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Thread: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of Ukraine

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    conon394's Avatar hoi polloi
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    Default Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of Ukraine

    Well all the military hardware threads have dropped off the map or were too specific, and with Putin making everyone think about a new European war I though it be worth highlighting some interesting procurement and hardware news...

    The F22 appears to be fixed and not all that difficult once the Air Farce admitted it really was suffocating its pilots:

    http://www.defensenews.com/article/2...yssey=nav|head

    So I suppose this means the US can now send some to Poland w/o having Russian pilots make choking sound jokes?

    -------------

    This next story might have been mentioned already and it it is groan inspiring especially for me as a American liberal since it is an unfortunate example of the worst kind of government lunacy and ineffective operation.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/politi...528_story.html
    http://apps.washingtonpost.com/g/pag...amouflage/140/
    http://theweek.com/article/index/238...he-us-military

    So in short a decade ago the USMC spent about 300,000 dollars and developed a family of apparently effective new camouflage battle uniforms. Fine, but of course it neither shared them with the rest of the US military or was even asked to. Instead the other 3 branches proceeded to spend what looks like maybe 30 million dollars to produce useless, ineffective or pointless new camo uniforms often for no apparent reason at all. For example read the articles why the Navy need blue camo for sailors on ships is beyond comprehension. Even worse read this quote from one of the links:

    "“They were not designed to hide anybody. They were designed to look cool,” said O’Neill, the West Point camouflage expert, giving his outside appraisal of the Air Force design. “It’s what we call ‘CDI Factor.’ Which is, ‘Chicks dig it.’ ”

    Really! I am sorry I lived in Texas and saw tons of soldiers in their various camo outfits and none of them are cool w/o all your gear. What is cool is a good dress uniform. Thus my 5th grade daughter never remarked on any of them but seeing a young marine in his dress blues - part of wedding party gushed 'he is so hansom'

    --------------

    Apparently war can rattle some logic into the Pentagon once in a while:

    The army will allow its troops to once again a light, effective and proven weapon that can compete with the RPG in range and effectiveness they needed by returning the Carl Gustaf to service

    http://www.saabgroup.com/en/About-Sa.../#.U0k7mlcZpuY

    Surprisingly the Army's solution was not just to waste the rather vastly more expensive Javelins on the problem, and even more amazingly the the US first dug up old crap in storage from Vietnam:

    http://www.clarksvilleonline.com/201...apons-arsenal/

    Similarly the Danes seem to have decided they to up gun the squad machine gun a bit after Afghanistan:

    http://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/2...0e6-7-62-gpmg/

    --------------

    The past thread on South Africa and its not being able to even keep its handful Gripen's in the air would appear to indicative of Africa's biggest economy really having a huge gap between its political aspirations and what its paying for. The new 2014 defense review is out and it it does not paint a rosy picture:

    "The Defense Force is in a critical state of decline, characterized by: force imbalance between capabilities; block
    obsolescence and unaffordability of many of its main operating systems; a disproportionate tooth-to-tail ratio; the inability to
    meet current standing defense commitments; and the lack of critical mobility. The current balance of expenditure between
    personnel, operating and capital is both severely disjointed and institutionally crippling.

    Left unchecked, and at present funding levels, this decline will severely compromise and further fragment the defense
    capability. It is clear that certain defense capabilities, if not addressed now, will be lost in the very near future. The longer this
    prevails, the greater the effort, time and cost will be to restore the Defense Force"


    http://www.sadefencereview2012.org/p...blications.htm

    --------------

    The US navy wants to get rid of a perfectly good capital ship to help save a perfectly awful one in the LCS

    http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-336

    --------------

    I really hope Poland builds this Tank

    http://gas2.org/2014/03/30/meet-pl-0...oland-w-video/

    The Russian media calls it PR stunt but Poland is dropping a pile load money into its defense budget... unlike most of NATO.

    ---------------

    Looks like the F-35 is loosing some Italian support.

    http://uk.reuters.com/article/2014/0...A2G0A120140317


    So any thoughts, and desire for some random military discussion?
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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    More threads like this would make the Mudpit a better place! A nice breadth of news from various places: I never knew the South African Armed Forces were in such a bad state.

    The UK has a major defence review scheduled for next year. I hope they don't further reduce the Armed Forces at a time when Europe is considerably less secure than it was in 2010, with Putin growing bolder and the US growing more interested in China and Asia than in Russia and Europe, but I don't think any major political party is prepared to increase the defence budget. Maybe the economic situation by next year will make it more appealing. At the bare minimum the Royal Navy needs to be beefed up.

