Our Prospects of Establishing Sea Control in the West Philippine Sea

China's first Aircraft Carrier, the Liaoning. Photo courtesy of The Japan Times
China’s first Aircraft Carrier, the Liaoning. Photo courtesy of The Japan Times

Everybody knows that China is a big and rich country with a powerful naval force, but just how powerful EXACTLY is that force, and what can we do to counter them in the West Philippine Sea (WPS)? This is not an easy question to answer, but let me offer my opinion about it. First let’s take a good look at China’s naval forces so we can see what we are up against.

‘The PLAN’
The Chinese navy is called the “People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN)“, and no, there is no truth to the rumor that they own the “Army Navy Burger” chain of fastfood restaurants. The PLAN is composed of roughly 470 ships, although only around half are major armed naval combatants (i.e., which for me means Submarines and missile-armed Ships), broken down into:1
– One Aircraft Carrier
– 25 Destroyers
– 42 Frigates
– 120 Corvettes
– 65 Submarines
* 253 major naval combatants in total

These forces are divided into three main fleets covering different areas where the PLAN operates, which are the “North Sea Fleet“, the “East Sea Fleet“, and the “South China Sea Fleet” (which we shall refer to as the “West Philippine Sea Fleet“).

Their Northern and Eastern sea fleets are facing off the navies of Japan, Taiwan and South Korea, and since the navies of those countries are quite powerful themselves, the PLAN has put up their latest and/or their most powerful ships to face off against those navies, like their Sovremenny-class Destroyers, for example. The bulk of their submarine fleet are also shared between those two fleets.

The fleet that concerns us directly is the PLAN’s WPS fleet, which right now consists of:2
– One Aircraft Carrier
– Nine Destroyers
– 17 Frigates
– 35 Corvettes (approximate only, assuming their Houbei-class Missile Boats are equally divided among the three fleets)
– Eight Submarines
* 70 major naval combatants in total

Hence while China has more powerful enemies further up north, they are still able to field quite a formidable fleet in our area. In terms of quantity they have equally large numbers of both big and small ships, complemented by a couple of Submarines. Their lone aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, is still not fully operational, and my guess is that they fielded it in the WPS because they are still gaining operational experience with it and they feel that it would be “safer” against the lesser navies in the WPS.

In the WPS, China is faced with not just one but two potential enemies in the Philippines and Vietnam. Vietnam is much closer to China than we are, in fact they share a border with them, and the “Vietnam People’s Navy (VPN)” is a strong one, more powerful than ours and currently consisting of:3
– Two Submarines
– Seven Frigates
– 17 Corvettes/Missile Boats
* 26 major naval combatants in total

Compared to China’s WPS fleet, the VPN only has less than half as many ships, but still formidable as they are of modern and contemporary design. Because of this, in any conflict with us, China will need to put a number of ships in reserve to pin down the VPN. However, since China has so many ships, even if they have a lot of potential enemies right now as long as they don’t fight those enemies all at the same time and just fight them off one at a time, then they will still be able to shuffle their forces around enough to reinforce an area. Hence we can assume that at any given time, they can, at the very least, field their ENTIRE WPS fleet in any confrontation against us.

‘Other Navies’
To better appreciate just how strong this fleet is, let’s take a look at the current naval fleets of other rich and powerful countries:

  • Australia (Eleven Frigates, six Submarines = 17 major ships in total)4

  • Germany, the number one economy in Europe (Eleven Frigates, eight Corvettes, four Submarines = 23 ships in total).5

  • India (Two Aircraft Carriers, nine Destroyers, 15 Frigates, 25 Corvettes, 15 Submarines = 66 ships in total)6

  • Taiwan (Four Destroyers, 22 Frigates, 90 Corvettes/Missile Boats, four Submarines = 120 ships in total)7

China's latest Stealth Missile Boat, the garishly painted Houbei-class. Makes you wonder what kind of a navy paints their ship like a pimp. Photo courtesy of the Club Military News Website
China’s latest Stealth Missile Boat, the garishly painted Houbei-class. Makes you wonder what kind of a navy paints their ship like a pimp. Photo courtesy of the Club Military News Website
  • Japan (Three Aircraft Carriers, 26 Destroyers, eleven Frigates, 16 Submarines = 56 ships in total)8

  • South Korea (One Aircraft Carrier, twelve Destroyers, ten Frigates, 21 Corvettes, twelve Submarines = 56 ships in total)9

(Note that Helicopters are also aircraft, hence a “Helicopter Carrier” is still an “Aircraft Carrier” which the navies of Japan and South Korea have.)

