Author Topic: Light Carrier Arguments  (Read 3345 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Chris Pook

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 180,885
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 11,618
  • Wha daur say Mass in ma lug!
Light Carrier Arguments
« on: February 12, 2017, 13:24:54 »
I'm pretty sure I have seen this topic before but I can't find it. Merge at will.

Quote
Will the U.S. Navy Build 'Light' Aircraft Carriers (Armed with Stealth Fighters)?

Dave Majumdar
February 11, 2017


While a new naval future fleet architecture study from the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA) suggests that the U.S. Navy should maintain a fleet of 12 full-sized supercarriers, the paper also suggests that the service should develop a new class of light carriers. In the interim, while the new aircraft carriers are being developed, large deck amphibious assault ships could fill the role of the smaller flattops.

“The proposed fleet architecture adds to today’s CVNs smaller conventionally powered CVLs of 40,000 to 60,000 tons that would be incorporated into ARGs [amphibious ready groups] as part of the Deterrence Force,” the CSBA report states. “CVLs would provide power projection and sea control capabilities at the scale needed for day-to-day operations and for SUW, strike, and CAS as part of initial combat, freeing CVNs to focus on high-end integrated multi-carrier operations as part of the Maneuver Force or the Northern Europe Deterrence Force.”


The new conventional carriers would be roughly the same size as the World War II-vintage Midway-class—as they were configured toward the end of their service lives—and would carry a formidable air wing. Initially, the new carrier strike groups would be equipped the Lockheed Martin F-35B, but once the new CVLs are built and are operational, they would be able to embark more capable air wings.

“In the near-term, existing LHA/LHD amphibious assault ships would be employed as CVLs using a loadout of twenty to twenty-five F-35B aircraft. As they reach the end of their service life, LHA/LHD-derived CVLs would be replaced by purpose-built CVLs with a displacement similar to a Cold War-era Midway-class aircraft carrier and equipped with catapults and arresting gear,” the report states. “As a result, CVL air wings would be able to become slightly larger and incorporate airborne electronic attack (AEA) and airborne early warning (AEW) aircraft that are catapult-launched and require an arrested landing.”

The CVL air wing will evolve from today’s Marine air combat elements, if the Navy adopts CSBA’s plan. “CVL air wings will consist of about twenty F-35Bs, which can provide ISR, AEA, and targeting for the small-scale CAS, SUW, and strike attacks it will need to undertake as part of the Deterrence Force,” the report states. “This number of F-35Bs can be supported by the Marine Corps’ planned procurement of F-35Bs. It would impact the number available for shore-based operations under the Unit Deployment Program (UDP), but UDP operations could be supported by ARGs that are in the region, which would also increase the flexibility of the ARG ACE, since it would have multiple airfields ashore from which it could operate. For AEW and C2, LHA/LHD air wings will rely on shore-based maritime patrol aircraft and E-2Ds.”

Eventually, the CLV air wing will add its own organic electronic attack and airborne early warning. “As the Navy builds CVLs with catapults and arresting gear, the CVL air wing will evolve to add one to two UCAVs, one to two utility/tanker unmanned vehicles, one to two AEW aircraft, and AEA aircraft needed for the threat environment,” the report states. “This evolution will require Navy-Marine Corps air wing integration, as is done today in CVN CVWs.”

The U.S. Navy—which commissioned the CSBA report—seems to be embracing the idea. "The Navy is at an inflection point where we are back in competition.  Many of the ideas from these studies will help us win that competition,” chief of naval operations Adm. John Richardson said in an emailed statement.  “To win, our thinking must sharp and these studies help us - they give us exactly what we want...some fresh ideas. Each study provided ideas that in some cases validated and advanced the Navy's current thinking.  Some of the recommendations from the studies are so sound that we will act on them quickly.  Other ideas show promise and we'll study those hard.  The studies will be rolled into our program of analysis, war games, experiments, technology demonstrations, and prototyping."

I take issue on a couple of points - one is the need for the light carriers to be able to launch its own AEW and AEA aircraft - I suggest that that type of "air-cover" could be handled by loitering vehicles like this Triton MQ-4C BAMS UAV



or even by LTA craft.

The other point is about replacing F35B capable ships with F35C ships with catapults as the older ships are decommissioned.  Why?  If the F3B solution is adequate why go to more complex ship solutions down the road?   I can't help but feel this is special pleading for the conventional community.

