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Be safe Diamond

The Whale Island Zoo Keeper
Last edited 1 month ago by The Whale Island Zoo Keeper
Greta Thunderpants

What “Warpons” do they have… still cracks me up …….

A Robinson

Having worked in the Combat System Design team for 4.5 years it really is good to see the fruits of our labours!

Supportive Bloke

Fine work

Jimmy b

Having worked with CMS some good stuff some not so.

On the other hand the boys and girls (other genders are available) did good

Last edited 1 month ago by Jimmy b
Gavin Gordon

That last paragraph is key. No matter how heroically the MoD & RN rise to the multiplying and extremely risk prone tasks laid at their feet, you cannot finance a peer / proxy conflict on a peacetime budget, especially one that’s had the erstwhile independent deterrent rolled into its funding. Neither can you gap capabilities seen as fundamental to other Maritime States, or take long over ‘fitting with’ rather than ‘fitted for’ onboard major warfighting units.
This country in no way lacks the scientific or technical skills, or imaginative solutions required to increase lethality, alongside our still justly renowned soft power.

Jim Camm

But it IS peacetime, relatively speaking. Do you propose a wartime budget perpetually? Because that’s completely unaffordable, it took decades to pay off the debt from WW2 and that was with an economy that was 2nd only to the USA at the time.

Moreover, who do you see as our “peers” whom we would have to fight? And are they operating at a wartime budget?

We are pretty friendly with most of Europe (despite Brexit), so the only ones I can think of are Russia, China, the Houthis, Iran and Argentina.

  • Russia is a ruin of their former Soviet reputation, as seen in Ukraine and the black sea. They would be lucky if any of their ships actually work if they every went to war with us.
  • China is in another league, so not really comparable.
  • The Houthis are a non-state actor with no real navy or airforce to speak of.
  • Iran has gunboats and missiles, but is very much a local player.
  • Argentina’s navy is in a pitiful state.

As for our actual peers (that we’re allies with), we have the best navy in Europe, only France is even close.

Graham Underwood

All stay safe,as usual our forces do a sterling job,we are all proud of our sailors and soldiers,air force,


So, when are the 4.5 inch guns able to attack air targets again? For a lot of the cheap drones used today it seems a very sensibele option to use. And a lot cheaper then missiles.

Greta Thunderpants



Well they’d need to restart production of 4.5” shells for anti-air usage. Which is not going to happen as this calibre is on its way out.

Supportive Bloke

It might as it is a quick fix that can be implemented without spending squillions.

That brochure also seems to say there are no ground or airburst versions which means NGS is also moot except against hardened targets?

I don’t know what the shelf life of 4.5” is these days but there was still WWII stock being used up in the 80’s!

There could well be a large pile of ground/airburst shells stored as loads (I mean unbelievable loads) were ordered post 82 and the airburst won’t have been used much since that function was removed from the software.

They would be expensive to get rid of too – only solution would be to fire them off at a range or at sea.


It’d be madness to use a T45 or any other modern warship for NGFS. Bringing an irreplaceable warship so close to shore to lob some shells at land targets when there’s obvious better options is reckless.

Supportive Bloke

I wasn’t suggesting using T45 for NGS

T23 GP was for that role.

I was suggesting that there wasn’t any burst ammunition in production?


Airburst is available, problem is that all the rounds are basebleed. That doesn’t give a predictable flight path for AA work.


Thanks for that. Of course even if firing at a small vessel you would want air burst to create the most damage rather than the overs or unders creating large water ‘splashes’


“T23 GP was for that role”.

Unfortunately they forgot about that fact with the T23 GP replacement .


Unfortunately for a AA destroyer the 4.5″ is not the best AA gun I think its more a ship to shore support I think this has been recently highlighted recently on this site


Oh dear I recently had a drink and more recently got repetitive


Agreed, it’d be better if they were replaced by the Bofors 57mm that the T31s are getting.

Supportive Bloke

The multiplicity of drones wasn’t really a factor in The Horizon Frigate development pathway.

The RN vision was more around the lessons in 82 but with plenty of system growth potential to track swarm muscle attacks. So T45 is plenty capable of defeating loads of missiles.

Adding anti drone capabilities simply needs effectors added such as a pair of 57mm and maybe swap out 30mm for 40mm.

With the added Sea Ceptor and NSM that would be a formidable AAW ship that could protect itself and other ships as well as having decent land strike capabilities as part of a larger force.


Agree with those gun changes, and with Sea Ceptor and NSM are already planned, the T45 becomes a truly formidable warship – though pretty damned good already.
Shame we only got 6.


Italians put 3 x76mm guns in their Horizons.

RN only stopped being biased against guns when BAE bought the Swedish Bofors and the US 5″ business.


And the Italian’s didn’t put a large calibre gun or Phalanx onboard…


They have the OTO-Leonardo 25 or 30mm Marlin instead of Phalanx. They like to support home industry not like another country


Theirs 76mm have guided anti missile rounds but they lack the real combat test,

A large calibre gun 127mm with guided anti aircraft rounds would be ideal to hit medium to large drones at 50-60km.I think it will be an essential system for the future.

Gavin Gordon

Moot point considering we’re going over to 5″ Mk 45 mod 4 on the T26. As far as I recall, you could install Mk 45 on T45, but at the expense of compromising Sea Ceptor fit.
For the future, I feel that T45 would still have upper deck capacity to swap out some smaller calibre side deck guns for Bofors if necessary, since they are the future fit for the T31.


Just bin the ancient 4.5 and give the T45’s the 57mm for standardization across the fleet, what you spend in acquisition you save in training, maintenance, common logistics and ammo. Similarly Bofors 40mm should be standardized across the fleet replacing a Phalanx. Yes I know the Bofors relies on main radar, off mount optronics and the main combat system and so is not as “independent” as Phalanx as an anti missile CIWS, but when you have CAMM and a threat from lots of cheap drones we must look beyond the expenditure of initial acquisition and look to the through life savings of standardization.
P.s. we used to actually like 6 on 6 off defence watches in the Gulf, always a pain in the arse going to action stations from your pit, but also revelling in doing what you have been trained to do 🙂


Have to agree and disagree with you here. Agree on the part about getting rid of the 4.5, but for the destroyers, I’d replace it with the lightweight 5″, which does exist. As far as Phalanx is concerned, it’s a necessary defensive weapon. I’m not saying you can’t have 40mm mounts, but not at the expense of Phalanx, or SeaRAM if you had to replace the Phalanx.

