Anti-missile weapons

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barnest2
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Anti-missile weapons

Postby barnest2 » Thu Jul 15, 2010 11:27 am

Ok, so this isn't entirely a travller question but i was just pondering the idea.
At todays technology level, would it be possible to create an anti missile missile. I know we have stuff like CIWS, but i mean a proper missile.
If we already have something like this would someone link me too it? Oh and i dont mean stuff like the patriot system, i mean missiles ot be fired at things like air-to-air missiles.
thanks in advance.
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Re: Anti-missile weapons

Postby rust » Thu Jul 15, 2010 12:36 pm

barnest2 wrote: At todays technology level, would it be possible to create an anti missile missile.
While there have been attempts to do so, and a couple of prototypes, I
do not know of any operational system of that kind that really could han-
dle anything smaller than a ballistic missile at a reasonable cost.
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Re: Anti-missile weapons

Postby DFW » Thu Jul 15, 2010 12:42 pm

barnest2 wrote: i mean missiles ot be fired at things like air-to-air missiles.
thanks in advance.
I assume that you mean an air launched anti-anti-aircraft missile? If so, yes it is possible to design one. Why don't our fighters carry them? Because ECM doesn't take up offensive weapons "slots" and those missiles would.

As far as what certain high value, non-strike aircraft carry, I'm not at liberty to say. ;)
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Postby justacaveman » Thu Jul 15, 2010 1:17 pm

Israel is fielding a Tank mounted anti-missile system called Trophy. It detects incoming missiles and shoots rockets at it.

At a higher TL than now you could have a laser system, or even a 4mm gauss system.
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Postby locarno24 » Thu Jul 15, 2010 2:21 pm

While there have been attempts to do so, and a couple of prototypes, I
do not know of any operational system of that kind that really could han-
dle anything smaller than a ballistic missile at a reasonable cost.
In service for 20+ years and genuinely effective. Examples:

Royal Navy: Sea Wolf (in service 1979, combat proven, Falklands War) - being replaced by Mach 4 (!) Sea Vipers on the new Daring-class.
http://www.deagel.com/Surface-to-Air-Mi ... 19003.aspx
http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov. ... nTrack.htm

US Navy: SM Standard SAM (in service 1970+, weapon component of AEGIS anti-missile system)
http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/ship/weaps/aegis.htm


Ballistic missiles, in fact, are relatively hard to hit compared to 'normal' missiles, due to their ridiculous speed and the insistance of the US on a 'kinetic kill' solution like THAAD rather than the pragmatic soviet version (NATO name ABM-1 Galosh) which made the weapon nuclear tipped.
http://www.army-technology.com/projects/thaad/
http://www.fas.org/spp/starwars/program/soviet/abm1.htm
Understand that I'm not advocating violence.
I'm just saying that it's highly effective and I strongly recommend using it.
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Postby rust » Thu Jul 15, 2010 2:34 pm

locarno24 wrote: In service for 20+ years and genuinely effective. Examples:
Royal Navy: Sea Wolf (in service 1979, combat proven, Falklands War)
Ah ... during the Falklands War the Sea Wolf system was only used against
aircraft, not against missiles, and of the eight Sea Wolfs used only two hit
an aircraft.
The other systems mentioned have yet to demonstrate that they can do
any better than that, especially when it comes to missiles.
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Postby Somebody » Thu Jul 15, 2010 2:46 pm

Also availabel and fielded in numbers is the RIM-116 Rolling Airframe missile. This system is slowly replacing/supplementing the 20mm Vulcan based systems due to better stand-off distance (1).