"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

Offline Thucydides

  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 179,065
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 13,032
  • Freespeecher
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2017, 20:26:39 »
There are a lot of issues that need to be explored before saying definitively if smaller carriers would be better.

One issue which should be settled right away is that the F-35B is not a substitute for the F-35C, since the range of the B model is seriously compromised by the huge lift fan in the centre of the beast. In the A and C versions, this space is used for other things, including fuel, and when you are not in VTOL mode, the fan is simply dead weight for the plane and pilot. (In a different world, something evolved from the Harrier with vectored thrust would be in the place of the F-35B, but we don't live in that world).

The main issue is what sort of mission do carriers fulfill these days? Given the ever increasing range of AA/AD systems, small manned fighters or even UCAVs launching off a carrier deck might not be sufficient for force projection anymore. Once again, we might see a change in what sorts of things become the capital ships of the 21rst century. Will they be versatile attack submarines like the Virginia or Arrant, boats which displace 6-7000 tons and have the sort of performance of 1980 era Los Angeles attack subs but carry strategic weapons?  Will railgun equipped ships rain fire on inland targets 200+ kilometres inland while small carriers launch drones to do the targeting and observe BDA? Will careers simply launch swarms of disposable UCAVs to race towards incoming threats and protect the battlegroup (something like WWII era escort carriers protecting convoys in the North Atlantic)?

So while there are many good reasons to look critically at large carriers, to believe that "small" carriers are the answer is really situating the estimate. Small carriers may or may not have utility depending on what the navy is being asked to do. For our size Navy and our range of missions maybe a carrier like the Japanese Hyuga Class might be actually be worthwhile, but that is a question the Navy will need to ask and answer.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline Colin P

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 97,020
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 7,537
  • Civilian
    • http://www.pacific.ccg-gcc.gc.ca
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2017, 16:15:25 »
Something like the Mistral or the Aussie heli-carrier would be good for us, offers a lot of flexibility in the ways we can assist our allies, such a ship would useful for disaster relief, anti-piracy, Operations in coastal states to name a few missions. 

Offline daftandbarmy

  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 164,415
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 10,360
  • The Older I Get, The Better I Was
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2017, 18:43:09 »
Not that I'm an expert on the subject beyond my armchair, but given the vastly increased lethality and proliferation of various types of anti-ship technology (missiles etc), they'd be better off building lots and lots of, presumably cheaper,'light' carriers versus putting all their eggs into a few 'large up front' baskets.
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

Offline tomahawk6

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 81,995
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 8,392
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2017, 19:45:39 »
It could be argued that the amphibious assault ship is a light carrier that as it can fly F-35's off its deck as well as other aircraft/helos.

Offline Colin P

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 97,020
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 7,537
  • Civilian
    • http://www.pacific.ccg-gcc.gc.ca
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2017, 11:45:56 »
The US should help out it's allies by funding part of these buys to ensure every NATO navy has one operational Helicopter/assault ship. The various aviation assets could be deployed to them as required. 

Offline daftandbarmy

  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 164,415
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 10,360
  • The Older I Get, The Better I Was
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2017, 11:54:14 »
The US should help out it's allies by funding part of these buys to ensure every NATO navy has one operational Helicopter/assault ship. The various aviation assets could be deployed to them as required.

Or rich, first world, NATO countries like us who have benefitted from hiding behind Uncle Sam's coat tails for decades, can finally get off our wallets and pay our own way (for a change).
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

Offline Flavus101

  • Member
  • ****
  • 12,005
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 210
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2017, 13:00:46 »
The US should help out it's allies by funding part of these buys to ensure every NATO navy has one operational Helicopter/assault ship. The various aviation assets could be deployed to them as required.

Why spend money equipping a member of NATO when at the end of the day you have no control of the asset?

I echo D&B, if the NATO countries really wanted to have a top-end military they have the money to do it. They simply lack the political commitment to shift the funding. When you start subsidizing things there ends up being a huge shock when the subsidies end (see the Mexican citizens and gas prices) and suddenly a lot of people become really attached to their entitlements. It's a trap that I don't think the US wants to willingly fall into.

