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C3 Howitzer Replacement

a_majoor

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Back upthread someone asked what a "5th Genertion RCA" would look like. Most 5th Generation systems are characterized by separation of sensors and shooters, the ability to take informaiton form "off board" sources and smart or brilliant munitions, often with a certain degree of autonomoy.

The USMC did an experiment where an F-35B used its sensors to detect an incoming drone (simulating a missile) and then used that information to cue, launch and guide an interceptor missile from a nearby ship. You could potentially extend that to having the F-35 relay information to a nearby Marine artillery battery to deliver a fire mission, or even the F-35 taking data from a UAV and using it to set up a strike from an "arsenal aircraft"

Theoretically, we have most of the parts already - FOO/FACs are separated from the battery, and while expensive, "smart rounds" are still loaded and fired pretty much like any other round. If we want to make the RCA "5th Generation" then we need the sensor end to be enhanced, and better sensor to shooter links (think of the Russians having a 10 second "kill chain"). Firing dumb rounds for training does not degrade too much from the process, and various techniques like re engineering the rounds, improved manufacturing techniques and even bulk orders (to achieve economies of scale) can potentially do wonders for reducing the costs of smart rounds.

But the problem is far deeper, as many of the posters have noted. We simply don't have enough tubes, or the right type of tubes to fire useful numbers of smart or dumb rounds, and most of the other capabilities are either degraded or exist in "penny packets", rather than being spread usefully across the Armed Forces. Perhaps the only real winning strategy is to go all out on "smart rounds" so even a few tubes can still make a useful contribution. This system is designed to be lauched by rocket, but there is no real reason that it cannot be adapted for use in 155 carrier shells, to give you an idea:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/davidhambling/2020/06/01/why-new-us-armys-tank-killing-drone-swarm-may-be-a-weapon-of-mass-destruction/#105dbff0ece8

But someone, somewhere really does need to stand up on their hind legs and start pushing for any of this to happen.
 

Kirkhill

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22.2 BCAD current defence budget (ranked 13th in the world out of 200 some odds - not that shabby)

1 MCAD / Tomahawk.

How about we buy the Americans 22,200 Tomahawks and call it good?  For that kind of money I bet they would be willing to open a plant in Oshawa.
 

GR66

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Chris Pook said:
22.2 BCAD current defence budget (ranked 13th in the world out of 200 some odds - not that shabby)

1 MCAD / Tomahawk.

How about we buy the Americans 22,200 Tomahawks and call it good?  For that kind of money I bet they would be willing to open a plant in Oshawa.

:rofl:
 

Old Sweat

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This is getting interesting. As an educated guess, the ten second figure quoted for the Russian system would have to be the timing to get a round in the air. In this time frame, the STA device would have to acquire the enemy gun/rocket being fire and compute the grid of the gun position, transmit it to the appropriate "cells", the selected responder would have to compute firing data and send it to the gun, and last, the gun would have to load, aim, and fire. There are ways that the process can be speeded up, including automation, prior selection, and the like, but this sounds like a best case in a certain situation.

What are we capable of, using the present kit? Here's an example from D Bty 2 RCHA in TF 1-07. The battery was the first one deployed with three two-gun troops as well as a STA element. In July 2007 one of the troops was deployed in the area of the Belly Button supporting TF31. The fire base was being mortared daily in the late afternoon and using basically Great War technology - crater analysis, timing flash to bang, etc, the base plate positioned had been calculated within about 500m. Good for developing intelligence, but not good enough for counter-battery. Finally the system deployed a LCMR on the gun position, actually sited beside the troop command post.

Come the time for the daily visit, "bang" went the mortar, blip went the radar, the gun data computer in the CP spit out bearing and elevation, the CP cleared the location as in enemy territory, and "boom" went the two M777s, that probably had been pointed at the general target area in advance and only required more accurate data to be set on their sights. While this was not within ten seconds, it was well under a minute. Subsequent patrolling revealed a damaged mortar, and a number of bloodstains around the tube. The mortar activity lessened considerably, and intelligence reported instances of mortar teams refusing to engage targets if counter-mortar radars were in situ.

