RN and RFA Ship Annual Running Costs

2-1-4-4-5 HMS Gleaner 1

The figures below show annual running costs for Royal Navy and Royal Fleet Auxiliary ships.

The average annual costs of operating only include those which are directly attributable to the Ship’s Unit Identity Numbers e.g. Personnel Costs, Fuel, Port Visits, Travel & Subsistence etc.

The average annual costs of operating do not include:­

a. Maritime Domain Maintenance Costs

b. Central Allowances- Appointing Drafting and Leave (allowances), Continuity of Education Allowance etc

c. Overheads for common services

d. Support costs for Naval Bases

e. Support costs from other MoD Top Level Budget areas

f. Central costs i.e. IT and Communications

g. Aircraft costs

h. Training and force generation costs

Costs shown are in £ million, per annum, for individual ships or individual ships in the class.

LPD Albion Class 23.975
T45 Daring Class 14.764
RFA Auxiliary Oiler and Replenishment Ship (Fort Victoria) 14.325
LPH Ocean Class 12.345
RFA Solid Support Ship (Fort Austin) 11.776
T23 Duke Class 11.735
RFA Tanker (Wave Class) 9.183
RFA Primary Casualty Receiving Ship, and Aviation Training (Argus) 8.877
RFA Landing Ship Dock Auxiliary (Bay Class) 8.170
Antarctic Patrol Ship (Protector) 7.413
RFA Small Tanker (Black Rover) 7.227
RFA Forward Repair Ship (Diligence) 6.558
RFA Spt Tanker Leaf Class (Orangeleaf) 5.677
ECHO Class 5.460
OCEAN SURVEY Ship (Scott) 4.541
RIVER Class 3.449
SANDOWN Class 3.020
HUNT Class 2.762
GLEANER Coastal Survey Ship 0.555

HMS Gleaner, the cheapest ship in the fleet, who’da thunk it !


Freedom of Information Request, click HERE to read

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63 Responses

  1. Ocean looks very good value until you spot that the aircraft (and presumably their maintainers, operators and stores) are not included!

  2. Will be very tineresting to see what QE comes out as by comparison on the same basis.

  3. What would interesting is is the sum of all the running costs, inc the numbers in each class to see the cost of running the entire RN surface navy ( as subs are not included here).
    The big item apart from sustainment/dockyard costs is of course the one obliquely called Support costs from other top level budget areas, which would the Treasury’s annual financial charge or rent on assets( and the reason for enthusiasm for leasing)

  4. Not sure where to post this, but the Daily Mail is saying that the Comair B737-800 test flights into St Helena airport have highlighted a serious crosswind problem & that scheduled flights will not start, until they figure a safe solution.

  5. Why are the Albions so expensive? Didn’t they top the league table last year as well?

    Do other navies publish this sort of info? If yes then can any comparisons be drawn or do the individual countries’ methodologies for what is and isn’t included in the costs make meaningful comparisons impossible?

  6. @duker

    I believe the leasing scenario was visited some time ago but decided against, once it had been looked into deeply. There are some commercially run vessels that MoD (N) has first call on if required if my memory is correct.

  7. Unsurprisingly, if you plot the complement vs the annual cost, you get a reasonable correlation. There are likely some wrinkles in there related to how many refits have fallen within the time period the cost ahs been calculated from, but cost is largely manpower-centric.

  8. @Dunservin

    There wasn’t any implied criticism there, I was just curious. Ocean, the Bays and the T23s to name just 3 classes all give sterling service as well. I was just wondering what it was specifically regarding the Albions’ nature and/or taskings that might account for them being at the top of the list.

    And ….. Happy birthday Bulwark

  9. I would imagine that when Ocean embarks her full complement of aircraft, crew and maintainers her costs become similar to, if not more than, the Albions. And when those aircraft and crew are ashore their costs don’t go away either, they’re just still not attributed to the ship.