Offline Colin P

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 97,020
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 7,537
  • Civilian
    • http://www.pacific.ccg-gcc.gc.ca
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #8 on: February 14, 2017, 17:31:47 »
Might still be cheaper than building and manning the platforms themselves. More of a 1 time deal per ship and only for a certain type or perhaps for a portion of the equipment to make it more compatible.

Offline tomahawk6

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 81,995
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 8,392
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #9 on: February 14, 2017, 19:26:54 »
I could see the US offering a discounted price to very close allies like Canada and Oz. At a cost of $3.4b its not an asset that just any Navy could use.

https://www.dodbuzz.com/2015/04/08/navy-prepares-amphibs-for-f-35bs-first-deployment-in-2018/

Offline Colin P

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 97,020
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 7,537
  • Civilian
    • http://www.pacific.ccg-gcc.gc.ca
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #10 on: February 14, 2017, 19:42:32 »

Offline tomahawk6

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 81,995
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 8,392
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #11 on: February 14, 2017, 20:03:19 »
Fine for littoral waters but not for much else.It cant accomodate the F-35.

Offline daftandbarmy

  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 164,415
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 10,360
  • The Older I Get, The Better I Was
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #12 on: February 15, 2017, 01:52:10 »
The best, and most unsinkable, aircraft carriers have usually been friendly countries.

There's a role for some good ol' diplomacy here that we may be underestimating.
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

Offline FSTO

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • 23,735
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 1,231
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #13 on: February 15, 2017, 09:02:18 »
The best, and most unsinkable, aircraft carriers have usually been friendly countries.

There's a role for some good ol' diplomacy here that we may be underestimating.

The beauty of the aircraft carriers (and navies in general) is that you don't need friendly countries, diplomatic clearances, boots on the ground, etc.

Offline dapaterson

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 358,260
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 14,476
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #14 on: February 15, 2017, 09:26:11 »
The downside is that modern asymmetric threats mean additional resources are required to protect the platform.  I recall a gentleman from New Zealand getting into a lot of hot water about a decade ago for trying to build a $5000 cruise missile (GPS guided).
This posting made in accordance with the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, section 2(b):
Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms: freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication
http://laws.justice.gc.ca/en/charter/1.html

Offline Chris Pook

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 180,885
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 11,618
  • Wha daur say Mass in ma lug!
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #15 on: February 15, 2017, 10:03:53 »
The downside is that modern asymmetric threats mean additional resources are required to protect the platformairport

FTFY [:D
"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

Offline FSTO

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • 23,735
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 1,231
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #16 on: February 15, 2017, 10:20:06 »
The downside is that modern asymmetric threats mean additional resources are required to protect the platform.  I recall a gentleman from New Zealand getting into a lot of hot water about a decade ago for trying to build a $5000 cruise missile (GPS guided).

True.
But there is no panacea. I believe a carrier of some sort will survive due to the flexibility it brings to a government.




Offline Colin P

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 97,020
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 7,537
  • Civilian
    • http://www.pacific.ccg-gcc.gc.ca
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #17 on: February 15, 2017, 10:38:55 »
Fine for littoral waters but not for much else.It cant accomodate the F-35.

Actually it is a version of this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spanish_ship_Juan_Carlos_I which was designed for the Harrier/F-35. The US could help cover the cost of the combat systems and making it compatible with the F-35, that way a squadron of F35B could use it as required. That offer may make the ship more fiscally attractive to US NATO allies, increasing the number of F-35 capable carriers at minimal costs. Not to mention the increased amphip and helicopter ability.

Offline Oldgateboatdriver

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • 84,395
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 2,642
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #18 on: February 15, 2017, 10:57:30 »
If you want a small carrier that is F-35 compatible, I would go for this instead of the hybrid "amphibious" warfare ships:


Offline Chris Pook

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 180,885
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 11,618
  • Wha daur say Mass in ma lug!
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #19 on: February 15, 2017, 11:11:13 »
In a world of stealth would the radar experts consider this a stealthy aspect?

"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

Offline Oldgateboatdriver

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • 84,395
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 2,642
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #20 on: February 15, 2017, 11:24:24 »
It's just as stealthy as any American aircraft carrier, or flat deck amphibious assault vessel, or the Charles de Gaulle, or the Queen Elizabeth class, or the Mistral, or the Juan Carlos, or the Australian amphibious assault vessels.

Those things are just big. There is no hiding them.
 

