Ground Based Air Defence

An interesting tender release notice sees further details being revealed for UK Ground Based Air Defence

Command, Control, Communication and Computer systems.

The requirement is to deliver a Ground Based Air Defence (GBAD) capability along with an initial support solution for up to 5 years. This will include delivery of Battle Management Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence (BMC4I) functionality, integrated with networked Land-Ceptor Launchers into a primary Fire Control Centre (FCC) which will centrally Command and Control missile engagements within the context of a wider Air Defence Command and Control (C2) Battle Management (ADBM) environment.

An alternate FCC with medium mobility and capable of operating independently, will also be required in the event that the primary FCC/Control and Reporting Centre (CRC) are disabled. The BMC4I provider will be responsible for delivering and supporting the alternate FCC including vehicles and mobility requirement.

The BMC4I provider will be the key systems integrator of the capability including provision of communications links and integration with existing in-service communications infrastructure, as required whilst conforming to MoD rules on communications infrastructure provision. It is expected that, given the time-frames to Initial Operating Capability (IOC), the BMC4I system will be relatively mature and within the provider’s range of existing products. The BMC4I provider will be required to demonstrate the extensibility of the system from the specific operational application here to enabling the development of a contingent BMC4I system with further investment in mobility, communications and hardening.

Value £100m to £250m

Land Ceptor

Who the bloody hell thought of that one.

Future Light Anti Aircraft Defence System (Land) - FLAADS(L) using the MBDA Common Anti Air Missile
Future Light Anti Aircraft Defence System (Land) – FLAADS(L) using the MBDA Common Anti Air Missile
command centre shelter for the UK's Land Environment Air Picture Provision system (LEAP) ISO Container
command centre shelter for the UK’s Land Environment Air Picture Provision system (LEAP) ISO Container
LEAP
LEAP

 

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Beno
Beno
February 16, 2015 1:31 pm

That’s not the name right ?

Really ?

Oh well good to see the thing is proceeding and seems well thought out.

Beno

Hohum
Hohum
February 16, 2015 1:35 pm

A wonderfully sensible programme. Obviously something with a bit more reach would be nice but beggars can’t be choosers.

Challenger
Challenger
February 16, 2015 1:53 pm

Seriously? That’s the name?

Sounds/looks like a good system though.

Challenger
Challenger
February 16, 2015 1:56 pm

P.S

How capable is Rapier these days? Has it been updated a decent amount over it’s long service life?

S O
S O
February 16, 2015 2:24 pm

Rapier cannot reach planes that find and identify targets on the ground with IIR and engage them with PGMs because Rapier Mk.2 has a maximum engagement altitude of about 16,000 ft.

Rapier present = de facto permissible airspace, even acceptable for ordinary drones.

Thomson
Thomson
February 16, 2015 4:01 pm

@Hohum

Wikipedia (yes Wikipedia :D):
Operational range: 1-25+ km (trials have a shown a capability of up to 60 km)

Now someone tell me, can we replace our Aster 15s on our Type 45s with this?

Thomson
Thomson
February 16, 2015 4:06 pm

Performance wise:

Sea Ceptor/CAMM vs Aster 15 vs RIM-162 ESSM???

Kent
Kent
February 16, 2015 4:31 pm

@TD – “Land Ceptor

Who the bloody hell thought of that one.”

What? Was “Épée” taken? Then again, “G-Bad” has a nice rap artiste ring to it. [“All right, chaps! Rock the ‘G-Bad,’ yo!”]

Chris Werb
Chris Werb
February 16, 2015 4:35 pm

The only things I’d change would be to have an alternate IIR seeker ala ASRAAM so you could use either depending on prevailing conditions, target type, jamming environment etc. It’s a shame the system loses the helo mobility of Rapier, but you can’t have everything. This thing is a quantum leap in capability over Rapier.

Mike Wheatley
Mike Wheatley
February 16, 2015 4:36 pm

@ Thomson,

I think you mean:
* Janes * (with thanks to Wikipedia for providing the reference to a source, leaving it to us to select a credible one):

“With an expected operational range of at least 25 km (trials are understood to have shown a capability to travel 60 km) and a maximum missile speed of Mach 3.0, CAMM significantly outperforms the 8 km range and Mach 2.5 top speed of the Rapier missile. ”

…which once again implies that the air based original ASRAAM has a range f*@k loads more than stated, and actually extends into AMRAAM territory – in turn explaining why the RAF were wanting to get ASRAAM qualified for internal carriage in the F-35 (where it would be at the expense of AMRAAM).
[CAMM uses the same motor, airframe, and fins as ASRAAM, it replaces a lot of other stuff.]

***

“Now someone tell me, can we replace our Aster 15s on our Type 45s with this?”

Ceptor is soft-vertical-launch. Sylver is big and heavy to cope with hot-vertical-launch of Aster-30’s. The CAMM launchers are much lighter, shallower, & more lightly supported, because they don’t have to cope with those stresses.
So what I want to know is, can we install 24+ Captor launchers around the funnel & hanger of the Type-45s, thus allowing all the Sylver A50’s to carry Aster-30’s?
‘cos that would be _fully_ taking advantage of what soft vertical launch can do for us.

shackvan
shackvan
February 16, 2015 4:43 pm

To compare CAAM, personal opinion only, I would rate it more highly than ESSM due to the fire and forget nature of the missile, so you can have quite a few in the air at any one time and don’t need a dedicated fire control radar. In raw performance however I suspect it lags behind Aster to some degree as its constrained by its airframe, ASRAAM gave up some manoeuvrability in order to be very slippery (hence the high speed and range for its size) and Aster missiles have the PiffPaff squib rockets included that give the missile some pretty startling terminal manoeuvrability. Bottom line though is Ceptor in any of its guises should be quite cheap, as SAM’s go, and because all you really need is a decent search radar or optical sensor to cue it then its utility gives it the edge over the other 2 even if not in terms of raw missile performance.

Randomer
Randomer
February 16, 2015 4:49 pm

Saab AMB based radar component?

Tony Williams
Tony Williams
February 16, 2015 4:54 pm

Quote from MBDA brochure: http://www.mbda-systems.com/mediagallery/files/sea-ceptor_datasheet-1379420378.pdf

“Sea Ceptor will operate from the SYLVER and Mk41 launchers using a quad-pack configuration to maximise packing density or for smaller ships”

So you get four Sea Ceptors in place of one Aster.

tweckyspat
February 16, 2015 4:54 pm

For once, looks like a sensible piece of cross -domain procurement (ie slightly better than Blowpipe fired from RFA Ships) let’s just wait to see if the RAF Regiment want to argue the toss over who fires it !

