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JohnPJones

mk110 and it's role

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i know this can spiral into various side debates, but i'd like to keep the focus fairly narrow.

the mk110 57mm gun system, should it be a primary gun on any USN blue water vessel at all?
should it be relegated to a secondary gun system, like the original zumwalt design had it, or does it have a role on blue water vessels at all?

my thoughts

corvettes, and patrol boats, are fine with a mk110 as a primary gun, but FFG, DDG or CG imo should have 76mm or larger, but i do think there is a role for the mk110 as a secondary gun for AAW and anti-swarm duties.

anyway thoughts on the system and where it can fit into a fleet structure?

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Kinda an odd statement, question, whatever.

Every weapon system installed on a ship has a purpose. In most cases, a gun based system is secondary to the mission of the ship anyway, the primary weapon being missiles.

The M110 57mm gun can fill a lot of roles depending on what it's installed on.

Close range AA defense, Close in weapon against small boats, cheap weapon to use for putting holes in something not worth shooting with a missile, ect...

Going with a 76mm or 127mm gun nets a weapon system that can reach out further, hit harder, and might even be useful for fire support. All at the cost weight, money, volume, manpower to operate and maintain, logistics, ect... that might be better spent on doing something related to the ships actual mission.

In the future, you're probably going to see warships with even smaller guns, or foregoing guns altogether in favor of missiles, drones, or even directed energy weapons.

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1 hour ago, SgtBeltfed said:

Kinda an odd statement, question, whatever.

Every weapon system installed on a ship has a purpose. In most cases, a gun based system is secondary to the mission of the ship anyway, the primary weapon being missiles.

The M110 57mm gun can fill a lot of roles depending on what it's installed on.

Close range AA defense, Close in weapon against small boats, cheap weapon to use for putting holes in something not worth shooting with a missile, ect...

Going with a 76mm or 127mm gun nets a weapon system that can reach out further, hit harder, and might even be useful for fire support. All at the cost weight, money, volume, manpower to operate and maintain, logistics, ect... that might be better spent on doing something related to the ships actual mission.

In the future, you're probably going to see warships with even smaller guns, or foregoing guns altogether in favor of missiles, drones, or even directed energy weapons.

yes, it is a defensive weapon, with minimal if any offensive capability, something FFG and larger ships need.

we may see laser and similar weapons replace guns some day, but the navies of the world already said that some day ships with no major caliber guns, and tried it, and it didn't work out or stick. the arsenal ship concept as just one example, it was left as just a concept because guns will be necessary for quite a while. there was also the leahy class CG/DL  which for a while was missiles only...this idea that guns will go away because of missiles has been around for a long time and even after 60+ years of missile development still hasn't come about.


however back to my original discussion topic. the LCS ships are considered under armed, and rightly so. until recently when they had harpoons tossed on where they could be tossed on they had no real offensive capability, and defensively they could barely take care of themselves. now up armed versions of the LCS classes are being offered for the FFG(X) program, maintaining the 57mm, and the biggest differences being a small VLS  compliment, and designed to carry harpoons.

without the VLS the AAW capabilities of the LCS is pretty minimal self defense at best, with the VLS the frigate version is now viable as an escort, but the frigate version is still fairly constrained by the mk110 in it's mission capabilities.
i think they should have a 76mm replace the 57 for the frigate versions.

unless you're doing an OPV or corvette (legend/national security class cutter) 57mm should not be the primary gun, but works well as a secondary gun. for example the BMD variant of the san antonio LPD being pitched has shown a mk110 as a secondary gun with the primary being a rail gun (granted rail gun isn't happening anytime soon so it'll likely it would be a mk45).

but speaking from first hand experience in how the navy prepares its ships for deployment and combat guns are still very important in the ASuW role...at least according to the many group sail, and com2ex exercises i participated in as opfor and for my own deployment...

Edited by JohnPJones

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Going from a 57mm gun to a 76mm gun would add one ton of gun mount, require additional structure to support the heavier gun and handle the recoil, need larger ammunition handling spaces with more weight of ammo, need a couple more crew members, and results in a larger ship. It's all money in the end. I'm a little surprised that the M110 is so heavy, but I guess that's all the bells and whistles. I guess if the 76mm gun was given all the extra toys, it would pick up more weight was well.

As far as Navy Ships going gunless, just like aircraft, it was done before technology was mature enough to support it.

The US Navy got rid of guns on the F-4 Phantom, but missiles weren't mature enough, so the gun came back. There's been talk about guns going away again post 1991, maybe something will come of it.

The British declared manned combat aircraft obsolete back around 1960 or so, the technology wasn't mature enough then, but today we have unmanned aircraft flying combat missions all over the place.

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6 hours ago, SgtBeltfed said:

Going from a 57mm gun to a 76mm gun would add one ton of gun mount, require additional structure to support the heavier gun and handle the recoil, need larger ammunition handling spaces with more weight of ammo, need a couple more crew members, and results in a larger ship. It's all money in the end. I'm a little surprised that the M110 is so heavy, but I guess that's all the bells and whistles. I guess if the 76mm gun was given all the extra toys, it would pick up more weight was well.

As far as Navy Ships going gunless, just like aircraft, it was done before technology was mature enough to support it.

The US Navy got rid of guns on the F-4 Phantom, but missiles weren't mature enough, so the gun came back. There's been talk about guns going away again post 1991, maybe something will come of it.

The British declared manned combat aircraft obsolete back around 1960 or so, the technology wasn't mature enough then, but today we have unmanned aircraft flying combat missions all over the place.

there are plenty of ships the size of the proposed FFG versions of the LCSes that have 76mm guns, so the hulls are plenty large already for the gun.

it's not that the technology wasn't mature enough, it's that the technology couldn't engage up close is the reason guns were put back onto combat aircraft, similarly guns will be necessary for NGFS until you can produce a missile that doesn't cost $1million.

yes talks of going gunless post 1991 was the arsenal ship design...a design that was scrapped ironically in favor of a design that was gun-centric...(a horribly botched project unfortunately.) a design we now know as the zumwalt class.

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The Arsenal Ship was meant as a support ship that sailed with the fleet and was directly tied into the AEGIS network so that manned ships could offload some of their missile payload for other capabilities. It died for the same reason a lot of other Navy programs died, the Pentagon believed that there wasn't a need for systems meant to fight near-peer or peer naval forces anymore. As for the Mk.110, I think it would make a great main gun for FACs/FIACs like the Cyclone and old Pegasus.

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6 minutes ago, TornadoADV said:

The Arsenal Ship was meant as a support ship that sailed with the fleet and was directly tied into the AEGIS network so that manned ships could offload some of their missile payload for other capabilities. It died for the same reason a lot of other Navy programs died, the Pentagon believed that there wasn't a need for systems meant to fight near-peer or peer naval forces anymore. As for the Mk.110, I think it would make a great main gun for FACs/FIACs like the Cyclone and old Pegasus.

Yep brown water vessels for sure, or defensive guns like the BMD variant LPD model has one aft of the aft super structure 

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