Supportive Bloke

On the destroyers the 40mm would replace 30mm

Phalanx can stay where it is.

Soft Kill
Sea Ceptor

That is a lot of layers to get through.

Phalanx also has a role with hypersonics – say you smash a hypersonic with a Sea Ceptor and a large bit, like the Russian ceramic heat shield, is heading your way Phalanx is ideal to mash that up into survivable fragments. Phalanx will pick the largest threat from its threat table and get to work and keep going through the table.

So layers do work together.


Not and never have been a fan of Phalanx based on its rather light 20mm round (which is why we used to have depleted uranium rounds, don’t know if we replaced with Tungsten?) and it’s short range. Since tests in the 80’s showed that against something As4 or As6 sized it didn’t “chew it up” enough to prevent large bits of shrapnel wiping away antennas, upper deck crews etc. so I am not sure that longer barrels and newer round s would allow it to chew up bigs bits of destroyed hypersonic targets either. It’s track record against even subsonic missile is not exactly stellar.We kept it for close in anti-small boat / Helo in tight RoE and because we are to tight to replace it. Fantasy fleet budgets – at least convert to SeaRAM.


Phalanx is a lot lot different now from the 80s version. Just as the next layer , the small missiles have a longer range to catch the supersonics further out.


Yes, people keep,saying that: you quote Star Trek, you can as change the laws of physics Cap’n! No doubt sensors are better, the software is, the barrel is lengthened and there are enhanced tungsten rounds – it remains a very short ranged, not very hard hitting system that technology has left behind, BAE 3P rounds for 40mm and 57mm, CTA A3B, guided rounds for 57mm, all longer ranged and arguably far more effective against a broad range of targets.
The only reason we still use Phalanx is budget, or rather lack of it.


Apologies for the typos above! To quote Star Trek, you cannot change the laws of physics – as in a small 20mm tungsten round even at high velocity only has so much kinetic energy.


The laws of physics are the same . The drones and helicopters are slower , a lot slower and can be engaged further out as you dont have a just few seconds for a kill.
I understand the Phalanx radar or the IR can lock on some 10km or more out.
Those Houthi ballistic missiles the current situation- are mostly repurposed old SA-2 AA missiles fired in a ‘ballistic trajectory’


They can’t be engaged that much further out due to the small caliber cannon, Phalanx radar and EO might be able to track the target but then you have to hit it with a small, albeit high velocity round, which does not have a maximum effective range anywhere near that of the modern 30, 35, or 40mm guns. 20mm is just to small.


And the Oerlikon Millennium 35mm


I agree, though if then take all the Phalanx that were freed up and fit them to the RFA vessels.


A fascinating read as always. Interesting to note that guns were used to take care of “leakers.” In the photos I have seen of HMS Lancaster and HMS Richmond (not sure how recent they are) they don’t appear to have any Phalanx or 30mm canons. Part of the “fitted for but not with” policy to save money. Could this be a disaster in waiting? I certainly hope not!


The frigates have a pair of 30mm but they were never designed to mount phalanx.


They don’t have Phalanx but do have a 30mm gun on each side of the ship


Fitted with either 2 × 30 mm DS30M Mk2 guns or, 2 × 30 mm DS30B guns, port/starboard boat deck just in front of the RIBs

They also mount 6 x 7.62mm GPMGs and either 2 x MK 134 7.62 Gatling guns or 2 x 2 MB 12.7mm HMGs.

Last edited 1 month ago by Russ
Supportive Bloke

Bear in mind we won’t be using EW fully in these encounters.

In a real situation nothing kinetic would be done against these kind of low speed drones. The electronics would be fried from afar.

The missiles may warrant a kinetic response.

May need to think about putting more than one 30mm on each side or a 30mm on the sides and 57mm fore and aft…..just in case a gun Jams…..can happen…..would be an expensive jam…..


Good suggestion actually. The Russians make sure they have 2 gatling gun CIWS on each side of the ship. I’ve always been of the mind that every ship should have at least 2 Phalanx and/or SeaRAM, plus their primary gun mount, either 57mm or 5″.

Toby J

The Russians habitually trust their systems less (I’m looking at you, Moskva) in defensive roles. Hence they retained above deck launchers for AA missiles for longer, with maybe 2 each at the bow and stern of their cruisers and each with their own fire control radar

Supportive Bloke

The Russian systems are based on a narrow look out, effectively, mono pulse radar.

The BATO systems are cued from a wide look CMS and then may use other sensors to specifically target.


Even getting 40mm mk4s on all the escorts and major vessels would be a really good idea


What would be the reason for not using EW fully?

Can test it properly in a real threat environment and saves ammunition for missiles


The Iranians and Chinese have ships nearby and would both be listening and recording.


The Americans, to show its hand because actionable information, for instance on the frequencies and the channel-hopping techniques employed, is likely to be passed on to the Chinese.


The use of ballistic missiles underlines the need to prioritise getting TBMD capable missiles onto the T45.
In terms of criticisms, the article doesn’t mention not fitting the Co-operative Engagement Capability to the T45. This was planned to happen and was used as a justification for dropping hulls 7 and 8 and having only 6 ships. It was then never fitted.

Supportive Bloke

“ The coordinated defence demonstrates the RN and USN sharing a common air picture and having the ability to quickly allocate targets to the various shooters within the task group”

As I’ve said a few times there are broad hints that another solution was arrived at.


We have been sharing a common air picture since radar and radio was invented. Link 11 and 14, then Link 16 and 22, but that is not the same as CEC as far as I know?

Supportive Bloke

There have been a number of press releases about platform A releasing a weapon and platform B guiding with targeting and mid course corrections.