Offline Dimsum

    West coast best coast.

  • Mentor
  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *
  • 128,885
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 3,811
  • I get paid to travel. I just don't pick where.
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #21 on: February 15, 2017, 11:27:32 »
It's just as stealthy as any American aircraft carrier, or flat deck amphibious assault vessel, or the Charles de Gaulle, or the Queen Elizabeth class, or the Mistral, or the Juan Carlos, or the Australian amphibious assault vessels.

Those things are just big. There is no hiding them.

Exactly.  Also "stealth" is really just "low-observable" - get close enough and you'll be able to see it (via whatever sensor) anyways.
Philip II of Macedon to Spartans (346 BC):  "You are advised to submit without further delay, for if I bring my army into your land, I will destroy your farms, slay your people, and raze your city."

Reply:  "If."

Offline daftandbarmy

  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 164,415
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 10,360
  • The Older I Get, The Better I Was
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #22 on: February 15, 2017, 11:34:22 »
Exactly.  Also "stealth" is really just "low-observable" - get close enough and you'll be able to see it (via whatever sensor) anyways.

And if it's anchored in the harbor of your enemy's capital city, surrounding by smoking ruins topped by your flag, you don't have to worry about stealthy... much  :)
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

Offline Colin P

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 97,020
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 7,537
  • Civilian
    • http://www.pacific.ccg-gcc.gc.ca
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #23 on: February 15, 2017, 11:38:00 »
If you want a small carrier that is F-35 compatible, I would go for this instead of the hybrid "amphibious" warfare ships:

Still nice to have type ship, but I expect the more flexible, the easier the sell would be. 

Offline Chris Pook

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 180,885
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 11,618
  • Wha daur say Mass in ma lug!
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #24 on: February 15, 2017, 11:38:54 »
Fair Game on the stealth - so you can't hide a big boat. 

So the solutions are: 

Try to protect the boat - magnifying costs while minimizing capabilities because ultimately one boat can only be in one place at one time - concurrently this increases the number of lives at risk engaged in "unproductive" defensive roles.

Or

Build many boats of low cost with minimal bodies on board.  And if you do have to have bodies on board you bring them to the boat when you need them.   Don't be floating around the Briny with a 1000 troopies on board (or even 100 aircraft) unless you need them there.  Fly or boat self-loading cargo to a cheap flat spot between the waves when the situation warrants.

"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

Offline tomahawk6

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 81,995
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 8,392
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #25 on: February 15, 2017, 12:23:55 »
Ships of this type operate with escorts. The nice aspect of the US amphib ships is that they can project power with their Marines and helicopters/soon to be F35's.

Offline Chris Pook

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 180,885
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 11,618
  • Wha daur say Mass in ma lug!
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #26 on: February 15, 2017, 13:07:48 »
My point is, T6, that when loaded with troops and aircraft the platform is a Very High Value Target.  Therefore wouldn't it be better to keep the Marines and Aircraft off the vessel and ashore for as long as possible.

15 Chinooks will cross deck 600 troops.  2 JHSV will do the same thing and allow the troops to bring heavier gear with them.
Aircraft, especially F35Bs can be kept in reserve and then just brought forwards to the platform in the numbers necessary for the mission.

And, with respect to the escorts, that, in my view, is the problem.  The VHVT demands the presence of escorts, each of which is a capital, manpower and operations draw and might be better employed dispersed than being forced to concentrate around the Target.
"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

Offline Oldgateboatdriver

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • 84,395
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 2,642
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #27 on: February 15, 2017, 13:44:26 »
And why not simply not have an army? If things go wrong, we could just snatch people off the street, give them guns and instruct them on the way while we get them to location on Air Canada planes!

I am jesting, of course, but I think you are missing the point, Chris.

These ships are not Very High Value targets because the marines are on board, they are VHVT because of the threat they represent to any enemy. Even without the Marines on board, they still cost 3.4 billion $US to build each and they still carry a huge amount of equipment to make opposed landings possible. That is enough to justify any enemy taking a serious crack at sinking them, even if the Marines aren't on board.

Moreover, where would you keep  those Marines? Another country? Not likely. They'd be in the US somewhere.