Remember that the number of ships cited above are the ENTIRE NAVIES of each country, and yet despite that only a few of them can numerically match up to just ONE FLEET of the PLAN. India, Taiwan, South Korea and Japan have the numbers to almost numerically match up against a single fleet of China’s navy.

‘Sea Control?’
The sheer number of ships of the PLAN poses a huge problem for us in terms of establishing “Sea Control” anywhere in the Spratly Islands. Sea Control is defined as the power to use a maritime area for your own purposes AND at the same time PREVENT the use of that same area by your opponent.10 As applied to the WPS, we will need to establish Sea Control if we are to mine any area in the Spratlys because if not, our enemy will then be able to seize or destroy those mining assets.

Common sense dictates that to establish Sea Control you need to be STRONGER than your opponent in order to ensure that you can maintain your presence in an area despite opposition. If you are significantly WEAKER than you opponent, then you won’t be able to consistently defend your presence in an area. At the very least, you should be AS STRONG as your opponent to be able to have a 50-50 chance of maintaining control of an area.

But with China having such a large armada, it is unlikely that we can realistically match up to their entire navy. In fact, in terms of the sheer number of major naval combatants, China is NUMBER ONE in the world, not even the navies of Russia (176 major naval combatants)11 or the United States (183 major naval combatants)12 can match up with them numerically. Matching up to their WPS Fleet ONLY MAY be the more achievable option for us.

‘Establishing Presence’
To establish Sea Control, we need to put something that will be VISIBLE to clearly communicate with everybody where the physical boundaries of our territories are which they should not cross. Submarines, wonderful weapons of war that they are, are not ideal for this because they rely on stealth for survival and effectiveness, and if they are out there showing themselves to challenge trespassers, then they are just throwing away their advantage. It’s good if we could just shoot anybody crossing our boundaries, but the reality is that initially there will just be a lot of POSTURING between both sides, with any actual shooting occurring later, if at all they do lead to such a situation.

For the same reason you can’t use land-based missiles as they are physically a hundred or so kilometers from an area, and will only come into play in a shooting war. Also, with the Recto Bank in the Spratlys being a good 260 km from the nearest area of Palawan, it is well beyond the range of most Anti Ship Missiles (AShM) made in the west, except for Russian missiles with their accompanying political complications.13

Aircraft would not be ideal as their endurance in patrolling areas are only measured in hours at a time, and they have relatively short lifespans measured only in thousands of flight hours before they need comprehensive overhauls. Also, with the Spratlys being a couple of hundred kilometers away, reinforcements even by high speed aircraft would arrive only after around 15-20 minutes, which may not be enough to prevent loss of our mining assets in the area.

So for me the only feasible tool that can establish visible presence and sea control of our boundaries for long periods of time are surface sea vessels or SHIPS as they can stay and monitor areas 24/7 for weeks or even months at a time.

‘Deterrence?’
Truthfully, it is kinda intimidating to even imagine how we can match up to a country with the most number of major naval combatants in the world, but let’s give it a try. It may be possible to discourage China from confronting our naval fleet thru “Deterrence“. This will only work if we can find a way to INTIMIDATE China, like for example having the capability to wipe out all or most of their WPS Fleet.

True, even if we wipe out their entire fleet they will just pull in more ships from their other fleets and destroy or seize our mining assets anyway, but other factors may also be in play, like that it will seriously degrade their naval capability and make them more vulnerable to their other enemies, and that maybe enough to discourage or deter them. The effect we are aiming for is like, “They may be able to kill us, but we can maim them also“, so in the end they will be thinking more about the prospect of being maimed rather than the prospect of “killing” us or our fleet.