  10. You have to say it does make interesting reading. If you think that a River is only £449k more expensive to run than a Sandown Class, and is a third of the cost of a T23. Makes one think if you could stick a small helicopter on them and a decent short range Anti Air/Anti Ship missile in a box at the front as many other nations do on a 2,000 tonne ship, maybe you have you class “31” there and then. We know the Rivers limitation as built No Permanent Helicopter, Main Gun under sized, No Missiles (surely a Hell-fire of even bolting the US system they are trialing out in the Desert with mixed Sidewinder, GMLRS and other Missiles launched from the same Box) but all those are repairable for very little money. Even if it takes the Rivers to £100m purchase cost at a proper commercial rate.
    If you work on the basis that the 13 T26’s were supposed to be about 13 x £750m = £9.75bn, pay for 10 T26’s allowing £7bn (to give you 4 permanently on Station), gives you £2.75bn / £100m = 27 Rivers !
    As and when needed you can stick 4 20″ Foot containers on the flight deck with Mk41 launchers in them and data-link them to a T26 or T45 or Merlin AEW etc and you have a awful lot of handy Missile Cells to send in to harms way whilst your Capital ships in T26/T45’s stay at arms length.
    Add in the cost of the 13 MCM ships that will need replacing and you start getting back up to decent hull numbers. Yes they would need a T26 say in the North Atlantic on Russian Sub hunting, but with say a group of 4 Rivers providing Helicopter and Sonar Coverage with 2 having Aster15’s in Box’s gives you a lot greater coverage than one T26 on its own. You just have to think outside the box a little, rather than thinking as I see it at the moment which is to equip them with inadequate armament and then say “told you they couldn’t do what a £1bn T26 could do”. Because an 8,000 ton Ship is not a Frigate, its a Cruiser, and too expensive to have more than a handful if that.

  11. Your 20′ ISO container has dimensions of 8′ x 8’6″ x 20′. (breadth, height, length)

    A tactical length Mk41 is (approx.) 8’7″ x 22’2″ x 11’4″.

    Do please explain – use crayons if you must – how four TEU are going to host any Mk41? Let alone why?

  12. And of course if we got all the toys you wanted into that little box, it would be a 8,000 ton cruiser. :)

    And anti-ship missiles do require some serious computing power to generate hits, I doubt without some dedicated computers, you might as well be firing cannonballs.

    I’ll give you an example that I have used here before. Assuming you used one of the Russian ramjet missiles, which are among the fastest in the world, if not the fastest (if you want to use a Harpoon estimate, just divide the speed by 3). At 80km, which is a decent range for a shot, Mach 3 would give you approximately 1 km/sec, which gives a closing time of 80 seconds. A ship at 30 knots is about 55km/h or about 15m/s. This means that if you fired at the target, by the time your missile reached the location, your target would be 80×15= 1,200m away. i.e 1.2km from the point you fired at. This is why dedicated fire control computers and datalinks to the missile is necessary, so that you shoot at where the target is going to be or at least correct your missile’s target location in flight. It’s not as easy as “point and shoot”. From the calculations, you can see that simply “pointing and shooting” would result in you missing by 1.2 kilometers. Which is why bolting on missiles without proper fire control and hoping the missile’s own seekers will do the job is wishful thinking.

    And once you add all those expensive stuff, your cheap ship isn’t looking so cheap any more. Nor light weight for that matter.

  13. Ginge its not the kit that brings the operating cost: its the people. Put enough people on the River Class to do the things you want to do with it and it would end up costing the same to operates as a Frigate while still being less safe and less capable.

    We’ve got decent Destroyers either built or planned. Now lets just build a decent Frigate design and have done.

  14. “And anti-ship missiles do require some serious computing power to generate hits, I doubt without some dedicated computers, you might as well be firing cannonballs”.

    Nah, not really. You give them an aim point which could be radar trace, aircraft report, etc, maybe do something clever with the route planning but nothing that a ten year old laptop couldn’t handle. All the clever stuff is in the weapon itself.

  15. Ginge, if you stuck a bunch of missiles onto a River class vessel, then you’re going to be adding weapons support costs and systems operator costs to the initially cheap patrol vessel costs. The change of mission could also increase the basic running costs, simply by routinely tasking the vessel thousands of miles away rather than in our own backyard.

