Skip to comments.China Takes Aim at U.S. Naval Might
Posted on 01/05/2012 4:53:26 AM PST by sukhoi-30mki
China Takes Aim at U.S. Naval Might .
The USS Gerald R. Ford was supposed to help secure another half century of American naval supremacy. The hulking aircraft carrier taking shape in a dry dock in Newport News, Va., is designed to carry a crew of 4,660 and a formidable arsenal of aircraft and weapons.
But an unforeseen problem cropped up between blueprint and expected delivery in 2015: China is building a new class of ballistic missiles designed to arc through the stratosphere and explode onto the deck of a U.S. carrier, killing sailors and crippling its flight deck.
Since 1945, the U.S. has ruled the waters of the western Pacific, thanks in large part to a fleet of 97,000-ton carrierseach one "4.5 acres of mobile, sovereign U.S. territory," as the Navy puts it. For nearly all of those years, China had little choice but to watch American vessels ply the waters off its coast with impunity.
Now China is engaged in a major military buildup. Part of its plan is to force U.S. carriers to stay farther away from its shores, Chinese military analysts say. So the U.S. is adjusting its own game plan. Without either nation saying so, both are quietly engaged in a tit-for-tat military-technology race. At stake is the balance of power in a corner of the seas that its growing rapidly in importance.
Pentagon officials are reluctant to talk publicly about potential conflict with China. Unlike the Soviet Union during the Cold War, Beijing isn't an explicit enemy. During a visit to China last month, Michele Flournoy, the U.S. undersecretary of defense for policy, told a top general in the People's Liberation Army that "the U.S. does not seek to contain China," and that "we do not view China as an adversary,
(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...
The worst mistake China could ever make would be launching an attack against one of our carriers. we could destroy them conventionally but I doubt that two nuclear super powers could engage each other openly for long before the conventional bombs were replaced by nuclear bombs. They know better than to open Pandora’s box.
The question that remains is how does one successfully acquire and lock a target that’s capable of maneuvering at 30 knots for an indefinite period of time, and do so with the precision necessary to ensure a killing hit with a conventionally tipped ballistic missile?
yes....if we had an ‘American’ president that is probably true....but with a Marxist POS in office. He would probably apologize for damaging the Chinese missile after it hit the Aircraft Carrier.
MIRVs, with terminal guidance.
MIRVs aided by emitters built into components in electronics installed on the ship (READ: Chinese ASICs and subcomponents)
The answer is to continue work on the upgraded Standard Missiles.
God bless Raytheon and the people who work there.
Gunpowder was going to make war obsolete. How’d that work out?
Obviously it is possible to call China's bluff, and there is a very good chance that China would not take any real action (for the reasons you mentioned ...it would also have a lot to lose), but chances are that the USN would not make such a gambit. That is what China is relying on for the short-to-medium term. Build real capability to directly engage the USN in an (albeit) limited manner, in the hope that that will keep off the USN from the area. Hence the focus on asymmetrical capabilities geared towards the USN (the 'Assassins Mace' strategy). At the same time China has also been building up its conventional (non-asymmetrical) capabilities, in this case massive investment in submarine technology, AEGIS-esque destroyers, aircraft carriers, etc which will be geared at enforcing/protecting shipping lanes etc as well as any incidents in the Taiwanese Strait/South China Sea/India etc.
Oh, yes. Since the potential enemies of the USA could attack and kill our forces, we need to tuck our tails between our legs and make nice and they won’t hurt us!
recall that during his tenure Clinton sent 2 carriers in the area when some tension regarding Taiwan had come up ...it would be difficult to repeat that today).
Wasn’t it business as usual for George W. Bush while the Chinese held 24 American airmen hostage in 2001? After the US got them back, nothing changed with the special relationship.
Read: the money is necessary for the ACORN STATE.
It has long been recognized that an attack like that on our carriers from a sovereign nation will result in a nuclear response.
Unless, of course, if our President is Obama, in which case we would appologize for our carrier being in the way of thier missles.......
Brought to you by “free trade”.
Yes. Not a trivial task. Seems like you’d need real-time imaging from low-earth orbit as well as a secure tactical datalink to the weapon.
Then you have the risk of lofting a ballistic weapon between nuclear armed combattants. How is the side being targetted expected to react?
Finally, the sinking of a US aircraft carrier with all hands is very likely to draw an escalated response. Consider that the US has already taken that decision by the simple act of putting the carrier within range of those (theoretical) weapons in the first place.
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´Glad you feel safe with obummer about.
Respectfully, I think you are being optimistic about technology that is at least a couple generations away for the US (let alone the ChiComs). The US has gotten pretty good, in training and eval exercises, at putting JDAMs into moving ships, but there are magnitudes of difference in multiple areas (like terminal velocities) between JDAMs and ballistically fired warheads. One of the practical issues with putting big conventional warheads onto SLBMs for the whole “global response” capability is that their CEP is still too large. And that’s against fixed land based targets.
Let’s take these head-on.
The DF-21D to date is really vapor-ware. They have rolled a few missiles through Tieanamen Square, written a lot of white paprers about it, and assembled parts and done static, and fixed dynamic testing, as well as some local tests.
But not once have they conducted a single live fire, full up system test of this missile...which would involve all of their C4 elements necessary to make it work. Until they shoot a missile out into the South China Sea hundreds or over 1000 km from the launch point and hit a manuevering vessel that they acquire initially by satellite or some other asset (submarine, patrol aircraft, etc) and then have the missile reaquire that target once it returns into the atmosphere and then hit it...they essentially have nothing. And they have never done that...not once.
Add to this the fact that such a system is charging headlong into the Navy’s best and premiere defense, the AEGIS anti-missile system, which has been tested successfully numerous times against precisely ballistic missiles...and tested openly...then you have the prospect for a Chinese system that does not exist yet, and if it ever does it will be facing defenses designed specifically to counter this very weapon.
