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The Mess - Military Forum Off Topic Thread!



  • Registered Users Posts: 21,472 ✭✭✭✭ Larbre34

    I don't think the politics of foisting a nuclear engineering facility on a Country with no history of nuclear energy or weapons, has been thought through, especially considering that the Osborne Navy Yard is in the middle of feckin Adelaide! Morrisson has to get that through Parliament before we even talk about the expense.

    And you're absolutely right, it will be as expensive as hell, but I don't think anyone even has a clue quite how much. For the price of 8 DEs they *MIGHT* get 3 Astute class, or 2 Virginia class, but the economies of scale are against them too, because they have no existing facilities to build the hull size, or technology, or nuclear power train and no workforce experience. And they want to start all that from scratch on the far side of the damn World.

    The stats say that the Aussie defence budget is 35 billion US dollars. Quite conceivably, the peak of the programme, maybe one ship in trials, one in fit-out and one building, could be burning through 5 billion of that all on its own.

    Scott Morisson is actually a massive moron. That programme will kill Governments before it kills any Chinese ships.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,131 ✭✭✭ sparky42

    And now France has pulled its ambassadors from both the US and Australia over this… Should have been handled far better.

  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 15,746 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Manic Moran

    Would 8xDE have the same military capability as 3x Nukes, though? Surely that’s the important question. If the DEs cannot perform the primary mission, for example not around Australian coastal waters, then they would be a waste of money no matter how cheap they are in comparison.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,904 ✭✭✭ Markcheese

    I think I read somewhere that the diesel electrics were fine for coastal defence around australia itself , ( as the Colin's class have proved)

    But as situations have changed , and china has become the big threat. ( Rather than indonesia ) , then the Aussies feel the need to be able to go much further afield .. in conjunction with their best buds the Brits and the Yanks. .

    Incidentally ,I get why the Americans are rubbing off the Chinese ,and want a serious position in Asia/ pacific -they are THE World power ect , for the Aussies it's their home turf so to speak - but why the UK ?

    Slava ukraini 🇺🇦

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,131 ✭✭✭ sparky42

    Given the current and older generation subs got up to plenty of long range operations (even those that are still classified), SSKs would be more than capable of surrounding operations in Australian waters.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,131 ✭✭✭ sparky42

    There’s a lot of different factors going on, the Australian justification over costs is BS, the SSNs will easily blow through what was budgeted for the SSKs. As to the UKs involvement, plenty of different options, it gets them another base in the region, it somehow gets connected to their “global Britain” shite (and gets one over on the French), and they hope gets some industrial crossover I’d bet.

  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 15,746 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Manic Moran

    I agree with you as far as the statement goes. There are two concerns.

    1) Australia is a long coastline. To get quickly from one end of Australia to the other is more feasible with a nuclear boat than a diesel. For the same level of coverage, you need more diesels. Let's say that the cost about equals out. Which brings us to....

    2) Australia's area of maritime interest is far beyond Australian waters, the island is on the end of a transoceanic supply line. Events which are going to have a significant influence on Australia's overall security situation are happening a couple thousand miles from Darwin. Considering the threats to Australia itself, Australian coastal security seems to be capable of being handled reasonably well by patrol boats, cutters and the occasional frigate, you don't need SSKs for the job. Who's going to invade? Papua New Guinea's Amphibious Task Force? China, skipping over closer, more realistic targets? A single nuke which can operate well in the Indian or Pacific, or S. China Sea is probably going to be of more benefit to Australia than three or four diesels which can't.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,131 ✭✭✭ sparky42

    The strategic mobility of a SSN has always been the dominate selling point for them no question, as you say whether covering the Australian coastline or ocean operations it will always be able to respond faster than an SSK. However that does come with a hell of a price tag, one that I’m not sure the Australian government has thought through entirely. Even if they manage to avoid the end of life costs of what to do with the reactor the lifetime costs of nukes are massive compared to conventional boats, add in there are only a couple of producers of the reactors (and the US is always going to come first). There is also the numbers game, with fewer SSNs the ability for Australia to lose one is far less than when they planned to have 12 SSKs, even leaving aside any combat damage, we’ve seen the US lose one sub to fire, the French having to do a cut and shut due to fire damage to a SSN, and just recently the USN are now down a Seawolf after it hit “something”. The smaller the unit numbers the more “eggs in one basket” situation.

    Also of course there’s the manpower issue, something which the RAN has had issues with in the past with the Collins, but now they have to add in nuclear qualified engineers. I wonder with some RN personnel be changing service( hitting them?), will they be able to sustain what in the US and U.K. navies are high end jobs?

    Lastly of course is how long the Collins will now have to stay in service, I saw some comments from an Australian minister that it might be the 2050s, that’s a long time for any sub and will increase risks.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,131 ✭✭✭ sparky42

    The Russians have just burned a Corvette in the dock in St. Petersburg, the Provornyy:

  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 15,746 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Manic Moran

    At least it wasn't a billion dollar helo carrier/amphib.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,131 ✭✭✭ sparky42

    True, but you know America always has to be bigger than everyone else…

  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 15,746 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Manic Moran

    Anyone interested in a pub session evening of 3rd Jan in central Dublin?

  • Registered Users Posts: 851 ✭✭✭ jonnybigwallet

    Count me in MM! Lookin forward to it! Happy New year all....

  • Registered Users Posts: 21,561 ✭✭✭✭ Esel

    Are Walts welcome?

    Not your ornery onager

  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 15,746 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Manic Moran

    Why not?

    3rd January, 20:30, The Long Hall

    Shouldn't be too hard to find me. (If you've seen "the Chieftain" youtube channel, at least)

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,149 ✭✭✭ Dohvolle

    Hope y'all had a good night.