China's latest Frigate, the Type 054 Jiangkai-class. Photo courtesy of the Jeff Head Website
China’s latest Frigate, the Type 054 Jiangkai-class. Photo courtesy of the Jeff Head Website

The most straightforward way to do this would be to simple match up with them on a ship-for-ship basis, coming up with a fleet of around 70 vessels and target a 1:1 kill rate to wipe off their fleet, but this will be very difficult to do as it means having a navy as strong or as large of that of India, Japan, etc.

‘Qualitative Advantage?’
Another way to have an effective deterrence would be to have a navy with a QUALITATIVE ADVANTAGE, specifically meaning a navy made of ships that can destroy more ships than their total number, or in other words a navy that can inflict a 2:1 kill rate, meaning destroy two enemy vessels for a single loss. This means we can field a lesser number of ships, say only 35 vessels, but they will be of better quality and thus strong enough to wipe out the enemy’s entire fleet.

This “Qualitative Advantage” is what the navies of Russia and the US have over China, so even if their navies have lesser number of vessels, they are still more than a match for China’s navy. The problem though is:
– How to ensure that the casualty rate will indeed be 2:1 in our favor because if not, we will just end up losing our entire force and also lose the battle anyway.
– In order to gain that Qualitative Advantage, we will have to invest in more advanced and thus much more expensive technology, hence acquisition, operating and maintenance costs will be much higher;
– Since China has deeper pockets than ours, they may end up winning the technological battle anyway simply because they can spend more.

Remember that even as this blog is being written, China is building MORE and BETTER Destroyers and Aircraft Carriers. China is expected to have 3 operational Aircraft Carriers within a decade14 and will also be fielding a new, bigger Type 055 Destroyer15 intended to rival the United States’ new Zumwalt-class Destroyers.

‘Quantitative Advantage?’
And yet another alternative in the opposite direction is to have a QUANTITATIVE ADVANTAGE, meaning have more ships that are smaller and simpler than they have to win a Battle of Attrition. So for example, we field a force two times the size of their WPS Fleet at 140 vessels, so even if they achieve a kill rate of 2:1 against us, we will still be able to wipe out their entire fleet. This seems to be what Taiwan is aiming for judging by the sheer number of Corvettes/Missile Boats that they have.

The problem with this approach though is:
– Timing will be both critical and difficult in fielding such a large force into the right place and at the right time. Remember that ships aren’t very fast, it will take them hours if not days to go from one area to another depending on the distance. Smaller ships also have less range and endurance, compounding the problem.
– We will need to accept that we will have a LOT more CASUALTIES on our side than that of our enemy. We in fact will be SACRIFICING our naval assets and the lives of our sailors to win a victory;
– The MORALE of our force will have to be high enough so they will continue advancing and fighting even if they see most of their colleagues dying all around them;
– How to ensure that the casualty rate will indeed be no higher than 2:1 at most because if not, we will just end up losing our entire force and still lose the battle anyway.
– The costs of building, operating and maintaining such a large force will also be quite expensive.

‘The Philippine Navy’
Currently the Philippine Navy (PN) has a fleet of only thirteen ships, more than half of which are World War Two relics, and none are armed with missiles. In fact, the Navy has still yet to see its first AShM-armed vessel in its history. This fleet consists of:16
– Three Frigates
– Ten Corvettes
* Thirteen major naval vessels in total

So our navy is outnumbered in the WPS by a factor of more than five to one, meaning China has five ships for every single vessel that we have, and their ships are also better equipped and better armed than ours. The Navy does have a solid plan on the type of force they envision to have, call it a “Wish List” if you want, and it is called the “Philippine Navy Desired Force Mix“. In it, the Navy envisions a force of:17
– Six Anti-Air Warfare (AAW) Frigates
– Twelve Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Corvettes
– Three Submarines
* 21 major naval combatants in total

This force would not fit the theoretical forces needed to counter China as described in the previous sections, but then again when the navy came out with this list, their intention was to field a force enough to monitor and guard all of our vast territorial waters, and not necessarily to face up to China’s WPS fleet.

