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Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/20/2018 11:10:19 PM   
thewood1

 

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The first part of the article is basically like click-bait, but the conclusions seem solid...

http://cimsec.org/age-strike-carrier/30906

Its a year old, but I just stumbled up on it.
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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/21/2018 1:29:31 PM   
Andrea G


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Most interesting, I agree about the potential developements of the MV-22, but the F-35 as replacement of the F-14 doesn't convince me.

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/21/2018 3:15:49 PM   
thewood1

 

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I don't really think that was the point. To me, the point of the article is that the role of US carriers might have to change from primarily being a strike platform back to a component of the an integrated fleet. As you move from adversaries that have little ability to threaten the carrier, to adversaries that can directly attack a carrier, the carrier has to come back to its original role of killing enemy fleets and covering landings.

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/21/2018 7:15:24 PM   
mikkey


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very interesting article, thanks for sharing

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/22/2018 12:44:07 PM   
Andrea G


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I fully agree that the role of the carrier group must revert to Sea Control mission, for this reason she needs an air-superiority fighter that will have the same advantages that the F-14 had above his opponents.

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/23/2018 12:47:02 PM   
kevinkins


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https://www.defensenews.com/naval/2018/04/20/us-weighs-keeping-carrier-strike-group-in-europe-as-a-check-on-russia/?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=ebb%2023.04.18&utm_term=Editorial%20-%20Early%20Bird%20Brief

While we may agree with the conclusions of the excellent article in the OP, it appears the USN does not based on the recent article linked above. It appears they are looking at a more distributed and less predictable deployment schedule for carriers.

“When we send them out, it may be for a shorter deployment. There will be three carriers in the South China Sea today, and then, two weeks from now, there’s only one there, and two of them are in the Indian Ocean,” Mattis said.

“They’ll be home at the end of a 90-day deployment. They will not have spent eight months at sea, and we are going to have a force more ready to surge and deal with the high-end warfare as a result, without breaking the families, the maintenance cycles ― we’ll actually enhance the training time.”

It seems the strike carrier capabilities will continue to be spread out and used as a deterrent around the world. I guess the carriers could be rapidly armed and concentrated to fight in the sea control manner the OP article supports. "Surge and deal with the high-end warfare" implies this. But where is the training for sea control operations, not to mention budgeting for sea control weapon systems?

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/23/2018 5:01:18 PM   
SeaQueen


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I've always thought of US supercarriers as multi-mission platforms. Strike was just one of the various "services" they could provide. It happened to be the one which was most in demand, historically. That has less to do with the aircraft carriers themselves and more to do with the nature of past conflicts, though. Historically most enemy fleets in post-war conflicts haven't been very capable. They've been green water or brown water navies, which aren't really capable of challenging a carrier and its escorts. If nothing else, the carrier could sit a couple hundred miles out to sea, impossible to detect and attack by any force up to the task.

In the conflict that never happened, NATO v. Warsaw Pact in the Fulda Gap, or the North Cape, carriers and their escorts would have been performing all the functions mentioned in the article. They'd have been attacking the enemy fleet as well as defending themselves and other fleets (e.g. amphibious forces, convoys). The endgame, of course, would be to close with the enemy coast and be in a position to strike targets with nuclear or conventional weapons, but that'd be the final phase of war which started off thousands of miles away in the North Atlantic, protecting themselves and convoys from strikes by naval bombers and submarines, moving through a midgame phase where they'd be fighting a large and heavily armed enemy fleet, and then, only once the fleet was defeated, could they then go on to strike targets on land.

Historical conflicts allowed the supercarriers to skip straight to the endgame because they faced no effective opposition.




quote:

ORIGINAL: thewood1

I don't really think that was the point. To me, the point of the article is that the role of US carriers might have to change from primarily being a strike platform back to a component of the an integrated fleet. As you move from adversaries that have little ability to threaten the carrier, to adversaries that can directly attack a carrier, the carrier has to come back to its original role of killing enemy fleets and covering landings.



