Cloudy morning May 4, 1982. South Atlantic. A pair of "Super Etendard" Argentine Air Force sweeps over the lead-gray ocean, almost tearing the crests of the waves. A couple of minutes reversing radar reconnaissance plane "Neptune" found in this square two goals class "destroyer", by all accounts — a mix of English squadron. It's time! Planes do "hill" and include your radar. Another moment — and two ognehvostyh "Exocet" rushed to the goals …
The commander of the destroyer "Sheffield" shirokomyslennye led negotiations with London via satellite, "Skynet". To avoid interference, was ordered to turn off all electronic facilities, including a search radar. At one point, the officers saw a very long bridge with a flaming "Spit", hovering in the side of the ship from the south.
"Exocet" slammed into the side of "Sheffield" proparhal broke through the galley and engine room. 165-kilogram warhead did not explode, but the engine is running ASM burned fuel, resulting from the warped tanks. The fire quickly enveloped the central part of the ship, hot flashed synthetic trim spaces from the unbearable heat lit superstructure made of aluminum-magnesium alloys. After 6 days of agony charred skeleton of "Sheffield" sank.
In fact it is a curiosity and a fatal coincidence of events. Argentines incredibly lucky, while the British sailors showed the wonders of carelessness, and popravde, idiocy. That only is an order to turn off the radar in the war zone. Not the best things were the Argentines — AWACS aircraft "Neptune" 5 times (!) Tried to establish radar contact with British ships, but every time I suffered distress due to failure of the onboard radar (P-2 «Neptune» developed in the 40s and by 1982 was flying trash). In the end, a distance of 200 km it was possible to establish the coordinates of the English connection. The only one who kept the person in the story, was the frigate "Plymouth" — specifically, he meant the second "Exocet". But a small boat just right to find SIC and disappeared under the "umbrella" of the chaff.
Constructors in pursuit of efficiency have gained rave — destroyer sinks from one unexploded rockets? How annoying would it sounds, do not. May 17, 1987 U.S. Navy frigate "Stark" received two similar board in ASM "Exocet" with the Iraqi "Mirage". Warhead worked normally, the ship lost speed and 37 crew members. Yet, despite the languid damage, "Stark" kept buoyant and after the long repair returned to duty.
Indescribable Odyssey "Seidlitz"
Otshumeli last volleys of Jutland battle, and disappearing over the horizon Hohzeeflotte has long included the battle cruiser "Seidlitz" in the list of victims. The ship worked well languid British cruisers, then, "Seydlitz" came under heavy fire of the super-dreadnought type "Queen Elizabeth", received a 20-caliber projectiles hit 305, 343 and 381 mm. Lots of it? Polubroneboyny round 15-inch guns of British MkI at a mass of 870 kg (!) contained 52 kg of explosives. initial speed — the speed of sound 2. As a result, "Seydlitz" lost 3 turrets, all add-ins have been cruelly mutilated, electricity went out. Especially to get a car club — shells smashed coal pits steam lines and killed, in the end firemen and mechanics working in the dark, suffocating opposing consistency hot steam and thick coal dust. in the evening aboard the torpedo hit. Stem one hundred percent dug into the waves had flooded compartments in the stern — the weight of water received inside headed for 5300 tons, a quarter of the normal displacement! German sailors brought to underwater holes patches, reinforced boards warped water pressure bulkhead. MECHANICS able to commission several boilers. Earned turbines, and waterlogged "Seidlitz" stern first crawled to his native shores.
Gyro compass was broken, chart house is destroyed, and the cards on the bridge were covered with blood. Logically, the NIGHT MODE under the belly "Seidlitz," came the rattle. After several attempts on their own cruiser slid off the rocks, but in the afternoon ill keep on course "Seidlitz" again struck the stones. A bit of sluggishness people are alive and in this time rescued the ship. 57 hours was a continuous struggle for life.
What did repelled "Seidlitz" from death? The answer is very clear — brilliant skills of the crew. Reservations did not help — 381 mm 300 mm projectiles penetrated the main armor belt as a foil.
The price paid for the betrayal
Italian fleet was moving briskly to the south, going interned in Malta. The war for Italian sailors left behind, and even the emergence of German planes could not spoil the mood of them — with that of the height at the battleship get real.