So your JHSV or Chinook option to bring the Marines back (and BTW, it's not 600: the America class or Wasp class before them carry 1750 Marines - and are usually accompanied by two other amphibious ships each carrying 750 more Marines) have to pick them up in the US and deliver them where? Logic dictates the large deck phib would have to remain within their "range" prior to reconnection. And compared to the ocean size and the potential destinations, both the Chinooks and JHSV have a limited range.

In your plan, if something goes wrong somewhere on earth, the Marines would have to assemble at their base in the US, embark on their Chinooks, fly to the amphibious assault ship, which would have to be within the flying range (only 400 Nautical Miles) of the US, wait for all the airplanes, and I guess their crew and support personnel, to arrive, then sail at the phib's  maximum speed (22 knots) to wherever on the planet they are needed. That is way, way, way too long.

A Marine Expeditionary Unit is the President's 911 force. When they are needed, they have to be there ... now. That is why the concept is forward deployment. At any given time four MEU(SOC) are forward deployed in areas where likely trouble spots are found, so they can be used quickly when the situation calls for it.

And while forward deployed, they don't need a huge escort situation, nor are they in danger from outside enemy until they are tasked to get close to shore for an operation.

I know we have satellite's galore, and new long range anti-ship weapons, etc. these days. But even with those, the oceans of the world - 2/3 of the planet's surface - are still the most wonderful hiding place ever. You are army, I believe, Chris. Think about it this way: If I gave you ten spy satellites and one hundred Search planes, and then asked you to find 5 main battle tanks and a couple dozen LAV's somewhere - anywhere - in Canada's whole land mass, and they are allowed to change location: how much time would you need? The answer is  a heck of a lot of time, if you ever manage to spot them. That's what is protecting the phibs until they are called in: not "stealth' by ship design, but stealth by  size of the hiding ground.
 

Offline Colin P

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 97,020
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 7,537
  • Civilian
    • http://www.pacific.ccg-gcc.gc.ca
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #28 on: February 15, 2017, 13:46:18 »
The Brits tried the same thing, and still lost most of their helo's and trying to use commercial ships for aviation support took longer to convert than anticipated (kudeos for trying) Apparently the CO wanted the troops off the Sir Galahad asap, but was overruled. At some point in the operation, you are going to have to risk having all your eggs in one place. Having a amphib assault ship on something like the anti-piracy patrols would drive the coastal towns involved into a panic and disrupt the pirates bases, even if you did nothing. Do a few landings at low risk areas and you have upped the ante for them and force them to start moving high valued assets away from the coast.

Offline Chris Pook

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 180,885
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 11,618
  • Wha daur say Mass in ma lug!
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #29 on: February 15, 2017, 14:02:21 »
And why not simply not have an army? If things go wrong, we could just snatch people off the street, give them guns and instruct them on the way while we get them to location on Air Canada planes!

I am jesting, of course, but I think you are missing the point, Chris.

These ships are not Very High Value targets because the marines are on board, they are VHVT because of the threat they represent to any enemy. Even without the Marines on board, they still cost 3.4 billion $US to build each and they still carry a huge amount of equipment to make opposed landings possible. That is enough to justify any enemy taking a serious crack at sinking them, even if the Marines aren't on board.

Moreover, where would you keep  those Marines? Another country? Not likely. They'd be in the US somewhere.

So your JHSV or Chinook option to bring the Marines back (and BTW, it's not 600: the America class or Wasp class before them carry 1750 Marines - and are usually accompanied by two other amphibious ships each carrying 750 more Marines) have to pick them up in the US and deliver them where? Logic dictates the large deck phib would have to remain within their "range" prior to reconnection. And compared to the ocean size and the potential destinations, both the Chinooks and JHSV have a limited range.

In your plan, if something goes wrong somewhere on earth, the Marines would have to assemble at their base in the US, embark on their Chinooks, fly to the amphibious assault ship, which would have to be within the flying range (only 400 Nautical Miles) of the US, wait for all the airplanes, and I guess their crew and support personnel, to arrive, then sail at the phib's  maximum speed (22 knots) to wherever on the planet they are needed. That is way, way, way too long.

A Marine Expeditionary Unit is the President's 911 force. When they are needed, they have to be there ... now. That is why the concept is forward deployment. At any given time four MEU(SOC) are forward deployed in areas where likely trouble spots are found, so they can be used quickly when the situation calls for it.

