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Old 09-10-2008, 04:49 AM
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Default Sinking a Destroyer

Raellus 06-30-2008, 03:56 PM There's been some question among the group supplementing and revising the naval warfare portions of the T2K v1 canon chronology as to what it would take to sink a modern Nimitz class carrier. Fortunately, no such thing has occured so all I can do is speculate, based, of course, on historical precedent.


I just watched a show on the History Channel called Sinking a Destroyer about a live-fire RCN/USN training excersise called "Trident Fury" where various surface, air, and submarine elements shot up an old, retired, Tribal class Canadian destroyer. The show wasn't that great and left out a lot of helpful details, but there was lots of neat footage of the Huron getting shot up. The thing was hit with one Sea Sparrow missile (yes, I too thought it could only engage airial [sic] threats), several hundred rounds of 20mm CIWS fire, a couple dozen 57mm proximity fuzed rounds, and, finally, 76mm rounds from its own, remounted gun! After the 76mm rounds, which appeared to hit under the water line, the destroyer began to list and eventually went under. Some RCAF Hornets shot it up with cannon fire but it was already half-way under water. Unfortunately, they couldn't say what had actually sunk it. I would guess the 76mm fire since that was the only stuff that appeared to hit below the water line.


They also showed some footage of a Mk.-48 torpedo launched from an Aussie sub cutting an old Aussie destroyer in half. It was quite impressive. A US SSN was on hand to administer the coup de gras with a Mk.-148 torpedo which proved unecessary.


In recent times, warships have almost been sunk by mines. In the first Gulf War, the USS Tripoli (an Iwo Jima class) struck an LUGM-145 contact mine which tore a 6-foot hole in the hull. After a nerve-wracking period during which it was feared that paint fumes would detonate adding to the damage, the ship continued launching mine sweeping helicopters, Shorty thereafter, she was able to sail under its own power to port for repairs.


The USS Princeton was struck by one, maybe two Italian-made MANTA accoustically triggered influence mine(s). The keel was snapped and the stern almost broke off. It lost stearing and, interestingly, its AEGIS radar system overheated and shut down when its cooling pipes broke as the ship was whipped around by the multiple shock waves. Princeton needed to be towed back to drydock for extensive repairs.


The Samuel B. Roberts had her back broken a few years earlier by an Iranian mine.


Almost a decade earlier, the USS Stark barely survived a hit from a single, "accidentally" launched Iraqi Exocet ASM.


During the Falklands, a RN Swiftsure (or Trafalgar, I can't remember) class sub sank the General Belgrano, a WWII era cruiser with one or two torpedoes.


Also sunk during the Falklands were a couple of Destroyers (one was sunk by an Exocet, and another by conventional 1000lb. iron bombs) and the Atlantic Conveyor container ship (Exocet). There may have been one or two more too, but I can't remember. I don't have my source handy so this bit is from imperfect memory.


In WWII, several U.S., IJN, and RN carriers, fast fleet types, light carriers, and carrier escorts- were sunk by bombs (usually in the 500-1000 lb. range)and/or torpedoes while others survived similar or seemingly more destructive hits.


There are so many variables that it's hard to determine exactly why some ships that should have sunk did not, while others that took lesser damage went under. Some of those variables include damage control (or lack thereof), collateral damage (aircraft fuel and ordinace igniting and exploding), and human error (in one case a Japanese damage control crewman openned a ventilation system to try to blow explosive fumes out of an endangered compartment. This spread fumes throughout other parts of the ship where a spark from some piece of machinery detonated the whole lot, setting most of the ship ablaze and leading to its destruction).


So, what could sink a modern US carrier? Who knows! A single torpedo, multiple SSM hits, a lucky bomb, a mine or two. Any combination of the above. Roll the dice!

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copeab 06-30-2008, 05:38 PM So, what could sink a modern US carrier? Who knows! A single torpedo, multiple SSM hits, a lucky bomb, a mine or two. Any combination of the above. Roll the dice!


You may want to look at the wargame Harpoon (board and computer versions).


Brandon

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thefusilier 06-30-2008, 07:32 PM So, what could sink a modern US carrier?


Maybe this one...