    I've heard very bad things about the LCS. They cost huge amounts of money, are plagued by survivability and interchangeable mission package issues, and yet are planned to be a major replacement to a significant portion of the USN's combat vessels over the coming decades. Seems to be a huge mistake on their part from what I've read.

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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    Carl Gustav is a gift that keeps on giving. This is why i buy Ikea furniture and i'm looking for a hybrid Saab.




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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    Quote Originally Posted by conon394 View Post

    I really hope Poland builds this Tank

    http://gas2.org/2014/03/30/meet-pl-0...oland-w-video/

    The Russian media calls it PR stunt but Poland is dropping a pile load money into its defense budget... unlike most of NATO.
    Polandtank and Polandball are very dissimilar.

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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    Putin making everyone think about a new European war
    If only Goebbels had trained the parrot on his shoulder like DC trained to make people parrot on their own.

    Last edited by Thorn777; April 14, 2014 at 05:58 AM.
    Quote Originally Posted by snuggans View Post
    we can safely say that a % of those 130 were Houthi/Iranian militants that needed to be stopped unfortunately

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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    Another interesting piece of news is that both Boeing and Selex are digging into the Stealth abilities of the F-35.

    Page 4 and 5 in this document from Boeing is essentially an all out attack on the F-35 stating that it is great against X-band radar but nothing else.

    Selex is producing the IRST and Aesa radar of both the Eurofighter and Gripen.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ares on defense
    Full article
    New sensors being developed for the JAS 39E and close to starting flight tests on the JAS 39-7 Gripen Demo testbed will be able to detect low-radar-cross-section (RCS) targets, and will provide the pilots in a Gripen formation with a new level of situational awareness, according to Bob Mason, Selex-ES marketing director for advanced sensors.


    The JAS 39E will have three Selex-ES sensors. The Raven ES-05 active, electronically scanned array radar (AESA), developed by the company's Edinburgh unit, will be the first production AESA to be mounted on a “repositioner,” a rotating mount that gives the radar a ±100-deg. field of view around the nose. The Skyward-G infrared search and track (IRST) system (from Nebbiano, Italy) is based on experience with the Eurofighter Typhoon's Pirate IRST and Selex-developed land- and sea-based IRSTs. The fighter also has a new identification friend-or-foe (IFF) system with three electronically steerable antenna arrays, which matches the radar's range and field of view.


    The three main sensors will cue one another automatically to display to pilots a fused picture of airspace around the fighter; it will also be fused with the JAS's new electronic-warfare system. Finally, sensor data can be shared between Gripens in a flight via data link.


    The IRST is capable of detecting low-RCS targets at distances compatible with a beyond-visual-range missile launch, Mason says. “We have seen them,” he responds when asked if Selex IRSTs have tracked low-RCS targets. “We are looking at very small delta-Ts [temperature differences between the target and the background]. Some infrared absorbent paints cause more friction than standard surfaces, and that causes kinetic heating that the IRST will pick up.” Skyward-G does not depend on a supersonic target—“skin heating at 300-400 knots is significant”—and detects heat radiating through the aircraft's skin from the engine, as well as skin friction and the exhaust plume.


    The IRST uses a long-wave focal plane array sensor (a dual-band system, adding mid-wave capability, is a potential upgrade) with three fields of view. In its long-range search mode, the system is an IR telescope with a fast-moving scanning mirror (located in a transparent dome in front of the windshield) and “step-scans” through its search sector. It also has a single-target track mode, and in wide-field mode it provides a night-vision image on the head-up display. As a passive system, IRST does not have inherent range data, but it can perform “kinetic ranging”—the aircraft performs a weaving maneuver and the range is determined by the change in azimuth angle to the target—or the IRSTs on two aircraft can triangulate the target over the TAU-Link.


    IRST hardware—the optics, detector and processor—has been improved since the development of Pirate started, but (according to Mason and other industry sources) the most important change has been the development of algorithms, based on operational experience and the analysis of real-world imagery, that look at IR signatures in detail, including variations of color and brightness within the target, in order to filter out false alarms caused by everything from birds to barbecue grills.