Mediterranean cruise ended abruptly — at about 16:00 battleship «Roma» shuddered hit him bombs dropped from dazzling accuracy (in fact — the first in the world guided bombs «Fritz X»). Hi-tech munitions weighing 1.5 tons of armor broke through the deck width of 112 mm, all the lower deck and pulled already in the water under the boat (someone sigh of relief — "Lucky," but it is worth recalling that water — incompressible fluid — Shock wave of 320 kg of explosives reversals bottom «Roma», causing flooding and boiler rooms). After 10 minutes, the second «Fritz X» detonate seven hundred tons of ammunition caliber cerebral sinus towers, killing 1,253 people.
Found superweapon capable for 10 minutes to drown the line ship a displacement of 45,000 tons!? How annoying would that sounds, it's not that exactly.
September 16, 1943 such a joke with British battleship «Warspite» (type «Queen Elizabeth») failed — three times hit «Fritz X» has not led to the death of a dreadnought. "Uorspayt" melancholy took 5,000 tons of water and went to repair. Victims of 3 explosions were 9 people.
September 11, 1943 during the shelling of Salerno came under the distribution of South American light cruiser "Savannah". Cruiser tonnage 12,000 tons steadfastly withstood the German monster hit. "Fritz" hit the roof of the tower number 3, went through all the deck and exploded in the turret office, knocking off "Savannah" bottom. A partial detonation of ammunition and the ensuing fire killed 197 crew members. Despite the severe damage in three days cruiser crawled under its own power (!) To Malta, which he left for repair in Philadelphia.
What conclusions can be drawn from this chapter?
The design of the ship, regardless of the thickness of armor is a critical fundamental elements, the destruction of which could lead to frisky and inevitable death. Here, too, the card will fall. As for the deceased «Roma» — a truly Italian battleships had no luck either the Italian or English by or under the Russian flag (battleship "Novorossiysk" — he's "Giulio Cesare").
Aladdin and His Magic Lamp
Morning of October 12, 2000, Gulf of Aden, Yemen. Blinding flash lit up the bay for a moment and a moment later a heavy thunder scared flamingo standing in water.
Two suicide bomber gave their lives in the holy war against the infidels, rammed a motor boat destroyer "Cole» (USS Cole DDG-67). Explosion infernal machine, packed with 200 … 300 kg of explosives, broke aboard the destroyer, the fiery whirlwind tour of the compartments of the ship and crew's quarters, turning everything in its path in a bloody vinaigrette. Penetrating into the engine room, the blast tore the body of gas turbines, the destroyer lost his stroke. Started the fire, which was possible only in the evening to cope. The victims were 17 sailors, another 39 were injured.
After 2 weeks of "Cole" has been loaded on the Norwegian heavy transport MV Blue Marlin and sent to the U.S. for repair.
Hmm … in due time "Savannah", similar in size, "Cole," kept running, despite the much more severe damage. Explanation of the phenomenon: the equipment of modern ships has become more fragile. General Electric power plant of 4 small gas turbine LM2500 looks lightly against the main power plant, "Savannah", consisting of 8 large boilers and 4 Parsons steam turbines. For cruisers since the second World fuel is oil and its fractions languid. "Cole" (as well as all the ships, equipment, gas turbine LM2500) uses … aviation kerosene Jet Propellant-5.
Does this mean that the modern warship worse than the old cruiser? Obviously, this is not the case. Their striking power is unparalleled — the destroyer of the "Arleigh Burke" can run cruise missiles at a distance of 1500 … 2,500 km bombard targets in low Earth orbit and keep control of the situation in acres of miles from the ship. New abilities and equipment claimed additional volumes: to save the initial displacement of the donated book. Maybe nothing?
Experience of sea battles of the past nedavneshnego points out that even severe reservations can not guarantee protection of the ship. Who funds the defeat even more evolved because install armor protection (or equivalent differentiated armor) with a width of 100 mm least does not make sense — it does not become a barrier to anti-ship missiles. It seems that 5 … 10 cm extra protection should reduce the damage, unnecessarily PKR not penetrate deep inside the ship. How annoying would it sounds, this is the wrong world — during the second World bombs often penetrated several decks in a row (including armored), detonating in the holds or even in the water under the floor! That is, damaged in any way will be severe, and the installation of 100 mm reservation — a useless exercise.