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601070&sid=a5LkaU0wj714&refer=home

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Matt Wiser 06-30-2008, 08:20 PM With conventional weapons, it's very difficult to sink a carrier, though the Russians built several types of ASMs and SSMs for the job. "Heavy" SSMs like the SS-N-3/SS-N-12, or the SS-N-19 had anti-carrier missions in mind, along with the AS-4 and AS-6 air-launched missiles. Torpedo wise, the Russians came up with the Type 65, a 650-mm torpedo meant to cripple carriers and it's very hard to decoy (at least by reading open sources) because it's a wake-homer. Some sailors call it the "Long Lanceski". You're not likely to have a carrier sailing in an area likely to be mined, but minefields in channels going into and out of port are another matter. Aircraft getting in close to deliver old-fashioned iron bombs and rockets are not very likely IMHO, but smaller ASMs like the AS-14 (EO/IIR/Laser-guided), or the AS-20 Kayak (the "Harpoonski) are much more likely.


Average warhead for the heavy SSMs/ASMs runs about 1100 to 1500 pounds

of HE. The Type 65 torpedo has a similar warhead. Smaller ASMs usually run about 350 to 500 pounds for the warhead. Don't forget that any anti-ship missile also brings with it unexpended fuel, which will spill and ignite (HMS Sheffield and Atlantic Conveyor in the Falklands and the U.S.S. Stark-one of the Exocets was a dud, but both had missile fuel spill and catch fire).


Look at how carriers had shipboard fires off Indochina in 1966-67 (Oriskany and Forrestal), Hawaii 1969 (Enterprise) and deck crashes over the years (Nimitz in 1981, for example) and see how tough carriers are designed and built. And the Nimitzs were built with lessons learned from the SEA experience re: fire-fighting, interior protection, and damage control.


Bottom line is that unless you get a lucky hit near fuel or munitions storage (two of the three most heavily protected spaces of the ship-engineering is the other), your best bet is going to mission-kill the carrier, not sink her. Taking out a catapult or two, knocking out the arrestor gear, or a torpedo hit that kills a propellor shaft or two, things like that.


Once nuclear SSMs and ASMs begin to be used in T2K, though, that's a whole 'nother matter.

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FightingFlamingo 07-01-2008, 09:09 AM In our conversations over the weekend, we concluded that the most likely non nuclear death to a US Large Carrier, would be a mission death. Images of the USS Franklin come to mind from WWII. Massive above the waterline ASM attacks causing fires and damage to avation support facilities onboard...

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Raellus 07-01-2008, 08:41 PM In our conversations over the weekend, we concluded that the most likely non nuclear death to a US Large Carrier, would be a mission death. Images of the USS Franklin come to mind from WWII. Massive above the waterline ASM attacks causing fires and damage to avation support facilities onboard...


I concur.


That said, I just don't want to overestimate the capabilities of U.S./NATO vessels while underestimating the same for Soviet Vessels.


I guess I'min the mood to play devil's advocate here.


Modern U.S. carriers are huge ships but I don't believe that they're unsinkable.


Setting the almost legendary Titanic aside for a moment, historical warships considered unsinkable:


Le Orient- sunk

Santisima Trinidad- sunk

The Bismark- sunk

The Yamato- sunk


Yet, they each took a lot of punishment before going under, but they all still sank. Lest one downplay the quality of these old tin cans, keep in mind that the Yamato was the largest ship ever afloat until surpassed by the U.S.S. Kennedy CVN and she was built to withstand 16-inch AP shell fire.


One of these days, I'll post a list of WWII carrier sinkings along with the cause/s of each. They may have been smaller than today's supercarriers but they were built pretty sturdy (w/ a lot less aluminum in the hulls and superstructure). A few succumbed to single sub-launched torpedoes while others took multiple bomb and/or torpedo hits.


Also, I'm no metalurgist so if I'm wrong, please correct me, but I seem to remember reading that both Sheffield and Stark burned pretty easily. Something about the Aluminum used extensively in modern warship construction having a lower tolerance for heat than steel.

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Hangfire7 07-02-2008, 12:05 AM Cool reply however,


First to take out a carrier, eliminate its support vessels, only the ballsiest of skippers or adminrals would risk his best ship without a propper escort. But then again, if its all or nothing well how good of a poker player is the commander?


