posted on May, 31 2008 @ 09:21 PM
reply to post by guppy
The Fractional-Orbit Bombardment System went out of favor for a lot of reasons, none of which are that mysterious. Its one big selling point was that
it allowed the delivery of nuclear warheads from "unexpected" directions, vastly complicating early-warning and ABM efforts.
One problem with the system is that it required far more powerful boosters than a simple ballistic trajectory, which meant greater cost, and reduced
Another problem for FOBS was that it wasn't hard to detect. A mass launch of FOBS delivery vehicles would be near impossible to hide, and would take
longer to arrive than a 'conventional' ICBM wave...which could put your country in the unenviable position of firing the first shot, but landing the
second punch. If you launched a few at a time and left them in orbit (in which case, it's not technically a *Fractional* orbit system), the
constellation of satellites would be a red flag (no pun intended) to NORAD.
Yet another problem was a new technology (at the time) called the "Ballistic Missile Submarine." It had the same advantage that FOBS did (the
ability to strike from unexpected directions), and, in fact, did that trick better than FOBS did. The submarines were also harder to locate and track,
further complicating the defensive picture. In short, the FOBS suffered the same fate as the Montana-Class battleships. By the time the bugs were
worked out, something else came along that did the same job better.