Just for a numpty, is there a minimum engagement range or would this cover all that we formerly called Medium and High Level GBAD (ie Rapier plus HAwk/Patriot ) ?

Agreed LandCeptor is a pants name, I would have chosen ‘ Thunderbird 3’ to follow in the naming succession of British AA Missiles. Or ‘ Swatter’ as a more basic description of what it is going to do.

WiseApe
February 16, 2015 4:56 pm

Sky Sabre.

How many sets are we getting? You can round off to the nearest 100.

John Hartley
John Hartley
February 16, 2015 5:02 pm

Just need to add a few THAAD (Chemring make bits for it), then you have the ideal High/Low mix i.e. LandCeptor/THAAD.

The Other Chris
February 16, 2015 5:08 pm

Aster still has a speed, kinematic, warhead and targeting system advantages (burn through, ESM, ECCM, etc) so you’d still want some 15’s around, especially if you want to finely discriminate between targets.

Think of CAMM in its role as an Air Defence weapon, whereas Aster/PAAMS is a full blown Anti-air Warfare system.

Hohum
Hohum
February 16, 2015 5:44 pm

Getting a missile to 60km is one thing, how long it takes to get there, what damage it is capable of doing at that point, what the actual no-escape zone is, etc, etc are all related questions but with very different answers. There is a reason why the Russians were putting 5.8 tonne missiles on tracked TELs in the 80s.

Mike Wheatley
Mike Wheatley
February 16, 2015 5:46 pm

General note about Wikipedia:

The worst offender I have found (yet) is their AMRAAM page.
It list various ranges for the various versions.
It “justifies” those ranges with citations 3, 4, 5, & 6.
– 4 is a German book, with a dead link.
– 6 is a Russian web site, with a dead link.
– 3 & 5 are a private fan site, which includes the disclaimer:
“Note: Data given by several sources show slight variations. Figures given below may therefore be inaccurate! Especially the range figures are rough estimates only.”

Wikipedia lists ranges of:
• AIM-120A/B: 55–75 km (30–40 nmi)[3][4]
• AIM-120C-5: >105 km (>57 nmi)[5]
• AIM-120D (C-8): >180 km (>97 nmi)[6]
…but the text states (repeatedly) that the -120D has a range of “50% more than the 120C-5”.
(Note: the -120D is still in development, so the finished product could be either, or neither.)

So, I would not claim to know what their ranges are, but I would say: those are really poor citations.
And more to the point: Wikipedia cannot be relied upon to only use credible sources.

Chris
Chris
February 16, 2015 5:55 pm

The UK had two and a quarter ton(ne) rocks to throw at incoming hostiles 80 km away: http://www.airforce.gov.au/raafmuseum/exhibitions/external/images/Bloodhound-on-launcher—ol.jpg

Hohum
Hohum
February 16, 2015 5:56 pm

As a rule of absolute, public domain figures for modern missile ranges are almost without exception wrong with the exception of where they are treaty limited and thus fairly obvious. Sometimes they are wrong by a little bit, sometimes they are wrong by epic margins.

I have heard anecdotes about one AAM in particular whose customers are not in a particular hurry to get it because it will go farther than their current AI radars can see, as an example.

Hohum
Hohum
February 16, 2015 5:59 pm

Chris,

Your RAF Bloodhound was not very field mobile though, the Army Thunderbird on the other hand…was marginally more so.

Mike Wheatley
Mike Wheatley
February 16, 2015 6:11 pm

@ Hohum,

Yes, I agree, simple comparisons are, err, simplistic.

I’ve always thought of Aster as a purpose-designed anti-missile system, as opposed to an anti-aircraft system that can be pressed into the anti-missile role.

If the target is ‘conveniently’ coming straight at you, (or an ally very close to you,) then you don’t need amazing maneuverability to hit it; Ceptor should be able to do that, even at long ranges, assuming the target is even visible (horizon, clutter,) at a long range.
In contrast to having to protect a distant ally from a missile that is crossing your own path – the role of PAAMS.

***

Personally, I’m much more excited by the cool logistics than can be unlocked by soft vertical launch & self-guiding weapons.

Mike W
February 16, 2015 6:20 pm

Is the idea of putting Land Ceptor on a MAN SV wheeled vehicle the permanent solution for this weapon system? Will the vehicle be required to cross rough terrain that would be difficult to negotiate? Would the ultimate solution be to place it on a tracked vehicle (armoured) when/if a suitable one becomes available? Remember that even Rapier was placed on Tracked Rapier but maybe were planning for a different kind of war then?

I was thinking of using any MLRS launch vehicles made redundant when we cut down the number of GMLRS in service. We originally purchased about 60 to 70 of the M270 launcher vehicles. They are armoured too (albeit fairly lightly). Or is that fanciful? Surely Land Ceptor won’t always be rear area and might very well have to move up to provide area defence for, say, a deployed battlegroup or even larger formation?

Hohum
Hohum
February 16, 2015 6:25 pm

Mike W,

Tracked Rapier in British service was an accident of history, they had had been built for Iran but for obvious reasons couldn’t be delivered and were acquired by the British Army, they were replaced in the 90s by Starstreak on Stormer. Most British Rapiers were towed behind Land Rovers or trucks so the MAN solution should be more mobile.

S O
S O
February 16, 2015 6:40 pm

@Mike Wheatley
Consider that ASRAAM’s lethality depends on its velocity. It’s no good against an evading fighter once it’s slow – and it’s going to be slow after a dozen km or so.
Concerning range: Use the specs published by Jane’s, users or producers.

@Hohum:
The definition of range varies. It depends on
– target manoeuvrability
– target vector
– target distance at launch
– platform vector at launch
– altitude
– whether target had bled energy dodging another missile before
– whether mid-course update by datalink is effective
– meteorological influences

Different sources can state different figures and all figures could still be correct because the sources had scenarios of different ambition in mind. High-tech warfare is terribly difficult to grasp before it proved itself against competent adversaries. This applies to most PGMs, ECM, ESM, torpedoes, CIWS, radars, submarine stealth, aircraft stealth …

related:
http://www.x-plane.org/home/urf/aviation/text/missiles/aam.html
http://www.x-plane.org/home/urf/aviation/text/missiles/sam.html

Anixtu
Anixtu
February 16, 2015 6:47 pm

Mike Wheatley,

“Wikipedia cannot be relied upon to only use credible sources.”