And while forward deployed, they don't need a huge escort situation, nor are they in danger from outside enemy until they are tasked to get close to shore for an operation.

I know we have satellite's galore, and new long range anti-ship weapons, etc. these days. But even with those, the oceans of the world - 2/3 of the planet's surface - are still the most wonderful hiding place ever. You are army, I believe, Chris. Think about it this way: If I gave you ten spy satellites and one hundred Search planes, and then asked you to find 5 main battle tanks and a couple dozen LAV's somewhere - anywhere - in Canada's whole land mass, and they are allowed to change location: how much time would you need? The answer is  a heck of a lot of time, if you ever manage to spot them. That's what is protecting the phibs until they are called in: not "stealth' by ship design, but stealth by  size of the hiding ground.
 


Suppose you fly the troops from San Diego to Diego Garcia on commercial air?  And haul the Chinooks by C5/C17.  Allow a week for assembly of Troops and Craft.

Chinooks will lift the troops 500 km (if no refuelling at destination platform - 90% of 1100 km if refuelling is available at the destination) http://www.rcaf-arc.forces.gc.ca/en/aircraft-current/ch-147f.page

A JHSV will lift the troops about twice that distance.



Which is cheaper and more effective - a Very Large Flat Top or

A collection of commercial grade logistics vessels with flat tops, self propelled submersible barges and a bundle of Absalon standard Command and Support vessels from which small bodies of troops can operate?

http://foxtrotalpha.jalopnik.com/exclusive-photo-usns-montford-point-the-navys-new-sea-1567333241

Edit: I don't dispute the need for the current standards of CVNs, CVs and LPH(D)s.  There is obviously a need for them.  I just suggest that there are other ways of doing some of the things that only they can currently do.

Consider the difference between the RN's Ark Royal in WW and D-Days Mulberry.  In this case I am proposing a deep sea version of Mulberry that can be assembled 1000 km off the target shore.





http://www.engineering-timelines.com/who/Hughes_HI/hughesHughIorys.asp

« Last Edit: February 15, 2017, 14:10:36 by Chris Pook »
"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

Offline Colin P

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 97,020
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 7,537
  • Civilian
    • http://www.pacific.ccg-gcc.gc.ca
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #30 on: February 15, 2017, 14:38:14 »
It's no easy task to assemble those commercial ships, chartering them and dealing with crewing issues (the bridge crew and the engineroom crews might be different nationalities and perhaps a nationality hostile to your intent). It would have been impossible during the economic peak to find the ships. They may be an option for long drawn out operation with lot's of lead time and one has to consider things like landing in foreign ports like what just happened to Singapore or a contract dispute which happened to Canada. Yes you will need commercial support, but the pointy end and quick reaction stuff will need to be naval and/or Naval Auxiliary.     

Offline Thucydides

  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 179,065
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 13,032
  • Freespeecher
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #31 on: February 15, 2017, 15:43:44 »
We could combine a few disparate threads however.

There is no reason that Canada's naval shipbuilding industry is at the mercy of feast or famine decisions by the government, if part of the strategy is to build a slow but steady stream of these sorts of support vessels Chris is advocating for. The GoC can even make a small bit of the cost back by leasing them out.

For wartime and emergency use, the ones which are laid up in reserve are manned and run by the Naval Reserve, who of course would be training on these ships and perhaps being part of the charter package when someone wants to lease a submersible barge from the GoC. And the USN has demonstrated various "packages" that are essentially armed ISO containers which can be bolted to the deck of a ship, so your barge suddenly has a CIWS or SAM launcher (and in the future, perhaps a 100kW laser emitter). Data links to "real" warships and warplanes provide the means to actually use these weapons as part off the larger task force umbrella.

Not exactly a totally ideal situation, but the Naval Reserve would have a sustainment role and capable of coming in the second wave with all the extra "stuff" that longer duration missions might need, and the fleet has a supply of specialist ships and crews to man them.

Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline GR66

  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • 44,915
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 531
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #32 on: February 15, 2017, 17:58:50 »
We could combine a few disparate threads however.

There is no reason that Canada's naval shipbuilding industry is at the mercy of feast or famine decisions by the government, if part of the strategy is to build a slow but steady stream of these sorts of support vessels Chris is advocating for. The GoC can even make a small bit of the cost back by leasing them out.

