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The Future of Britain.

This is a discussion on The Future of Britain. within the Geo-strategic Issues forum, part of the Global Defense & Military category; Originally Posted by Palnatoke I think the FREDA version can carry a mix of 48 aster 15&30 in it's launcher ...


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Old February 3rd, 2012   #61
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Originally Posted by Palnatoke View Post
I think the FREDA version can carry a mix of 48 aster 15&30 in it's launcher and will have an improved version of the herakles radar, which is a highly modern radar developed by a (or the) leader in the field (Thales). The herakles is a bit different than thales's APAR, Smart-L radar or the Sampson, in that those two systems has an active phazed array radar and a volumne search radar, while the herakles is "only" an active phazed array (I believe). Such things has it's pros and cons. As I understand it the herakles can operate the ASTER 30 to it's full potential, though, again as I read the text , it won't give the same long range surveillance as the APAR-Smart-l or Sampson, but the french also got carrier based AEW units so maybe that's not needed?

The FREDA is the "cost-effective" answer to the Horizon/Type45 failures (I consider them both expensive failures), as you might know Fr and It. stopped the Horizon project due to spiralling costs, leaving the navy short of targetted number of AAW units, and the FREDA is filling the gap.
FREDA will have 32 Sylver silos, hence a maximum of 32 Aster. AFAIK Herakles is a passive phased array (though a top-notch one, I think), not active.

I don't see FREDA as an answer to the failure of Horizon (& certainly not T45). Horizon looks pretty effective to me, but expensive. FREDA is a cheaper gap-filler to make up for budgetary constraints leaving France short of high-end AAW ships. The Italians are trying to fill the gap by increasing the AAW abilities of their standard FREMMs with a more capable AESA derivative of EMPAR, to make up for the lack of a VSR.
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Old February 3rd, 2012   #62
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Honestly I think the British should look at american technologies and partnerships and avoid these euro centric initiatives. I think the Brits have more in common with the US in terms of military than with the euros..
Yeah, give up designing or making anything & just import it from the USA or maybe, if we do as we're told, be allowed to be subcontractors.
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Old February 3rd, 2012   #63
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I've said before that i think the best approach for england is a 10yr lease of superhornets and cancel the jsf and buy into the 6th generation fighter that is replacing the superhornet which is supposed to come aloong in 2025 just 5yrs after we are supposed to get the jsf anyway. we could use this plane to replace typhoon/tornado aswell
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Old February 3rd, 2012   #64
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FREDA will have 32 Sylver silos, hence a maximum of 32 Aster. AFAIK Herakles is a passive phased array (though a top-notch one, I think), not active.

I don't see FREDA as an answer to the failure of Horizon (& certainly not T45). Horizon looks pretty effective to me, but expensive. FREDA is a cheaper gap-filler to make up for budgetary constraints leaving France short of high-end AAW ships. The Italians are trying to fill the gap by increasing the AAW abilities of their standard FREMMs with a more capable AESA derivative of EMPAR, to make up for the lack of a VSR.
IMO those 2 facts are the most important factors for an AAW destroyer, missile capability and radar capability. As the T45 has more Asters + a better radar then it leads one to believe that for AAW the T45 will perform better, i for one am very glad we didn't participate in FREMM as we ultimately came out with a more capable (vastly more capable compared to T42 and cheaper to run) ship than we would have done with FREMM. There is a reason why T45 is a more expensive ship (excluding poor management decisions) after all.
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Old February 3rd, 2012   #65
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I've said before that i think the best approach for england is a 10yr lease of superhornets and cancel the jsf and buy into the 6th generation fighter that is replacing the superhornet which is supposed to come aloong in 2025 just 5yrs after we are supposed to get the jsf anyway. we could use this plane to replace typhoon/tornado aswell
There are no superhornets to lease - no idea where this idea comes from other than wishful thinking but effectively it's a no go.

To be available to lease, the US government would effectively have to underwrite the deal so the manufacturer could build the aircraft, then arrange terms. Can't see that happening.

Why cancel JSF? We have a workshare in it, the platform is proceeding satisfactorily - what's the benefit? Why switch to an aircraft that's a twinkle in the eye of the designers, and which may take decades to provide full capability ? That's decades *beyond* the ISD of JSF.

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Old February 3rd, 2012   #66
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I've said before that i think the best approach for england is a 10yr lease of superhornets and cancel the jsf and buy into the 6th generation fighter that is replacing the superhornet which is supposed to come aloong in 2025 just 5yrs after we are supposed to get the jsf anyway. we could use this plane to replace typhoon/tornado aswell
Why should the UK (not England) lease Superhornets? Plus as said before where would they get them from? INothing more than a pipe-dream.

