Thursday, August 02, 2012

HMS Daring.

The HMS Daring just got back from its first deployment and by all appearances it was quite successful.  But a couple of questions hang out in the ether for me...

Is the Daring the most advanced anti-air destroyer in the world?  By everything I've read (even knocking off a 10% embellishment fee) it is.  Nicely done by whatever design shop did it.  Next, I love the concept of independent operations by warships...but when they do integrate with allied navies why do they always aim to link up with Carrier Battle Groups?  The capabilities that these ships bring would be most useful (especially when I think about the US and the UK teaming up) to Amphibious Ready Groups.  The HMS Daring could almost provide anti-air coverage for almost all engagements up to full fledged warfare against a peer competitor.  An example would be a joint US-UK intervention into Syria.  One Daring class destroyer could protect a combined amphibious group all by its lonesome.

I really like this ship.


  1. I know there always the jingoistic national pride thing that assumes one piece of kit is automatically the best but from conversations with various people I think the Type 45 (BAE by the way) is.

    Don't forget, the underlying requirements/specification was driven by actual combat experience of the Type 42 in 1982

  2. hey TD. trust me. i'm the king of jingoism so when i say that it appears that the TYPE 45 is probably the best anti-air ship in the world, its done with a bit of homecooking for the Burke class built in. the '45 is just a better, more modern design...even its launch tubes are superior and are built for larger more capable missiles to be integrated over its service life. the design also makes it possible to peek just a bit further over the horizon and the small boat threat is dealt with in an integrated way from the hull up. yeah. right now, today, cost not being a factor its the best top end destroyer floating.

  3. Nice ship, but er, what about putting some weapons on her?

    So far she's got her anti-air suite, a medium calibre gun, anti-sub torpedos and small arms...

    How about putting Harpoon ASM on her at least? She's "provisioned" for them and the UK has Harpoon missiles in her inventory...

    If her role is to protect task groups, then what about giving her a basic capability to engage other surface combatants, who will be firing the very ASM's at the fleet, she is protecting?

    And if she is supporting the Royal Marines, what about a precision guided round for her main gun?

  4. a shake down cruise that entailed action off Africa, exercises with US carriers and basically sailing around the world.

    i think they did quite nicely. additionally while i like precision rounds, the gun its provisioned with it is remarkably accurate out the box...i truly believe this hyper accuracy nonsense is going to go away...and if you're talking about not having harpoons then i think we're talking past each other on what we think its proper capabilities should be. as an air defense ship i want it fighting what i consider the biggest threat anti-ship missiles, and aircraft. if its defending an amphib or carrier group assets are available on other ships to sink ships carrying anti-ship missiles...heck Harriers or F-35's or F-18's can get out there and do that job.

    you can punch holes in her but its more capable than any other anti-air ship out there. you just have to use it and fight it right.

    1. The best way to stop a missile from comming is still to kill the missile carrier, be it a ship or a plane. And if you use your AA unit as point for the formation, or alone on your flank to prevent a threat, you may want to have some harpoon or exocet or other ASM onboard to send the 3 OSA or chinese or iranian equivalent coming down your throat...

    2. if you're talking about a layered defense then your subs will kill those ships before they get to launch range...if the subs miss then your aircraft will kill it...if your aircraft miss then your helos should get it and if they all miss then screw the ship i want the missile dead.

      no one fights alone. we need to look at task forces as task forces instead of setting up each ship to fight by itself.

    3. Well it might be the case that, in fact, you are fighting alone in your little square of sea : if your AA ship is to act as an isolated picket near the coast to provide early warning to a task force without long range airborne radar coverage (say, british ships fighting alone in the Falklands without radar helicopters, E-3 or E-2), with your subs looking for the ennemy big guys, you could get in a nasty situation if you don't have a few ASM onboard... You can also be in a pacific war islands scenario with not enough water for your nuclear subs, your AA ship covering the air approach to the island and being attacked by a few light ships in a PT boat like configuration, torpedoing or missiling you (or a least trying to), while you don't have a US carrier availlable (you're covering a small amphib assault group, the carriers are away for some fleet sized action and can't help you, most of the Wasp's F-35 are helping the Marines getting ashore or providing a light AA CAP patrol). Even a Burke would be in some troubles in such a scenario ! Fewer hulls mean more chances you are alone, and then it's better if you came prepared for every scenario (plus the fact that Harpoon versions can now do land attack, as can the latest Exocet, providing another level of ground support).

  5. You also have the italian and french Horizon class which are quite efficient in the AA role, and their Aster missiles are shown in various tests to be really good, with a future ABM capacity coming with the next version of the missile, for which the ships are already equiped... The dutch, german and spanish AA ships are also fine, although maybe too close to the Burke in terms of equipements...

  6. i considered those ships in my estimation but they are equipped with the same missiles as the Daring..the Daring just carries more. its a matter of light weight vs. a heavy weight ship in this role. the Daring is closer to the Burke class in a well rounded all around modern battleship whereas those ships are closer to traditional anti-air destroyers. if you want to extend this world wide, the Japanese and the S. Koreans also have a couple of interesting designs

    just my opinion. your mileage may vary.

    1. Well if I take a look, I see the French version of the Horizon equiped with 32 Aster 30 and 16 Aster 15, the same amount of missile as the Type 45, but also it's 8 Exocet, it's 2 76mm and it's 2 20mm guns, it's torpedos, etc. But the italian version, with it's 3 76mm and it's 2 25mm is even better in my eye, although it's ASM is worse.