‘Parting Shot?’
THEORETICALLY, there may be ways for us to contest China for Sea Control of the Spratly Islands, but REALISTICALLY, I think our prospects are bleak as we are working on a LOT of assumptions, like what might deter China, loss rates, etc. which in the end might be wrong. The costs of building a force strong enough to deter China would be enormous, one which our economy would not likely be able to handle without sacrificing the other aspects of our country like Infrastructure, Education, Agriculture, etc. And with a current Poverty Rate of 25% (meaning one out of every four Filipinos are poor, higher than Vietnam, Thailand, etc.), that’s not something that we might want to do.

So, does this mean that we should just give up on the modernization of our armed forces altogether? Not necessarily, as the whole idea above applies only to our prospects of securing mining assets in the Spratly Islands, and not necessarily to the defense of the Philippine mainland where the dynamics are a little bit different and may in fact still be in our favor despite China’s formidable armada. Besides, if we as a people keep electing the RIGHT leaders to lead this country, we may end up prosperous enough within the next 1-2 decades to be able to field a force that may at least deter China.

Bottomline is that we may have problems standing up to China now, but if we play our cards right we may be able to do so in the future. If we give up now, then there will absolutely be no chance for us to stand up to them at all …

China's latest Destroyer, the Type 052D Luyang III. Photo courtesy of the Hobby Shanghai Website
China’s latest Destroyer, the Type 052D Luyang III. Photo courtesy of the Hobby Shanghai Website

SOURCES:


  1. List of active People’s Liberation Army Navy ships, (https://web.archive.org/web/20150315054755/http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_active_People’s_Liberation_Army_Navy_ships
  2. South Sea Fleet,
    (https://web.archive.org/web/20140812092930/http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_Sea_Fleet
  3. Vietnam People’s Navy,
    (https://web.archive.org/web/20140814055631/http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vietnam_People%27s_Navy
  4. List of active Royal Australian Navy ships, (https://web.archive.org/web/20141016151705/http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Current_Royal_Australian_Navy_ships
  5. List of active German Navy ships, (https://web.archive.org/web/20150413081603/http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_active_German_Navy_ships
  6. List of active Indian Navy ships, (https://web.archive.org/web/20141027162504/http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_active_Indian_Navy_ships
  7. List of active Republic of China Navy ships, (https://web.archive.org/web/20160508095514/https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_ships_of_the_Republic_of_China_Navy
  8. List of active Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force ships,
    (https://web.archive.org/web/20140723025914/http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_active_Japan_Maritime_Self-Defense_Force_ships
  9. List of active Republic of Korea Navy ships, (https://web.archive.org/web/20150531041446/http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_active_Republic_of_Korea_Navy_ships
  10. Sea Control and Sea Denial: Controlling of the seas today,
    (https://web.archive.org/web/20131017190426/http://stratrisks.com/geostrat/15981
  11. List of current ships of the Russian Navy 2014,
    (https://web.archive.org/web/20140927235737/http://russian-ships.info/eng/today/
  12. U.S.Navy Active Ship Force Levels, 2007 to 2011,
    (https://web.archive.org/web/20140903115016/http://www.history.navy.mil/branches/org9-4.htm
  13. BRAHMOS MISSILES FOR THE PHILIPPINES?,
    (https://web.archive.org/web/20160729013356/https://rhk111smilitaryandarmspage.wordpress.com/2014/07/10/brahmos-missiles-for-the-philippines/
  14. China’s Oversized Aircraft Carrier Ambitions, (https://web.archive.org/web/20140903005010/http://thediplomat.com/2014/06/chinas-oversized-aircraft-carrier-ambitions/
  15. Type 055 Desroyer,
    (https://web.archive.org/web/20160119100257/http://www.deagel.com/Destroyers-and-Cruisers/Type-055_a002885001.aspx
  16. List of ships of the Philippine Navy, (https://web.archive.org/web/20150511020250/http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_ships_of_the_Philippine_Navy
  17. Philippine Desired Force Mix,
    (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYijAkw0Smw
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225 thoughts on “Our Prospects of Establishing Sea Control in the West Philippine Sea”

  1. You mean for the Vulcano rounds, kim205co?

    I couldn’t really find a good source on what the price is for the Vulcano rounds, but if it really is the same as missiles, then its no good, a missile would be better. If it were cheaper than a missile, then it would be worth it.