If you don’t like it, make it better.

Hohum
Hohum
February 16, 2015 6:48 pm

SO,

Well done at spectacularly missing the point, and bizarrely repeating one of my own points from further up. To be clear, I was hinting very strongly that most missile manufacturers, at their customers behest, lie about their weapons performance. And I know they do.

Mike W
February 16, 2015 6:54 pm

@Hohum

Thanks, Hohum, for your views. I do remember the reasons for Tracked Rapier entering British service (fall of the Shah and cancelled contract etc.) but they seemed to fit the UK’s needs in BAOR at the time and served for quite a while.

Despite your views on mobility, I am still a bit dubious about MAN SV as a carrier vehicle, though.

S O
S O
February 16, 2015 7:02 pm

Hohum, my point was that calling range figures wrong is almost inevitably wrong itself since exaggerations over the maximum range in the most advantageous case are not the problem.

Published range may be lower than possible in easy scenarios, but they’re always correct in some trickier scenario and the scenario applied is never specified in published data.

Moreover, the actual effective (rather than maximum ballistic) range is not known before actual employment in a hot conflict in large scale (same problem as with pk).

Peter Elliott
February 16, 2015 7:20 pm

Has the quad pack of Cepter missiles into Mk41 or Sylver actually been demonstrated successfully yet? Or is that just an aspiration / boast by MBDA?

I also seem to recall some question about how it would actually fit into the space vacated by T23 Seawolf silos. Maybe not as much space saved as hoped for..?

Hopefully it will quad pack on T45 which will free up silos for more Aster 30 while also increasing the number of short range shots carried. But we may be in danger of counting chickens.

Not a Boffin
Not a Boffin
February 16, 2015 7:44 pm

Very unlikely you’ll see Ceptor quadpacked in an RN ship, Sylver or Mk 41.

Peter
Peter
February 16, 2015 7:47 pm

Instead of Land Captor, how about InterCeptor? :)

@Anixtu

“Wikipedia cannot be relied upon to only use credible sources.”

“If you don’t like it, make it better.”

Isin’t there a fairly considerable problem with writing the sources your citing in a discussion?

Hohum
Hohum
February 16, 2015 7:58 pm

SO,

Still missing the point. Public domain range figures for most current generation missiles are wrong because they have deliberately been published as wrong- it’s not down to the nuance of the definition its down to deliberate dishonesty.

Mike Wheatley
Mike Wheatley
February 16, 2015 8:07 pm

@ NAB:
Re: “Very unlikely you’ll see Ceptor quadpacked in an RN ship, Sylver or Mk 41.”

…why is this?

monkey
monkey
February 16, 2015 8:09 pm


How about
For air – InterCeptor-A
For land – InterCeptor-B
For sea – InterCeptor-C
It almost works :-)

Anixtu
Anixtu
February 16, 2015 8:59 pm

Peter,

“Isin’t there a fairly considerable problem with writing the sources your citing in a discussion?”

Has Mike published some material that might be used as a reference to improve the Wikipedia article(s) mentioned?

Mike Wheatley
Mike Wheatley
February 16, 2015 9:46 pm

@ Aniaxtu:
To answer the direct question, I do not know the actual ranges or other capabilities of currently in-service weapons. (If I did, I wouldn’t be allowed to publish them. I doubt I would be allowed to even discuss much of anything military on a site like this.)

To answer your previous meta question: I don’t have a problem with Wikipedia being a poor source.
– I use it primarily as a way of searching for primary sources, and not as a source itself.
– And secondly as a way of identifying how much research another person has done on the subject. (If they only quote Wikipedia, then not much.)

Also, last time I edited Wikipedia about a military subject, it was ~cunningly~ counter-edited, which I took as a hint about who might be keeping an eye on pages like that.

The Other Chris
February 16, 2015 9:47 pm

Elliott

Mk.41, yes. Unsure about Sylver, but likely.

@Mike Wheatley

T45 is using its VLS for Aster which is preferable in its role, if it gets another set of VLS then Aster 30 Block 2 hasn’t got its size down to squeeze into an A50.

T26 is using huge numbers of the cold launch tubes for CAMM instead. They’re pretty nifty, hermetically sealed too IIRC @NaB?

Other reasons aside, there’s no other planned RN vessels with VLS to take them!

@Thread

If you know the fuel being used on a missile, you can make very good estimates on top speed and burn endurance. That’s different to range.

Mike Wheatley
Mike Wheatley
February 16, 2015 10:09 pm

@ TOC
I do *hope* that Ceptor on T-45 would be in its own (lovely, additional,) launchers,
it certainly makes sense to me,
but NAB made an authoritative statement, and knowing *why* he was so sure, is to me more interesting than just the factoid that “there will be quad packing”.

Anixtu
Anixtu
February 16, 2015 10:14 pm

Mike Wheatley,

“To answer the direct question, I do not know the actual ranges or other capabilities of currently in-service weapons.”

To my occasional disgust, Wikipedia isn’t about having the “correct” information in articles, but rather about having apparently well-sourced information. If you have a better source of data on missile ranges than those used in the article that you have criticised: change it, cite it, get into an edit war with someone else who thinks they know better.

“Also, last time I edited Wikipedia about a military subject, it was ~cunningly~ counter-edited, which I took as a hint about who might be keeping an eye on pages like that.”

Please elaborate!

The Other Chris
February 16, 2015 10:20 pm

@Mike Wheatley

With an advanced system like Sea Viper on board, using that against a threat is preferable to loosing off several Sea Ceptors.

You have a higher POK and more control. Sea Ceptors in flight would get in the way, so to speak.

If you can carry more Aster, carry those rather than Sea Ceptors.

If you can’t carry Aster (ie you do not have PAAMS) take Sea Ceptor over non-AEGIS ESSM or SeaRAM.

Mike Wheatley
Mike Wheatley
February 16, 2015 10:56 pm

@ ToC,
PoK for 1 Sea Viper > PoK for 1 Sea Ceptor I agree with,
but I am skeptical that PoK 1 Sea Viper > PoK 4 Sea Ceptor, for all roles.
In particular, for self defence.
Really?

Rocket Banana
February 16, 2015 11:18 pm

I would imagine that Sea Ceptor is pretty wonderful at shooting down a M=0.9, sea-skimming missile.

I would rather have Aster15 to hand for any of the bigger and faster missiles though.

Aster30’s booster could mean an overshoot for a fast incoming, low-level, threat.