< Message edited by SeaQueen -- 4/23/2018 5:02:49 PM >

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/23/2018 9:50:37 PM   
rmunie0613

 

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I agree. Over time, the USN (and "western" navies in general, really) have become accustomed to 'ruling the sea' and have largely only faced opponents who could not challenge that. It is a very good idea to re-evaluate that in light of new developments, and probably to do as mentioned and at least remember what "sea control" meant.

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/23/2018 10:04:00 PM   
c3k

 

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Well, when an economic adversary can LITERALLY create islands in parts of the sea which have contested ownership, I'd say you don't have "sea control".

I'd guess that would be a LITORAL change? ;)

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/23/2018 10:34:21 PM   
SeaQueen


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That's sort of the point of navies being concerned with anti-access/area denial strategies. They're about regional powers attempting to deny or contest sea control and air dominance within their region of the world. So there's not really anything new in there. Carriers in the USN are sort of like battleships once were. Their main battery is their air wing. You can use it for sinking ships, you can use it for attacking things on land... and they can do even more than battleships did, at longer ranges with greater effectiveness. They're very versatile. Depending on the adversary you're talking about, they might be doing any or all of those things.

quote:

ORIGINAL: rmunie0613

I agree. Over time, the USN (and "western" navies in general, really) have become accustomed to 'ruling the sea' and have largely only faced opponents who could not challenge that. It is a very good idea to re-evaluate that in light of new developments, and probably to do as mentioned and at least remember what "sea control" meant.


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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/24/2018 2:36:39 PM   
Gunner98

 

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Interesting article - thanks.

Was a bit surprised (maybe not) that it didn't discuss the integration of USAF, USN and NATO air assets that has become the hallmark of recent conflicts. That integration including planning, airspace coordingation, refueling, target separation etc, would probably play an important role in any near future conflict.

From what I understand in the Gulf War, the USAF's ATO had to be printed and flown out to the Carriers so the USN could use it for planning and integration (and it was a several inches high stack of dot matrix printout). That has improved significantly.

B

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/24/2018 5:25:03 PM   
SeaQueen


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Gunner98
Was a bit surprised (maybe not) that it didn't discuss the integration of USAF, USN and NATO air assets that has become the hallmark of recent conflicts. That integration including planning, airspace coordingation, refueling, target separation etc, would probably play an important role in any near future conflict.


If you look at in terms of the ATO process, the Navy's aircraft don't really belong to it, but rather to the JFACC or CFACC. That way they all benefit from each other's assets. It's not uncommon, for example, to see things like Navy aircraft receiving Air Force tanking, with a combination of USMC and Air Force jamming support, and Air Force ELINT and AWACS support. I'm not sure how well the Army gets included in that process, but I'm pretty sure the USMC does. I've read mixed things about Army aviation's integration. I'm not sure I understand that part. At its best, everything feeds off and coordinates with everything else.

That being said, there's also a maritime component commander, who would presumably be coordinating with the air component commander to make sure that naval targets were included in the ATO generation process and I suspect, just because of the politics of things, the Navy (and Marine Corps?) would have first dibs on striking naval targets. The two of them would get together and decide who strikes what. The end product of that negotiation would be the planned ATO. They would also do things like coordinate with any submarines in the area, or maybe surface ships with cruise missiles.

That's the US/NATO process. I don't know how other nations work. I'm sure they have their own ways of doing things, which might be more or less flexible.

< Message edited by SeaQueen -- 4/24/2018 5:26:11 PM >

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/25/2018 1:37:36 PM   
guanotwozero

 

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It seems the forseeable future of strike operations in defended airspace will be based on cruise missiles and stand-off weapons, as evidenced by recent events. Carriers will still be able to play a role in this, as many of these weapons will be air-launched. It's also likely that drones will be used in high-risk areas, such as for jamming, and these could be carrier-based too.