For wartime and emergency use, the ones which are laid up in reserve are manned and run by the Naval Reserve, who of course would be training on these ships and perhaps being part of the charter package when someone wants to lease a submersible barge from the GoC. And the USN has demonstrated various "packages" that are essentially armed ISO containers which can be bolted to the deck of a ship, so your barge suddenly has a CIWS or SAM launcher (and in the future, perhaps a 100kW laser emitter). Data links to "real" warships and warplanes provide the means to actually use these weapons as part off the larger task force umbrella.

Not exactly a totally ideal situation, but the Naval Reserve would have a sustainment role and capable of coming in the second wave with all the extra "stuff" that longer duration missions might need, and the fleet has a supply of specialist ships and crews to man them.

Getting very off topic with regard to light carriers, but this kind of approach could possibly be used with the Canadian Surface Combatant.  Assuming whatever design is selected has a useful sized helicopter deck, a flex deck of some sort that can be used for either accommodation of troops, vehicle transport, or modular sensors/weapons (something Absalon-ish?), then you could have your 12-15 CSCs followed by 12 x Kingston-class replacements using the same hulls and engines.  They just wouldn't have the same weapons and sensor suite (maybe just a 57mm gun? or RWS, etc.?).  This could keep the production lines running until it's time to again replace the CSC's.

Several people discussing the CSC have noted that it's the weapons and sensors that are the major costs in warship production.  "De-armed" CSCs to replace the Kingston-Class would give you a significant commonality in mechanical components and training.  The larger design would be very useful in many non-combat operations and in time of war they could become very useful in the key role of convoy escorts by adding an ASW helicopter and a modular towed-array sonar (freeing up the fully-armed versions for areas where a more multi-role capable ship is needed).

Sorry for the derail.

Offline Chris Pook

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 180,885
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 11,618
  • Wha daur say Mass in ma lug!
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #33 on: February 15, 2017, 18:23:22 »
No derail perceived here.

I can see a spectrum of "flat tops" ranging downwards from CVNs, CVs, CVLs, LPHs, LSD(A)s, to Absalon-ish Comd & Spt ships and then back up the other side through Container Ship Conversions like the US Special Forces support ship Ocean Trader

  along with Davies's and Irving's own proposed commercial conversions. 

It would be interesting to see what a decked over super-tanker, with a sea crew of 13 to 20 would cost and what capabilities it might add.

"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

Offline tomahawk6

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 81,995
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 8,392
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #34 on: February 15, 2017, 19:38:27 »
My point is, T6, that when loaded with troops and aircraft the platform is a Very High Value Target.  Therefore wouldn't it be better to keep the Marines and Aircraft off the vessel and ashore for as long as possible.

15 Chinooks will cross deck 600 troops.  2 JHSV will do the same thing and allow the troops to bring heavier gear with them.
Aircraft, especially F35Bs can be kept in reserve and then just brought forwards to the platform in the numbers necessary for the mission.

And, with respect to the escorts, that, in my view, is the problem.  The VHVT demands the presence of escorts, each of which is a capital, manpower and operations draw and might be better employed dispersed than being forced to concentrate around the Target.


US amphib ships have a well deck for delivering Marines or non-lethal aid for disaster relief ops. Usually there is an attack sub assigned to both the CVA and LHD. The LHD capability is at the link below.

http://www.navy.mil/navydata/fact_display.asp?cid=4200&tid=400&ct=4

USS Makin Island

« Last Edit: February 15, 2017, 19:45:13 by tomahawk6 »

Offline Thucydides

  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 179,065
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 13,032
  • Freespeecher
Re: Light Carrier Arguments
« Reply #35 on: February 16, 2017, 23:40:14 »
If we are looking for adapt le commercial designs, the modern car carrier might be one place to look. It has deck space for hundreds of wheeled vehicles and the ability to roll them on and off the decks. Most designs have flat upper decks as well.

To militarize the design, the decks and ramps need to be strong enough to carry tracked vehicles, most of the upper decks would be used to store supplies and carry troop accommodations and the upper deck strengthened to allow helicopters to take off and land. Fitting CIWS mounts at either end is probably a good idea as well.

This would be a "big honking ship" (indeed, conversions of existing ships would be massively oversized for Canadian use unless many decks were removed and the ship essentially lowered), but would have the versatility to be used for a multitude of supply and delivery tasks.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.