And for missile defence the US once fielded Safeguard, a two-tier nuclear tipped ABM system (Spartan missile for exo-athmosphere intercept, Sprint for in-athmo intercept) This like the Sowjet Galosh(that has been modernised multiple times could work as a short range anti-starship defence. The current russian missiles are the Gorgon and Gazelle

The Sowjet SA-15 Gauntlet SAM also has an anti-missile capacity against Air/Ground missiles build in and is availabel in a TELAR version (Radar and launcher in one vehicle and can fire on the move

Late model Sowjet Long-Range SAM like SA-10 Grumble, SA-12a Gladiator, SA-20 Gargoyle and SA-21 Growler have anti-missile capacities either against short range missiles or even against IRBM/ICBM types. All are mobile systems (like Patriot but better cross-country, shorter setup times)




(1) A "killed" missile still leaves a cloud of shrapnel flying along the missiles last trajectory and modern warships have little armor
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Postby locarno24 » Thu Jul 15, 2010 2:48 pm

You're quite correct. My apologies. Other examples:

Specific examples:

One testing:
"Details of the test in which a Seawolf anti-missile missile intercepted a sea-skimming Exocet have been released by the Royal Navy. In this
unique test the anti-ship Exocet was destroyed at Seawolf s maximum range of just under three miles. The MM.38 Exocet was fired from the Leander-class frigate HMS Jupiter towards a target barge anchored in Cardigan Bay, off Wales. Although it lacked a warhead, the Exocet was in every other way an operational missile, and the launch formed part of Jupiter's normal training."
FLIGHT International, 17 December 1983

http://www.flightglobal.com/pdfarchive/ ... 02236.html

One combat (albeit Sea Dart, rather than Sea Wolf):
One of the most significant surface actions of the Gulf War was achieved by the Royal Navy when HMS Gloucester, a Type 42, or Sheffield Class guided missile destroyer.

The ship employed its Sea Dart missiles to shoot down an Iraqi Silkworm missile that was fired towards the USS Missouri. The action was the first confirmed successful engagement of a missile by a missile in combat at sea.
http://www.seayourhistory.org.uk/conten ... /1100/1/3/
Understand that I'm not advocating violence.
I'm just saying that it's highly effective and I strongly recommend using it.
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Postby rust » Thu Jul 15, 2010 2:54 pm

Yep, being somewhat sceptical when it comes to the claims of producers
concerning the abilities of the weapon systems they sell, I usually do not
trust any test results very much - but the successful use of the Sea Dart
described in your second quote is in my view sufficient proof that it is in-
deed possible to destroy a non-ballistic missile with a missile.
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Postby locarno24 » Thu Jul 15, 2010 3:17 pm

In a Traveller setting, at least, given that we're assuming ships are able to exchange missile and torpedo fire whilst moving at (potentially) several Km/s relative to one another, even against wildly evading small craft, I think anti-missile fire is believable with a suitably specialised round.

Essentially, you'd probably just stick a sandcaster barrel of sand or pebbles (or something essentially resembling one) in place of a normal warhead.

Even a fairly light strike is essentially lethal - a missile can't be armoured enough to shrug off a high-velocity impact, even a small one, without being slow and unmanouvrable enough to be dead meat for pulse/beam laser fire from more conventional point defences.

Given the almost obsessive interoperability of 3I technology, you could probably get away with firing it through a conventional missile launcher, firing it at the incoming salvo.

Working on the assumption that it's more or less the same as a normal missile aside from the warhead and fusing, time to impact would logically be half the remaining time to impact of the salvo (unless we want to get into simultaneous UVAST equations. In which case don't call us, we'll call you). Launching them is a reaction, but one that doesn't have to wait until turn-of-impact, giving you a better chance of thinning out an incoming barrage before it all goes to fleeble.

That just leaves the question of what the difficulty roll should be.
The gunnery check effect defining the missile 'to hit' roll remains sensible, but the shot will unarguably be more difficult than trying to hit a starship under equivalent circumstances, so I would assign the missile a number of levels of 'automatic dodge' (i.e. some multiple of -2 DM on the counter-missile's to hit roll).