As for the examples given, some were just poorly designed, some of the failing in design was because of the misplaced belief that their ship was unsinkable, HOWEVER, and I am not saying I am familiar with all of the vessles listed, I am familiar with most. A couple were poor design! but the real ones I shall apply the following to, they either ran out of ammunition, or they had suffered so many casualties that they couldn't function. <Funny we just had a similiar conversation with the hospice doctor who visited today when talking WWII, a lack of manpower>


And this is something that can apply to modern carriers too, eliminate their crew, either through casualties from action, disease <that could pose a interesting campaign idea, the area is aflicted with nasty bug, the PCs mission find out who is spreading it, of course it is the sleeper GRU agent in the area who of course was imunized against it> Or deny them supplies. If a vessel doesn't have the fuel, ordinance or food then they again become operationaly ineffective, concentrate on their supply train a classic but effective method. And to do this one does not really need to engage or sink the supply convoys or supply ships and refuelers, just let it be known your forces are in the area and the refueling/resupply operations will be halted, or the supply/refuelers will head for safety. Do that once or twice and the operations of a carrier battleground will be seriously curtailed and they will have to withdraw to a freindly area to resupply. Granted the nuclear powered vessles will not have to worry about ships fuel, but food and avaition fuel are consumables.


As for sinking carriers, remember the atomic tests at Bikini Atoll, several of the carriers used as test subjects which were built early in the war or even before remainded afloat even after being nuked. So, their initial durability coupled with the durability learned from modern naval engineering and what has been gleaned from the Bikini and other tests which improved ship construction and in turn survivability. So, that is something to keep in mind.


However, what would it take to cause a ships reactor to be compromised? Remember "The Hunt For Red October?" And the question, "How do you make a crew want to get off the ship?" Or, if your intel was sterling and you could manage to learn where the nuclear operations personel were berthed and took out the bulk of the reactor crew, then what happens? You don't have the personel.


then again I have read accounts of WWII actions where the majority of the ships food supplies were destroyed in action leaving the crew on short rations. Again, how long can they last? Their ability has just been erroded.


Sorry guys I am getting ahead of myself with all kinds of "what ifs" or "how abouts" but it is interesting to toss out ideas and theories. Here is another one, take out the carriers eyes? Its radar and other systems? Although then you would need to take out its com system email, satelight phone, and that of its escort ships, so it isn't as easy as it sounds.


Again good topic, I love it.








I concur.


That said, I just don't want to overestimate the capabilities of U.S./NATO vessels while underestimating the same for Soviet Vessels.


I guess I'min the mood to play devil's advocate here.


Modern U.S. carriers are huge ships but I don't believe that they're unsinkable.


Setting the almost legendary Titanic aside for a moment, historical warships considered unsinkable:


Le Orient- sunk

Santisima Trinidad- sunk

The Bismark- sunk

The Yamato- sunk


Yet, they each took a lot of punishment before going under, but they all still sank. Lest one downplay the quality of these old tin cans, keep in mind that the Yamato was the largest ship ever afloat until surpassed by the U.S.S. Kennedy CVN and she was built to withstand 16-inch AP shell fire.


One of these days, I'll post a list of WWII carrier sinkings along with the cause/s of each. They may have been smaller than today's supercarriers but they were built pretty sturdy (w/ a lot less aluminum in the hulls and superstructure). A few succumbed to single sub-launched torpedoes while others took multiple bomb and/or torpedo hits.


Also, I'm no metalurgist so if I'm wrong, please correct me, but I seem to remember reading that both Sheffield and Stark burned pretty easily. Something about the Aluminum used extensively in modern warship construction having a lower tolerance for heat than steel.

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thefusilier 07-02-2008, 02:12 AM I dunno... but I just think a sub putting a bunch of torpedoes into a carrier could do the job.

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copeab 07-02-2008, 10:33 AM In 2000, I'm wondering where all the fuel and ammo for the aircraft come from. And the supply ships to support the carrier at sea.


Brandon

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FightingFlamingo 07-02-2008, 10:52 AM This past weekend we tried to address these issues for the major combantant battlegroups.

disposition of the AOR's for each battle group...

Spares and Fuel is a major issue for any ships we determined to survive

Some fuel is available, but is extremely limited, possible conversion of some surviving nuke boats to LPH....