The next step, to get from there to today, is not beyond our capability.
 

FJAG

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Somewhat along the same line (albeit a bit off the C3 replacement topic) is this article from Forbes:

Army Breakthroughs In Long-Range Fires Raise Novel Questions About Targeting, Organization, Command
Loren Thompson Senior Contributor
Aerospace & Defense

The U.S. Army’s top modernization priority is to increase the reach and lethality of its fires, meaning artillery and tactical missiles. To say it has been making steady progress toward that goal would be an understatement; in the near future it will begin deploying weapons that far outclass their Russian and Chinese counterparts.

Some of the new systems, such as the Precision Strike Missile being developed by Lockheed Martin, will fit neatly into the Army’s existing doctrine and organization for defeating enemies at a distance. But other next-generation fires emerging from Army laboratories are so capable that they raise unprecedented questions about how targeting information will be generated, what kind of unit will host the weapons and how their use will be authorized.

Two weapons in particular break the mold on what the term “fires” has traditionally connoted in Army circles. The Strategic Long-Range Cannon will combine a new gun barrel, projectile and propellant to precisely hit targets up to 1,000 nautical miles (1,150 statute miles) away. That’s greater than the distance from Berlin to Moscow.

A hypersonic glide missile being developed in concert with the Navy and Air Force will reach even further, presenting enemy defenders with the nearly impossible task of intercepting a maneuvering munition that is moving at five times the speed of sound. The Army last year selected Dynetics, a Leidos unit, to manufacture the missile’s uniquely resilient glide body.
...

See full article here.

While this article deals with weapons systems outside the scope for a brigade, some of the same questions need to be addressed within the brigade (and it's immediate general support fires assets). Fires coordination and networking of sensors (from the Mark I eyeball on up) needs a major boost in capability.

Most of the skill set required for this is currently found within 4th Artillery Regiment (GS) in Gagetown which has morphed from an Air Defence unit to one doing multi-disciplinary fires coordination and deconfliction while employing medium range radars and UAVs. Perhaps a role for some reserve units to give the 4th some depth?

:cheers:
 

jeffb

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4GS are not the only ones in the UAV game. Each Regiment has a STA Bty with a UAV Tp within it. The 4GS SUAVs are substantially more capable than the Raven-B MUAS employed at the CS Regts but they are still very capable of conducting fire missions. The time to spool up a mission is no slower than from any other sensor and likely faster in most cases than the SUAS given the level the are employed at.

The biggest stumbling block that I can see around getting members of the PRes operating UAVs lies in the training burden, lack of aircrew medicals, proximity to Class F airspace and currency requirements. None of these are terminal but they would require some significant effort.
 

FJAG

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jeffb said:
4GS are not the only ones in the UAV game. Each Regiment has a STA Bty with a UAV Tp within it. The 4GS SUAVs are substantially more capable than the Raven-B MUAS employed at the CS Regts but they are still very capable of conducting fire missions. The time to spool up a mission is no slower than from any other sensor and likely faster in most cases than the SUAS given the level the are employed at.

The biggest stumbling block that I can see around getting members of the PRes operating UAVs lies in the training burden, lack of aircrew medicals, proximity to Class F airspace and currency requirements. None of these are terminal but they would require some significant effort.

Thanks jeffb. I think that there may also be Raven MUAVs in the Recce Regts. I have no idea as to what extent the Ravens (either the CS Regt or the Recce Sqn's) are capable of being networked into a comprehensive system (my guess is not so much and they link in only as far as their guidance and control system) All that said, I expect reservists could train on and operate Raven-Bs and, with the appropriate effort, SUAS (Let's face it you can't fire a 105 in your mother's back yard either.) Strikes me a battery of reservists with a few Raven kits and a few TAPVs could be easily accommodated pretty much anywhere with a minimum of logistics support required and a lot less cost than a 105 battery.

:cheers:
 

Kirkhill

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OK.  So we can reach out and touch from greater distances. 

That can be integrated into the brigade and make the brigades Areas of Operation and Areas of Interest greater.  Excellent.  We can do more with less.  One firing point can cover more ground and more targets.