    1. The LOGIR can be fitted into the Chunmoo 230 mm rocket, right? If so, it would be an interesting Anti-Ship Ballistic Missile with its 80 km range. Do you have any ballistic rockets with 400 km range? 😀

  2. The development of a variety of platforms (70mm, 130mm)
    Range 6km —–> 10km increase is (Fire & Forge)
    The first price is $ 40,000 —–> 2013. $ 60,000 estimated
    Developed 2005-2016 (combat placement)
    US Navy stopped development (2010) -> US Army APKWS joint development
    AH-1W Launch Success at sea —> Target Hit

  3. The alternative for LOGIR is 2.75inch rocket pods
    Terrorist small boats, small targets
    Difficult to use the expensive Harpoon
    Has been developed aiming at a target

    K-MLRS (130mm.240mm equipped)
    It is not designed for maritime targets
    JADAM role and identical
    Was developed for the simultaneous attack on the multi-target
    South Korea is the MTCR member states. (800Km range limit)
    Completed 800km ballistic missile development in the past

  4. Rhk, the vulcano ammo should cost around 25k$ the 155 round, and the range isn’t 80km but 100km (since the M982 excalibur cost 50k)

    http://www.diehl.com/en/diehl-defence/press-media/subjects-in-the-focus/new-precision-large-calibre-ammunition-for-armies-and-navies.html

    “An additional plus of the VULCANO artillery ammunition is its range. It lies at approx.. 80 kilometers (land) and 100 kilometers (sea) nearly doubling the performance of the U.S. competitor. Furthermore its price is more reasonable: In series production, the artillery projectile is said to cost only half as much as the U.S. competitor. ”

    Since you were talking about the 76mm we can assume the cost will be a lot smaller, (if it goes by proportions it should cost around 13k but i imagine it will have higher cost)

    No need of laser marking, they have mounted IR seeker,

    Yes the 76mm probably doesn’t do a lot of damage, but you have:

    1-120RPM
    2-No counter measures (no CIWS like against the missiles)
    3-A deviance of just one meter.
    4-Way cheaper than a missile with that range
    5-It is both offensive and defensive, since you can use it as CIWS

    Imagine how many targets a ship can engage with that RPM with the IR seeker doing the rest of the job.

    Want a bonus? since the chinese use Supersonic missiles sooner or later the IR seeker on the Vulcano will be probably mounted on the AA version too, so you will get a 40km CIWS against supersonic, with guided and manoeuvring ammo against a target that has a giant IR signature.

    My advice? Skjold class corvette this is the solution to your problems.

    1. * Thanks for the cost estimates, meriv. Still quite expensive, if you need 10 rounds to hit and damage a ship, that’s USD 130,000 for the 76 mm Vulcano rounds. Yes, since the 76 mm Vulcano round is pretty small, it is going to be hard to hit. With its IR Seeker though, the target can use decoys and hope it will spoof the cannon round away.

      * No, in order to reach 80 km against sea or land targets, the round will have to be fired in an INDIRECT manner, meaning using something similar to ballistic trajectory. However, since missiles are much smaller and much faster than ships, you can’t use the same way to hit them, you need to use DIRECT fire to hit them, and the range will be much closer, typically only 4-6 km against missiles using direct fire and using conventional ammo.

      * Oto Melara is offering ANOTHER round for CIWS against missiles, and that is the STRALES. It is a guided round used to shoot down a missile: http://www.otomelara.it/documents/1287567/3815358/STRALES_2013.pdf

      * When a South American navy bought 3 of these, it cost them only around USD 2 million each, which is way cheaper than a Phalanx, and better range, too, at around 8 km. The rounds of course will be expensive, but I think it is a great way to improve the capabilities of our ships, especially the Jacintos. A ship armed with VULCANO and STRALES rounds could theoretically do away with AShMs and short-range SAMs, and just add in a medium-range SAM. Not many countries have adopted them, though. Only Italy and one other South American country …

      1. On paper those Strales really look good. For USD 2 million you get a hybrid gun/missile CIWS with a range of 8 km, farther than the USD 13 million Phalanx CIWS’ 2.5 km range.