Some of the CV's we killed, Some got so badly damaged they were scuttled, some were abandoned, some nuked in the repair yard, some out of gas in nice places some in bad... and some are waiting to put to sea (if only they had an airgroup), some got nuked, and some sunk outright...


we tried to look at how much damage these ships were designed to take, the composition of their battlegroups, and the fact that most are 80,000+ tons displacement, compartmentalized, and generally designed to take a beating (US Carriers all have Armored strength/flight decks, and are generally steel as apposed to aluminum (citing the FFG's, and UK DDG's).


The closest thing to real battle damage we have to use for reference regarding Carriers was the USS Forrestal's Fire (multiple detonations of 1000lb bombs blowing a hole in the flight deck + fuel fires). So We determined that they could take a beating, it might have been arbitrary but it worked for us.

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Matt Wiser 07-02-2008, 08:17 PM Hey Flamingo, are you guys using the list of surviving carriers and escorts I put together a while back? If not, feel free to use it. There's two operational carriers (both nuclear) on each coast, along with escorts, but the fuel for escorts and aircraft is limited; a couple more carriers stuck in relatively hospitable ports (Guam and Portsmouth, UK), one in Norway (short of fuel, she's conventionally powered), Independence is stuck in Oman-one rudder blown off and two ASM hits that took out the arrestor gear; and a couple others are used as floating power stations at Bremerton and Alameda, respectively. (damaged at 2nd Kamchatka) You'd have to go to Antenna's board to retrieve the list if you need it.

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gstitz 07-02-2008, 09:56 PM To directly answer your question, I looked at the Harpoon 4 boardgame rules.


A Theodore Roosevelt CVN is rated as having 1476 damage points.


She has a "book" top speed of 32 knots (everything in H4 is based on declassified, open source material).


It takes 369 damage points to reduce her speed to 24 knots.


It takes another 369 damage points (738 total) to reduce her speed to 16 knots.


It takes another 369 damage points (1107 total) to bring her down to 8 knots.


It takes another 369 (1328 total) to put her dead in the water and the final 369 to deliver the coupe de' grace.


A 16" 50 gun delivers 106 Damage Points per hit, so a a full broadside of nine rounds is not quite enough (954) to bring her to half speed, but two broadsides (1908 points) is a kill.


A Russian Kh-22 (AS-4 Kitchen) does 167 damage points. A KSR-5 (AS-6 Kingfish) does 117 points. A Tu-22M Backfire can carry 3 of either. So, it would take 6 Tu-22Ms, each carrying three missiles to sink a CVN.


Of course, this ignores the effects of defensive SAMs carried by escorts, CIWS, etc. etc. etc.

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FightingFlamingo 07-03-2008, 09:02 AM Matt We've seen you work on the Navy. We've working on our own history for the vessels based on historical Ocean assignments, and battlegroups we've created for 96-97. and started beating them up looking at the Cold War Mission Tasking envisioned.

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Raellus 07-03-2008, 02:32 PM To directly answer your question, I looked at the Harpoon 4 boardgame rules.


A Theodore Roosevelt CVN is rated as having 1476 damage points.


A 16" 50 gun delivers 106 Damage Points per hit, so a a full broadside of nine rounds is not quite enough (954) to bring her to half speed, but two broadsides (1908 points) is a kill.


A Russian Kh-22 (AS-4 Kitchen) does 167 damage points. A KSR-5 (AS-6 Kingfish) does 117 points. A Tu-22M Backfire can carry 3 of either. So, it would take 6 Tu-22Ms, each carrying three missiles to sink a CVN.



Thanks for doing the research for me.


I'm sure the game designers did their homework and they could well be right on all counts. I'm still having a hard time buying it, though. 18 AS-6s for a positive kill? HMS Coventry and the Atlantic Conveyer each succumbed to only 1 Exocet hit and both missiles share similar characteristics.


And when 76mm gunfire can sink a destroyer, I can't imagine a battleship needing to connect with two full broadsides to effect the sinking of a carrier. I know it's comparing apples to oranges, but at Leyte Gulf, an escort carrier was sunk by only a couple of 16 or 18 inch shell hits.

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Raellus 07-03-2008, 02:58 PM OK, so I've been doing some more research, looking at several Cold War Soviet exercises simulating taking on a reinforced carrier task force in the region of Norwegian Sea (Springex '84 & Summerex '85) and this is what the Ruskies were prepared to throw at it.