Two levels, giving a -4 DM, so that the gunnery check has to be at least a basic success to give any chance to the counter-missiles, seems a fair-for-gaming if not scientifically justifiable fudge. If you want to be picky you might increase that slightly for missiles or decrease it for torpedoes, as the torpedo is thirty times larger, which surely must make for an easier target as there's no indication it travels faster (same flight time).
Understand that I'm not advocating violence.
I'm just saying that it's highly effective and I strongly recommend using it.
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Postby lastbesthope » Thu Jul 15, 2010 6:35 pm

rust wrote:Yep, being somewhat sceptical when it comes to the claims of producers
concerning the abilities of the weapon systems they sell, I usually do not
trust any test results very much - but the successful use of the Sea Dart
described in your second quote is in my view sufficient proof that it is in-
deed possible to destroy a non-ballistic missile with a missile.
Indeed AFAIK, and I work in the field, the Sea Dart incident is the only confirmed combat missile on missile kill on record.

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Postby phavoc » Thu Jul 15, 2010 6:56 pm

The Russians have the Kashtan system, which is a combined gun/missile (CIWS) system. You can find some info here: http://www.deagel.com/Ship-Air-Defense- ... 60001.aspx amd here: http://kbptula.ru/eng/zencom/kashtan_m.htm

Back in the 70's anti-missile missle technology did not exist, so it wasn't included in the game. And in all the updates its never been added. Sad, since lasers, particle beams, black globes, jump drives and anti-gravity didn't exist then too, but THEY made it in...
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Postby Egil Skallagrimsson » Thu Jul 15, 2010 9:36 pm

Is the lack of missile on missile combat hits a consequence of very few opportunities, and a lack (thankfully) of many conflicts in the last 30 years between technologically equivelent opponents?

In the 70s and 80s both the US and USSR spent a fortune developing anti-ship and anti missile weapons. Designs like the Aegis were intended to shoot down incoming missiles (as the Russians were expected to fire anti-ship missiles from 200nm away). Though clearly technically challenging, the amount of money spent on the systems, and the way that whole classes of ships were built around them suggests that both sides believed they had solved the problems. Perhaps not the best sources, but both the modern naval wargame Harpoon, and Tom Clancy's book Red Storm Rising clearly worked on the basis of usuable, and effective, anti missile missiles, and both were supposed to be well informed.

After all, an incoming missile is just a faster moving, possibly smaller, aircraft, probably taking less evasive action. So no reason why they cannot be shot down if your fire control radar and computers are good enough.

Back to the rules, my version is virtually identical to Locarno 24's, i.e. specilist anti missile missiles, I just go for a straight 8+ to hit, possibly modified by different tech levels of missiles, making them more effective (but in a non 3I setting I am working on I have scrapped most other weapons, or limited them to short range, seeing complex missile exchanges as the most likely form of space combat)

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Postby far-trader » Thu Jul 15, 2010 10:12 pm

Egil Skallagrimsson wrote:...Though clearly technically challenging, the amount of money spent on the systems, and the way that whole classes of ships were built around them suggests that both sides believed they had solved the problems.
That's a bit naive :) I mean that in the nicest way. I believe they believed if they spent enough money they would solve any problem. Where "enough" is more than exists in some cases but when you're just taking it a billion here and a billion there nobody says much ;)

The military has a long track record through the cold war of steamrolling ahead on expensive ideas, even when proven impractical if not impossible, just because so much (careers as much as money) had already been invested (some would argue wasted) that to stop would be an admission of guilt in something approaching fraud.

That said we may be finally reaching the technological capability to make it work. So maybe they weren't so wrong about throwing enough money at the problem, just short sighted about just how much money would be needed to advance the technology far enough...

...and of course every time defense catches up to offense, offense changes the rules.