      So while the Horizon are lighter, they might have better chances to survive an attempt against them.

      The Japanese and especially the S-Koreans ships are closer to the Burke, but we're also looking at much heavier ships.

      Finally, there are more ships using the Horizon class equipements like the radar (EMPAR is on Cavour CV, 4 Horizon class frigates, italian FREMM frigates Carlo Bergamini) than they are using the Type 45's, meaning lower cost of ownership

      So I'm not sold on the Daring and it's friends :)

  7. I have mixed feelings on the Type 45. The Type 45 only has 48 cells, and Aster can't be quad-packed in any configuration like ESSM. It compares more closely to the various AAW frigates like the F-100 than, say, the Burke, Tico, KDX-III and friends.

    Not crazy about rotating arrays, even though SAMPSON is double-sided.

    Also have mixed feelings on Aster. Active guidance is nice for dealing with raid saturation attacks, but only if it can pick up small, fast crossing targets in a dive. Not a whole lot of room in the nose of that missile for a powerful seeker.

    The Burkes and Ticos have a pretty powerful jamming suite too. Not sure if the Type 45 has a similar capability.

    I think, my preference would still be for a SARH missile and an active array X-band radar like SPY-3 or APAR.

    SAMPSON is mounted nice and high though, so it should provide longer horizon coverage than SPY-1. But better than SPY-1 plus SPQ-9B?

    Lastly, the AEGIS ships have a more mature and varied munition selection (e.g. ESSM, SM-2 MR/ER, SM-3, SM-6, TLAM, VLA).

    If the US wanted an AAW ship smaller than a Burke, we should look at the F-100 or the G&C Baby Burke concept, IMHO.

  8. Sol, I'm in agreement with you, for anti-air work i'd take a T45 any day. For the people who say that it needs other weapons, i'd say that the T45 has always been designed as part of a task force, which means T23 doing the ASW work (also one of the best in the world in its field) and the British preference has always been for SSNs to be doing the ship killing, followed by air assets, although T23 does have the capability too.

    And the great thing about T45 itself is that if it comes down to it and those extra weapons are ever needed, Harpoon can be bolted straight on, while the gun can be upgraded (space provided) and more/longer VLS can be added (space provided again). And in a few years (before 2020) we'll likely see Aster 15 going from the T45 and Sea Ceptor replacing it in the short range/point defence role, allowing for quad packing and maximisation of space in the VLS.

    It was a shame to see CEC cancelled but again it could come along when there is a necessity/money.

    Oh and T45 is not the same as Horizon just because the same missile flies from it, the UK chose not to use EMPAR and develop SAMPSON for a reason, it's more powerful.

    As TD pointed out, the RN, more than any other major navy, has seen the need for a top class AAW ship, and learnt what it needs the hard way, that experience counts for a lot i'd say.

    1. yeah you're right but everyone wants to focus on a fight one on one system wise without supporting whatever.

      lets be honest. thats an end of days scenario and i wouldn't want to be anywhere on that type of battlefield. Special Ops are fighting insurgents in Afghanistan. want to know how most fights end? with JDAMS being dropped on the bad guys. want to sail a ship out and put it on a picket line? guess what. its gonna have support. both aerial, subsurface and on the surface. want to talk missiles? aster 30 is good to go. sm3 is good...what makes the difference between them and other missiles? the electronics packages supporting them.

      we are WAAAAAY past the days of counting cannons. we are waaaay past the time of thinking that multi role guns can only be used as they traditionally have. the 57mm cannon is good against, air, sea and land targets. same for the 76mm...same for other guns.

      i like tradition. i'm a traditionalist but the weapon systems of today are beyond tradition.

  9. Given the almost complete lack of defensive armament on the Queen Elizabeth class carriers, the Type 45 better be good.

  10. The Type 45 doesn't have superior systems to USN DDG's as far as I'm aware. The Aster missile according to any number of people who seem to know what they're talking about has issues.

    This aside assume the Type 45 is marginally better in some areas over a DDG-51. The RN is building 6. The question is whether the 3 or 4 available at any one time, including those already deployed, is adequate. Is a carrier task force defended by 2 Type 45's adequately protected against a significant aerial threat? I'd suggest in many situations the answer is no. Frankly you've got to leave one to cover the carrier and then estimate the threat axis and put the other one up forward there.

    1. your forgetting about the futute type 26, for close in protection, plus in any future serious threat environment, they'd put to sea with all available type 45's, 3 or 4, plus numerous type 26 & others. This may not be routine, but in high threat areas.

      your right we need more major surface commbatants, but i'd put the type 45's one for one against the DDG arleigh burke's.

  11. While the Type 45 is a very good DDG it's not a Burke. Sampson is a very good system but it puts out 25kw vs the 6mw for AEGIS and the Burke's carry twice as many missiles.

    The RN has 19 surface combatants with 6 DDG's and 13 Type 23's. The Type 26 is supposed to enter service in ten years to replace the Type 23's. Given the history of RN programs the last decade it would almost be a miracle if the RN actually gets 13 Type 26's.

    Far too much has been sacrificed on the Typhoon alter. It as just announced that the Tornado's will all be gone by 2019 and exactly how many F-35's are operational by then is questionable. In any case when the RN is down to 19 surface combatants and 7 SSN's it's a matter of debate how many might be able to surge for a major operation. Consider that recently the RN could not find a single surface combatant for operations off the UK.


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