But how does that relate to the "real" fight. ie the fight for hearts and minds fought when you are close enough to grab them by the belt buckle, get within pig-sticking range?

When locating targets in a crowd one still has to advance to contact and meet eyeball to eyeball.  This is still the job of the infantryman (if the environment is not permissive - the police officer if it is).  It seems to me that the more technology reduces the need for gunners and support weapons (because of increased range at all levels), the need for infanteers willing to grab belt buckles and make persuasive arguments, expands in direct proportion to the area of coverage of the guns.  Or is it just that we need hypersonic transport to get the infanteers on target as fast as we can get rounds down range?

 

Old Sweat

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Here is an example of Canadian gunners co-ordinating guns, a UAV, and a RAF Harrier to take out a Taliban party that probably was going to set an ambush for elements of TF 3-06. I wrote it several years ago based on several interviews and printed documentation. The event took place in late August 2006 shortly before the commencement of Op Medusa.

The Taliban were ambushing enough convoys between Kandahar and Patrol Base Wilson (PBW) to become an irritation. Surprisingly they continued to mount these attacks from the same area time after time. Moreover while they were unable to inflict other than minor casualties to the coalition forces and were suffering heavy casualties in return, they showed little inclination to modify or scale back their efforts. The BG CO decided to teach the enemy a lesson by aggressively searching them out and then destroying them with artillery and air power. Major Ivey [ BC E Bty] and he would use the Sperwher Tactical UAV to hunt Taliban at last light every night for a week. The Sperwher had both a respectable onboard camera and an equally effective target acquisition package that could provide accurate grid locations. This data could be displayed on a large screen TV monitor in the BG CP at Kandahar Airfield. Any insurgents located would be attacked using artillery or air controlled by the FSCCO, Captain Tim Spears. It was a simple solution and an excellent example of modern fire planning. That evening both the BG CO and the BC were present in the CP to observe the proceedings.
The two guns of Lieutenant Frank Gould’s C Troop were located in an austere gun position about two kilometres west of PBW and as last light approached on 24 August, the detachments took post to lay and swung the two M777s to face east along Highway 1. Meanwhile the Sperwher had launched and soon arrived in the area of interest. Bingo! Its sensor package picked up a group of about twenty people sitting approximately 400 metres north of the highway in a lightly built up area. Now that was suspicious, but without a clear demonstration of hostile intent, a gaggle of military-age male Afghans just hanging out in itself was not enough to initiate an engagement. Soon they stood up and began to move through the maze of grape fields towards the highway in two or three groups. Their intent was clearly hostile, as the RPGs and other weapons they were carrying could be seen on the screen in the FSCC. Excitement mounted both in the FSCC and on the gun position. The Taliban, however, took an erratic course as they threaded their way through the rows of grape vines, as if they were having problems navigating the dense foliage. Finally a group of about 15 stopped near a compound long enough to allow C Troop to fire a round of fire for effect using target data transmitted from the Sperwher. [I assume this came from the FSCC over the sat phone.]
The two high explosive rounds did not hit the enemy, but they did impact close enough to the insurgents to spur them into a sprint to the compound. By this time a British Harrier fighter-bomber had arrived on station. Unfortunately there was neither a FAC nor any friendly troops in the area to actually provide eyes on the ground to confirm the target location. Instead Tim Spears and his FSCC staff controlled the Harrier from the ground using HF radio while watching the feed from the TUAV, while fire orders and sitreps were passed to C Troop via satellite phone. This procedure had not been practiced in the battle group pre-deployment training and both the CO and the JAG were unfamiliar with the FSCC’s procedures, and thus were not aware of how it operated and what it could accomplish.
At this point the wheels almost came off the wagon. An urgent phone call from the liaison officer at the Governor of Kandahar’s palace caused a sudden shift in attention away from the insurgents in the compound. The local Afghan police had reported that artillery rounds had hit a compound west of the city, killing a family. On hearing this report, Omer Lavoie blurted “holy shit I’m going to jail.” Greg Ivey assured him that the rounds had impacted in the target area and they definitely had not landed in the compound. The TUAV circled back over the target area and confirmed that the thermal signatures of the two still warm shell craters were well away from any buildings.
With that distraction out of the way, Captain Tim Spears set about destroying the enemy-occupied compound. On the gun positions the two detachments waited for the orders to pound it with high explosive. Instead, as Master Bombardier Lucas Cunningham, a member of Brantford’s 56th Field Regiment, recalled “much to our surprise my gun detachment was given fire orders for a MARK mission with a single illumination round. Not questioning why, we applied our data and fired the round. The illuminating [round] hit the compound dead centre, a direct hit. . .”  This mission had been fired to confirm that both the aircraft and the FSCC were looking at the same target. With the target identified, the FSCC cleared the Harrier hot and the pilot centred his sight on the compound and launched a 500-pound laser guided bomb. Back on the gun position