These may well work over Link: probably do.


This is the USN short description page for CEC -as it needs a special processing unit (computer and software) and needs its own antenna for its “distribution” network” I don’t think it works over standard data links, probably due to the “real time” element of targeting a fast moving missile.,and%20integrated%20fire%20control%20capability.

In the RN perhaps Ship B can provide mid-course targeting to a CAMM fired by ship A because all ships have the same ship-to-weapon datalink.

Harold Egret

The 4.5” gun anti-aircraft software was withdrawn as a “cost-saving” measure? Penny-wise and pound-foolish! How many times does this lesson have to be re-learned (or, more accurately, recorded and then forgotten again). If the 30mm/CIWS is engaging missiles as a back-up to your area-air defense suite, you have problems. The medium gun (4.5”/5”) fills that role. Only have 48 x Aster VLS to deal with 21 inbounds in one attack…and then the next attack? If using Asters to go after crude UAVs, then this is a poor trade. Might need something that has more ammunition and is more cost effective – like a gun with 800 rounds per mounting using proximity fuses. How much do the Aster missiles cost vice the Houthi propeller-driven missiles, and what is that return on investment? We must be smart, and not have the cost pushed onto us unnecessarily! And if it is a software drop…get that software out there now and get it loaded immediately!!! That isn’t even a material solution – that’s just reloading the software!


There are no AAW shells for the 4.5 inch anymore


Is that what the government has said to all the other users of 4.5in.
Chile , Brazil, maybe malaysia ?


I dont know, but we at least dont have them anymore.


No that’s what the manufacturer says if you bother to check BAEs website.

PLA Navy

The 4.5-inch Mk 8 gun is now really only useful in the Naval Gunfire Support role in relatively benign environments — NL

Is that clear and understood? or do you not understand simple English?


My answer is in regard the 4.5 in AMMUNITION.

There are no AAW shells for the 4.5 inch anymore’

The existing users have no need for new guns production do they

PLA Navy

Just to remind your comment, in case you have Dementia

Duker 3 days ago

So many said that using the 4.5in gun or the Phalanx wasn’t possible against slow moving drones especially around 5km and greater away

Last edited 1 month ago by PLA Navy

Ah the newest sockpuppet . Hope you are keeping warm

as Rupert said
“Airburst is available, problem is that all the rounds are basebleed.”
The RN could still have them in storage . Other Navys could have them too

Last edited 1 month ago by Duker
The Whale Island Zoo Keeper

It was poor for AA when it had the ‘software’.

There is more to it than just being a medium gun.

Supportive Bloke

But that was when it was run on compensated hydraulics. The stories of it hitting other shells etc were just rhubarb.

Now it is servo mounted it is rather a different story.

The issue was to develop AAW integration for this effectively new system.

In a time when threat was low, Sea Wolf was working fine and ASTER / CEPTOR was on the horizon and 4.5” was slated to be replaced with its 155mm aborted relation it wasn’t a priority.


Sea wolf never worked fine. The launcher micro switches failed in the cold wet south Atlantic. I know. I was there. We didn’t trust it. Sea wolf hasn’t been used aggressively since so basically, it failed.

Supportive Bloke

Sea Dart [and Slug] had plenty of micro switches which were a nightmare.

When these were replaced with sealed magnetic / reed type switches the reliability massively increased.

As Wolf, in T23, was tube launched and not external I don’t get this?

Or are you referring to Sea Wolf lite on the trainable launcher on T22 etc? That was much more exposed?


Replacing it with the 57mm which is being fitted to the T31s would be a better choice.


Could do with developing the Camm missile ( they call it modular missile) to carry the darts off star streak probably get 10-12 darts on one missile and take out multiple targets. That would be perfect for swarm attaches and cost effective.


No. The darts from Starstreak HVM are “semi-automatic command to line of site” with the command link being laser rather than radio frequency, even if you went to the expense of fitting the guidance lasers to all the existing optronic mounts (probably not possible) or replaced them with new (even more expensive) it still can only guide darts against 1 target at a time. Perhaps take the 20mm out of Phalanx and add 10 of so HVM / LMM and add the guidance laser, and you have a sort of UK SeaRAM type mount useful against drones, but really 40mm and 57mm 3P rounds do pretty much the same for less expense.


Or you could just purchase and install SeaRAM. It’s deployed widely. It’s available. It’s effective.

Toby J

I wouldn’t mind us developing a British alternative to RAM. We could stick it on just about everything and would retain home production. Would StarStreak work with a single, radar-guided dart? Like mini Aster?


For “son of Stormer” for the Army (Russians have been showing off 12km + range Helo launched ATGM” ) and for anti drone work from ships we could take the components of HVM and LMM developed by “Team Complex Weapons” – specifically the big impulse initial booster of HVM, the body of LMM with its unitary warhead, and the LWIR seeker that has been mentioned in public with respect to the Fury small glide bomb, which is the front end of LMM. Maybe a bit longer and heavier, hence vehicle / ship launchers rather than MANPADS, but Mach 3 + and high G out to the 8km + of the existing missiles, plus longer range at lower velocity as it slows down, it good enough against Helo, UAS or small boat. ???

Supportive Bloke

Known as Sea Ceptor?

Sea RAM isn’t cheap.

May as well stock up on the thing we have that works superbly and exports brilliantly.

Other issue is where do you put yet another missile? There is a limit to the number of missiles and systems you want in any ship.

The ONLY place Sea RAM might make sense is QEC. Personally I’d prefer 57mm mounts.


CAMM is superb, I was suggesting something much cheaper and shorter ranged than CAMM for the anti-drone role.
RAM seems to be quite expensive for what it is at $903k per missile in FY21 dollars, perhaps the multi-mode guidance, but I can find no data on the cost of a CAMM round.


We need to get another Type 45 armed and back into active service as soon as physically possible. Any kind of retaliation will probably involve saturation attacks and Diamond only has so many Missiles, add to the fact her Sampson radar is far superior to that on the Type 23s.