    The IRST can give the radar a very accurate azimuth and elevation to the target, which allows it to focus its energy and increase the probability of achieving detection and track on a low-RCS target, Mason says. The AESA provides virtually instantaneous beam-steering within its ±70-deg. scan, but the repositioner is slower. One concept to be demonstrated will be the use of two Gripen radars and the TAU-Link to provide a wide-angle picture to both targets.
    Quote Originally Posted by conon394 View Post
    I really hope Poland builds this Tank

    http://gas2.org/2014/03/30/meet-pl-0...oland-w-video/

    The Russian media calls it PR stunt but Poland is dropping a pile load money into its defense budget... unlike most of NATO.
    There is a longer article here. Apparently it is based on the Swedish CV90-120 that Hägglunds/BAE developed as a light tank built on the chassi of the CV-90 (a highly successful IFV).

    So it won't be exceptionally fast and it won't be survivable in a head to head fight with a proper MBT. But it should be cheap, small and mobile.

    A picture of how the tank looked before the stealth additives.





    Quote Originally Posted by Heinz Guderian View Post
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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane





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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    Aren't those sensors on those tanks way too much in the open?

    They might be building it for a new C&C game though.
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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    Quote Originally Posted by Setekh View Post
    They might be building it for a new C&C game though.
    Either that or the man pictured takes Cosplay very seriously.
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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    Quote Originally Posted by Phier View Post




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    ****ing hell




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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    First Thanks Poach and thank you all for some discussion

    Mentioning the RN

    Here is another question for debate - I don't really get the Type 45/Horizon type destroyers vs new Arleigh Burkes.

    -----

    About the same Gun load (no Zumwalt here and not cruisers). The UK and US go with a one (more heavy) gun and French and Italians with only a 76 mm but more. After that about the same and the overall result looks effectively the same. At best I would say the UK/US approach prioritizes fire support vs AA defense but if you read through all the ammo packages and such it looks like you mostly achieve pretty much the same with either gun load - if you have the right one with the right ammo.

    About the same Helicopter capacity and flexibility

    About the same potential torpedo tube capacity - the ABs come with the most and the UK with none, the French and Italian in the middle

    Overall I grant the EU/UK ship as cleaner more modern lines over the AB, but I imagine the new ABs will improve (The Japanese Kongo class looks more 'clean') but I think the newer European design might always have the edge here - how much is that worth. The Ab and Kongo both a a lot more crew vs the newer European design. I have no basis to judge that except I assume the Europeans have more spacious berths and lower day over day cost but might have damage control issues.

    I assume all of these ships incorporate the lessons of Falklands war and the odd missile attack since and are similarly robust. Which means I have found no news suggesting any of them are flimsy (like the LCS) or armored and reinforced in any unusual manner

    So far then large destroyers with pretty much the similar secondary abilities, but then we get to the the heart of the matter they are all called guided missile destroyers and here is where I am not seeing what the UK/France and Italy are paying for...

    On balance a rather large EU wide class of what 10 ships, expensive at around ~1.5 billion per ship from what I can tell but they seem to fall well short of what the US is getting it for its ~1.8/9 Billion dollars for a new Arleigh Burkes when it comes to actually being a big expensive guided missile capital ship.

    Specifically the the issue I see (and will stand correction on) is a vastly more limiting VLS system and number of tubes used by Europe vs the US is one that would make me unhappy were I a sailor on the brine or a tax payer. Here is the military techno gobbly gook: Europe paid for the PAAMAs air defense system, and 48 Sylver (apparently the math I have found seems to say 15 and 30 missiles but that does not add up 48 so I can't say what is in the 3 mystery tubes) single specific VLS tubes. Which translates into 48 AA missiles either the short range 30 km range Aster-15s or the 120 km range Aster-30s. In addition there is generally a bolt on of 2x quad mounts of Exocets or their equivalent (depending on navy). 56 missiles of which only 30 typically look to be long range fleet defense AA/Anti Missile tools and 8 anti ship missiles and 15 short range Air defense missiles.

    By comparison the AB has 90 Mk 41 VLS which look to be much more flexible: RIM standard (various), ESSM quad packs, ASROC, Tomahawk, etc. Which leads me to conclude the AB can carry 48 ESSM in quad packs (exceeding the the Aster 15 and ~what 75% as effective of Aster 30), 48 of the the latest RIM standards which exceed the Aster 30 and still have 30 free vertical launch tubes. That is the AB can basically double the AA capacity of the Type 45/Horizon ships and retain 30 free VLS cells to only 8 dedicated anti ship missiles on the Type 45/Horizon [well really assuming 48 ESSMs and the AB need only have 30 RIMs so that really leaves 48 tubes while still exceeding the AA capacity of the Horizon type]. I should note the since the AB used to carry 2 quad boxes of Harpoons those 8 anti ship missiles don't look impressive and looks more like an after market bolt on kind of thing.