Leave the Aster30’s for long-range (perimeter) missile engagements when doing area AAW and for the jet that launched the AShM at us and verified it is a worthy target for bounced SAMPSON and a 120km SAM :-)

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
February 16, 2015 11:20 pm

A strange, but an interesting discussion. It is good to mix oracle-like statements, authorative and less authorative sources… And thinking aloud can also make a contribution.

Lock-on launch/ lock-on after the launch is missing as an angle (no boring topics, like the number of available fire control channels and the like, luckily). If you can launch 4x the number of missiles against a saturation attack, with missiles that after the initial directing are active (independent) and let you do the”next” thing… That is obviously a good thing?
– why would the RN pass on the opportunity?
– this is not to say that the loadout proportion between missile types should be disproportionately skewed towards the weapon which overall is of lower performance (reach included in that) but can save the bacon in extreme situations, and is of lower cost (unit cost and integration cost both considered)

Rocket Banana
February 16, 2015 11:32 pm

AAC,

I guess a saturation attack is dealt with simply using multiples of the most effective SAM.

If you think about high speed threats (Brahmos, Granit, etc) then you may only get 30 seconds notice of an impact. You’re then heavily reliant on the time-to-target of the missile in order to have a second (if not third) crack at downing it.

I’m assuming Aster15 (especially) accelerates very much quicker than CAMM. In which case you could fire off one of each on the premise that Aster gets there first (and fails) but the threat is then picked up by the in-flight CAMM. It’s not quite a second shot though, you waste it regardless of the outcome of the Aster shot.

Obviously you could put an Aster30 out first if you picked up the threat with another asset.

Ron
Ron
February 17, 2015 12:21 am

MBDA shows pictures of CAMM in 4 packed launchers. The launcher is still under development but it may turn out that 4 pack is standard fit.

Yes, CAMM has been launched from a Mk 41. Google for a picture. Tests with a Sylver are highly unlikely as there’s no prospective customer (unlike with Mk 41). Sylver appears to be heading for the grave.

One thing not mentioned so far is cost. Asters of all varieties are very expensive and it quickly becomes unaffordable to carry more than a handful. On the other hand, CAMM’s maybe as low as a 100k a pop so the Navy is much more likely to end up with a ship full.

CAMM-ER is a pleasant thought. It’s being offered to the Italian navy as a cheaper, but comparable alternative to ESSM for their new corvettes. Thanks to a bigger booster, range is up 50% over standard CAMM plus it’s faster (with presumably a worse minimum engagement range). So from a range/speed perspective, ER is probably also close to Aster 15. It’s fatter but still fits in a standard width CAMM container but is longer. I wonder if the Type 26 will have space for a longer launcher. Would be nice to have a beyond horizon/stratosphere capability.

Peter Elliott
February 17, 2015 9:17 am

I am guessing that the reason why the RN might not get quad packed CAMM is a combination of technical reasons and cost..?

By which I mean the funding is only in place only for the dedicated cold launchers planned for T23 and T26. So while quad packing into T26 or T45’s hot-launch VLS is technically feasible it comes with an additional price tag that we don’t want to pay right now.

And if you consider that over their lives those hot launch silos are going to be well utilised by Land Attack, Anti-Ship and maybe a future VL anti sub weapon you can maybe see why there is no sense spending extra to fill them up with CAMM. Especially if there is the possibility someone else might make the investment leaving it as a MOTS add on if we ever need it in the future.

The Other Chris
February 17, 2015 9:30 am

Issue with a saturation attack is how to handle your defensive missiles all engaging the same target when you want them to engage the incoming salvo more evenly.

Although CAMM supports mid-course guidance of varying effect depending on what is supporting it, the systems available to an Aster launched by a T45 and supported via PAAMS are vastly superior for target discrimination.

CAMM is very good, but it isn’t an AAW system.

TrT
TrT
February 17, 2015 9:40 am

Beyond ‘those islands down there’ what exactly is the purpose of this system?

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
February 17, 2015 9:47 am

Simon,

There is better detail to the cost side of the argument by Ron (and PE’s wait for MOTS angle).

The initial acceleration phase means unsteerability (alluded to by Ron in”Thanks to a bigger booster, range is up 50% over standard CAMM plus it’s faster (with presumably a worse minimum engagement range)”). Exactly why the Russian systems optimised for cruise missile defence include a gun for the last kilometer before impact… Luckily there are no tree tops at sea!

Chris
Chris
February 17, 2015 10:01 am

Have you noticed this Ground-Based Air Defence thread has morphed into yet another grey ship weapon fit fetish thread? How did that happen?

You have to smile; its only a week or so back that TD and its cohort of commenters were accused of rampant disregard for, and hostility toward, all things Royal Navy by a fellow called Andy. Like he wanted even more Grey Funnel Line content?? Insatiable!

Chuck
Chuck
February 17, 2015 10:31 am

@TrT: Shooting down planes, drones, cruise missiles, helicopters or anything else that might threaten us or our forces from the sky. We can’t assume everyone we’ll fight in the next 50 years will be hairy savages with AK’s. Some might have an air force.

Even among those who don’t; drones and light aircraft are becoming ever more common among non-state actors. A trend that will only continue.

I’m actually kinda stunned by the question, in any real war our ground forces wouldn’t last a day without air defence. As far as I’m concerned this is about the most sensible investment the MOD has made in donkeys years.

They’ve even done reasonably good job on the procurement side, I can’t think of the last time when the biggest balls-up was a silly name.

@Thread: Couldn’t we give it another sword name? I know we’ve already got something named after most British swords, but there’s a few left. Curtana a good one we’ve never used AFIAK, might be a bit grand for a SAM though, save that for a tank. Falchion? Bastard would be a good one, but the PC crowd would nix it before you could explain it was a type of sword, Spatha? Hell even Dirk would be a better name. Sod it Rapier 3 or 21, would do.

El Sid
El Sid
February 17, 2015 11:45 am

Personally I think of Sea Ceptor as Sea Sceptre, which has some perfectly good maritime heritage behind it as a name – but is perhaps less easy for export markets to pronounce? Or are there trademark issues?

That would mean the land version could simply be Sceptre – gets a bit Gandalf, but it would work.

The Other Chris
February 17, 2015 12:17 pm

Off on a historical tangent spurred by El Sid’s mention of “Sea Sceptre”, but thought you chaps and chapesses might be interested:

http://archives.chicagotribune.com/1926/02/02/page/1/article/britain-seeks-league-return-of-sea-scepter

(Left-hand column).