      2. This one I think applies only to weapons with more predictable ballistic trajectories like Rockets, Artillery and Mortar (RAM), not sure if it will be as effective against sea-skimming and/or maneuvering aircraft or anti-ship missiles. It does put a wrench on my concept of using Anti-Ship Ballistic Missiles though for the Philippines …

  5. What about similar to what Indonesia got from the US? 24 refurbished F-16’s for $800 million. Maybe we can get refurbished F-18’s for close to that amount and mount a couple of Harpoons each. The new ones can carry 4 harpoons.

    1. All I can say about those refurbished Indonesian F-16s is … Sayang. If I’m not mistaken, those were the same F-16 taken from the US National Guard stocks that we refused a couple of years ago, thinking that the cost was too high it was almost like buying new aircraft.

      If we had bought those then, we’d have F-16s by now. Of course, I think this was before China became an assh%#e at Panatag Shoal …

  6. China and Vietnam engaged into ship-ramming/blocking and water-cannon duels without resorting into a military confrontation. China has the advantage bec. it has more & bigger ships to use. Our government must support our shipbuilding industry by ordering Naval Fishing Trawlers armed with underwater rams and water cannons in large quantities for the PCG. This will generate employment and enhance the capability of the PCG to confront Chinese CG maritime vessels. These naval trawlers can serve as patrol boats, fishing boats, minesweepers, anti-submarine warfare and for ramming illegal Chinese fishing boats & water-cannon engagements against Chinese CG ships.

  7. 1 year operating maintenance costs (Korea Air Force standards)

    KF-16 1.2 million (2013)
    F-15K 2.2 million (2012)
    E-737 20 Million (2012)
    Global Hawk 77 million (2012)
    F-35A 5.7 million (2011)

    KF-16 2 Million (2006) —> maintenance, source code, parts localization
                                             2014 (1 million estimate)
    F-16 must be operating costs in each country.
    Costs must be purchased
    Taiwan F-16A / B the most expensive (politically)
    Egyptian, Turkish F-16C / D cheapest (military support)
    Estimated to be expensive if you buy the Philippines (market size, defense industry)

  8. Yep. We can always play the waiting game like what they did to us. Beef up spending for the next 10 years then we turn into aholes by suddenly escorting our fishermen with navy vessels and blocking their resupply routes. Difference is we have itlos. Btw, have been reading unclos laws recently and i might say the chinese if they have any brains know that they are wrong. Unclos is practically common sense and if they do believe they own it then its like saying that spain and portugal own both halves of the world. That is why they keep on claiming islets…time will run out until itlos decides and they are counting on the fact that asean will do nothing. Not even fight back…btw any frigate/corvette news?

    1. No news yet on the new Frigates, but various speculations that some announcement will be made between now up to the end of 2014, which is about a 3-month wait at most.

      The donated Pohang Corvette is set to be transferred next month, so that is worth looking forward to. The RPG-7s and new/refurbished M-113s are scheduled to arrive the 4th Quarter of 2014, so those are again worth waiting for also. The delivery of the PhAF AW109s have been moved forward to the 1st Quarter of 2015 …

  9. RHK111, why do you think the PN prefers to procure Frigates than LCS which is more suitable for our costal defense. Is it more expensive.
    As per Wikipedia information, By 2019, all Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigates in the United States Navy were to be replaced by the LCS. While the LCS class ships are smaller than the frigate class they will replace, they offer a similar degree of weaponry while requiring less than half the crew complement and offering a top speed of over 40 knots. A major advantage for the LCS ships is that they are designed around specific mission modules allowing them to fulfill a variety of roles. The modular system also allows for most upgrades to be performed ashore and installed later into the ship, keeping the ships available for deployment for the maximum time. The littoral combat ship (LCS) is a class of relatively small surface vessels intended for operations in the littoral zone (close to shore) by the United States Navy.[1] It was “envisioned to be a networked, agile, stealthy surface combatant capable of defeating anti-access and asymmetric threats in the littorals

    1. Sorry, I’m not a big fan of the LCS, not really sure what the US Navy wanted to do with it. It is very fast, but quite under-armed in its current configuration, although the manufacturer is offering a more heavily armed version of it. Its also quite expensive.