Of course, because investing right now in an aircraft design which would probably be far more expensive than the F-35C and NOT have 5th Gen aircaft on our carriers and instead leasing non-existant Hornets is the way to go, somehow I think not. IIRC isn't the F-35C for the USN going to replace the F-18? (Because if it is, why the hell would we NOT pick the F-35 and still operate F-18s which are not currently available)

Skunk Works chief on next-gen fighter - YouTube
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When the time comes, we'll see if we ever build a 6th geneation figher - if we can afford it - i would not be suprised to see the optionally manned umm options to exist
If the Chief on Skunk Works has doubts on the affordability of a potential 6th gen then how on earth would the UK be able to afford it?
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Old February 3rd, 2012   #67
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I actually think that the entire F-35 JSF program is rediculous.

It seems that the Americans got it in their heads that THEY "needed" to have this aricraft and it's dubious abilities and simply suckered the other nations into it with their "fantasy stories" about it's abilities, technology and especially it;s cost ( development and Per Unit).

Reality has shown that ALL the original "stories" have proven false. Canada has dumped enough money into the project that it's un reasonable to now back out ...as has every other contributing country.

from what I;ve read/heard, even the Americans aren;t "enthusiastic" about it.

From conception through R&D, everything about this Aircraft is based on American needs and wants...every one else is just be "shoe horned" into the program.

For Canada, ours will differ cause it;ll have a drag chute for icy runways...It;s already been shown that the Comms. system DOESN'T work in Canada's North...and that was the reason for it!????..so more money into developing a CANADIAN Comms Suite just so that comms across Canada can occur. Our needs and use of Fighter/fighter bombers has been minimal to say the least...they actually USED our CF18's in Libia...but no actual operational need for a $139 MILLION per unit plane exists....our 18's are old...yep.....do they need replacing YEP.....could we have bought another GOOD plane that meets our needs and more of them for a fraction of the costs so far...Hell YES!.......

The UK is likewise being suckered into this "shoe horn" mentality.to much money, to many unfounded promises and little actual capabilities shown...just alot of future" promises".....Everyone will need to seriously change our entire Airforce structures, tactics, support everything for this "one plane wonder package"...

yep so great that even the USA is reducing it;s perspective orders.......sad, very sad.....

The UK has a stelar and long lived Aero Industry...they should have spent the money AT HOME, built an aircraft for UK needs......simple isn;t it?........
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Old February 3rd, 2012   #68
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The UK has a stelar and long lived Aero Industry...they should have spent the money AT HOME, built an aircraft for UK needs......simple isn;t it?........
We've not built a supersonic fighter on a national level since the original lightning - there's no way we could have rattled off a fifth generation aircraft with the current infrastructure. We had design lead on Typhoon and that was twenty years ago.

F35 works fine and if you're in doubt, pop over to the F35 thread and read that through.
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Old February 3rd, 2012   #69
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FREDA will have 32 Sylver silos, hence a maximum of 32 Aster. AFAIK Herakles is a passive phased array (though a top-notch one, I think), not active.

I don't see FREDA as an answer to the failure of Horizon (& certainly not T45). Horizon looks pretty effective to me, but expensive. FREDA is a cheaper gap-filler to make up for budgetary constraints leaving France short of high-end AAW ships. The Italians are trying to fill the gap by increasing the AAW abilities of their standard FREMMs with a more capable AESA derivative of EMPAR, to make up for the lack of a VSR.
Thanks for the missile count and I agree that it looks like Herakles is a passive phazed array. It is also a top radar by one of the leaders in the field, and nothing suggests that it's a bad or inferior radar. It's obvious that a ship needs the radar that can surport and match it's cababilities and intended use, and given that the french navy, unlike the italien and english got carrier borne AEW, maybe the long range surveliance aspect is not as important for the intended use. As to the ability of the radar to detect and react on/to realworld threaths (like low altitude stealthy objects), we don't know how it meassures up against other radars. But aparently the french are content with the performance, else they would probably have got a better radar. F.ex. Signaal (now thales) also offers the APAR-Smart-L radars, which is in use by a number of navies.
And anyway a 3D air range of 250km and an ability to track more than 400 targets, sounds as "enough".

As I read the specs of the FREDA, this ship can combat air threats to the full potential of the ASTER15/30 missile, which incidentially is (exactly) the same missile as the horizon and T45 is equipped with and thus limited by. That FREDA carries 32 ASTERS doesn't seem so low, compared to T45's 48 missiles (according to wiki). If the marginal cost (because the FREEM sisters are being builded regardless) is good, then I have a very hard time seeing why this shouldn't be a very good ship for the french navy.
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Old February 3rd, 2012   #70
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IMO those 2 facts are the most important factors for an AAW destroyer, missile capability and radar capability. As the T45 has more Asters + a better radar then it leads one to believe that for AAW the T45 will perform better, i for one am very glad we didn't participate in FREMM as we ultimately came out with a more capable (vastly more capable compared to T42 and cheaper to run) ship than we would have done with FREMM. There is a reason why T45 is a more expensive ship (excluding poor management decisions) after all.
The frustating part is that you don't even mention the money... more than 1 billion pound per ship in "then money"....! a cracy amount of money, and well more than double that of a FREMM (unit programme price), not knowing the price a FREDA, but since one can view those as "extras" it's the marginal price that's interesting. (The cost of development of the main ship has been paid (FREMM) and the development cost of the weapons has also been paid (Horizon)
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Old February 3rd, 2012   #71
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IMO those 2 facts are the most important factors for an AAW destroyer, missile capability and radar capability. As the T45 has more Asters + a better radar then it leads one to believe that for AAW the T45 will perform better, i for one am very glad we didn't participate in FREMM as we ultimately came out with a more capable (vastly more capable compared to T42 and cheaper to run) ship than we would have done with FREMM. There is a reason why T45 is a more expensive ship (excluding poor management decisions) after all.
Mmm...no sense in comparing FREMM with a Daring - the T45 was our home built alternative to the Horizon frigates once we'd withdrawn from the Horizon program. FREMM is a near equivalent to the forthcoming T26. You need to look at the Horizon vs T45 costs/specification. The prime mover for us getting out of Horizon was workshare - the French and Italians were aiming for workshare based around building I think 12 and 6 respectively, while committing to rather less of a build ending up with I think 3 and 1 respectively.