You've got Tu-22M Backfire's firing AS-6 and AS-5 missiles from over the horizon, with patrol aircraft providing targetting information. Some launch high, providing obvious targets for defensive SAM fire, while others launch low, reducing radar warning time (due to the curvature of the earth and the defending ship's radar horizon).


Then, almost simultaneously, a Kirov class battlecruiser launches SS-N-19s from approximately 310m (550 km) away. Oscar class SSGNs also carry SS-N-19s. They have a rated speed of Mach 2.5!


Meanwhile, SSNs and destroyers/frigates close the range to fire SS-N-9 and SS-N-3 missiles from approximately 70m (110km).


Now, add SSNs and/or diesel boats closing to torpedo range. Then hurl a few suicidal missile armed coastal patrol craft into the fray.


Throw in a squadrons of SU-24s launching anti-radiation missiles to diminish the capabilities of the carriers AA escorts.


If the Soviets were really creative (or just immitating the Israelis' feat over Lebanon in '82), they would send in a flight of Bears or Badgers armed with obsolete AS-2s to act as missile decoys to thin out the defenders' supply of SM-2 and Sea Sparrow SAMs.


Heck, if they were really desperate, the Soviets could send up a few groups of Mig-27s armed with rockets and iron bombs to finish the job.


Add in variables like radar glitches, the effects of weird atmospheric conditions on sophisticated electronics, operator fatigue/error, luck, etc., the defenders are bound to take a few solid hits on the chin.


One must not underestimate the effects of the "Fog of War".


It's not too difficult to imagine a carrier task force being overwhelmed and nearly wiped out in such a 360 degree melee, granted at great cost to the attackers as well.

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chico20854 07-03-2008, 10:16 PM OK, so I've been doing some more research, looking at several Cold War Soviet exercises simulating taking on a reinforced carrier task force in the region of Norwegian Sea (Springex '84 & Summerex '85) and this is what the Ruskies were prepared to throw at it.


You've got Tu-22M Backfire's firing AS-6 and AS-5 missiles from over the horizon, with patrol aircraft providing targetting information. Some launch high, providing obvious targets for defensive SAM fire, while others launch low, reducing radar warning time (due to the curvature of the earth and the defending ship's radar horizon).


Then, almost simultaneously, a Kirov class battlecruiser launches SS-N-19s from approximately 310m (550 km) away. Oscar class SSGNs also carry SS-N-19s. They have a rated speed of Mach 2.5!


Meanwhile, SSNs and destroyers/frigates close the range to fire SS-N-9 and SS-N-3 missiles from approximately 70m (110km).


Now, add SSNs and/or diesel boats closing to torpedo range. Then hurl a few suicidal missile armed coastal patrol craft into the fray.


Throw in a squadrons of SU-24s launching anti-radiation missiles to diminish the capabilities of the carriers AA escorts.


If the Soviets were really creative (or just immitating the Israelis' feat over Lebanon in '82), they would send in a flight of Bears or Badgers armed with obsolete AS-2s to act as missile decoys to thin out the defenders' supply of SM-2 and Sea Sparrow SAMs.


Heck, if they were really desperate, the Soviets could send up a few groups of Mig-27s armed with rockets and iron bombs to finish the job.


Add in variables like radar glitches, the effects of weird atmospheric conditions on sophisticated electronics, operator fatigue/error, luck, etc., the defenders are bound to take a few solid hits on the chin.


One must not underestimate the effects of the "Fog of War".


It's not too difficult to imagine a carrier task force being overwhelmed and nearly wiped out in such a 360 degree melee, granted at great cost to the attackers as well.


We've adopted that approach for at least one US carrier.


What we have, in brief summary (details are still to be fleshed out):


Pacific Fleet:

Midway - sunk by Soviet raider

Ranger - destroyed in port by strategic nuclear strike

Independence - in Oman, damaged

Kitty Hawk - in Hawaii, no fuel

Constellation - sunk by tactical nuke

Nimitz - overwhelmed by Soviet combined strike as described above, scuttled by USN

Vinson - overwhelmed by approx 200 Backfires at onset of war & sunk

Lincoln - damaged, in Bremerton, WA

Stennis - intact, Okinawa

New Jersey - lost in port in strategic nuclear strike

Missouri - intact, in Bremerton, WA

Des Moines - stuck in Pusan, no fuel

Salem - active in CENTCOM AOR


Atlantic Fleet:

Coral Sea - lost in tactical nuclear strike

Forrestal - burned out in Norway after overwhelmed by Soviet combined strike as described above

Saratoga - lost in strategic nuclear strike while in drydock

America - damaged, abandoned in Sicily

Enterprise - damaged, in port in Belfast NI (Hi Tigger!!!!)

