Originally posted by StellarX
And you have qualifications making your speculation somehow more valid and above suspicion?
I am not going to identify myself, but on this forum I only tend to comment Naval technology, tactics, and strategy and there is a reason. I have no
intention of identifing my identity, and wouldn't expect anyone else to do the same. Judge my comments however you wish.
The simplistic way to look at the Moskit is to guage it against other anti-ship missiles. I think it would be difficult to compare anti-ship missiles
of western and eastern designs, because each was designed with different tactics in mind, so I'll try to keep the comparisons strictly to the Russian
side and attempt to show the differences between Western thoughts.
Any Anti-Ship missile should be guaged on the following merits:
Size of weapon
A simple comparison between 2 different Russian Anti-Ship missiles:
P-270 MOSKIT (SS-N-22 SUNBURN)
Size of weapon -
wingspan 2.1 meters 6 feet 11 inches
length 9.74 meters 32 feet
total weight 4,500 kilograms 9,920 pounds
warhead weight 320 kilograms 705 pounds
Speed: Mach 3 at high altitude, Mach 1.5 at Sea Skimming altitude
Range: 90 kilometers or 55 MI / 45 NMI
Payload: Conventional: 320kg warhead or nuclear
Terminal Targeting: Active radar seeker, Passive seeker to active jammer.
3M54 KLUB (SS-N-27)
Size of weapon -
length 6.20 meters 20 feet 4 inches
body diameter 53.3 centimeters 21 inches
total weight 1,780 kilograms 3,925 pounds
warhead weight 400 kilograms 880 pounds
Speed: Mach .6 -.8 ; Mach 2.9 terminal
Range: 300 kilometers 185 MI / 160 NMI
ECM: RAM, Jammer
Terminal Targeting: IR/ Passive/Actice Radar, ARGS-54 seeker
Above illistrates the changes that have been made in Russian techniques to penetrating ship defense systems. In 1981, when the Moskit entered service,
it was the most dangerous missile in any Navy. It was designed to take advantage of the weaknesses of the SPY-1A radar system, specifically the SPY-1A
weakness of RF backscatter from wavetopsea skimming cruise missiles, the lack of coordination between CISM block 0 and AEGIS by reducing the
engagement time-envelope of hard point defense systems.
Russian tactics would saturate a target with overwhelming firepower at high speed to insure complexity of defense. It was a valid and could have been
a highly effective tactic in the 80s.
But the limitations the Moskit has made it difficult, and by 1989, with the AN/SPY-1D phased array radar and Block 1 CIWS upgrade, things changed. The
new SPY-1D could better track sea skimming missiles than the 1A because its digital signal processors had been upgraded with faster CPUs that could
filter out RF backscatter from wavetops. The Block 1 CIWS upgrade increased CIWS's rate of fire by 25% (4500r/min, pneumatic gun drive) and extended
its engagement envelope past 2 nautical miles with subcaliber Tungsten teflon-saboted ammunition (14mm penetrator) which increased the potency of hard
Also upgraded was the internal search radar, although this was not as significant, given that AEGIS CIWS is slaved to the SPY, and usually doesn't
even spin up its own internal search radar. Today, even these advances have been upgraded to included CEC, SeaRAM, and much improved capability for IR
detection which greatly improves targetting and tracking of super-sonic missiles. That last point is a big deal in the case of the Moskit.
The main technological advancement of the Russian Moskit came at the expense of 3 important things in anti-ship missile strategy. First, the missile
creates an enormous heat plume that allows it to be detected well over the horizon. This allows IR seeking anti-missile systems to target the Moskit
before its own radar detects incoming interceptors. Second, the high speed of the missile prevents the missile from using IR tracking itself, leaving
it only able to utilize radar seekers, which makes it easier to detect when used as a fire and forget missile, since it must maintain radar homing
active to aquire a target at low altitude. Finally, the high speed (heat) prevents it from turning much, at high speeds the attempt to do radical
turns tears a missile apart, so avoidance isn't a jerky pattern, rather a gentle roll.
As a large missile, it has a larger cross section able to be detected by radar, and gives off enormous heat which makes it easier to detect. It has
very short range, considering a carrier CAP starts at about 400nm out, forcing an attacker to close within 350 nm under the carrier CAP just to take a
shot. It is limited to radar only guidence and like all fast missiles, does not turn easily. But it sure is fast!
Now compare that to the 3M54 KLUB. The KLUB has a tiny radar cross section and a RAM coating, making it among of the stealthiest anti-ship missiles in
the world. Able to be fired at 110nm further than the Moskit by a greater number of platforms, the KLUB is ideal for standoff attack against a CSG.
The KLUB can approach at subsonic speeds while sea skimming, then rise up to aquire a target via active radar at a range of 60km over a 45 degree
angle. The KLUB then goes into a terminal dive with jammers enabled to prevent electronic interference as it homes in on a target with either
active/passive radar or IR, and has a final stage burn over the last 15-20km up to speeds around Mach 2.9.
So you tell me which is better, a non stealthy heat plume Moskit designed against the weakness of the AN/SPY-1A, or the stealthy sub-sonic with
terminal phase options KLUB desgned for deep, long range penetration of surface groups.
Against todays US Navy Carrier Strike Group, the KLUB would be a major competitor, while the Moskit would not. In a CEC task force like the USS Reagan
CSG or USS Lincoln CSG, a Moskit is going to require a nuclear weapon to be effective, and even then it may need a good hit within a few km. Never
mind technology issues like the high speed of the Moskit making it easily detectable, the short range makes it unlikely to even be used against a
Some additional Reading:
I know the writer, he used to be a USAF intel officer out of Tinker and is a consultant today for Raytheon. This was written after retiring from
public service but prior to going private.
Originally written by the alias "Stokes Pennwalt" at www.sciforums.com...
His homepage is here: www.ll.mit.edu...
A closer look into his background gives more detail as to his expertise on the subject, which is respectable and includes 3 years at the Naval War
College studying these type of scenarios.
CEC basic info:
CEC is critical to this discussion, as it represents the latest technology as a result of the super-sonic sea skimming scenaios of the early 80s. CEC
task forces made Navies of most nations obsolete overnight, and change the conventional thinking regarding missile defense from independent layers of
capability into structured, coordinated layers of interoperablity.
As for my comments about Iskander, I'll stick to my statements. He is not a Navy person, it is very clear from his comments and how he places
priority on certain elements that are in defiance of the engineering of Naval vessels and ignorant of the technologies used for warfare. Mad Scientist
appears to have finally caught him in his nonsense.