    Questions then:

    Is the US simply getting the benefit of building and using the Mk 41 VLS and its missiles and associated Radar etc in so many ships classes and allied sales that its just affordable now compared to the PAAMA/Sylver system due to volume. Are the UK, France and Italy just paying through the nose In order to retain local production? If so why pay for what looks like a limited system - in for a dime, be in for a dollar. Where is anti sub, land attack or light weight quad pack option(s)? Or is the PAAMA and Aster a known better option than the ESSM and RIM variants? Do navies have international tests and competitions so that people might have a gleaning of light on which to make a rational choice? Since the US is willing to still spend a huge chunk of change on CVs and as such the USN can likely justify CV aircraft as its primary strike arm, but the same is not true of the UK, France or Italy - who between them and the with the whole EU as well cannot and will not seemingly have the CV based power the USA has even with a similar GDP. Given that why are some of the largest capital ships of the largest economies in Europe so mission specific and apparently lack flexibility?
    Last edited by conon394; April 14, 2014 at 02:40 PM.
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    Knight_Of_Ne's Avatar Miles
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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    I think the big difference is designed role, as far as I know (correct me if I am wrong please?) the Arleigh Burkes were designed as all in one multirole vessels, whilst in the UK the Type 45 is specifically developed for AA primarily and the frigate arm is meant for ASW. Obviously both are meant to be capable of other roles but their primary role is what defines them and what they are supposed to be best at. This however is naturally not helped by budget cuts which result in reduced flexibility as less vital roles are cut or reduced to save money and time.

    There is of course the economy of numbers you mentioned, the USN will always get these sort of systems cheaper simply because they buy them in vastly superior numbers to other navies.

    Honestly, I think most countries naval doctrine is limited by budget which is something that to be honest the USN need not worry about, and that the difference between the Arleigh Burke and other similar vessels is that the USN can afford a multirole vessel armed with the best equipment available and other navies can't hence a more specialised and inflexible vessel.

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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    @Conon Knight of Ne rather hit the nail on the head here my friend- it's very difficult to compare the Type 45 to the AB since the Type 45 is an almost pure designed anti-air platform- and in this capacity it actually far out ranges in terms of it's 'umbrella'.

    Some stats for it:
    http://www.naval-technology.com/projects/horizon/

    So in an anti air capacity the argument could be made it beats the Burke... of course then in terms of cost, actual worth (their are only 6 Type 45's) and multi-rolling we see it far outstripped. For instance while the Type 45's could potentially load and use tomohawk missiles...none are actually fitted, and it's doubtful they ever will be unless their the sole ships left in operation.

    http://www.thinkdefence.co.uk/2013/0...5-and-harpoon/

    For instance here we see that the Type 45 doesn't actually come equipped normally with asw missiles, and it's only recently their getting their role broadened out.

    Under the Freedom of information act can you tell me if some, or all of the type 45 Destroyers, now in service are to be fitted with weapons from recently retired type 22 block 3 hulls in the near future? Namely, Harpoon and anti-submarine torpedo tubes.
    Your request is being dealt with under the terms of the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act.
    I can confirm that the MOD does hold information within the scope of your request and a summary of this recorded information is provided below.
    Harpoon will be fitted to four of the six Type 45 Destroyers.
    The fit will utilise redundant equipment from the de-commissioned Type 22 Batch 3 Frigates and, in addition, new equipment has been procured to allow integration into the Type 45 vessels.
    Currently there are no plans to fit anti-submarine torpedo tubes in the Type 45 Destroyer.
    So i'd perhaps say calling them 'guided missile destroyers' is more a wishful hope from the RN. Anti-air would be far better a term.
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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    As far as the Royal Navy's combatant renewal plans go....

    Type 45 Destroyer: AA. 6 of them.

    Type 26 Frigate: General service/anti-ship/ They're going for some modularity here. Assumed that 13 will be built, none started yet.

