Originally posted by Zaphod58
reply to post by NotAnAspie
Remember, Space Fence doesn't even see out to geosynchronous orbit, so you've got almost no time to detect, track, and decide on that meteorite
coming screaming in at you.
The Iskander is a TRBM, not an ICBM, so you can't compare it to a Minuteman, or even to Russian ICBMs.
well, it certainly seemed that "impossible" was the direction you were taking this in.
A) If not, then you could have easily simplified your debate a few posts ago by pointing out the lower speeds of the iskander being the problematic
area of my original statement.
B) In your first reply to my argument that missiles could achieve meteor speeds (which admittedly is not as easily proven as I would like for it to
be, but still possible when you explore the circumstances further, imo) your argument was more about the meteor speeds being higher than what is seen
within the atmosphere, rather than going right for the calculation error... the former which is a non point if you are talking about hitting it with a
maneuverable missile within the atmosphere.
What this tells me, a long with your other replies is that you are exploring these details congruently as I am. Please do not try to pretend that you
aren't. I'm very certain that your initial reason for replying to my post was to dismiss the idea entirely.... rather than doing what you are doing
now, which is comparing missiles. If you want to compare missiles that's fine, but I think it's clear we are learning this as we go... both of us.
As for the trajectory issue of the meteor... moving in a straight line at a calculated speed does not make it harder to hit... it makes it easier to
hit, naturally. The idea that "You" have to be perfect the first time isn't exactly correct. "You" have to be using the right *equipment*, which
in this case is a high speed missile that just needs to lock onto a dumb target that is capable of doing a lot of damage... as is suggested by your
note of the mass of the rock- true, but before thinking you have to hit it with multiple missiles, why not just use a very destructive warhead? It
seems what you are imagining is shooting from a jet... or something that takes personnel command and lighter weaponry. That is not the impression I
have at all. There is no "Quick, choose which it is" scenario that I think applied in this circumstance... because it is not left up to personnel
decision. It is automatically calculated by computers. An incoming rock gives any such devices quite a time frame to make such calculations... So it
should really just be a one shot deal. Size, speed, location... hit it with the right missile and boom... there you go. It should go like clockwork
and if it doesn't... yes, there may be a scramble taking place for plan B to stop it any way they can but ideally, this is not how you would approach
a meteor... like tactical warfare. You would approach it calmly and methodically.
The missile doesn't have to be highly maneuverable or decoy capable or anything like that... so yes, there is no point in throwing the iskander into
this equation...that's true, but it's tactical operations are what makes the iskander special as a side note. yes, I just learned this... not afraid
to admit that.
Space Fence may not see out to geosynchronous orbit... Which would be a good reason that it's not a good choice for incoming rocks. That doesn't
change the fact that they saw DA14 coming months before it ever came close and had already calculated trajectory which CANNOT be denied, calculating
trajectory, size and speed.... which is exactly what you need to make that necessary methodical assessment. In the case of DA14... they very clearly
had MONTHS to pick a weapon had the thing fell to Earth. DA14 was roughly 3-4 times bigger than the Russian meteor... and even though that would be
harder to calculate, it would only be 3-4 times harder to calculate... all being relative to distance, so at at least one fourth of the distance, it
should have been as clear to detect as DA14... which should have still meant weeks of knowing, assuming they even told us about DA14 when they first
found out... and thats small potatoes in detail so I'm not even going to look it up. I know *I* knew about DA14 months before it got here... so yes,
I CERTAINLY believe they knew about the Russian meteor shortly thereafter. No scrambling need even apply.
We could talk about space fence all day since that is the subject... or in this case, the reasons why it WOULDN'T be effectively used for such
purposes. That's fine and is becoming even more apparent but the meteor struck in Russia, not the US so Space Fence shouldn't be in that equation
really... as it doesn't apply and also because it is very clear that they have other ways of detecting meteors, obviously... or we never would have
heard of DA14.