Well, it seems that the US Navy’s newest MPA asset, the P-8 Posieden, is having berthing issues. Seems it’s a tad bit difficult to drop a torpedo designed for use at less than 1000ft from 20,000. Ya think?
More torpedo goodness!
I wonder how Sonobuoys are going to fare being dropped from that altitude as well or will the P-8 drop down to deploy a field and then return to the tanker for more gas to stay on station to process them buoys. Just wondering. There is a lot of good to come from a modern airframe (relatively speaking) like the 737-tube but applying it to the military application as complicated as Airborne ASW is a long stretch. They really needed to develop a couple of prototypes to test all this out. I fear we will have P-8’s that are not truly mission capable out flying around on station while the Engineers in both the Navy and at Boeing figure out all the cute little nuances of this kind of mission. Developing kits to make the P-8 Fleet actually work will be a product line at Boeing.
BT: Jimmy T sends.
I agree. The P-8 will have to be fully pressurized at altitude, and that means no unpressurized tube. All the sonobuoys will have to be either carried in external launchers, as in the P-3C and later variants, or have some airlock system to allow loading internally, sealing the tube, then opening an external door.
The other thing that will be required is a ballistic computer to time the drops. That will have to take into account the altitude, airspeed, winds aloft, etc. I’m not certain whether the current sonobuoy with it’s rotating fin retarding system will withstand a drop from that altitude, and whether, once it hits the water and the fins pop off, it will even come back up.
Lots of things to consider with this platform. I understand they have top men working on these issues. Top. Men.
So no MAD gear then?
Scott… prolly not, unless they have a UAV to do it for them. That 737 sucks gas like all get out below 20K feet, and it works even better at 30K.
I understand the desire for a heavy-lift, long-endurance jet MPA. However, I question the choice of the 737 airframe for the job.
As far as dropping the torpedo, I wonder what height the apogee of an ASROC is?
I wonder if the HAAWC will have the same problem the SDB has. SDBs glide so well, it takes the damn things forever to get down to the deck. It is a less preferred weapon for CAS because it takes so long to get warheads on foreheads.
How much will a shooting solution degrade while a torp is working its way down from 25K ft.?
I’ve been wondering the same thing. Also concerned about the effects of heavy weather on the glide path, sensors, etc. The old Soviet tactic was to hide under the nearest rain squall or thunder bumpers. Made many a mission seem longer than it was, and put extra fatigue on the crews too.
I’ll see what I can dig up and post to a new article.
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