“ . . . just then in the distant night the sound of a fighter jet could be heard, followed by a huge flash of light and a echoing thunder. Over the radio we heard a British Harrier had been on standby to hit the compound. Well our illumination round had provided the signal he needed and he unloaded a 500 lb [sic] bomb on the compound, levelling it . . . “

The bomb had indeed scored a direct hit, destroying the compound and, it was later determined, killing 12 of the 15 enemy who had taken refuge in it.
Although this was a significant achievement for E Battery and especially for the FSCC, the flexibility displayed and the coordination of sensor and shooter was second nature to the gunners. It did, however, come as an eye-opening revelation to others in the TOC that evening. Major Ivey recalled

However, to the infantry and other combat arms present in the BG CP that evening, it was a significant accomplishment that again strengthened the newfound respect for the artillery. An avid hunter, the BG Com[man]d[er] referred to this type of operation as “jacking Taliban.” Three enemy fighters miraculously escaped out of that compound that evening. They obviously spread the news to their friends because the 1 RCR BG was never ambushed along Highway 1 for the remainder of the tour.
 

FJAG

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Chris Pook said:
OK.  So we can reach out and touch from greater distances. 

That can be integrated into the brigade and make the brigades Areas of Operation and Areas of Interest greater.  Excellent.  We can do more with less.  One firing point can cover more ground and more targets.

But how does that relate to the "real" fight. ie the fight for hearts and minds fought when you are close enough to grab them by the belt buckle, get within pig-sticking range?

When locating targets in a crowd one still has to advance to contact and meet eyeball to eyeball.  This is still the job of the infantryman (if the environment is not permissive - the police officer if it is).  It seems to me that the more technology reduces the need for gunners and support weapons (because of increased range at all levels), the need for infanteers willing to grab belt buckles and make persuasive arguments, expands in direct proportion to the area of coverage of the guns.  Or is it just that we need hypersonic transport to get the infanteers on target as fast as we can get rounds down range?

Chris. It's been my experience that the people who say that we don't have anywhere near enough artillery is the very infantry with combat experience that you talk about.

:whistle:
 

Old Sweat

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FJAG said:
Chris. It's been my experience that the people who say that we don't have anywhere near enough artillery is the very infantry with combat experience that you talk about.

:whistle:

Indeed. People seemed to have considered precision guided weapons as a panacea weapon, to steal a phrase from Bomber Harris. Imagine defending a position shelled by a few guns using precision guided rounds, as opposed to being shelled by a couple of field regiments worth of artillery tossing HE in your general area at a rate of fire of several sounds per gun per minute.

First case: Wham. Holy crap, the CP vehicle has been hit. "Platoon, 400, advancing infantry, rapid, fire".

Second case. Holy crap, we're under heavy artillery fire. Where's the FPF?"
 

GR66

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Old Sweat said:
Indeed. People seemed to have considered precision guided weapons as a panacea weapon, to steal a phrase from Bomber Harris. Imagine defending a position shelled by a few guns using precision guided rounds, as opposed to being shelled by a couple of field regiments worth of artillery tossing HE in your general area at a rate of fire of several sounds per gun per minute.

First case: Wham. Holy crap, the CP vehicle has been hit. "Platoon, 400, advancing infantry, rapid, fire".

Second case. Holy crap, we're under heavy artillery fire. Where's the FPF?"