The Other Chris
February 17, 2015 12:29 pm

CAMM(L) is running behind CAMM(M) which has been tested and is to be implemented next year on a T23.

It’s only natural to drift towards that version for examples and source material as most information on the proposed system is on the Maritime version. A number of the principles being discussed (acceleration, speed, kinematics, warhead, targeting, mid-course guidance, discrimination, support measures, nature of the launch cannister, etc) apply no matter the setting.

Folks are quite right to question why this would not replace components of PAAMS(S/E) or SAMP/T and to ask for comparisons with alternate systems.

Chris
Chris
February 17, 2015 12:35 pm

TOC – tongue was firmly in cheek; it just seemed an interesting counter to Adam’s contentious claims.

Jeremy M H
February 17, 2015 1:45 pm

As a ground based system it has great value as something that provides a degree of coverage that is pretty much always there. Plus the nature of the system lets you play some degree of mind games with the other side. Since there is, at least as I understand it, no fire control radar in the traditional sense the other side doesn’t really know if the ground based radar you set up is firing at them or not.

In a lot of ways the system is more nasty when put ashore than it is at sea. At sea you can be pretty sure that where there is a radar transmitting that is where the missiles will be coming from. You can play some games with that by sending a ship down the likely threat axis and leave its radar off until things are in range but for the most part your radars and missiles are on the ships (or airborne) and that is that.

On land you can distribute the system however you please. The radar is going to have some relation to the launcher but you can make the hunt substantially more difficult. Plus the other side now has to wonder if they are about to be shot at whenever they find themselves under radar observation. They don’t get a tracking radar to warn them.

All together its a pretty nice system for the tier between MANPADS and a full up area defense system like Patriot or an S-300. Hopefully NATO sees a few people invest in it as its something that would be nice to have.

Slightly Agricultural
Slightly Agricultural
February 17, 2015 6:53 pm

@Mike W

Regarding MAN SV mobility, talking about using left over MLRS got me thinking about logistics (TD is rubbing off on me). Your launcher would then be tracked (with all the resulting mobility implications, good and bad) but your logistics chain is still, wait for it, MAN SV flatbed or DROPS, no?

Unless I’m missing a tracked loggy vehicle somewhere, there’s probably limited benefit to spending on a tracked launcher when all your reloads have to come on a wheeled vehicle anyway. Slightly less of an issue for MLRS & AS90 because they don’t leave a nasty gap in everyone’s air defences when they trundle off for replen.

Oh dear, I think I’ve just justified FRES UV…

WiseApe
February 17, 2015 7:27 pm

@TOC – I can’t make out the text but going off the date (1926) and the 5-5-3 headline, I’m assuming the article is about the Washington Naval Treaty of 1924?

“5:5:3:1.75:1.75 ratio of tonnage between Britain, the United States, Japan, France and Italy respectively”

I wonder who would occupy those respective positions today?

http://www.navyrecognition.com/index.php/focus-analysis/naval-technology/2297-china-may-have-started-construction-of-next-generation-destroyer-type-055-for-the-plan.html

Chris
Chris
February 17, 2015 8:03 pm

Slightly – you may be surprised (or not) that in my vehicle designs where I include a variant with specific munitions I put in (for want of better term) a limber to carry reloads. Ideal if the same base platform as mobility is equal.

Not a new idea; the likes of the German and American SP guns have munition carriers on the same chassis (at least I’ve seen artists impressions of them, complete with girder cranes to move stuff between vehicles).

The Other Chris
February 17, 2015 8:11 pm

Article transcript:

Britain seeks League return of sea scepter

Would revise 5-5-3, Ban Battleship.

BY ARTHUR SEARS HENNING.
(Chicago Tribune Press Service.)

Washington, 1) C., Feb. 1.- [Special] Great Britain, it was learned today, aims to regain at the league of nations disarmament conference her old position of acknowledged mistress of the seas.

She relinquished that position at the Washington arms conference and accepted naval parity with the United States for the purpose, it now seems, of inducing us to scrap a naval building program that would have made America the greatest sea power on earth. Having attained our definite acceptance of that position and found us neglectful of maintaining parity in fact, Britain is maneuvering for a new agreement according her a recognized actual naval superiority.

Early Conference Postponed.
How much of the British scheme will be revealed at the preparatory conference remains to be seen, bit some of the details have trickled through the to Washington from our observers abroad. It appears now as if the preparatory conference would be postponed from Feb. 15, the original date, to some time between between March 1 and May 15, such postponement having been asked by France, Italy, Japan, Czecho-Slovakia and Uruguay. To notification by the league pf the postponement request, Secretary of State Kellogg replied today that we were ready to proceed on Feb. 15, but would not object to the proposed delay.

Where English Plans Converge
The British plan, in the first place, proposes an agreement by all nations to abolish not only the submarine but the battleship. Britain sought at the Washington conference to scrap the submarine, but France declined even to a limitation, and that’s where the Hughes armament reduction plan was torpedoes and only salvaged in part, for the British in retaliation declined to limit cruiser and other auxiliary tonnage.

Now the British contemplate going a step further and proposing not only that the submarine be banned but to abolish battleships as too expensive. The Washington conference provided for the replacement of the existing battleships beginning in 1930 and the British now would allow battleships to disappear gradually as they become useless.

Wants 5-5-3 ratio dropped
Under the British scheme navies would consist of cruisers [limited to 10,000 tons by the Washington treaty], destroyers, and minor auxiliaries, aircraft and aircraft carriers. But Britain does not contemplate an acceptance of a 5-5-3 ratio applying to cruisers and other craft, and that’s where her ambition to regain her supremacy of the seas come in.

Britain wants far more cruisers, destroyers, and other craft than the United States on the ground that the far flung British empire requires more ships for adequate protection. Even if eventual agreement were to be on the basis of a parity of cruisers Britain would be in reality superior to America, for there are scores of British merchant ships which are potential cruisers, having been built with that possible view.

To promote acceptance of these ideas in the United States, the British have been propagandizing in this country. First came Prof. Ross, naval historian of Cambridge university; then Lord Lee of Fareham, and finally Sir Francis Bridgeman, formerly first sea lord of the admiralty. The latter urged on President Coolidge, Secretary of the Navy Wilbur, and others abandonment of battleships and submarines.

– Chicago Tribune, Feb. 2 1926, Volume LXXXV No. 28

WiseApe
February 17, 2015 9:04 pm

Thanks for that TOC – the perfidious British! (Or, a recognition that carriers were the new capitol ships and subs the greatest threat, take your pick).