      Even the USN is now changing its mind, ordering less of these boats and considering a better Frigate based on the National Security Cutter.

  10. C-RAM or CIWS since the same weapons are used the factors of ammo per kill, dwell time, cost per engagement, etc. apply for both. MANTIS (Millennium) and Centurion (Phalanx) both examples of naval CIWS adapted for C-RAM. STRALES relies on a guided shell (the DART) like one of the solutions described in the article, in fact there is a C-RAM version of STRALES (DRACO) using the same ammunition. Use your head no need to wait for someone to spell it out to extrapolate. http://www.otomelara.it/products-services/landsystems/draco

    1. No need to get testy here, franmar. After all, we are all allowed our opinions here, and as far as I’m concerned your insistence on using the C-RAM as CIWS is clearly just an opinion. The Denel Dynamics article clearly says:

      “The simplest guidance law will be command to intercept. RAM targets have highly predictable trajectories due to their ballistic nature.”

      This is why the name is specific only to “Counter – Rockets, Artillery and Mortar”.

  11. Read the quote in context not in isolation. Sensors and weapons are discrete components of the system. Sensors for land use and those for naval use will use different guidance laws but still the systems examined in the article rely on the same weapons. Centurion is Phalanx on a truck, MANTIS is Millennium on a pallet, and the Umkhonto is a missile developed for naval vessels.

    The factors analyzed (dwell time, cost/engagement, etc.) have to do with weapons not sensors. (Denel after all makes munitions not radar.) The harder it is to kill a target the more these factors become relevant: precisely because a C-RAM’s job is arguably easier their effects will be magnified for a CIWS (e.g. dwell time against a maneuvering AShM will take longer relative to a mortar round with a ballistic trajectory) rather than be avoided. In other words these are factors inherent to weapons by their nature no matter their application. The difference is merely one of degree.

  12. Ang suliranin ng hukbong dagat at ng buong sandatahang lakas ay pinababayaan nito ang kanilang mga gamit ng hindi inaalagaan nang husto. Halibawa, me nakita akong huey sa loob ng kampo aguinaldo na imbes na hairpin lock ang nakalagay sa maliit na elisi nito, ang ipinalit ay binaluktot na pakong simento. Tama ba yun? Pero, pag pinoy ang tatanungin, ang sagot lang ay “pwede na yan!”. Ngayon kung putol ang isang dahon ng elisi ng barko, hahayaan lang yan, wala naman daw makakakita. Nakalubog ito sa tubig.
    Sana lang kung ang lahat ng miyembo ng sandatahang lakas ay katulad din ng Dragon boat team ng Phil. Army. Tahimik lang pero responsable at may binatbat! Bravo!

    1. Grabe. Subukan mong kuhanan ng piktyur sa susunod para makalampag ang AFP.

      Kung tutuo nga na ganito, gaano kahirap ba naman na pumunta sila sa isang “Aircraft Graveyard” para mangalap ng sim-pleng piyesang tulad nito? Marami tayong mga helikopter na hindi na talaga mapapakinabangan, mga tipong “scrap” na talaga, puede silang mangahoy duon.

      Ideally, dapat me sangguni ng AFP na namamahala sa mga ganito na tinatanggal lahat ng mapapakinabangang piyesa sa mga eroplano o helikopter na wala na talagang silbi at i imbentaryo sa isang lugar para baka maaaring mapakinabangan pa. Pero ang problema siyempre e kung saan ilalagay at iimbak, kailangan ding gumastos para dito.