Kennedy - in Split, Croatia, no fuel, CIVGOV asset

Eisenhower - in Iceland, limited operational capability - air wing ineffective

Roosevelt - sunk, overwhelmed by Soviet bombers

Washington - in Portsmouth, England

Lexington - laid up in Mobile, Alabama with engineering casualty

Iowa - interned in Sweden, damaged

Wisconsin - sunk by Soviet IRBM strike

Newport News - abandoned in drydock, Brooklyn, NY, heavily damaged in gun duel.


So just over half of the USN's modern carrier fleet (10) was lost in the war, 4 by nuclear strikes, 2 by massed bombers, 2 by combined-arms strikes, 1 abandoned at a late stage of the war when repair was unavailable and 1 (the oldest) by a raider.


As I'd written up in my Pact naval strategy article, the Soviets used some novel concepts to get to the carriers - including a specialist anti-radar aviation regiment that used AS-17 missiles, previously unknown to NATO, to damage/destroy Aegis radar systems and also take down E-2 and E-3 AWACS aircraft. The mass Backfire raids were only used a few times, as the vast majority of the aircraft were actually Long-Range Aviation assets, operating in the Soviet Far East as part of the Tchaikovsky raids, and were rather quickly redeployed back to the Europe to perform in their intended theater strike roles.


We didn't have time to get to the amphibious, convoy escort, replenishment or submarine groups last weekend. Maybe next time!

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Raellus 07-03-2008, 11:07 PM Thanks for the list Chico. Let us know as details are published.

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TiggerCCW UK 07-04-2008, 02:45 AM Enterprise - damaged, in port in Belfast NI (Hi Tigger!!!!)



Hoo yah, fame at last!! Thats a sight I'd like to see.

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TiggerCCW UK 07-04-2008, 02:45 AM The carrier I mean, not the damaged bit.....

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kato13 07-04-2008, 05:32 AM A reminder that something much simpler can render a ship combat ineffective for a while.


All you need is a Windows NT system and a data entry clerk who makes a typing mistake.


http://www.gcn.com/print/17_17/33727-1.html#

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Matt Wiser 07-04-2008, 06:02 PM Uh, boy, that's some listing of what happened. You didn't include Oriskany (someone mentioned her being reactivated), I noticed. And Midway being sunk by a raider? That I find hard to swallow. And Newport News was scrapped in the late 1980s; she was decommissioned in 1974, and her #2 turret was unusable as it had a turret explosion similar to Iowa's in 1989. She would have been a parts source for Des Moines and Salem being reactivated.

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shrike6 07-04-2008, 09:26 PM Matt, I'm sure the DC group will give your errata the same consideration that they gave to the errata I gave them on the US Army orbat.

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Raellus 07-04-2008, 10:41 PM And Midway being sunk by a raider? That I find hard to swallow.


I think it depends entirely on what Chico means by "raider". Care to elaborate, Chico?


My guess is that the raider is an aggressively captained SSN (Akula, Charlie, Victor III) that managed to sneak past the carrier's ASW screen to within torpedo range. It's entirely within the realm of possibilities. The sub's probably not going to survive the encounter, but you never know. During Midway, I-168 snuck right underdeath the Yorktown after torpedoing it and somewhow still managed to E&E past four angry destroyers to safety.


But, I may be barking up the wrong tree here. Chico could mean something entirely different by "raider".

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Matt Wiser 07-05-2008, 02:05 AM Isn't the classical definition of raider being a warship or disguised auxilary cruiser that preys on merchant shipping? The disguised German raiders of both World Wars, the light cruiser Emden in WW I, the Pocket Battleships in WW II, or the Confederate cruisers like the Alabama fall under this category.

Even old-time raiders like Sir Francis Drake or Sir Henry Morgan would count. Though their victims called them pirates. Even the British and French in WW I called the disguised German raiders Mowe and Wolf "Pirates who should be hung from the nearest tree."