Sounds more like a Sun Tsu misdirection operation, trying to convince an enemy (that would be us) to either be afraid to use or not deploy an effective weapon (in this case our carriers) because of fear of a trumped up non-existant DF-21D missile.
Ok, now, take their Song and newer Yuan class SSK (diesel electric) submarines. These are good combatants and getting better for the littoral waters...bu they are not effective against high speed naval vessels manuevering in the open sea. They are too slow and must lie in wait near a choke point, or in shallow waters to have a chance. The US Navy Carrier Strike Groups have very effective ASW warfare including long range patrol aircraft from shore, world-wide intelligence systems on the sea floor to hear and track enemy subs, ASW helicopters ranging in front of and all around the carrier, effective ASW frigates (FFG) and destroyers (DDG) protecting the carrier, and finally, nuclear submarines of our own that accompany each carrier specifically to hunt down and kill enemy subs.
The Chinese nuclear subs that can keep up with our carriers are getting better, but are still too loud and few in numbers. They would be more dangerous than the Songs in deep open water, but their sound signature will give them away unless they hold still and wait in which case they lose their ability to stay with the carrier and have to rely on knowing where the carrier is going and finding good waters with good thermal environs so they can hope to avoind our searches. We saturate the areas along the intended path of our carrier movement with ASW work, passive and active...and at any choke points...and are likely to find them anyway.
Let’s talk their J-20 new fighter. I admit it is quite an achievement. But look at its engines in the rear...how far they stick out without any IR protections. Those engines are IR missile magnets. In addition, this aricraft is probably at least 6 years or more from being deployed in any numbers by the PLAAF. Its almost more of a technology demonstrator than a manufacturing prototype. Big jump for the PLAAF, but not on our immediate event hoorizon as a threat...and the F-22 will still eat its lunch. Our problem is we have only produced 187 F-22 and intend to do no more. Not enough if a major conflict breaks out.
Finally, their carrier. It is a big achievement for them and represents their direction towards blue water capability and a desire to confront and face the US Navy in the western pacific. They are really building up their navy in numbers of new, modern surface compabatants, from FACs, LCS (OPV) type vessels, modern multi-mission FFGs, modern, capable DDGs including an Arleigh Burk knock-off with their own PARS and battle management system, up to new San Antonio type LPDs and this carrier. They have supposedly started building two more carriers in Shanghai as we speak but they are not far enough along yet to be seen. They have the new J-15 strike fighter which they are beginning to produce. It’s an updated and upgraded SU-33 that the Russian use for thier carrier. It has decent range and ordinance carry capabilities and is very manueverable and a good aircraft. But they are using a STOBAR carrier design which will limit the amount of fuel and ordinance they can take off with over the ski-jump. Unitl they get to a CATOBAR (Cats and traps) design, they will be burdened by this disadvantage. And they are still probably 2-3 years before they have a complete trained air wing for this 1st new carrier. Still, it represents a significant change of balance in the WESPAC and will be, outside of our own carriers, the most powerful carrier group in the region. That’s why you are seeing Japan, Korea, Australia and India also going all out to develop their own naval aviation capabilities.
Read all about the Chinese here:
The Rising Sea Dragon in Asia
Read all about the World’s aircraft carriers here:
World-wide Aircraft Carriers
Hope all this helps.
China is a rising threat and we need to act now to limit their growth and increase our own. Since the mid 1990s we have been decreasing our naval power and size and the Chinese have been dramatically increasing theirs. Sooner or later the lines will cross, first in numbers, but also ultimately in capability. We have time, but we need to recognize it and act. Exotic technologies are great and we are pushing them with the Ford Class CVNs and the Zumwalt Class DDGs, but we also need numbers. Naploean once said that quantity has a quality all its own. We experienced that specifically from the Chinese in the latter half of the Korean War.
Good summary Jeff. As usual, the media seek headlines, which urge the Chinese are happy to exploit. The Soviets were never ten feet tall either.
The flank speed of these ships is a carefully guarded secret.
Of course, if they ever crank it on that high, they’ll leave their escorts staring at their wake, but hey... They’ll also leave a big empty space in the area the missile was aiming for.
Ballistic missile hitting a Carrier doing 35kts...surrounded by Aegis...and TRACKABLE TO SOURCE.
Is China actually willing to risk even SHOOTING AT a CVN?
Last year when the USS George Washington sailed into the Yellow Sea, but 150miles from Beijing, not a single Chinese aircraft came out to play. Not one.
And this during the very high-profile Korean dust-up and AFTER the Chinese warned us not to do it.
This so-called risk to Carriers is little more than blathering.
ASIC = ?
Please define recondite acronyms and abbreviations, thanx.
ASIC = application specific integrated circuits
‘We’ use circuits and chip and IC components manufactured in China. My insinuation is that these are to some degree purposefully ‘contaminated’ to serve a later purpose — such as key logging or RF signaling.
Do you mean, "as long as Obama remains in office"? It sounds like that is what you are saying.
With someone like Sarah Palin or Rick Perry in the White House, that statement would not be true.
The Italians experimented in the 1960's with installing SRBM silos in the quarterdeck of a Mussolini-era light cruiser, back when the first CLGM's and CLG's were being built. They didn't build a follow-on and eventually discarded the cruiser.
I assumed you were referring to the widespread worry about Chinese-engineered "Trojan firmware" in anything coming out of e.g. Taiwan, which has been heavily penetrated by Chicom intelligence services.
Similar situation with the USS Long Beach: she was designed first to have a Regulus launched, then a Polaris missile farm behind her forward superstructure. Eventually an ASROC box and the two 5” guns Kennedy insisted on went there.