I’d be amazed if the RN aren’t ahead of you on this. Diamond will need replacing at some point and the T23s aren’t on par with T45 for air defence.

Supportive Bloke

The radar won’t make any difference against these sort of targets. ARTISAN is just fine.

Sea Ceptor is also more than good enough and 1/5th the price.


The problem with CAMM is range. You simply need too many ships to make it work over the area required. Now if you could convince everyone to move to a convoy arrangement, then most modern frigates armed with missiles like CAMM, Aster 15, ESSM etc can do the job. The missiles incoming (& drones) are not exactly high end.


CAMM ER or CAMM MR may resolve the range problem in the future.


It seems illogical to use a £1m missile against a £10k drone, but if a successful intercept prevents the drone striking a £200m merchant shi[p or a £1bn frigate then the use of missiles can be justified.

As a backstop, the RN needs to have a couple of 30mm autocannon fitted to any UK carrier that goes anywhere near the Red Sea.


Firstly, excellent work on behalf of the RAF in conducting last night’s Air Strikes Contribution and the Royal Navy’s continued commitment to defending the sea line rights of passage through the Red Sea. I feel that there should now be a sustained commitment to precision strikes by air and sea for as long as the Houthi Rebels continue their attacks. But the UK’s commitment should not extend to extend further, to boots on the ground. Instead I feel that now is time for the US and Israel to, take a leaf out of the book of the late Simon Wiesenthal through playing the long game and “Decapitating the Head off the Snake”. Otherwise, I feel that the Medieval Islamic Death Cult inspired violence that continues to strangle any prospect of hope and prosperity in the Middle-East will never end.




Last edited 1 month ago by Nat

Youthi, Hamas and Hezbollah arent death cults

david anthony simpson

Fairly close though


Why don’t you look in the mirror?


No but they are essentially a religious based bunch of fascists and they do believe that all Jews need to be dead and that everyone else are the pawns of Jews and that it’s a good death if you also kill a Jew.


‘River to the Sea ‘ was a Likud party election slogan too
1977 election manifesto which stated “Judea and Samaria will not be handed to any foreign administration; between the Sea and the Jordan there will only be Israeli sovereignty” M Begin a former terrorist leader like a number of Israel PMs
Pot kettle black


It’s 2024 not 1977, though you seem stuck back there, in the glorious workers paradise of the Soviet Union…

Last edited 1 month ago by Sean

what has this got to do with here? lul


Hamas, Houthis and Hezbollah all are keen to have their civilians killed to protect their combatants.
Their speech are proper of a death cult.

The Whale Island Zoo Keeper

Hopefully somebody in the MoD sees a chance to get rid of the Mk8 and generally update T45’s guns when they go in for the SeaCeptor upgrade.


Before any changes get looked at a budget needs to be found. With HMG making it clear that defence is going to be held to 2% GDP for at least the next few years the only way to add projects will be to make cuts elsewhere.

The Whale Island Zoo Keeper

HMG have just peed £2.5 billion up the wall funding the US’s war in the Ukraine.

Guns for T45 will hardly cost anywhere near that.

I know it is a novel concept HMG spending money on the UK’s actual defence interests.

Budget? FFS.

Supportive Bloke



> the US’ war in Ukraine
Oh dear, another RT drooler.
Really no point responding to one of these Supportive Bloke.


That’s £2.5bn to Ukraine to fight Russia so that we don’t have to. We’re getting a bargain given the havoc the Ukrainians have wreaked upon the Russian military.


Was UK part of the old Soviet Union ?
Must have been


No, but you obviously are.


Only in your communist fantasies


Your Eisenhower fantasies
“…to fight Russia so that we don’t have to”

So now you are repeating the wise words of Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnston.


Why don’t you go and fight then? comrade.

Last edited 1 month ago by Boris

Well in comparative stakes to yourself, you’re showing Boris to be exceedingly wise, which is quite some achievement.

As for fantasies, less said about your adoration of Putin, the better. There may be minors present.

Last edited 1 month ago by Sean

Moderation Policy.

Try to stick to the subject matter of the article 


Moderation policy:
Do not use more than one username per person to post comments or supply false email addresses.
Commonly called sock puppets , of which you are prolific user 


You attract a lot of fans!


Ah Duker’s paranoia again.

Probably still thinks I have superuser access allowing me to change posts days afterwards, as he hilariously once claimed.


I can change anything I like, including the law of Physics.


The Mk45 Gun is made by BAE in US and could be around $70 mill each- just for hardware, not including CMS integration- so I dont think so.


I don’t think it’s that expensive, but even if it were, there are clear advantages in installing it on the Type 26s, including ‘commonality if the UK was ever called to fight in a sustained action with NATO partners. The Mk 45 (and 57mm Mk 3) are in service with the UK’s most important ally and stocks are likely to be available from the US Navy’s solid stores support ships, offering wider resupply options’, as per a prior Navy Lookout article.

But since the Type 45 are Air Defense Destroyers, I’d swap out the 4.5 for the 57mm Mk3. Higher rate of fire and pre-programmable fusing which would be perfect for defensive measures against swarm drone attacks.


The US agreed a sale of 13 off them to India for $1bn, which comes in around $75m. That did also include ammunition, spares, training, etc, etc.


I doubt there would be too many western CMS’s that did not already support both 127mm guns. It would be like not supporting Leonardo 76mm out of the box or a fighter jet that couldn’t drop a dumb bomb.

Lord Hood

The boats were engaged in an attempted act of piracy but unwisely fired on a USN MH-60R helicopter from USS Gravely that then launched four AGM-114 Hellfire missiles at them.” Classic British understatement. Thank you for yet another well researched and written article.

The Whale Island Zoo Keeper



a good one, lol


Well there’s a blast from the past. The TRAM system was being trialled in the early to mid noughties at Port Hueneme. I used to have a video of it – primarily for scaring people, but lost it many years ago.

This is the first time I’ve found anything on it since. Still a long way away from being a practical system.

DVIDS – Images – Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Franchetti Witnesses Combat Readiness Efforts at Naval Surface Warfare Center, Port Hueneme Division [Image 4 of 4] (

Supportive Bloke

Complete with office chair for nervous looking bloke!


