Wednesday, May 20, 2009

When monkeys fly out of my SVTT

Ummm ... General Conway ... please call your office.
A persistent capability gap in U.S. naval surface fire support (NSFS) could well be filled by the new Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), according to Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Conway.

Conway said his Navy counterpart, Adm. Gary Roughead, has agreed to expand the concept of using the LCS as a firing platform for what Conway called a “box of rockets.”

The services are still examining storage and elevator capacity aboard LCS, and Conway said “we don’t have [the] box we need.”

NSFS is the ship-to-shore artillery element of the fires triad used to suppress and break apart enemy forces under an amphibious assault. Marine and the Navy leaders looked to reinvigorate the Corps’ classic, forcible beach-entry role after years of in-land counter-insurgency fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. But as adversary defenses become more sophisticated, and reach farther from shore, the challenge for U.S. forces remains to outfit ships with systems offering enough firepower and range.

The truncation of the DDG-1000 and cancellation last year of Raytheon’s Extended Range Guided Munition (ERGM) put a dent in the Corps’ requirement for NSFS (Aerospace DAILY, Dec. 19, 2006). In the near-term, Conway said, the Marine Corps has not found a volume of firepower that can successfully fill the NSFS gap. Using the LCS “may fix the problem for the long-term,” he added.
Let's do a little back of the cocktail napkin planning here - shall we?

Let's give the LCS crowd 100% success in having the right LCS (or let's say 4) there at the right time with the right mission module there with the right opponent and the right sea state, OK? We have NetFires onboard. Each box has 15 missiles that have the hitting power of about a 155mm artillery round.

As I understand it, each SUW LCS Mission Module will give you four boxes. That is 60 rounds of 155mm equivalent (yes, yes, precision fires bla-bla-bla, we know). Four LCS together and you have 240 155mm equivalent ......

Wait, am I getting ahead of myself? Let's read that again,
The services are still examining storage and elevator capacity aboard LCS, and Conway said “we don’t have [the] box we need.”
A NSFS "box of rockets?"

This should work out like this if we needed it anytime soon from the sound of it,

You want a "box of rockets?" At about the 1:15 point, these guys had box of rockets. Mmmmmm, from concept to development, how long did the LCT(R) take?

This concept ain't done. Put it back in the oven.
UPDATE: Thanks to Scott B., we have an update ... snerk .... no shocker, but as of 04 MAR - as per Raytheon the punch just got smaller by 25%.
The LCS Mission Module can fire as many as 45 NLOS-LS PAM missiles from three container launch units. With a range greater than 25 miles, the PAM missile gives the LCS an increased surface warfare weapon capability.

"These tests prove the plug-and-play missile seeker ability to detect and track targets while filling the warfighter's capability gap for precision engagement of moving and stationary targets in open and complex terrain," said Scott Speet, executive vice president of NetFires LLC and Raytheon's NLOS-LS program director.

Set the watch: It is that time again. I am mostly dropping off the grid for the next six days or so. Through the weekend and all. I have some good stuff tee'd up through the 26th, so keep coming back. As Spock and I are on an away team, I need the right team on the bridge. C-14 you have the con, Byron Chief Engineer, LBG nav, MTH weapons, AM, Mr. Walthrop and GoH man the anti-troll quick response team, Maggie Comms. Kristin plays that nice Yeoman with the clipboard and the mini-skirt circa the second season who keeps Bones (Skippy) out of trouble.

Once again, I have some good stuff lined up - but if there is something breaking, I won't be able to get to it here ... where ever "here" is.

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