But for Traveller, I think Missiles have been allowed as Anti-Missile defense at some point. Or it was a house rule? Seems like it goes back a long way in my mind. Maybe CT Special Supplement 3?
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Postby rust » Thu Jul 15, 2010 10:23 pm

far-trader wrote: ...and of course every time defense catches up to offense, offense changes the rules.
Indeed. For example, several of the latest designs of anti-ship missiles
are much more like torpedoes, they submerge a long distance from the
enemy ship and then attack submerged, exploding under the ship - so
conventional anti-missile systems are completely useless against them.
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Postby phavoc » Thu Jul 15, 2010 10:43 pm

far-trader wrote:The military has a long track record through the cold war of steamrolling ahead on expensive ideas, even when proven impractical if not impossible, just because so much (careers as much as money) had already been invested (some would argue wasted) that to stop would be an admission of guilt in something approaching fraud.
The F-14 Tomcat and it's Phoenix missile system were developed to shoot down the expected horde of cruise missiles that the Soviets would launch at US fleets and convoys crossing the Atlantic. The Russians never could field a true blue-water fleet, so they developed cruise missile bombers and submarines to do the job for them.

And yeah, the military has had some blunders (Sgt. York anyone?), but most of the time they are actually on the cutting edge and often develop systems that have a high chance of failure... but if just one of them pays off it can be a big payoff. In some ways the same theories are used by oil companies to drill in deepwater and by drug companies (ok, BP and Avandia are bad examples...)

far-trader wrote:...and of course every time defense catches up to offense, offense changes the rules.
You can mount stand-off attacks now using bomb-pumped lasers.
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Postby Rockymountainnavy » Fri Jul 16, 2010 2:59 am

To see how a TL8-almost 9 does it see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDqNjnUNUl8
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Postby rinku » Fri Jul 16, 2010 6:58 am

I'd be fairly cautious about projecting these weapons onto space missiles, which operate at several orders of magnitude greater ranges and speeds.

An anti-missile missile would need much better tracking gear than on an anti-ship one, probably including much better sensor and ECCM gear on the controlling ship, too. Not impossible, but definitely more expensive.
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Postby Somebody » Fri Jul 16, 2010 11:04 am

Well, the lates generation of anti ship missiles where developed to defeat AEGIS cruisers so they have some interesting capabilities:

+ Higher speeds reducing the time to engage and making gun-based Close in systems less useful. The faster a missile the further will it's debris travel and still be dangerous. And since gun based CIWS can't get too big (They need to be fast moving/tracking) there is a limit in caliber/range

+ Acting as a swarm instead of independent missiles. This includes one missiles sacrificing itself for better target data. The missiles come in as sea skimmers (with a very limited sensor range due to earth) and one of them "pops up" to take a sensor lock and broadcasts the data. It will most likely get killed but the swarm gets an update. The swarm also transmits "I will go for ship x" data between the missiles keeping them from attacking the same target

+ Maneuverable missiles. Some modern ASM are cruise missiles using ramjets instead of rockets. They are bigger but have better ranges that allow them to take a less than direct attack route and even try a reattack

+ (Deceptive) Jammers and stealth. Modern missiles use jammers to confuse the enemy. This works best against the current generation of Air-Air Missiles that use an on-board radar (Lower powered/less capabel than the fighter or ship based units)

+ Loitering missiles. The ALARM anti radiation missile can loiter if the enemy switches of the radar waiting for him to come active again. This has the double benefit of increasing the hit chances against mobile systems like SAM-15 Gauntlet (The HARM won't work here since it attacks the "last known position) and may convince the enemy to keep a system switched off (Clancy has a nice description in Red Storm Rising/Island part) allowing other weapons to go through

And finally (as the US Navy learned in more than one NATO exercise) quantity has a quality all of it's own. The missile defences can be swamped by firing enough missiles at them. Combined with targeting the air/missile defence ships this can strip the main defences (AEGIS ships in case of NATO) away leaving the target open for a second wave

Oh and some Russian ASM have a "home on jammer/home on radar" targeting mode. Definitly build to go after the air defence ships
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Postby DFW » Fri Jul 16, 2010 12:18 pm

Interesting data. Fortunately, in space the best area of the EM band to use for detection/tracking is the IR band. You can't effectively mask it.

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