The USN seem to believe that they have made a breakthrough on the system.

Supportive Bloke

Good link.

Interesting bit in their about their modular missile program. We already have that approach with CAMM and to a lesser degree ASTER.


I doubt they’ve fixed the principal issue. You can see TRAM in the background of the picture in your link. The system basically comprises a small traversable mobile crane, mounted on a frame that would straddle VLS silos. The crane and frame would live aboard a T-AKE and be passed across by jackstay / spanwire depending on your flavour of English.

Straight away that tells you there’s a weight limit. Which also tells you that rigidity may become an issue, which in turn may throw up alignment issues later in life. It’s also dealing with munitions safety, which means that load and safety factors tend to be high, which tends to add weight……

However, the bigger issue is the actual unload/load cycle. You’re talking about removing Mk14 canisters that have expended their weapons from the silo before you even think about putting a new one in. The empty canister may have propellant residue in it – so potential hazmat issue – and it’s unlikely you can just deep six the thing. So you have to find a safe place to stow it on deck, transfer it back to the T-AKE and then restow for return to CONUS. That’s a seven metre plus long load, weighing over half a ton and you have to handle several of them (to make reloading worthwhile).

I have no doubt they can make the TRAM work in a demonstration style. I am less sanguine that it can be done at a scale and speed at sea to make it both safe and operationally achievable (in terms of time connected).


Or theres this method
Not quite open ocean reloads but a start

Last edited 1 month ago by Duker

Only ever trialled. Never used properly. Pendulation.


Its solvable . The previous on board method was only dropped because the Cold War ended

a lot of testing and evaluation going on in last 5 years

“In 2021, the dry cargo ship USNS Amelia Earhart (T-AKE-6) and guided-missile destroyer USS John S. McCain (DDG-56) experimented with VLS reloading at sea, Robertson said. That was preceded in 2019 by two separate VLS-reloading tests, which “were pierside and protected harbor only. There were no open ocean events.”
The first one that year was in May 2019 and involved the guided-missile destroyer USS Curtis Wilbur (DDG-54) and the dry cargo/ammunition ship USNS Richard E. Byrd (T-AKE-4). Both ships had participated that month in the combined maritime exercise Pacific Vanguard off Guam. The second, held in August 2019, involved the dry cargo/ammunition ship USNS Washington Chambers (T-AKE-11) and guided-missile destroyer USS Wayne E. Meyer (DDG-108).
Three years earlier, in 2016, the Navy put VLS reloading to the test with initial experimentation with the auxiliary ship USNS Bob Hope (T-AKR-300) and the guided-missile cruiser USS Bunker Hill (CG-52).”

The current SecNav has made it a priority – he was a former CO of USS Bulkeley DDG-84

I can think of adding an extra frame on the silo side to hold the vertical wire in a collar so it is more synchronised with the receiver vessel movements

Last edited 1 month ago by Duker

The “previous on-board method” was dropped because it was unsafe and no-one ever used it.

That led to a whole raft of studies and development programmes in the 90s and noughties, culminating in TRAM. It died, because when you saw the serial even ashore, it was clearly impractical.

All the trials/experiments you reference are just that. Attempts to make the improbable, probable.


Doesnt look too hard . Of course like ANYTHING at sea is subject to weather conditions.
It will became something that is an alternative and practiced in some areas


If only you’d ever been to sea, eh?

A photo of a trial on the original system that was never used operationally because it was unsafe – and consequently removed from the 50-odd launchers it had been fitted in.


End of Cold War. Britain also removed its RAF nuclear weapons because of that.
lots of things are unsafe on the face of it, but warships arent the local Coop.


Straws. Clutching at.

Your logic is impenetrable.

That photo of the after VLS farm on a Tico is a giveaway in itself. Have a look at how far aft it is. Then compare it to the munitions supply ships of the time – and specifically their RAS points. Then wonder – with both ships connected by a spanwire at a feasible relative position, how does each missile (let alone each return empty canister) find its way from the munitions ship to the cruiser. Then think about the rate that might happen at.

It was a good ideas club thing, just like the VLSW RAS equipment for T23. Fitted, never used as just utterly impractical.


They arent using that exact system again. The real problem at the time was too slow which the newer system is to improve a lot on.


Of course not. All those cell mounted cranes were removed long ago.

The “new” system referred to – TRAM – is just as slow,. It’s purpose is to better capture the canister, thus removing the pendulation effect. But it’s still subject to the same limitations in supplying the canisters. Plus the frame itself needs transferring first.


You raise excellent points. The usn started throwing a lot of resources at over the last few years and they claimed to have come out with a workable solution. Time will tell.

Toby J

That does not look like a new system, it’s already rusty!


The rusty bit will be the MK14 canister that goes in the Mk41. It’s probably the same dummy one they used in the original programme nigh-on twenty years ago and will have been sat out in the yard at PH until being disinterred recently.

Bloke down the pub

Obviously the MOD wouldn’t comment but it would be interesting to know if Diamond sailed with a full complement of missiles or if funding cuts mean some of the silos were empty.
BZ to the Geezers.

Clueless Observer

Great work by the crew but MOD needs to hang their heads in shame, FFBNW clearly not working, Mk41 VLS would have been ideal to launch something back at them rather than sending the RAF halfway across the Middle East, might have also been a deterrent.
It could also have carried some quad packed CAMM’s.
Tend to agree with comments around removing the 4.5″ for 57mm but I get the cost issue.
I guess the same applies with the 30mm versus 40mm Bofors, might be a weight issue too ?
It’s still a good news story and might help recruitment.

Supportive Bloke

NSM would be fine to throw something back on a Return-to-sender basis.

RN has bought 11 sets – all T45 will have them in addition to Sea Ceptor.

That way it is a fully rounded destroyer.


Halfway across Middle east ?
Maybe but its only 3 hrs or so flying time . 2500km


In these days of shoot & scoot, 3 hours means the target could potentially be 300km from where it was. Mobile missile launchers are, well, mobile.


