Sunday, July 23, 2023


 I see these numbers and to be honest, I don't doubt them but wow!

"The 'Oniks' missiles are originally designed to target surface ships, with a speed exceeding 3000 km/h. As a result, they are difficult to detect and intercept," he said.

The same applies to the "X-22" missiles, which travel at speeds over 4000 km/h.

Most risible about that is the fact that just earlier they claimed to be routinely taking out Russian Kinzhal missiles which are said to travel upwards of Mach 10. 

I was the fire control officer on a frontline destroyer during the cold war. It wasn't much of a weapon system but it did work. and worked well. I look at those numbers and think back to the 'good old days'.

If you have something targeting you inbound at 3000 kph it is detected at the horizon by my fire control systems and hits the ship about 6 seconds later. Missiles moving at mach 10 are just invisible.

I really hate to say it but the USN has Harpoon missiles, subsonic sea skimmers that they are and for some reason the word toast springs to mind. I knew that when Soviet frigates were launching carrier killing missiles from the Black Sea at targets in Syria.

The USN will not win a naval war with Russia. It would do well to see who else has been buying those weapons because to be honest, it will be an ugly and short war.


Dan said...

The issue of course is whether or not these Russian "wunderwaffen" actually perform as advertised. Historically Russia/USSR sold a LOT of weapons to a LOT of countries based on hyperbole. And when those weapons came up against western technology they failed miserably. Are they repeating this pattern or have they actually managed to create missiles that perform as they claim.
NOBODY but the Russians know for sure....and maybe even they don't know for certain.

HMS Defiant said...

True but what I saw still rings the bell. The Russians were firing those devestating missiles from the Black Sea into targets in Syria. Yeah, it's hard to miss a whole country and they counted them all as fodder but still it was an achievement well beyond our submach cruise missiles.

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

Wouldn't speeds like those greatly magnify targeting errors?

Anonymous said...

There could be a lot of expensive ships rusting on the bottom of the oceans if any of this holds up. I doubt the smartest thing to do is to discount it and say that their weapons won't work as advertised. Even if only a few do, it would be catastrophic.

P.S. At those speeds, they might not even have to account for the motion of the target. It would be like they were standing still.

Anonymous said...

During the cold war, the doctrine was to destroy the supersonic missile platforms before they could be launched. The supersonic missiles launched from supersonic backfire bombers were around back then and AWACs, etc & Tomcat's Phoenix LR missiles loitered way out there at the edge of launch range just waiting for the easy meatballs. Dunno if that has changed since.

Anonymous said...

Answers are in the charts:
The "Outer Air Battle" has become the inner.

Anonymous said...

At the guided missile school we referred to the problem as shoot shoot look shoot. My air defense missile was a box launcher with 8 missiles and I knew the story on them. 47% never left the rail but those were the old BPDMS RIM 7H. Come the Backfire raid it was a certain death and I don't care how many simply dropped into the sea out of the bomb bay or off the wings. I saw that with the ALCM but oddly, enough always made their way to the target.

Zarba said...

And while we spend more on defense than the 10 next largest countries combined, we have not been able to field effective defenses nor hypersonic missiles of our own.

We focus on DEI initiatives and do nothing to reduce bloat, waste, and inefficiency. We blow billions on gee-whiz systems that don't work, and ignore basic logistics like sea/airlift capabilities that we'll need in a real peer-to-peer conflict.

We can't even make basic munitions in sufficient quantities to sustain a prolonged conflict, let alone the ability to ramp-up production of planes, tanks, and ships.

We're fat and stupid, and it will bite us in the ass when it counts.