Anyway, back to wheels or tracks.

Pardon my ignorance, but if you have a tracked launch vehicle, could it not tow a tracked trailer carrying reloads? Also, there’s the thorny old problem of air portability. Remind me how many C-17s we’ve got. Eight?

Chris
Chris
February 17, 2015 9:07 pm
Repulse
February 17, 2015 9:17 pm

As the UK is an island wouldn’t it make sense to have a primarily a sea based air defence solution. I’m not necessarily talking about ships, more like modern versions of the WW2 AA sea platforms, something like:

http://www.boeing.com/defense-space/space/gmd/gallery/sbx006.html

This would leave the T45s as portable platforms that could be located in UK waters in times of high crisis, or float around the world protecting the CBG which is what they were designed for…

Repulse
February 17, 2015 9:19 pm

Further to my last comment, with the downturn in the Oil and Gas industry, perhaps we can reuse North Sea platforms?

The Other Chris
February 17, 2015 9:26 pm

Anecdotally, the platform that SBX is fitted aboard was Russian built…

monkey
monkey
February 17, 2015 9:26 pm

On the manoeuvrability of the reloads carriers I can see the need to have them at the same level as the weapons platform and compatible with the MLRS and AS90 ( or their future equivalents) munitions carriers would be no bad thing long term. Could a future MLRS fire from the same tubes as the LANDCEPTOR ?
On the 5-5-3 ratio article of the Chicago Tribune of 1926 and the British wanting to ban battleships and submarines , great foresight of the troubles ahead for the RN . They always had a pretty well developed secret service of their own embedded in other nations navies and shipyards. They could see Battleships as little more than a drain on money and manpower and the most dangerous weapon the RN fleet could face was submarines. With less than 10 years since the end of the war and impotence of the RN’s capital ships and the destruction wrought by the U-Boat fleet not a bad proposal.

Chuck
Chuck
February 17, 2015 9:47 pm

; Nice idea, but those things aren’t left in place. If production ceases, they’re moved as soon as a ship is available to do it. A lot of old AA platforms are still out there though.

@Monkey; If it really can go 60km ballistic it might make a nice(if low yield) tactical missile. Got to wonder how hard it would hit if you ripped out the seeker, plugged in GPS and used the weight difference for more warhead.

Anyone know the actual warhead weight? Never seen it quoted, wondering just using the AA version against soft targets(directed frag could be perfect for that) might work without changing the hardware, they’re always bragging about how most functionality is in the software. Going to need to hit reasonably hard to justify 10k a shot though.

Chris
Chris
February 17, 2015 9:51 pm

monkey – MLRS is longer and fatter by a large margin. I dare say using support inserts CAMM might be popped out of MLRS RLC tubes, if anyone wanted to carry big launchers for smallish missiles.

The Other Chris
February 17, 2015 9:57 pm

I don’t think there’s anything specific out there for CAMM, though it is based on ASRAAM which is a 10kg directed fragmentation.

Gloomy Northern Boy
Gloomy Northern Boy
February 17, 2015 10:05 pm

Casting my mind back to a previous article about containerised batteries, the comparatively small size of the old place, the possible need for instant area air defence elsewhere in the world, the increased reliability and value of UAV’s/remote command and control…and the vulnerability of fixed targets…might a forward looking set up that can be quietly deployed from warehouses here and there…using Reservists ostensibly in logistics…and managed from obscure offices in unimportant places, using Reservist/Geeks ostensibly in some quiet corner of communications be the way to go?

Not knowing we have a serious air-defence until somebody’s air assault becomes the world’s largest firework display over the North Sea might be quite a modern, light footprint way to deliver the goods…

GNB

monkey
monkey
February 17, 2015 10:17 pm


The MLRS are 227mm dia ,just looked it up :-) , and the CAMM range 166mm dia . My thinking was more towards Chucks thoughts of an different warhead ( aren’t cluster munitions prohibited? ) which smaller to reduced the latest buzz word collateral damage guided by the usual multi guidance package , GPS,laser MMW. Not so much a square kilometer denial than a hectare denial weapon. The launcher being a kind of multi-missile type launcher , similar to a VSL armed ship the opponent does not know what mix of missiles you are loaded with if the carrier is identical so has to tread more carefully with his deployments if his UAV’s or whatever spot your vehicles.
Also a standard fit should be the Konsberg Protector RWS as on the (not) FRES SV for self defence.

WiseApe
February 17, 2015 10:19 pm

– That’s all well and good but – as RT is want to remind us – we do occasionally find ourselves inland (whatever happened to canals?). Any CAMM based system is going to be fairly short ranged so we’re not looking at a Bloodhound replacement for the UK here. Where is our layered national air defence?

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
February 17, 2015 10:33 pm

“On land you can distribute the system however you please. The radar is going to have some relation to the launcher but you can make the hunt substantially more difficult. Plus the other side now has to wonder if they are about to be shot at whenever they find themselves under radar observation. They don’t get a tracking radar to warn them.”
– describing NASAMS2?

monkey
monkey
February 17, 2015 10:39 pm


A UK layered air defence ala Israel’s Iron Dome and Davids Sling?
We are a long way from such a comprehensive coverage system but we have nicer neighbours who will have a stab at shooting down incoming aircraft and missiles first …. hold on …. what if the launch is from the sea?…. from submarines or passing merchant ships ….oh dear ….. where’s that MoD bucket of sand?
One Bucket,sand filled, emergency use off , to be used in case of someone talking sense.

El Sid
El Sid
February 17, 2015 10:53 pm

@monkey
My thinking was more towards Chucks thoughts of an different warhead ( aren’t cluster munitions prohibited? ) which smaller to reduced the latest buzz word collateral damage guided by the usual multi guidance package , GPS,laser MMW

Why not? It’s not rocket science. Oh hold on – it is…

If you’re looking at trying to share launchers, it might be more sensible to look at Brimstone, which is much closer in diameter to CAMM than the MLRS rockets like M31 and which has all the guidance you might need already developed or under development.

WiseApe
February 17, 2015 10:58 pm

I’ve just had a brilliantly original idea – why don’t we just put the launch cannisters in a container and bung it on the back of a lorry?

I’ll patent it in the morning.

monkey
monkey
February 17, 2015 11:03 pm

@El Sid
Yes the Brimstone II would be just about right , its a dedicated anti- surface target missile already. Its got good enough range and can hit those point targets whilst disguising its intended targeting using its way point feature.

Mike W
February 18, 2015 10:36 am

@Slightly Agricultural

Sorry, have only just seen your comments.