    Black-Swan Sloop: Rumour/Planning notes made public suggest they're considering a class of 30-40 3,000 tonne ships built for total modularity (along the Danish StanFlex style lines) replacing all the smaller ships like Minesweepers, Hydrographic ships and patrol ships, the idea being a large single class will be cheaper to build per unit (£65 million each) and, being modular, can simply be altered to fit whatever tasks are required. I've heard chat the 'unofficial' idea is to let the big ships (T26/45s) focus on more important stuff while these little ships do stuff like the Falklands, Gibraltar, anti-piracy, and so on. With 40 ships to throw around that can be equipped for an array of tasks it'll make the fleet more versatile. So the plan goes...

    Astute Class Submarines: Hunter-killers, 7 replacing the 7 Trafalgar Class. 2 built, 4 under construction, 1 more confirmed by contract.

    QE class carriers: Fleet carriers. 2, maybe only 1 operational.

    Pretty much all of this except T45s and Astutes (as they're all built/being built) are subject to the 2015 SDSR. Economy is getting a bit better, Russia is getting a bit more aggressive: we all hope Labour don't introduce yet more cuts to an already much reduced RN.

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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    Read last night that some guys in Italy have built a working photonic radar and have tested it at an airport.

    Early days yet for the technology but it could prove interesting to see how it develops.


    As for the glorious Senior Service.... quite apart from what's on their shopping list, they're having problems with personnel retention in the marine engineering branch.


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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    Light/medium tanks - definitely have a niche, but likely they have to wait a generation until the arsenals are cleared of legacy MBTs.

    It all, including the naval platforms, comes down to costs and personnel crunch. Steel, as many like to reiterate is cheap (relatively), but the electronics, weapons and midlife refurbishments aren't. If outfitting the platform is the most expensive aspect, then the temptation is to make it more survivable, which considering the declining number of naval platforms, seems like a good idea.

    That is ...


    LCS - Is an interesting bet, and seen from a wargaming POV, maybe justified.

    Likely, they'll continuously improve the hull, and ship them off to less strategic and low risk environments, like the Arabian Gulf, maybe even keeping an eye on the Russians.

    Again from my wargaming POV, you can militarize a civilian ship to save on costs, but actual military hulls shouldn't be compromised without clearly understanding the advantages and disadvantages they bring with them.
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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    Black-Swan Sloop: Rumour/Planning notes made public suggest they're considering a class of 30-40 3,000 tonne ships built for total modularity (along the Danish StanFlex style lines) replacing all the smaller ships like Minesweepers, Hydrographic ships and patrol ships, the idea being a large single class will be cheaper to build per unit (£65 million each) and, being modular, can simply be altered to fit whatever tasks are required. I've heard chat the 'unofficial' idea is to let the big ships (T26/45s) focus on more important stuff while these little ships do stuff like the Falklands, Gibraltar, anti-piracy, and so on. With 40 ships to throw around that can be equipped for an array of tasks it'll make the fleet more versatile. So the plan goes...
    Considering the unmitigated failure of the modular thingy for the LCS I have doubts it can really be implemented or even should I think its a mistaken concept that only really looks good on paper in some staff meeting with industry reps and a shiny happy power point hand job.
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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    Quote Originally Posted by conon394 View Post
    Considering the unmitigated failure of the modular thingy for the LCS I have doubts it can really be implemented or even should I think its a mistaken concept that only really looks good on paper in some staff meeting with industry reps and a shiny happy power point hand job.
    I think a modular design may work. But switching modules on an active ship really doesn't seem to be worth the maintenance issues.

    So I think a modular design where the basic hull is the same between different ship types could work, bu extending it beyond that is foolhardy.

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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    Nice to see that someone is taking vehicle stealth seriously. I remember when the technology was first being showed off. British if I recall.

    Absorbs radar, masks heat signatures, is black... I'm going to guess at night you'll hear it before you see it.

    Of course during the day time its going to rely on smoke like everything else, but overall a good protection. Of course once it's detected its probably going to get torn a new one by AT but its not like that isn't the case for pretty much any vehicle these days.
    Last edited by Col. Tartleton; April 16, 2014 at 10:26 AM.
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    Default Re: Some unrelated recent military procurment storiess since I am getting bored of the Ukrane

    Quote Originally Posted by conon394 View Post
    Considering the unmitigated failure of the modular thingy for the LCS I have doubts it can really be implemented or even should I think its a mistaken concept that only really looks good on paper in some staff meeting with industry reps and a shiny happy power point hand job.
    Denmark's StanFlex system is very successful, by contrast. The LCS certainly shows that a module-based approach can​ become a total and very expensive failure, which is something the RN will surely be looking at in detail.

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