This does show that the RN needs to move the same Gun paradigm it’s using on the T31 to the rest of the fleet.

The 4.5 really needs to be withdrawn and replaced with gun focused on swift ish moving smaller surface and air contacts (drones) as this is now essentially the major threat to warships in the littoral.

It would be good to see the T45 getting a 57mm/40mm/40mm gun set as well as the T26 getting a pair of 40mm guns.

the rivers also need to be able to manage a drone or two someone could fling these at a UK warship even in benign a 40mm MK 4 replacing the 30mm.

The capital ships and amphibious vessels should also get a set of Mk 4 40mm as well.

Supportive Bloke

None of that is impossible or crazy expensive.

A change of direction was clearly signaled by QECs not being fitted with the 30mm.

To me that signalled a new project. I was making a few tongue in cheek comments about salt water but there is more to it than that – based on the tea leaves we can see.


Indeed, I think the RN has put a lot more thought into the future target set than most people think. I did read a design paper on the T31 and the 57/40/40 with CAMM was actually the most effective weapon fit against the target set and ranges that the RN gave the designers…they changed the process with the T31, instead of saying what was needed weapon fit wise..they gave a set of engagement scenarios and asked the designers to come up with the most appropriate’s not the cheapest option that won as most people assume.

Fingers crossed your right and the RN thinking was ahead and has just been reenforced by the latest navel campaigns that have essentially been drone focused.

I also think the RN needs to now move all the mission bays it’s wisely built into its escorts to a really clever drone focused offensive capability. This is also where I think your thoughts on up arming the Amphibious vessels come into play as those amphibious vessels could make profoundly powerful drone warfare vessels.


The only possible fly in the ointment wrt 57mm gun is that it is air cooled. It’s obviously a very good system, but, sustained rate of fire(barrel over heating) might well be a issue in a mass drone scenario.
As you say, the weapons fit has clearly been thought about, and looks to have hit the sweet spot for what’s required, so BZ to the navy for that. However, let’s hope that 57mm is as capable for sustained firing rate as might be required.


From what I was reading the barrel of the mk 3 monoblock construction helps with heat issues, it was bofors that basically said water cooling was not needed. The U.S. coastguard did some all out testing of the system when it was introduced and one of the tests as I understand it was sustained fire using all 6 20 round cassettes..once the 120 rounds are used up it’s a full manual reload that puts the gun out of actions for around 10mins I think.

With the Mk 3 it’s probably a good idea to look at the guided munitions with smart fusing..essentially a cheap micro missile…a bit costly but if you have one of the 20 round cassettes with guided mad-fires, 2 with 3P smart fused and 3 with standard have a system that can deal with a lot of attacks…

As long as you also have the pair of 40mm Mk 4s you still have very good capability even when your 57mm is going through a manual reload cycle… the T31 with CAMM 57/40/40 is going to be very difficult to saturate and overwhelm..even if it has one system os.

Last edited 1 month ago by Jonathan

While I agree that the 57mm is useful, it’s the things that it can’t do that is the problem. It is really only a defensive weapon. It can fire off its 120 rounds in 30 seconds or so. 76mm SR will take 60 seconds to fire 120 rounds. 10 minutes to reload? Throw a shell out to 40km? Minimal NGFS? A few things RN forgot to add to their equations. It pays to remember that when you run out of missiles, it’s guns or sink.

The Whale Island Zoo Keeper

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Yes, certainly an interesting set up with either 2(French) or 3(Italian) x 76mm Oto M guns with guided rounds. The weapon is also water cooled so arguably a better option versus swarm attacks.

The Whale Island Zoo Keeper

I find it irksome when some say T45 is the best AAW destroyer because it isn’t. SeaViper is probably the best AAW system currently. But the weapon system and the barge it is bolted on to are not the same thing. For T45 to the best AAW it would need extra weapon systems such as DP 76mm rapid firing guns.


It is the best AAW destroyer with the exception of ABM defence, though that is being worked on, and it’s about to be even better with Sea Ceptor and NSM fitted.
It’s a shame you find inconvenient facts so “irksome”.


Since when a T45 is better than a modernized Arleigh Burke?

Toby J

Better at everything except BMD, because Sampson is a long way up and looking across, rather than at the base of the mast looking up. This means that sea skimmers get spotted much sooner, and Aster is much better against low-flying targets. Also an advantage for traditional diving missiles and aircraft attack

Supportive Bloke

The BMD bit us being addressed.


Ah the Russian troll is back. I never said that, don’t be so disingenuous.


Since the fact T45 only needs 1 missile to deal with an inbound missile whereas an Arleigh Burke requires 2.


Since the fact T45 only needs 1 missile to deal with an inbound missile whereas an Arleigh Burke requires 2.



Laugh all you like, that’s the SOP for the RN and USN.
What is amusing is that Russian Navy SOP for inbound anti-ship missiles is to fire even fewer missiles, zero to be precise, and then sink.

Last edited 1 month ago by Sean

“irksome” is relative

Sejong the Great class

  • 1 × 5-inch (127 mm)/L62 caliber Mk 45 Mod 4 naval gun
  • 1 × 30 mm Goalkeeper CIWS
  • 1 × RAM Block 1 CIWS
  • 16 × SSM-700K Haeseong anti-ship missile
  • 2 × triple torpedo tubes for:
  • K745 Blue Shark torpedo
  • 1 × 48-cell, 1 × 32-cell (80 cells) Mk 41 VLS for:
  • SM-2 Block IIIB/IV
  • 1 × 48-cell K-VLS for:
  • K-ASROC Red Shark
  • Hyunmoo III land attack cruise missiles
  • 2 × Super Lynx or SH-60 Seahawk

The Zoophiliac has issues with irksome facts, like climate-change, Corvid etc.