“Unless I’m missing a tracked loggy vehicle somewhere, there’s probably limited benefit to spending on a tracked launcher when all your reloads have to come on a wheeled vehicle anyway.”

Very valid point. It was just that I wondered whether CAMM mounted on MAN SV vehicles would have sufficient mobility to keep up with fast-moving armoured formations traversing difficult terrain. Or have I got it wrong and would they be equally effective positioned further positioned further back? It would be nice to have tracked limbers too, to match the launcher vehicle, as Chris mentions (“Ideal if the same base platform as mobility is equal.”) but I suppose it is all a matter of money.

Don’t really see where FRES SV enters the equation, though.

Chris
Chris
February 18, 2015 10:49 am

Mike W – I’m pretty relaxed over the tracks vs wheels arguments – each has mobility advantages but in different situations. So I’d be happy enough for this sort of system to sit on properly high-mobility wheeled platforms or on tracked platforms; either would be OK. The MAN option is not high mobility, but is cheap and easy to integrate with mechanically (big tin flatbed). As for tracked platforms, I noted Witham selling the UK Shielder fleet recently – D’oh!

S O
S O
February 18, 2015 12:29 pm

@Mike W

Such area air defence systems wouldn’t be used like SPAAGs. They would stick with the ammunition column (~trucks) and its security elements anyway, more like SA-6 than like Roland.

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
February 18, 2015 12:46 pm

Yep, but you would still need some Roland like capability for the actual ops, quick tempo and spreading out not all planned ahead… there might even be a helicopter behind the hillside or free tops.

Mike W
February 18, 2015 2:42 pm

@SO

“They would stick with the ammunition column (~trucks) and its security elements anyway, more like SA-6 than like Roland.”

Many thanks for that information. I assume then that systems like HVM/Stormer would deal with the forward shorter-range AA protection?

“As for tracked platforms, I noted Witham selling the UK Shielder fleet recently – D’oh!”

Well, I hope they stripped off and retained the Volcano mine dispensers. Expensive and useful stuff. And who knows, with the unpredictability of possible future campaigns, such a capability just might be needed.

Chris
Chris
February 18, 2015 2:59 pm

Mike W – ref Volcano – I think they were kept back; at least not sold with the carrier vehicles. I had another quick rummage and found a refurbed Shielder for sale – http://www.milweb.net/classifieds/large_image.php?ad=75031&cat=1 – just the thing for your SHORAD system Sir…

Slightly Agricultural
Slightly Agricultural
February 18, 2015 3:12 pm

@ Mike W, not FRES SV (scout) but the on-again-off-again utility version (UV). Usually seen as some sort of 8×8 and a potential platform for some kind of protected logistics with good mobility.

Its It’s all academic I guess, as thethere’s no money for it. At least what we’re getting is using existing vehicles and containers..

Does the launch platform come off the truck though? Or is a MAN SV heli-portable? Would seem like an odd choice if the rest of the system can be moved as containers. Especially as you could then use any vehicle which can take an ISO-sized frame as a launcher in a pinch (especially if you split the launcher and crane into two segments)…Though I guess the only platform big enough is maybe Wolfhound, which perhaps isn’t enough of a gain over a protected SV. That and I think the days of such improv in a pinch are perhaps long behind us!

Mike W
February 18, 2015 4:15 pm

Chris

Thanks very much for that info. That refurbed Shielder looks very impressive. I think that the Stormer and variants are good vehicles and perhaps more use could have been made of them as support for Stormer/HVM units or for 16AA Brigade. Still, the powers that be have obviously worked out that they only needed a certain number and the rest go to Withams. How much useful, or at least serviceable kit, has been flogged off through them over recent years!

@Sightly Agricultural

Do you know, that’s the second time on this site I have typed FRES SV when I meant FRES UV! Yes, I suppose the cargol/logistics version, if we can afford one, is a possibility. Rather like your thinking about heli-portability, containers and flexibility between different vehicles for launchers. However, like you, I do not think it will come about.

S O
S O
February 18, 2015 6:01 pm

@Mike;

the current state of battlefield air defences in NATO / EU is poor. Mostly it’s indeed more or less elaborate ManPADS variants as forward defence, plus the autocannons of IFVs within their limits of elevation and fire control.
I suppose much needs be done to cope with drones.

The traditional concept wasn’t so much area air defence rear, self-propelled (very)short range air defences forward as a vertical layering:
SA-4 / SA-6 / IHAWK / Patriot provide area air defence, which is in practice air defence against medium and high altitude threats. Their fire control wasn’t beyond-the-horizon capable, and the horizon is often very close due to hills.
The (v)ShoRAD systems meanwhile weren’t only forward with tanks etc. (though they often were in shape of tracked SPAAGs), but dispersed a lot. Main march routes, river crossings and other traffic jam-prone bottlenecks, air bases, army aviation field bases, corps HQ, area SAM batteries and valleys which allowed to fly under the area SAM coverage were covered by (V)ShoRAD. Assuming enough were available, which was only true for the Warsaw Pact – but the thousands of Shilkas were no good in valleys due to poor target discrimination by their radar.

The handful of battlefield air defence systems of the West (other than long-since countered Stingers and Mistrals) are not going to achieve much in the forseeable future.

Mike W
February 18, 2015 7:15 pm

@SO

Well, thanks very much for that very detailed and knowledgeable reply. It sounds as if you have not left much out – a pretty comprehensive summary of the situation. Your final sentence:

“The handful of battlefield air defence systems of the West (other than long-since countered Stingers and Mistrals) are not going to achieve much in the forseeable future.”

does not make for very comfortable reading, especially as we are likely, I think, to encounter opposition forces with strong air power sooner or later.

monkey
monkey
February 18, 2015 7:38 pm

On our lack of anti-missile / aircraft abilities I find that quite shocking when are fully aware of the value of air strikes to dismember a countries infrastructure. Serbia, the two Gulf wars etc come to mind. We obviously have very capable air forces but strength in depth of defences off multiple platforms would seem the order of the day to give the OPFOR planners the biggest headache possible both in terms of using existing kit and what to spend on for that ‘future war’ . Getting the potential opposition to blow their limited resources on redundant kit has got to be good. Nothing better would b re to have also tin boxes mocked up to look exactly like a real system to spread about the battlefield at say 5 to 1 ratio , fake to real , electronic and heat sigs included.