    You couldn’t reasonably expect the annual cost to remain the same if an enhanced River class was operating as a missile boat in the Gulf or somewhere, rather than as a fisheries patrol vessel off the British Isles.

  16. @NAB

    “Unsurprisingly, if you plot the complement vs the annual cost, you get a reasonable correlation. There are likely some wrinkles in there related to how many refits have fallen within the time period the cost ahs been calculated from, but cost is largely manpower-centric.”

    It is very much scaled as the crew number. But, I guess the number does NOT include the fighting systems maintenance cost (payed to BAE, MBDA, Ultra Electronics, Thales, and so on), do they? So this number does not reflect the “real” running cost, I guess.

    Then, if it is only crew and fuel, T23’s “11.7M”/180 = 65k GBP/person, while River 3.44M/35 = 100k GBP/person. The difference reflects what? Fuel may contribute to some extent.

    But, I guess it also reflects “sea going days”. River OPVs are “at sea” 280-300 days per year, while that of T23 is 150-180 on average, I guess? Rivers shall be “over/double crewed” to keep that sea-going days, while at least 1 T23 in long refit with limited core crew.

    All this is “assumption”. Is it far away or near the reality?

  17. TAS, check the maths. Unless you do some correction, your target is going to be 1.2km away from your radar trace. And that is with Mach 3 missiles, which the Western countries do not have. If you used Harpoon, the target would be 3.6km away from where you aimed your missile. Simply bolting on missiles are no use if you don’t have the fire control to effectively control them.

  18. Obs, seriously? Mate I’m a qualified Principal Warfare Officer and I’m telling you, it’s not that hard. The combat system is not and does not need to be complex – the weapon does all the hard work.

  19. Donald – there are so many (acknowledged) exclusions in that data you can’t actually use it for any useful purpose. So don’t try – it’s just making up numbers with guesswork. What is true is that the higher eth ships complement, the higher the op cost (based on those figures).

    Speaking of making up numbers – putative ASuW scenarios are all well and good, but I’m with TAS – there’s actually very little shipboard fire control involved for the actual intercept. The hard part for OTH engagements is making sure that one doesn’t inadvertently blow some innocent party out of the ‘oggin. But that is largely to do with third-party sensing, tracking and target designation, which doesn’t necessarily require loads of shipboard kit.

  20. TAS, how do you usually compensate for time of flight of the weapon? Is the correction in flight, does the weapon go into a search pattern at the location indicated or is the weapon launched at the estimated position of the target taking into account flight time?

  21. Without getting into detail that shouldn’t be discussed, almost exactly that. Aim-off isn’t hard (basic vector calculation) but without a datalink you can’t achieve mid-course updates. So at long range with a potential time delay between last position and firing, your error is bigger, you need a bigger search pattern and the weapon has to work harder. Add to the mix an increased background shipping density, and the weapon is the one that has to work out what’s a target and what’s not. This is why people talking about how scary Brahmos and Oniks are are over-egging the pudding, because getting a weapon to fly accurately to the most well worked-out and funky aim point in the world is easy. Getting it to hit a target, that’s hard.

  22. NAB/TAS – don’t make it sound too easy or you’ll spark discussion about skeleton-crewed weapons barges and arsenal ships all over again… ;)

  23. Funnily enough, that is one of the trends that has emerged and will be picked up by the complex weapons thread.

    Increasingly stringent interpretation of LOAC and resultant ROE drives the need for smaller and more precise bangs, coupled with data links and positive ID from offboard (or onboard) sensors

    No more lobbing over the horizon at a blip and then letting the missile get on with it, however clever that missile might be

  24. That particular trend emerged at least a decade ago in the maritime arena. One reason why FASGW became one of the longest running programmes known to mankind….