Sejong looks a great general purpose destroyer, but with regards to the AAW role it definitely comes in second to the T45. The torpedoes you mention aren’t much use against aircraft/missiles/UAVs and neither is the Red Shark anti-submarine missile, etc, etc.
As for radars and SAM it’s similar to the Arleigh Burke, but you’re not comparing like-for-like. The RN fires a single Aster to take down an incoming anti-ship missile. The USN doctrine is to fire a pair of SAMs for each incoming missile. When you consider the number of incoming missiles each destroyer can deal with, rather than the number of missiles it carries, the T45 comes out ahead of Sejong.

Last edited 1 month ago by Sean

HMS Diamond has not had the best mechanical reliability track record

yeah, T45 is the best, and NL is making fake news


So you are incapable of differentiating between a class of ship, and an individual ship of that class. Guess that means we can treat you like every other 11 year old.


Sean boy, I am only 5, now go and play with the big boys, lol.


I was being generous with my estimation of your intellectual age.
I’m nice like that.


You are incapable of differentiating between age and intellect and yourself is an obvious prime example of mismatch.
The world is glad that you spend your life here rather than on the street,

Last edited 1 month ago by Roger

“and yourself is an obvious”?!?

What’s obvious is you’ve not passed your “English as a Second Language” course. Guess the standards in the Russian troll farms are slipping…


Hear! Hear!


We can only hope that the powers to be actually take note of all what is currently going on around the globe, when they finally get round to deciding what the weapons/sensor fit for the upcoming T83 is going to be. Perhaps a tad more designing to the requirement as opposed to designing down to a cost!


It’s funny. Since Babcock won the T31 contract, the design has been lambasted as a glorified OPV in the comments on various forums. Yet now in the wake of the activity in the Red Sea, there’s universal acclaim that the T31 would be ideal for the situation with the 57mm and 40mm guns being a cheap and effective method of dealing with these swarm drone attacks.

Seems like the RN knew what it was doing after all…

Armchair Admiral

There’s a thing eh! At this stage of the game, the 57mm would seem to be the weapon of choice for massed drone attacks. No missile system has the persistence of a gun system provided with hundreds of cheap munitions for this scenario.
No doubt the “shore bombardment ” brigade would have something to say about that, but likely the 57 would be fending off hundreds of cheap drones coming in from close on-shore while the main gun was targeting…whatever…drone trucks?

RAM missile as I understand it/ have read is very expensive for the size and has a longer minimum engagement distance than Ceptor.

River B2 needs a 40mm and a radar able to point it/spot drones adequately. Or Martlet. There are not many benign environments left and you surely don’t want to have large swathes of ocean marked ‘No go’.

The elephant in the room seems to be the silence over EW and similar systems. Have they been used,? Are they only useful if the ship itself is being targeted? Are they not being used for fear of giving away vital Intel to potential enemies?

Supportive Bloke

I’d generally agree.

EW won’t be used to try and keep as many tricks quiet as possible. Almost all EW can be mitigated if you know how it works.

As you say RAM is expensive so we’d be better off doubling down on Ceptor. I suspect that number of Ceptor tubes will be increased on T31.


I recall the Channel 4 documentary years ago where a T45 was in the Black Sea and was buzzed by a squadron of Russian aircraft. An officer made an off-hand comment to the effect if they’d switched everything on full power they’d have fried the electronics of the Russian aircraft.

Supportive Bloke

The captain didn’t quite say that.

She said ‘they wouldn’t come so close if the pilots realised what this ship was capable of’ or words to that effect. I’m going from memory. I suspect you are right that this concerns using offensive EW.


So no fighter jets have ever been hardened against EMP or other high electric field measures ?


Well given that Russia is taping basic GPS devices to the dashboards of it’s jets, I would seriously the doubt the sophistication and durability of the onboard electronics.

Last edited 1 month ago by Sean

Thats because the Russian GPS Glonass was being jammed so the western one was still available


That’s a cool story from years ago. From a TV channel allegedly. That’s not exactly how that stuff works…. And that was right before the type 45s engineering took a dump. That was a little bit more significant. Could we please just try to be a little bit more realistic?


And also right before the T45s went into PIP, which includes upgrades to Sampson’s EW capability. From a TV channel reporting the words of a RN captain, who is definitely going to know what their ship can do. Now let’s be realistic about the reliability and capability of the RuAF.


No allegedly about it, the only surprise was the officer being so open. I’m guessing they don’t allow unlimited tv access in whatever institution you’re housed in?

And the only thing taking a dump is you when you post. Since that tv series the Type 45 PIP engineering upgrade has begun, with 1 complete and 2 in progress.


And just when you think 57mm could be the sweet spot for anti-drone work, BAe come up with the Hypervelocity Projectile for,a,US,program:

“The HVP is a next-generation, common, low drag, guided projectile capable of executing multiple missions for a number of gun systems, such as the Navy 5-Inch; Navy, Marine Corps, and Army 155-mm systems; and future electromagnetic (EM) railguns. Types of missions performed will depend on the gun system and platform, but range from Naval Surface Fire, to Cruise and Ballistic Missile Defense, Anti-Surface Warfare and other future Naval mission areas.”

A long range, guided projectile with an AA role, maybe the T26’s big expensive gun won’t be so useless after all…… ?

Toby J

Only if we get some
I was talking about HVP on UKDJ a few days ago, it certainly seems a useful gadget, combining low cost with on paper versatility and high performance. The issue appears to be high development costs (like Zumwalt gun) which put the USN off


Current hypervelocity projectile is actually “take 2” at this, because the first attempt was too expensive, this go around is meant to be cheaper from the get go – but yes, we will see!


Re 57mm. France & Italy disagree, as do many others. 57mm is not the only game in town. It’s also easier to design guided munitions for lager calibres than smaller. Nothing currently in the works for 57mm can’t be upscaled, but down scaling to 57mm is not always as easy. Eg Volcano started as 155mm, now 127mm & 76mm. 57mm Volcano would, I suspect, be useless (not enough payload). You can even lay a (land) minefield out of a 155 volcano. New 127mm experimental ASW rounds in a volcano package?


Jed’s post from further down is another example.


Yes but the USN is going big on the 57mm, it being fitted to its new Constellation frigates and is used on the Freedom and Independence littoral combat ships.
(It’s also fitted to US Coastguard cutters – Legend and Heritage class!)