Ron
Ron
February 18, 2015 7:39 pm

Somebody official remarked that if the QE’s needed more air defense, they could park a CAMM(L) on an unused corner of the flight deck. Ships radar could provide cueing and data link updates.

mike
mike
February 18, 2015 7:45 pm

@ Ron

Wont be as simple, unfortunately. Unless the system can account for the movement of the ship, sea spray and clearance, not to mention if the data link is actually possible in the electromagnetic nightmare of a ship.

mike
mike
February 18, 2015 8:24 pm

@TD

Good point.

But in ’82 unguided SENB rockets were not cleared from the deck of a carrier built in the 50’s… Its not the missile – with its Naval heritage – but the launcher, its like the ideas of parking a MRLS on the deck, is it possible for the launcher?

I am just unsure we can park it up, chain it down and plug in and play, I’m not too concerned of the missile – but will it cope with the rolling? Will it cope with sea spray?

I’m all for giving CVF more teeth, its the one key area I thought it was lacking in, but we have a tendency to not really think about/fund for kit to be truly flexible.

But I did not know about how high it’d go in the vertical before the horizontal, nor the fact it’d cool with a different radar/link for guidance. Imagine if we had that in ’82 – the upstream ’42s giving targeting for the land based defence, a good combo.

mike
mike
February 18, 2015 8:35 pm

Righty, I dunno – experience tells me to not hold my breath :D
Putting something to sea can’t be so deceptively simple!

The Army is finally getting a move on from Rapier.

The Limey
The Limey
February 18, 2015 9:34 pm

Wrt CAMM(L) what I don’t understand is why it’s not all packed in an ISO frame.

Rocket Banana
February 18, 2015 10:27 pm

Does anyone have a figure for the intercept ceiling for CAMM?

I’m hoping for 50-60 thousand feet otherwise it’s pretty pointless against anything with laser or GPS guided bombs.

…another reason to keep Aster15?

In which case, what is the British Army going to be protected by?

Observer
Observer
February 19, 2015 7:15 am

Simon, maybe not against high flying aircraft, but what about others? E.g cruise/ballistic missiles, helicopters etc? Leaving the rest for ground based defences allows your airforce to concentrate on the enemy’s airforce instead of trying to do everything at once, so in a way, it is a force multiplier. Something like the Navy argument about smaller ships freeing the larger ones to do more important stuff. Not that the bigger ships are not also assigned to “lower end” jobs when there isn’t a war going on…

Obsvr
Obsvr
February 19, 2015 7:46 am

The Army abandoned heavy (ie high altitude) AD in the mid 60s (ie T’Bird 2 went) and the RAF undertook to deal with that threat.

Sazuroi
Sazuroi
February 19, 2015 7:51 am

@ NATO lack of air defense: I remember having heard a while ago that Russia relied more on ground-based approaches while the West, especially after the suppression successes in the first Gulf War, relied more on air superiority. That said, with how few planes we have and how few of them are ready to fly air superiority is not guaranteed against a relatively modern air force of decent size. Perhaps not even against Russia.

Plus, even with air superiority, some threats can get through. A few months ago, the IS had captured three old Mig-21 or something from a Syrian air base, and it took about a week for the media to report them downed. It’s unclear whether they managed to attack anything, but the original report cited local sources and the confirmation from our air forces only came a few days later. Of course, it would have been easier to find those planes if we had radar on the ground, but if they could operate under “air superiority” at all no matter how old they were, just MANPADS may not be enough if we ever get in a similar situation with our boots on the ground. Note that old AA cannons are still in widespread use in Syria.

Apparently there are plans to mount the new stationary air and mortar defense system SysFlak the Bundeswehr is developing, or rather its gun component, on the Boxer. We also have a short-range missile system named Wiesel 2 Ozelot in stock, though S O probably knows more about that than I do.

Also, Great Britain has a gun system similar to the Gepard which can be mounted on a wide variety of tank hulls, but it was only ever sold to one country, Finland I think. So there are some ways out of the gap if the will were there.

S O
S O
February 19, 2015 11:57 am

MANTIS may or may not be mounted on Boxer; let’s ignore MANTIS and LeFlaSys simply; the quantities purchased are negligible and the feasibility was publicly demonstrated by other systems before. The apparently successful CRAM test with AGM years ago (a CRAM capability claim is also in the AGM brochure IIRC) is more interesting. It’s worthwhile to remember that the current 155 mm L/52 howitzers approximate (calibre, muzzle velocity, maximum elevation) the 150-155 mm heavy AAA projects from WW2.

@Mike W;
you may be interested in Gudmundsson’s “On air defence” by J.D. Crabtree. It’s one of the weaker books in the “On …” series, but good enough till the 1990’s. Some early chapter excerpts are on google books.
The U.S.Army published its field manual for its AD ops:
http://www.bits.de/NRANEU/others/amd-us-archive/fm3-01.7%2800%29.pdf

Western area air defences of today are often set up in clusters, since Patriot firing units have only about 110-120° effective arc (AN/MPQ-53 cannot rotate) and thus requires other firing units for their defence even against medium altitude threats. This is the reason why so many old IHAWK systems were kept in use well into the 90’s and why MEADS is under development. It also means that the quantity of firing units and their range yields very little actual coverage. You would need three Patriot firing systems to defend 360° unless you can improvise with a radar on a railway turntable (and the FCS may be unable to cope with that trick).

The Other Chris
February 19, 2015 12:06 pm

CAMM altitude is unannounced, however it’s the missile system delivering the solution to the Future Low-Altitude Air Defence System requirement as the first clue, which includes replacing Sea Wolf.

Sea Wolf has a ceiling of about 10,000′ publicly, so more than that.

ASRAAM on which CAMM is based is meant to be able to operate up to 50,000′ (again publicly) when launched from an aircraft, so less than that.

Aster 15, kinematically superior, supposedly can hit 45,000′ (public) from the surface (Aster 30 Block 1, 1NT and Block 2 can punch exo-thermically).

So pick your altitude between Sea Wolf and Aster 15 from the surface.

Mike W
February 19, 2015 2:44 pm

@SO

“you may be interested in Gudmundsson’s “On air defence” by J.D. Crabtree.”

Many thanks for the recommendation. Rather surprised to read about the limitations of Patriot, though. The trouble with me is I know a little bit about many areas of defence but have no real depth knowledge of any! Cheers!

Chris Werb
Chris Werb
February 21, 2015 9:55 pm

Obsvr. Minor nitpick. Thunderbird 2 was retired in 1977 IIRC. Not mid 60s.

Peter W
Peter W
October 5, 2016 6:50 pm