  25. @Observer

    As TAS points out specifics are difficult to discuss but in general terms let us think practicalities.
    You have fired a missile at a target which can have a delta from the original position.
    If you do not have “eyes on” and data link updates the missile had to do some work to find and hit the target without hitting something else or missing.
    So how do we do that?
    Firstly we have to consider what sort of “seeker head” the missile has, are we using radar, TV, IR. Anti radiation etc?
    Then we look at how each system can ID the target and at what range which can also be very dependent on height
    Do we want the missile to fly in high or low? Do we want it to pop up and look at a certain range thus minimising the delta the target may have travelled and refining the solution?
    What is the accuracy of the “seeker heads” ability to ID the correct target?
    How clever is it? Can it loop and attempt to reacquire?
    Is it going to go active at any stage?

    All issues that affect the engagement but all have offload solutions.

    How difficult is it to have a stealthy missile that pops up to x height at y range and compares an IR and Visual silhouette with a database? Then looks at how target is moving in relation to itself ids and calculates an attack profile at low level readjusting when finally visual.

    My brothers masters is in artificial intelligence and he reckons the computing part would be pretty easy.

  26. “My brothers masters is in artificial intelligence and he reckons the computing part would be pretty easy.” – His other brother has been sitting on plans for a practical fusion reactor for 40 years.

  27. @NAB

    “Unsurprisingly, if you plot the complement vs the annual cost, you get a reasonable correlation.” Agree the numbers are to make any real sense of, but interestingly there doesn’t seem to be much difference between RN and RFA crew costs in that case.

  28. Thanks, another question, this time from the receiving end of the missile, how difficult or easy is it for radar to differentiate between objects that are a) stacked in flight, considering that you are using a 2D display screen for a 3D situation and b) one behind the other where the first object is blocking a straight line path from the emitter to the 2nd target?

  29. Well as usual I see the people commenting will not see the point I was trying to make.

    1. I have seen Mk41 Launcher in a Container test fired I think on this website (there are other military websites). Oh we’re 2” out that’s it guys lets give up and go home, thank god you lot were not around in 1939.

    2. Why do you want them in a container ? So you can move them, bolt them down in the space on a River already designed to do that, lift them with the thousand and one container handling cranes, lift trucks etc.

    3. We need loads of people and sensors on a River if you put them on the back deck. no you don’t that’s why I said the “container” would be data linked to another Vessel/Aircraft with the computing power. Thus the River acts as a force multiplier. And nobody onboard would do anything otehr than make sure they are chained down and plugged in.

    4. All the support costs and 100’s of extra people needed on a River would drive the cost up to the same as a T23/T26. No it wouldn’t because the support cost to buy a sealed containerised system would be minimal and you would not need 1 extra Sailor on a River because the system is run off ship.

    5. You increase the running costs sending all around the globe, since those ships are at sea now 300 days a year I can not see how the costs go up, I specifically have said base them overseas and fly the crews in, the RN the only organisation who have never heard of Jet Liners, “we’ve been sailing around the Cape from blighty to deploy ships since before Sail old boy, don’t think we’ll change now” well sorry but change is going to be forced on you

    I could go on but the crayons getting blunt.

    The fact is this was all supposed to be about adding a 2nd frontline string to the River Class, whilst its main role would be relieving the T26/T23/T45’s off any other role other than escorting the Carrier and any Amphibious deployment because that is all you are going to have in number terms, you are getting 6 T45’s (at the moment 5 since one is permanently laid up) and 8 T26’s. That’s it.

    So don’t say “lets get on and build a frigate” because that is what you are doing, you’ve built a AAW Destroy that sits in Portsmouth because the lights go out, you’ve designed a Frigate that is replacing a Vessel doing exactly its job at 4,000 tons with an 8,000 ton monster that costs £1bn or 4 times the original amount of money you were given. Astute overpriced, under performing and late. The T31 now being talked of as 1,000 tons heavier than a River, with an extra 20 metres space that is going to cost £300m or 5 to 6 times the cost of a River. When was the last time we built any warship on time and within budget ?