Even if we'd stayed in the Horizon program we'd still have had the same radar fitout as we'd spent quite a bit of time insisting and making it possible to include SAMPSON.

Daring stacked out at 750m per copy, you can't compare that to a FREMM as the ship is intended to be a cheap, multipurpose frigate with a far less capable sensor set.

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Old February 3rd, 2012   #72
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Why cancel JSF? We have a workshare in it, the platform is proceeding satisfactorily - what's the benefit? Why switch to an aircraft that's a twinkle in the eye of the designers, and which may take decades to provide full capability ? That's decades *beyond* the ISD of JSF.
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I agree that there's no turning back now.

My point is more "in retrospect". In retrospect britsh planners should, in my mind, have clearly seen not only the need for a landbased fighter, but also the need for a new carrier fleet by, say, 2010-2020. And envisioned the need for a modern multirole fighter cabable of fullfilling those roles with in budget limits.
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Old February 3rd, 2012   #73
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Daring stacked out at 750m per copy, you can't compare that to a FREMM as the ship is intended to be a cheap, multipurpose frigate with a far less capable sensor set.

Ian
The price was 1.2bn per ship in "then" money.

The FREMM is a very capable highly modern multirole warship with a modern and very capable radar, it's priced at less than half of that of the T45.
The FREDA version is intended to bring many of the same capabilities that the T45 brings to the table - that's obvious from reading the spec lists.
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Old February 3rd, 2012   #74
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FREDA will have 32 Sylver silos, hence a maximum of 32 Aster. AFAIK Herakles is a passive phased array (though a top-notch one, I think), not active.

I don't see FREDA as an answer to the failure of Horizon (& certainly not T45). Horizon looks pretty effective to me, but expensive. FREDA is a cheaper gap-filler to make up for budgetary constraints leaving France short of high-end AAW ships. The Italians are trying to fill the gap by increasing the AAW abilities of their standard FREMMs with a more capable AESA derivative of EMPAR, to make up for the lack of a VSR.
Btw, upon reading on it, apparently Herakles is some sort of cross breed between an active and passive array.

The herakles is, as far as I can see, developed by Thales Nl. (the former Signaal of Nl) privately and is, according to themselves, their most modern product. That same company also has the widely sold APAR radar, so it's not because they can't make a geniune active array at Thales Nl.
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Old February 3rd, 2012   #75
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The frustating part is that you don't even mention the money... more than 1 billion pound per ship in "then money"....! a cracy amount of money, and well more than double that of a FREMM (unit programme price), not knowing the price a FREDA, but since one can view those as "extras" it's the marginal price that's interesting. (The cost of development of the main ship has been paid (FREMM) and the development cost of the weapons has also been paid (Horizon)
I did mention money when i said "There is a reason why T45 is a more expensive ship (excluding poor management decisions) after all", if i didn't make it clear then i apologise.

What i'm trying to get across is whilst FREMM for what it is, is a perfectly capable platform BUT as a dedicated AAW destroyer the T45 does come out on top, whilst the radar on FREDA has a range of around 250km (i think?) SAMPSON has one of 400km which I believe would make the T45 more effective with dealing with airbourne threats than FREDA. True, France has carrier bourne AEW however i'm of the opinion that for AAW a destroyer should be able to act relatively independantly and as such have the best sensors mounted as possible and because of this can currently track more inbound targets from a longer range and destroy the threat faster than FREDA can currently do.

Plus, looking at Wiki FREMM is generally a 2000 ton smaller ship with about 1000nm less range than the T45. The T45 program recieved flak from the media about "only" carrying 48 Asters compared to the capacity of the Burke class so imagine how a 32-capacity ship would have done.

The issue is essentially FREMM is a multipurpose frigate, and while it may be a very capable AAW system it still isn't going to be as effective as a dedicated AAW destroyer, FREMM is more along the lines of the T26 in its philosophy.

Don't get me wrong, FREDA is a decent capability ship but compared to the T45 it isn't as effective. Plus the kick-backs from BAE building them in British shipyards is relevant.
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