What I envision for a country like canada who's population doesn't even care about their military a way to build a supply a way to build a distroyer
that can fly a VTOL like the harrier. Is 2 planes per ship a hanger and pad or maybe 1 plane and a helo.
Rotary Wing ASW is dead. You could have a dozen helos and not be able to do more than inner zone work. Which is pointless if the threat has even a
60nm AShM and _utterly ridiculous_ if it has a 250nm class (SSGN) heavy strike option. There is some indication that hyperspectral IR and LIDAR work
(see 'April Showers') has more or less turned the the ocean transparent in many parts of the world (in which case you use another sub as the kill
vehicle, long before the threat enters an independent or battle group based ops area). And that you are better off with fastlay bottom sensors and
robotic platforms in the highly energized/muddy coastal zones.
Rotary Wing SAR is an accident waiting to happen. Particularly if you are working under Littoral conditions (200nm either side of the whitewater) or
'From The Sea Forward' (400nm inland) whereby not only is your response time /glacially/ slow. But you are almost entirely dependent on tanking to
get your there. Even just trying to be a hero to offshore fisheries or resource exploitation EEZs in peace time gets very dangerous as your payload
threshold for pickups and fuel emergency-at-takeoff dictated by the >
Size wise i dont know how much space the seaking is given on ur ships but i could find out if u dont know.
Spotting factors for navalized helos tends to be pretty good. I seem to recall that the folded length on the SH-3 (CH-124 to you folks) went from
about 55ft to around 48 and the rotor disk from 62 feet to 'width of fuselage'. Takeoff gross was roughly 22,000lbs. That said, the Iroquois was a
pretty tight ship (closer to an FFG than a DDG IIRC) and I seem to recall they went to individual 'garage' style stalls rather than an extensible or
shared space like we did. Only 2 of anything on those. There are about 3 other classes plus 2 'futures' so the rest I will leave to you to Google
you also need spare parts etc. But here is the next complication. We are losing the harrier (which Can never had) and are moving possibly onto the 35
which is in some turmoil from what i can gather. A plane like the 35 would be nice but range is it the best choice? what other options would guys put
forward for a VTOL on distoryers.
Well, to me, the RQ-8 Firescout-
Is little more than an QH-50 -
With 'mod bod' fuselage covers for better aesthetics. And a tenth the payload. Either system would work, with sensors, for endurance missions
immediately around the boat but the numbers of these remain fairly small and are largely safety of navigation biased (especially without weapons).
The problem is that, as the Army has spent a decade discovering with their various brigade/maneuver/divisional radio control airplanes, if you can
only stay up about 3hrs, and it takes an hour each way to make max radius of around 120nm, the amount of /target search/ you can do is limited. Which
is essentially what drones are all about. Not tracking an established threat, whether known or on-approach to a friendly maneuver force (predictable)
but _saturating_ a give threat battlespace to find the /unknown/ threats.
If you want to do that with a rotary wing asset you have to be able to stop the rotor, and accelerate to 300-400 knots for your transit in. Slow the
airframe enough to maintain a low-throttle setting cruise and then come back out. Unfortunately, even with systems like the X-50 Dragonfly-
This is not simple as the rotor size/stiffeness requirements and airfoil shape does not support good lift:drag ratios and you are still effectively
paying through the fuel tank for all the hotpipe and untouchable tail volume necessary to support the main rotor and ducted tail propulsor. This
inevitably means lower ceiling and payload performance from the front fuselage pod, usually as a function of radius or MEP trades.
The 'ideal' system is one which, as I said, doesn't partake of the idiocies of manned 'everything is a fighter mission' flight system redundancy
(which is effectively all a tail is worth) but still preserves the airfoil area and power of jetborne fixed wing design in only a slightly smaller
Since it's virtually a 'sure thing' that if the pilot bigoted services accept a UCAV based platform at all, it will be /purely/ as a
no-bombs-allowed sensor platform. And it's equally certain that if the USN ever gets a CSA that it will be only because the USAF's stranglehold on
targeting/tanking has been broken off at the wrist in destruction of the heavy-tanker/MC2A (high ticket followon to the E-3 and 8) programs. The only
remaining question is how you want to 'distribute the remaining mission elements'.
IMO, the combination of the greatly increased internal fuel and the use of the F/A-18E as a 'fighter whale' will largely avoid the need for
generation of a followon to the long lost EKA-3/KA-6/ES-3A mission. While ASW, as I said, is dead or they wouldn't have plopped 2 billion into the
various Viking upgrades only to ditch the entire fleet.
That only leaves the heavy AEW mission (with the massive AS-18A array on the back of a 'new' E-2D). And the overland ELINT/RISTA options.
Which, IMO, don't /need/ to be carrier based, at least exclusively.
Bluntly, as long as airdales navy is the one holding the leash on the haze grey admirals, there will never be developed a small-carrier air component
which can drop bombs.
For your needs, such as they might be (CF-188s are principally anti-drug/terror operators and I doubt if the JSF will be STOVLized just for a -highly-
'residual Atlantic powerprojection option) I would go with one of the Container Ship carriers that the UK investigated shortly after the
Falklands/Conveyor theme proved workable. In that you can build a runway, services and even CIC/Air Defense system out of prefab container
combination of freight containers and then run limited air ops from them with either rolling-VL or Skyhook methods to keep jetblast damage and thermal
protection problems down (though the SDLF is relatively cool). You might have to modify the bridge/forecastle structure to get truly good recovery
and skijump options but it would be cheap compared to traditional CV building, even in the L/S areas.
Again, the question is mission. Canada's fleet remains highly optimized for the Atlantic and Polar ASW/SAR missions while being fairly small for any
kind of global mission expansion of charter. As such you wouldn't get as big an expansion of your surface assets ability to fling things inland as
the USN would with pure-recce systems off SAGs while a more conventional (manned) strike optimization faces the same (subsonic) problems of airwing
size to radius and fleet train logistics.