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kato13 07-05-2008, 06:23 AM Clancy/Bond in Red Storm Rising refer to the lesser capable Russian subs, primarily tasked against merchant ships, as raiders IIRC. That is what I though of as I read it.

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chico20854 07-05-2008, 12:38 PM I think it depends entirely on what Chico means by "raider". Care to elaborate, Chico?


My guess is that the raider is an aggressively captained SSN (Akula, Charlie, Victor III) that managed to sneak past the carrier's ASW screen to within torpedo range. It's entirely within the realm of possibilities. The sub's probably not going to survive the encounter, but you never know. During Midway, I-168 snuck right underdeath the Yorktown after torpedoing it and somewhow still managed to E&E past four angry destroyers to safety.


But, I may be barking up the wrong tree here. Chico could mean something entirely different by "raider".


To be honest, I can't recall exactly what we meant. Midway was the very first carrier group we addressed (of 18) and I'm interperting Law's chicken-scratch shorthand notes. (It was a rush session, which is why we didn't even get to the escort, amphibious, replenishment or sub groups). I'm thinking it was a modern Soviet SSN, as I agree the surface raider vs CVBG equation is a non-starter, and Midway did not operate fixed-wing ASW aircraft. And I'm sure the Soviets would gladly exchange a SSN for a CV.


Shrike, I'm sorry we haven't gotten back to you. We haven't taken a second look at the US Army, as we are nowhere near having to use them yet. The US Orbat was worked out for the revised US Army Vehicle Guide we are working on - but many of the division histories will be based on wargaming significant battles of the war using the Third World War system. I'm currently pretty deep into the Pact orbat, which is a slow process due to the translations involved (English-language sources are few and inadequate & I don't speak Russian, Hungarian, Polish, Romanian or Bulgarian very well if at all) and sheer size of the Pact forces (about 350 divisions). But until the Pact is done (and factors, counters & maps done up) and we find time to meet and wargame out some battles we're not focusing on the US Army. I agree that we have some deconfliction to perform, and in some cases its just a case of not seeing eye to eye, which I believe honest, intelligent people can do from time to time, but mostly we haven't gotten back around to it.


We did the USN major groups so that Law can start writing up some ship histories, and for a change of pace from the grind of orbats. Also, the Navy plays a pretty important role in our recovery plan (more writing I need to find time for), in some cases more important than divisions that are reduced to a few thousand troops by the time of Operation Omega and reorganized or disbanded upon return to the US.


As for the Essex-class carriers I left out above (Oriskany, Hornet and Bennington) when we were putting groups together at the beginning of the war we didn't include them, figuring that they were still in the shipyard for a fairly extensive reactivation and modernization, as most were decommissioned in the early 1970s and airwings were still being scraped together (both personnel and aircraft). Spare parts were scavenged off of Interpid and Yorktown. Once war broke out there was a conflict for limited shipyard resources between battle damage repair, new shipbuilding & reactivation of the Essex, and it was essentially resolved by the nuclear exchange - they never reach operation. The Arapaho converted container ships serve in a convoy escort role, but their number is limited by the number of airframes on hand. (We assume that, in general, US war production in the first year of the war is at best able to sustain replacement of losses and significant expansion is not an option for 1997, and the nuclear exchange takes it off the table for 1998 and beyond.)


On Newport News, I was unaware of its condition. I saw it was still in Navy custody in 1992 and figured we would bring its big guns back!

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Jason Weiser 07-06-2008, 06:16 PM I think I do, I think we may have gotten Midway mixed up with Ranger's fate ala Steel Bandit, which we have to update. Chico, when you get back from NM and read this...I think Midway can have Ranger's fate ala that lucky Victor II we discussed?


Or, were we thinking that a Primus raider got some lucky Styx shots in? It's possible, especially '98 on because she'd probably be operating as part of a short battlegroup with damaged electronics?

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Law0369 07-06-2008, 07:21 PM No Jason it was the fate of WWII Yorktown damaged in battle and escorts off doing other things while it was being towed to friendly port and was hit by torp's from a sub.

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Jason Weiser 07-06-2008, 07:36 PM Cool.


Thank god you took the notes Law, if it had been my handwriting, we'd still be deciphering the words, let alone the intent. :confused4

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