    As to you Crayons comment that about sums it up, the attitude in the defence community that is insular, we know best, don’t change anything, don’t think, group think that leads to failure after failure. If you were in private business instead of government you’d be bankrupt very quickly. Am I saying my idea is perfect, nope I asked for reasoned debate not insults.

    The fact is as the guy who pays for your toys and the guy who has to work getting people elected who might be sympathetic to the Armed forces, I however having now followed some of these debates on various websites am rapidly coming to the conclusion that maybe the “lets not bother we only ever waste money on defense as long as we have some Shoreline defensive weapons why do we need to be sailing around the world” have it right, because every other part of the Government including the NHS, Prisons, Local Government are thinking of new ways of saving money, whilst you lot sit and lament you can’t have a 40 Frigate/Destroyer fleet at £1bn a pop.

    Get real, we all now that 5 T45’s and 8 probably end up with 6 T26’s are not enough for the commitments being made, but I see nowhere in this whole chain of debate where anybody thinks about how to build something for less than £1bn, no we go off on a debate about how you can data link to a missile and provide detailed over the horizon targeting. Well sorry guys but if you go on as you are, there won’t be any missile because we can not afford the boats to fire them.

  30. So Ginge.

    Do explain how rather than being a couple of inches out, you managed to completely miss that the height of a Mk41 tactical length launcher is well over 6m – as opposed to a standard container that’s around 2.5m in height. I suppose that really is thinking outside the box……

    Some of us do work for private companies and here’s a hint – walk through the door with logic skills like yours and you’ll be walking straight out again. Looking up the dimensions of a Mk41 is relatively straightforward. As is looking up those for an ISO container. If you can’t even get that right, don’t start crying when your credibility is questioned.

  31. And as for the rant about every other department thinking about new ways of saving money – you clearly haven’t been around defence circles very long. The last twenty years and beyond have been a continuous climate of “do more (or the same if you’re lucky) with less”, while complying with every new “initiative” and fluffy trend that politicians think can be applied without additional cost.

  32. To be fair NAB, you could use a missile erector in an ISO container, the technology is hardly sci-fi.

    Not looked at the dimensions and arcs but don’t imagine it would be all that a mechanical engineering challenge, accepting there is more to it that the mechanical issues


    TaS, forgot about that one

  33. One constraint with VLS systems, however. More and more we are seeing elements of the design optimised for vertical handling and stowage, which means lying the launcher down could actually damage the missile (bending it where it’s not supported). Associated constraints therefore include an inability to fly reloads overseas, as you can’t stand a 6.5m high launcher up in most (any?) cargo aircraft.

  34. Errr, so not a Mk41 then. A completely new development.

    You take a vertical missile launcher – key word “vertical” – purpose of which is to provide missiles at very high readiness to fire and which is designed and engineered to support and protect same. Then, because clearly high readiness to fire and safety/protection of high explosive and rocket propellant materials is of limited importance compared to fitting missiles horizontally in an ISO container, you re-engineer the entire system – including the exhaust vent etc, so you can get four cells in an ISO box. So you can fit it on an inappropriate platform.

    You container-porn people need some therapy.

  35. Burn the witch

    To be fair, I don’t think trying to squeeze a Mk41 into a container is that good an idea because of the mains services it requires, but there is mileage in using the ISO form factor and dimensions for missiles that are normally self contained/sealed and not vertically launched, or at least those that are moved to the vertical, like CAMM for example, or GMLRS, or NSM. Plenty of examples of box/rail launchers out there, putting them inside the bounding dimensions of an ISO container just makes handling easier, the reason why the world is moved by container I suppose. As Ginge says, this would be an expedient solution, short term

    Also, the protection and stowage is provided by the missiles case that is loaded into the VLS, as well as the VLS. Missiles (whether vertically launched or not) cases are not routinely stored in the vertical, nor are they transported by road, rail, sea and air in the vertical either.

    Interestingly, containerisation also opens up resupply by air options, as TAS alluded to.