I think you definitely need both.  Long range precision fires to stop their forward momentum, shape the battlefield, slow their resupply and eliminate their artillery then mass of HE to hit them once they've been fixed in place.

Finding the balance for a relatively small army like ours though is the problem.  Too large a focus on precision fires and not enough on HE and you end up with the scenario Old Sweat describes.  Too much focus on the HE and a more numerous enemy can use maneuver and their own fires to suppress our own artillery.

That's why I think we need to find better ways to integrate from the Infantry Section all the way up to the Artillery Brigade.  60mm mortars/Carl-G supported by 81mm mortars/Javelin supported by 120mm mortars/TOW supported by 105mm howitzers/Spike-NLOS supported by 155mm howitzers/MLRS supported by HIMARS with Precision Strike Missiles/F-35s with the whole system integrated to fight a common battle.
 

Kirkhill

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I'll stipulate that infanteers love fire support.  Especially when they are in a target rich environment.

My point is that as technology changes our working assumptions have to, if not change, at least be questioned.

I made a facetious comment about substituting our defence budget for 22,200 Tomahawks - annually?  Or just a one time buy?  Either way a Tomahawk is a generation 1 or 2, single use, armed UAV.  At that scale of production costs would come down.  Enough to maintain a supply for NATO of 30,000 annually?  What effect on tactics and structure on NATO might there be if there was a steady supply of 1000 lb bombs self-deliverable from ranges up to 1700 km without the need of an airfield?  Or, instead of a unitary 1000 lb bomb we were delivering 2-4 250 lb SDBs or a bunch of Scorpions and have them circle the area until required for the strike?

Do we need strike aircraft at all?
What changes would be needed to the artillery?
What ratio of guns to grunts is now required?

My one underlying assumption is that war is not about technology.  Technology facilitates war.  War is about people disagreeing - disagreeing so violently and viciously that they are willing to slaughter the other bastard even if it means getting slaughtered oneself.

War is about people.  Soldiers are people.  Soldiers that engage people are grunts.  Whatever every other corps in the Army is doing, and how they are doing it, the fundamental need is a force of people willing to engage other people and, when Her Majesty's Government deems fit, slaughter the dissenters until they stop dissenting.

If the command structure puts a system in play that can slaughter dissenters at 1700 km how many dissenters are located in that 9,074,600 km2 area (the land area of Canada, for a coincidental comparison is 9,093,507 km2)?  How much of an opposing force could the dissenters build up faced with that level of potential response?  How many guys with binoculars and radios are necessary to keep that area under surveillance?  How many grunts are necessary to convince those dissenters willing to chance it to move along and give it up for a bad job? And do those grunts need to be infanteers, motorized dragoons, armoured dragoons, heliborne dragoons or hypersonic dragoons in drop pods?

I accept that fire support is the key to winning wars by making the grunts job easier, but that fire support is driven by technologies and today our technologies are changing.  I don't know if it is changing faster than it did when the first engineer shoved a mantlet up to a city wall, dropped off a pot of gunpowder, lit the blue touch paper and retired to a safe distance but his action changed the structure of armies for generations.

Our current structure is still largely based on solving the problems of 1915 when we ran out of shells for the guns and decided we had to do things differently.  The answer then was to supply more infantillery in the form of machine guns, mortars, rifle grenades and hand grenades.  And the artillery raised their sights past 45 degrees.

I don't argue that the barrage is necessary, or useful, or comforting.  It is all of the above.  But does a 2020 barrage look the same as a 1920 barrage? The type of barrage the Otter Commission envisaged when it established the basis of our current militia structure?  When radio was in its infancy and the Air Force was flying SE5a's?

All this talk of breaking up gatherings of dissenters has got me hearing "Bonnie Dundee" or, as my people in the West of Scotland knew Graham of Claverhouse, Bloody Clavers.



 

FJAG

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Chris Pook said:
Our current structure is still largely based on solving the problems of 1915 when we ran out of shells for the guns and decided we had to do things differently.  The answer then was to supply more infantillery in the form of machine guns, mortars, rifle grenades and hand grenades.  And the artillery raised their sights past 45 degrees.