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/25/2018 2:39:47 PM   
Primarchx


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quote:

ORIGINAL: guanotwozero

It seems the forseeable future of strike operations in defended airspace will be based on cruise missiles and stand-off weapons, as evidenced by recent events. Carriers will still be able to play a role in this, as many of these weapons will be air-launched. It's also likely that drones will be used in high-risk areas, such as for jamming, and these could be carrier-based too.



If by recent events you mean Syria, sure they've all been stand-off attacks. No one is taking a risk with substantial Russian air defenses in the area for occasional demonstration strikes. But there are manned a/c over Syria every day dropping ord on ISIL.

Any sustained offensive operations will still depend on aircraft for the lion's share of strikes. There are just not enough stand-off PGMs to service the strike needs of a major operation for any significant amount of time. Such munitions will probably be used substantially to reduce an IADS to allow follow-on strike aircraft access for using cheaper and more plentiful JDAMs.

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/25/2018 9:17:22 PM   
guanotwozero

 

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That's true, but IS don't seriously contest the airspace. There will always be a role for some sort of carrier-based strike capacity to deal with asymmetric or lower-tech opponents.

However the article speculates that the balance will shift away from such strike capacity as it will be too difficult to deal with future contested airspaces, at least with the resources available to a carrier group. With the rise of China as a military power it will become more important for carriers to protect the fleet and attack the enemy's.

The scale of such an opponent means that a carrier group will find it hard to penetrate and dominate territorial airspace; easier to secure land bases within range and ferry in large numbers of strikers + escorts there. Which means surface groups go back to dominating seas and localities, rather like the WWII Pacific Theatre. The amount of resources needed to deal with an enemy carrier group leaves little spare for land strikes.

Nevertheless I speculate that it will still be useful for carriers to support long-range stealthy striking as part of their repertoire. At the very least it's more to threaten the enemy fleet and keep them at bay from a beachhead.

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/26/2018 11:01:44 AM   
SeaQueen


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I think that the increasing range and lethality of air defense systems is exactly why there's been longer and longer ranged standoff weapons developed. Cruise missiles, drones, decoys, electronic attacks, low observable technologies, etc. all have a role to play. I don't think there's any single "silver bullet" solution, but rather a need to use things in combination. Figuring that out is the hard part.


quote:

ORIGINAL: guanotwozero

It seems the forseeable future of strike operations in defended airspace will be based on cruise missiles and stand-off weapons, as evidenced by recent events. Carriers will still be able to play a role in this, as many of these weapons will be air-launched. It's also likely that drones will be used in high-risk areas, such as for jamming, and these could be carrier-based too.


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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/26/2018 11:23:47 AM   
Dysta


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I take all battles as rock-paper-scissors, it's matters how you shoot rather than what will you choose.

You wouldn't engage submarines without ASW airwings.

You wouldn't engage massive number of missile boats without Mavericks for Hornets.

You wouldn't engage surface AA without JASSMs.

And of course, you better pray when EMP struck in, and turned into a floating elephant in nuclear apocalypse.

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RE: Article on the death of the strike carrier - 4/26/2018 1:41:47 PM   
guanotwozero

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: SeaQueen
I think that the increasing range and lethality of air defense systems is exactly why there's been longer and longer ranged standoff weapons developed. Cruise missiles, drones, decoys, electronic attacks, low observable technologies, etc. all have a role to play. I don't think there's any single "silver bullet" solution, but rather a need to use things in combination. Figuring that out is the hard part.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Dysta
I take all battles as rock-paper-scissors, it's matters how you shoot rather than what will you choose.


Agreed. As aircraft and pilots are regarded as highly valuable, there is a strong desire not to lose them. Limiting their risk to danger means using longer ranged weapons against equal-tech opponents, at least until the risk is reduced.

The development of technology and tactics are symbiotic. The significant change is the rise of China as a superpower so the tactics, based on there being a single superpower, have to change accordingly. The example in the article is of how to swarm an enemy fleet- whether single-axis overwhelm or multi-axis confusion is more useful.

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