And when it comes to having the funds to develop exotic munitions, the USA is firmly in first-place.


Canada made the inverse course new Type 26 have 127mm instead the 57mm of Halifaxes.


Will that survive the inevitable cost cutting?


And the Canadian Navy has a fraction of the budget and size of the US Navy.


The US did a very large study on the 57mm vs the 76mm and decided on the 57 for reasons of rate of fire I be honest they are both very good gun systems and either would do.


There is a Navy Lookout article on the 57mm which says rate of fire x shell size means the 57 can put more weight of explosives on target in a given time than the 76, and with various guided natures being developed – search for it for details.

The Whale Island Zoo Keeper

You can buy 250 57mm systems for the money the government have just given the Kiev regime. The government is spending roughly the cost of a one gun on illegal immigrants per day.

Cost? There is no cost. Only what the government choose to spend money on.


By “Kiev regime” I assume you mean the government democratically elected by the people of Ukraine.
As for buying 250 57mm guns, alas we don’t have a navy large enough to utilise all those – 11 would be enough to equip the T45s and River Batch 2. Even then, it’s uncertain whether they would ever be fired in anger…
Whereas we know the £2.5bn in the Ukraine’s hands serves the U.K.’s national interest in helping to defang a rabid Russia and protect a fellow democratic state.


Does anyone want to disagree with that? I don’t.


By “Kiev regime” I assume you mean the government democratically elected by the people of Ukraine.
 As for buying 250 57mm guns, alas we don’t have a navy large enough to utilise all those – 11 would be enough to equip the T45s and River Batch 2. Even then, it’s uncertain whether they would ever be fired in anger…
Whereas we know the £2.5bn in the Ukraine’s hands serves the U.K.’s national interest in helping to defang a rabid Russia and protect a fellow democratic state.

Last edited 1 month ago by Sean

of course a Democratic state
Supposed to be held on 31st march 2024…..supposed to be according to the constitution.

But democracy can be so flexible sometimes, but I wonder which candidate the oligarchs will pick, like last time, maybe a confectionary millionaire , a TV show host…..
Oh already done all that .


What about your country China? Does it have any democratic election?


A new sock puppet arrives , replacing the Kerdu used earlier


Clearly you don’t understand democracy. It’s involves getting everybody to vote for the candidates/ party of their choice. Which is difficult to do when the fascist state next-door is occupying a chunk of your country, which disenfranchises the voters there. Not to mention the difficulty in collecting and allocating the votes of those fighting on the front line, or who have become refugees abroad.
It’s not a difficult concern surely? After all the U.K. parliament of 1935 sat through to 1945, there was no 1940 election, because we were at war.

I guess you think elections are done Putin-style, where the president thinks up a number for his winning percentage and the election officials rubber stamp it. No need to count ballot papers etc.

Last edited 1 month ago by Sean

Zelensky was elected 5 years back in spite of the ‘difficulties’ with eastern regions being in a war . Why were elections not held then

UK in 1940 ( or earlier) didnt have a constitution like the US or Ukraine does which mandate elections must be held after a certain time.
The Longest Parliament in England was 20 years ( 1640-1660)
US had elections during wartime of course


When Zelensky was elected, far less of Ukraine was under illegal occupation, the front-lines were static, and they didn’t have conscription. Big difference, but you know this, you’re just being disingenuous, again.

Wrong. The U.K. does have a constitution, but it’s not a written one like the US, which has both pros and cons.
As for quoting the Long Parliament, I can believe you’re seriously quoting a time when only ‘40 shilling freeholders’, a very small proportion of the population, were allowed to vote. It hardly qualifies as democracy, though at least it wasn’t rigged like Russia’s elections.


UK doesnt have a constitution in the generally accepted usage. Those ‘basic laws’ can be altered at any time
 no clear distinction between what is a constitutional law and what is a regular law. This also means there are no special procedures for changing the constitution itself in the UK.’

See the current who- ha over the Sub-postmasters Scandal where there will be legislation passed to exonerate those with convictions. Which is different situation from royal pardons. Apparently some legal people are saying Parliament overturning the courts convictions is ‘unconstitutional’
Blairs party made many ‘constitutional changes’ which were just party policy. hardly a constitution when it can be done by a simple majority rather than a super majority which is the case for other countries with no written constitution but have certain laws that are passed and can only be changed that way


Thanks for proving to everyone that you’re not a Brit. We understand how an unwritten constitution works, indeed many foreigners do too, but you clearly don’t.


You’re your own worst enemy! If you’d bothered to read the link you posted, you’d know why your own argument is facile.

Keep working on your comedy routine Sophie.


I read it and they are going ignore the constitution and become like Russia.

Article 103

The President of Ukraine is elected by the citizens of Ukraine for a five-year term, on the basis of universal, equal and direct suffrage, by secret ballot.laws are read as a whole not by ignoring parts and only reading the loopholes…. of course this is Ukraine one a the dodgiest jurisdictions in Europe, next to Russia

Last edited 1 month ago by Duker

Then Sophie, you’re wilfully choosing to ignore parts of it in a deliberate attempt to deceive. Elections can be suspended when the country is under martial law, and there can be no better reason for martial law than being under an imminent existential threat.


Quote for the constitution part that says that


Article 83, look it up yourself Sophie.

Last edited 1 month ago by Sean
The Whale Island Zoo Keeper

I asked you before not to reply to my comments. It causes too much upset for site.

As for buying 250 57mm guns, alas we don’t have a navy large enough to utilise all those

You honestly thought I meant the government should buy 250 Bofors 57mm? Really?


Defang a rabid Russia?

Good grief……………

You are an arrogant pompous fool. I pity those IRL who have to spend time with you.

Mike O

Hear, hear. A great write up. Good luck to the crews involved for the rest of this operation.


Iain Overton says it isa waste of money on X.


The guy who had to resign after the scandal of making false accusations against Lord McAlpine? Surprised anyone still takes notice of him.

Ian J Kennett

Bravo Zulu hms diamond