    Options and trade offs, options and trade offs :)

    Whilst understanding the wider issues, I honestly think there is more to this approach, even if for limited circumstances and applications

  36. The LPD cost could be higher for many reasons. Travel is a big budget item. Flights for the Amphib battle staff or an RM contingent when carried will go against the ship. The AGRM will also be billed against the ship’s costs as part of the ships company.
    With only 2 ships and one of those being in Refit/extended maintenance, the additional costs for sending people on training courses also become a factor. It was great planning to have the majority of the RN schools in Pompie and the 2 LPDs in Guz .
    Oh and happy birthday Bulwark…old ships and one of the best I served on.

  37. “Also, the protection and stowage is provided by the missiles case, not the VLS.”

    Au contraire Beelzebub! It actually depends on what type of protection you’re talking about. What TAS is actually alluding to is that while the missile canister provides environmental and sometimes RATTAM protection, they do not always provide protection against structural loading and shock among other things.

    Which is why pretty much all UK VL weapons employ some form of logistics container which allows robust handling, stacking and transport in munitions depots, barges and in transport between same – including air movement. Those logistics containers are (rightly or wrongly) nothing like ISO dimensions (or even multiples thereof). Lots of info for those able to in the relevant SHIM/SEXSSI and RASS.

    Other weapons (and launch canisters) employ different philosophies (the US canisters for Mk41 are also the transport cans as I understand it. However, balancing the design characteristics of the missile between weight / seeker dimensions / manoeuvrability / energetics / warhead size and type is difficult enough, without artificially constraining it to ISO dimensions, just because some people have a container fetish.

  38. Nice to see a discussion on the merits of subsonic v supersonic missiles.
    TAS is spot on. The weapon systems do most of the work nowadays. For SSGW you still have to factor in allowances for the search basket , target speed , direction of travel etc but most of it is straight forward.
    Planning a multi- missile multi-axis Harpoon engagement is interesting if you have never done it before.

  39. NaB, I edited the bit you quoted pretty much as soon as I wrote it, sorry, yes, agree.

    So my point is that it is a combination of missile transport/stowage case and VLS that provides long term protection. The principle of looking at containerisation is that you do the same, case and ISO container provide relevant and appropriate protection. You move the container AND missile case as a unit load.

    I don’t think you would try and constrain any existing design to container dimensions, you would have to work with what you have, that was Ginges point I think, not to overcomplicate things that don’t need to be overcomplicated.

    It is all a compromise

  40. “I don’t think you would try and constrain any existing design to container dimensions”

    Well clearly not – it’s an existing design! By definition if it doesn’t fit it doesn’t fit!

    For a clean sheet of paper design, I have to say that fitting in an ISO box is going to be a distant fourth or fifth choice in priority to performance / payload / lethality aspects. Rocket science is supposed to be difficult, we don’t have to add to that!

    “you would have to work with what you have, that was Ginges point I think, not to overcomplicate things that don’t need to be overcomplicated”

    No – Ginge’s point was an unfortunate conflation of some random operating costs and some ill-researched ideas about well established kit as an attempt to magically solve a complex problem. Working with what we have does not involve magicking up new versions of existing kit just like that.

  41. Random question prompted by all this talk of containers and horizontal vs vertical carriage/launching….

    I assume carriage is horizontal but out of interest, and if it isn’t classified, at roughly what angle does Astute launch a Tomahawk? Does everyone have to hang on for dear life as the boat angles herself to 45 degrees or thereabouts for launch or is it a less severe launch angle?

  42. Tomahawk is squirted out of a torpedo tube and then in a magical series of balletic manoeuvres, rises to the surface and blasts off :)

  43. @TD and fisher folk you lost me at “Maritime Domain Maintenance Costs” I assume this goes beyond the RN Public Relations Website. As it is the first exclusion it sounds important, and I hope less contentious than the fantasy fleet discussions.

  44. So…

    Are we putting a Mk41-esque VLS on the Rivers or not?

    Are we going to embark a Wildcat to zoom up to 3000m, press a button, send a signal to the ship to launch the AShM and then guide it to the target that it can see from way outside of SAM range using Link16 or CEC?