I don't argue that the barrage is necessary, or useful, or comforting.  It is all of the above.  But does a 2020 barrage look the same as a 1920 barrage? The type of barrage the Otter Commission envisaged when it established the basis of our current militia structure?  When radio was in its infancy and the Air Force was flying SE5a's?

Chris. The "problems of the 1915" barrage were all solved by the building of the Maginot line, and we all know how well that worked out.

By 1939 the whole "barrage" issue had been changed to fluid movement and while the Otter commission had some shortcomings, at the end of the day the years of extreme austerity had still left a core upon which mobilization could fitfully take place in 1939. There is actually nothing fundamentally wrong with our Militia system. The legislation is mostly adequate as are the basic concepts as envisioned. The problem isn't fundamentals but systemic, i.e. the way our current leadership organizes and utilizes the system is flawed.

Let me get back to the basics. Equipment changes with the times as technology advances, you always have to cater to those changes proactively but in measured steps to ensure the new technology operates as advertised (how often did the one or another of the 524 sets in my CP go down on an average exercise) and that you have sufficient time to retool doctrine and training and don't spend money unnecessarily on marginally effective upgrades.

Secondly, what's your fallback when technology craps out? digital is fine as long as it works and as long as the opposition hasn't found a way to make it stop working. At the end of the day, the Mark1 No1 human has a built in computer that allows it to keep functioning in spite of EW etc. The same for analog artillery. The $500 M107HE round will function when the $100,000 GPS based M982 Excalibur has lost it's guidance system - not to mention that you can buy and stock 200 of the one for one of the other. Does anyone here really trust autonomous tanks?

Oh and one final thing. We've had a long period of time without any major wars. That's always nice but makes one complacent. Does anyone here really feel comfortable in saying that the Soviet Union wasn't deterred by the mass of NATO on the other side of the border. They certainly didn't hesitate to role tanks into the streets of Hungary and Czechoslovakia when they felt threatened and they weren't protected by a NATO like defence organization. And then there's the plain old nutcase leadership like Saddam or Kim. There are simply too many rogue variables in the world to allow us all to sing Kumbaya and beat all of our swords into plowshares. We need a serious military which means an adequately trained and adequately equipped military. We have neither.

:cheers:
 

Kirkhill

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I will further stipulate that progress is best achieved by keeping one foot on the ground and advancing in a cautious manner.  I joined the infantry, not the cavalry.

As a weekend infanteer it was a continuing source of aggravation that we were denied both infantillery (thanks Old Sweat) as well as opportunities to work with guns, rockets, helicopters and jets that supplied alternate sources of support.

Somewhere along the way decisions have been made that have seen us change from the Arquebus and Pike of the Tercio to the Machine Gun and Mortar of the Platoon. Some moves were cautious and planned with a suitable fallback position in the event of failure. Other moves were radical leaps forced on the instigator because they had run out of other options and circumstances demanded doing something different.

As it stands currently we have the "luxury" of defending the status quo. And frankly there aren't enough dissenters out there that we feel  the need to slaughter viciously and violently.  Unfortunately I am not sure that everyone feels as accommodating these days and those modern day dissenters can't meet our modern day tercios with tercios of their own - so they are looking to do things differently.

Air launched ballistic missiles, ship killers, swarms of autonomous boats or missiles may not be the answer they are looking for but they are looking to do things differently.  And so should we.

Especially if we continue to be parsimonious, reactive, retiring and committed to hanging on to one of the earth's largest troves of treasure with a ridiculously small population - many of whom would seem to prefer to be somewhere else.

PS - The Maginot Line solved the shortage of shells?  Prior to 1915 the DS solution was lots of 75mm-13pdr-18pdr Quick Firing Guns sending shrapnel down range at 15 rounds per minute to mow down people in Feldgrau advancing in lines.  Who needed machine guns?  By 1916 the infantry had adopted lots of machine guns, including the Lewis, and lots of ways to throw its own bombs down range (hand, rifle and mortar).  By 1917 they had figured out how to use all the new kit - including creepy-crawlies carrying machine guns and bunker busting 6 pdrs.  That allowed the artillery to conserve shells and apply them in planned concentrations.  Those fundamentals haven't changed.
 

