



Isn't this the same one that broke down while crossing Panama Canal ?

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 10 Dec 2018 19:59

krishna_krishna wrote:
brar_w wrote:



Isn't this the same one that broke down while crossing Panama Canal ?


Yup same one and they fixed that issue and it was able to test the system out post change. It is back in Panama now after undergoing WS qualifications. You don't have the luxury of building full fledged prototypes for ships so the first in class vessel is your only vehicle to discover and fix faults and complete testing. This is why the ship spent nearly 2.5 years in vessel testing and PSA and an additional 2 years before first deployment. It is time well spent to find and fix things that come up on a new design.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby krishna_krishna » 10 Dec 2018 21:49

brar_w wrote:
Yup same one and they fixed that issue and it was able to test the system out post change.


Good to know that brand new ship is fixed and hopefully it would not need towing like last time it did.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 11 Dec 2018 02:01

^ As I said the point of having this phase in the ship's life is for this very reason. They are 100% sure that there will be discoveries and fixes would need to be designed, and implemented both as a result of design changes, or other things like quality control at the source OEM or the human factor as you are still writing own the CONOPS and procedures for many of the sub-systems.

It is no accident that they gave 2.5 years of trial and PSA time between commissioning and then built an additional 18-24 months between Combat System Qualification and first deployment to do this activity. First in class ships, and new designs have to go through this phase and there is no way of avoiding time consuming and costly testing, and non-operational period in order to sort things out to sea a relatively mature ship and trained crew when it comes to first operational patrol. That in the case of the DDG-1000 is expected to be in 2020 or 2021. Its combat system will be fully qualified by the end of the year or by early next year, but they will still not deploy operationally for a year and a half because of this buffer.

More the reason to re-use the basic design, and IPS systems on a future cruiser because not only have you invested billions to develop this capability you would have had 2-4 years of dedicated testing and close to a decade of at sea experience by the time you commission the first cruiser.

Speaking of the ship class, it appears the DDG-1002 was launched yesterday :

Future USS Lyndon B. Johnson (DDG 1002) Launched at Bath Iron Works


The future Lyndon B. Johnson is the third and final DDG 1000 Zumwalt-class ship, and is scheduled to be christened in the spring of 2019.



Image

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Singha » 11 Dec 2018 07:17

What kind of power plant it uses to put out 75mw?
If the ddg51 puts out much less, wouldnt it mean zumwalt will need to refuel more often to use all that railgun and sdf radar? No nukular power onboard

The pvls array might be able to safely divert any explosion or fire out of the ship than a regular array in the middle
Nice touch that

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 11 Dec 2018 07:59

Read about it here : https://www.powerelectronics.com/power- ... make-waves

Things like high energy lasers, and even the railgun don't consume power all the time. Same applies to the larger radar. You are not constantly using these systems at 100% capacity or in the case of a HEL or EMRG at all given they will need power draws for a small amount of time. The problem with the DDG-51 Flight III is that it, even before it enters service, is tapped out as far as growth is concerned. This limited the baseline AMDR to a 14 foot antenna (vs 12 for the SPY-1) when the US Navy was looking at a larger sensor. This also limits the HEL to an 80-150 kW system (HELIOS) whereas the US Navy would ideally want a system that can scale up to 300+ kW over time via upgrades.

Things like SEWIP II and III are also pretty power hungry and of course you need cooling to take care of all these systems. There is no more growth left in that class which is fine for the variant that will be fielded in a few years, but they can't take the design forward. At baseline, the Zumwalt is a 16000 ton ship with 78 MW of power capacity and plenty of real estate for large sensors, more weapons and VLS capacity. Most importantly, it has plenty of room to grow via iterative improvements as opposed to the Burke which is at the end of its road.


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