    We need a hangar on the Rivers.

    We also need some fuel, maintenance engineers and spares for the Wildcat.

    Where do we put this containerised VLS?
    Do we stretch the River a bit and shove it behind the gun?
    Do we just dig a hole in the hull for it in the first place?

    I like the sound if this :-)

  45. If you guys are using Harpoons, why bother with a container since those things come with their own tube that you use as a launch tube /container in the first place?

    And any takers for the radar question?

    I think the reason why I thought flight time to target was a problem was because some people were arguing about the utility of the US’s LCS speed and I think one of the arguments was that the extra speed would allow the ship to get out of the “seeker basket” of the missile by the time the missile reached the target location. Guess it isn’t going to happen from what the users here say.

  46. “No more lobbing over the horizon at a blip and then letting the missile get on with it, however clever that missile might be.”

    So it’s okay for the enemy to do this but we have to “be British” and play fair? We need weapons for stringent ROE skirmishes and weapons for all-out war, otherwise there’s little point in “defence” because it can’t actually “defend” against yesteryear technologies en masse.

    I still prefer the 200nm exclusion zone and blat anything that isn’t ours policy.

  47. Missiles don’t need to be vertical launched, its just happens to be the western standard these days.

    We could have an ISO container that houses a horizontal cold launcher, similar to the Russians, no space issues there;

  48. shark, to be more precise, it’s TLAM/TASM (Tomahawk Land Attack Missile/Tomahawk Anti-Ship Missile)/LRASM standard if you are talking about “Western” weapons, there are a lot more anti-ship missiles than the Tomahawk, LRASM and the SCALP-N if you are talking about the West, like the Sea Skua, Penguin, Harpoon, Exocet etc, so it’s hard to say vertical launching anti-ship missiles is “standard” since it’s still about 50/50.

  49. @Observer

    Radar: Khareef sports a SMART-S. Artisan is in the same class and lighter I think. No reason to think we’d go with anything else for GPFF whether it’s the BAE 111, Venator 110 or a T26 GP.

  50. TOC, that was not the question.

    The question was “Is there a problem differentiating targets that are “stacked” on each other considering that you are using a 2D display (top down) to display a 3D situation”. And the related “How hard is it to differentiate and acquire a target that is behind another target considering that radar (i.e radiation) works in straight lines?” not “What brand of radar are they using”.

  51. Obs, think about what you’re asking. You are not operating in a 2-D environment; a missile is not at sea level but elevated, so radar energy is not ‘blocked’ by a ship for any meaningful distance. Yes, two radar contacts may ‘merge’ if they are very close together, but if you sit at altitude and look down you can see past things.

  52. Apologies Observer, cross confusion from another thread!

    I’d better go and get a coffee…

  53. TAS, not talking about ship blocking but two missiles fired closely together and about the way the results are displayed since you are using a 2D display (flat screen?) to display a 3D result. If there are 2 objects, one above the other, how is the difference displayed on a monitor?

    And I guess that answers the “one behind the other” question, grab some altitude and look down.

  54. Isn’t the showing 3D stacks on a 2D screen simply a question about the user interface on the combat system? You see this sort of issue solved all the time on internet web sites for property listing, hotel booking etc. On map view if there are multiple properties very close together one typically sees a single marker on the map and either needs to zoom in to differentiate the contacts (not applicable in this context since no amount of zooming in would separate a perfect 3D stack on a 2D display), or hover the mouse to see that the marker on the map actually references number of individual properties that are collectively identified by that single marker on the map. My guess is that something like the later might be used on a combat management system whereby a single marker is used but there is some way for the operator to view/select the individual stacked targets referenced by that single marker.

    I definitely have no knowledge or expertise whatsoever in this area but offer the above in the hope that it might explain what I think Obs is asking so that people who do know what they are talking about might be able to offer an answer.

    Obs – have I understood your question?

  55. Ah, yes, that was what I meant, thanks Julian. So the problem can be solved by a stacking of selectable results. Didn’t occur to me, blind spot. Thanks!

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