Old Sweat

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We seem to be moving in the right direction. Thanks everybody. We need the capability to reach out and touch someone with precision guided weapons by a combination of air launched and ground launched weapons, and also to overwhelm the enemy close in with a storm of fire, again ground and air delivered. The latter may sound old fashioned and messy, but their targets don't stand still or post signs saying "here I am". So how do you hit something you can't see?

Gunnery is the fine art of missing by just enough to cause your target to duck before the next shot. Even with the "dumb" rounds that make up the majority of our arsenals, the gunners now have the capability of achieving a first round hit (in the above parameters) most of the time. And we can reach out and touch someone in multiples of tens of kilometres away. The trick is to convince the folks that sign the cheques that the two capabilities, that is precision and mass, are complimentary. How we ever managed to field an eight gun field regiment is beyond me. Three or four times that number seems more in order for those occasions when the enemy is numbered in blobs, lots of blobs, and is bent on whittling down your ration strength.
 

Colin Parkinson

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FJAG said:
Chris. The "problems of the 1915" barrage were all solved by the building of the Maginot line, and we all know how well that worked out.


:cheers:

I will argue the Maginot Line despite being under armed and under manned, did it's job. It was the mobile army and the General Staff that failed miserably. Not to mention the political will to sort the army out, despite having plenty of warning.
 

FJAG

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Old Sweat said:
... How we ever managed to field an eight gun field regiment is beyond me. ...

Boiling frog analogy, Brian. You and I started with four regiments each with four eight-gun batteries;

Then we went to four regiments each with three six-gun batteries;

Then we went to three regiments each with three six-gun batteries;

Then we went to three regiments each with two six-gun batteries;

Now were at three regiments each with two four-gun batteries.

Meanwhile, each regiment still supports a brigade group of one armoured regiment and three infantry battalions throughout. From 32 guns to 8 guns per brigade before we start being attrited by very efficient counter battery fire. And I used to feel sorry for the yanks with their 18-gun battalions back in the 60s. Hey! Guess who still has 18-gun battalions?

Boiling frog Brian, boiling frog.

:facepalm:
 

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Old Sweat said:
We seem to be moving in the right direction. Thanks everybody. We need the capability to reach out and touch someone with precision guided weapons by a combination of air launched and ground launched weapons, and also to overwhelm the enemy close in with a storm of fire, again ground and air delivered. The latter may sound old fashioned and messy, but their targets don't stand still or post signs saying "here I am". So how do you hit something you can't see?

.....

Old fashioned and messy isn't a problem.  Following the principle of "economy of effort" it seems to me a good thing to do what we can to reduce the number of situations where we need to "concentrate force" in such a manner.

Just sucking back for a minute here.  One pet peeve of mine (amongst many  ;D ) is whenever I mention rockets in pods people seem to assume that I am anticipating rippling everything off in one shoot and then have to scramble for a reload.  My general concept is one of not letting the pods run dry but maintaining a steady rain of precision fires to facilitate an ongoing game of whack-a-mole.  I figure, as an ex-infanteer, if one sniper can keep a platoon engaged and discouraged a steady diet of strikes and near misses would do the same.  Largely what you are describing with the guns. 

Cheers for now.  :cheers:

 

daftandbarmy

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Chris Pook said:
Old fashioned and messy isn't a problem.  Following the principle of "economy of effort" it seems to me a good thing to do what we can to reduce the number of situations where we need to "concentrate force" in such a manner.

Just sucking back for a minute here.  One pet peeve of mine (amongst many  ;D ) is whenever I mention rockets in pods people seem to assume that I am anticipating rippling everything off in one shoot and then have to scramble for a reload.  My general concept is one of not letting the pods run dry but maintaining a steady rain of precision fires to facilitate an ongoing game of whack-a-mole.  I figure, as an ex-infanteer, if one sniper can keep a platoon engaged and discouraged a steady diet of strikes and near misses would do the same.  Largely what you are describing with the guns. 

Cheers for now.  :cheers:

So.... MLRS then?
 
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