      Atsaka baka maging ugat ng kuraptsyon dahil puedeng ibenta sa international market ang mga piyesang ganito, lalo na by internet …

  13. Tinagalog ko ang sagot ko dahil nahihiya ako baka mabasa ng mga intsik ang kahinaan natin. Atsk binabasa din nila ang blog na ito.

  14. Our past & present government has already made the biggest mistake of allowing China to take control of Mischief Reef in the first place and still continued that mistake with Mabini Reef and Scarborough Shoal. And now Reed bank is in danger of being invaded. How far is the Pnoy government going to allow China to slowly give-in to China’s creeping invasion of our territories. Up to Pag-Asa Island or Palawan Island. If within this year before the ITLOS decision, China invades Pag-Asa Island and our other remaining reefs and shoals in Spratly Islands, what is the Phil. going to do now. Just let China occupy them while waiting for the AFP to have a credible defense capability for several years. This is pure stupidity bec. no matter how much we modernize the AFP, it will never match China’s military might. While we are still in the process of acquiring modern fully-armed Frigates for the PN, MRFs for the PAF and Coastal Missile Batteries for the PN, PAF & PA, our government should have turned-over all the PN small naval ships and patrol boats to the PCG, BFAR & PNP maritime police to confront and stop Chinese CG maritime ships & illegal fishing vessels coming in and out of our EEZ, extracting our marine resources and occupying our reefs and shoals no matter how few and weak our capabilities are bec. that is the solemn constitutional duty of our government and the AFP to defend our sovereign territory even if many Filipino lives will die for it. That is why our National Anthem has the words “…ang mamatay ng dahil sa iyo”. Many of our political leaders either simply don’t understand or are totally ignorant of the real, true meaning of “dying for our country.” Japan is also weaker than China even if it has more capable military force than us but the Japanese gov’t. has the guts to confront China even if it leads to war

  15. very much agree. i admit that if it were up to us we can just do what the vietnamese did but alas we are even weaker than the vietnamese. our president also wants to do this (i think) but he also has to think about the 100 million other mouths to feed (sadly this is a reality). its easy to say makibaka but harder to justify all out conflict with a more powerful foe. the law ultimately will be our ultimate equalizer…but if china still continues to assert its ownership of the south china sea and all of the spartlys and all its riches after arbitration then ultimately we will have to fight (those politicians will have no excuse now) with or without help from ASEAN (God help us). On the good side apparently ayungin shoal and the reed bank contain 45% of the total natural gas deposits of the area (tama ba?) so maybe let china get the others shoals (for now) lets just protect the remaining that we have. by the way while china may have the strength in numbers for their navy i think Japan’s SDF navy is still more powerful (currently). It is a wild card navy since nobody knows exactly how they operate since some of their tech is indigenous and they have the biggest and quietest diesel sub fleet. China knows that their carrier is all show and no bite and can easily be defeated (for now) because it is limited by its ski jump (less missiles to carry for an aircraft), propulsion (non nuclear) and experience.

  16. sir jmcenabre, about playing hide and seek in the wps… that is actually quite difficult. wps is quite open. most islands don’t even have trees. if a stealth boat is able to launch missles and hit some PLAN ships… they can counter-attack using helicopters and planes. so hide in seek in the wps is, well, almost impossible. unless the one doing the hiding is a submarine.

  17. again what im saying here is stealth missile boats…i dont think if were talking about stealth boats they can be easily sighted or detect. with its size alone without stealth has low radar signature..how much if it is stealth. it can stay in a shallow portion out of reach of a submarine because its low draft and even planes cannot easily detect it because it is stealth.

  18. yes rhk111 because absence of MRFs and major surface capable missile ships and submarines..i prefer a quicker response of a combined surface launch anti ship missiles, protected by anti-aircraft missiles and stealth missile gun boats which i feel faster to purchase and immediately available.

    stealth missile gun boats are moving targets and cannot be easily detected and they can operate in areas under the cover or umbrella of surface launch anti ship missiles and anti-aircraft missiles. i think this could be an effective Sea Denial pending acquisitions of brand new MRFs and missile frigates.

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