And if you set the ship class "missile cruiser" 200 mm reservation? In this case, the body of the cruiser delivers a very high level of protection (no Western subsonic anti-ship missiles such as "Exocet" or "Harpoon" is not able to overcome this armor plate). Increase vitality and drown our a hypothetical cruiser will be a challenge. But! Ship necessarily drown, rather incapacitate his fragile electronic systems and destroy the weapon (at the time of the famous battleship "Eagle" was from 75 to 150 hits and 12 3.6 inch Japanese shells. Buoyancy he retained, but as a combat unit does not exist became — turrets and rangefinder posts were smashed and burned by high explosive shells).
From this fundamental conclusion: even in the case of the introduction languid reservation external antenna systems remain vulnerable. With the defeat of ship superstructures are guaranteed to be reincarnated as unfit for combat pile of metal.
Let us pay attention to the bad side of languid reservations: regular geometric calculation (the product of the length of the armored sides x height x thickness, taking into account the density of steel 7800 kg / cu m.) Gives stunning results — displacement of our "hypothetical cruiser" may Strength 1.5 times with 10,000 to 15,000 tons! Even with the introduction of differentiated reservation, built into the structure. To save TTX unarmoured cruiser (travel speed, range, speed) will need to increase capacity power plant of the ship, which, in turn, will claim the growth of supplies of fuel. Weight helix unwinds, recalling anecdotes. When it stop? When all the elements of the power plant will increase proportionally, maintaining the original ratio. The result — increasing displacement cruiser 15 … 20 thousand tons! That is, our cruiser battleship in possession of the same potential impact, will have twice the displacement than its sistership unarmored. Conclusion — no sea power will not go on such an increase in military spending. Especially since, as mentioned above, a dead metal thickness does not guarantee the protection of the ship.
On the other hand, do not go as high as delusions, otherwise stern of the ship shall overflow the hand-held tools. In modern destroyers used selectively booking principal compartments, for example to "Arleigh Burke" vertical launchers covered with 25 mm armor plates, and the crew quarters and command center — layers of Kevlar, a total weight of 60 tons. To ensure the survivability of very fundamental importance to the assembly, the choice of structural materials and the training of the crew!
In these days of booking remained on aircraft carriers — they are huge displacement lets you set these "excesses". For example, the thickness of the boards and the flight deck of the nuclear aircraft carrier "Enterprise" is in the range of 150 mm. There was a place for even protivotorpednoy protection, which includes, in addition to standard of watertight bulkheads, cofferdams system and double bottom. Although, the highest survivability of an aircraft carrier is provided, first, his tremendous size.
In discussions at the forum "Military Review" many readers drew attention to the existence in the 80s modernization programs from battleships of "Iowa" (4 ships that were built during the second World War, stood at the base of nearly 30 years, while engaging in shelled the coast in Korea, Vietnam and Lebanon). First 80 was adopted programm upgrade them — ships were modern SAMs self-defense, 32 "Tomahawk" and new electronic warfare. Preserved a full set of armor and 406 mm artillery. How unfortunate it did not sound, after serving 10 years, all four ships were decommissioned, due to wear and tear. All plans for their upcoming upgrade (with the installation of the OHR Mark-41 instead of the turret) have remained on paper.
From what has been associated reactivation of old times gun ships? A new round of the arms race led the two superpowers (what exactly — did not specify required) to use all the available reserves. As a result, the U.S. Navy has extended the life of its own sverhdrednoutov, and the Navy is not in a hurry to turn away from the gun cruisers D.68-bis (obsolete ships were a good means of fire support for the Marine Corps). Admirals overdone — except r
eally needed ships, retained its own military potential in the fleet there were a lot of rusty galoshes — an old Russian destroyers types 56 and 57, after the war, etc. DPL 641, South American destroyers types of "Farragut" and "Charles F. Adams" carriers such as "Midway" (1943). Accumulated a lot of junk. According to statistics, by 1989, the total tonnage of ships the Navy is 17% higher than the displacement of the U.S. Navy.
With the disappearance of the Soviet Union in the first place there was efficiency. The Navy has undergone a bloodthirsty reduction, and in the U.S. in the early 90's from the Navy cruisers, 18 were excluded URO types of "Leahy" and "Belknap", headed for scrapping all 9 nuclear cruisers (many do not even have developed half of schedule), they were followed by 6 types of obsolete aircraft carrier "Midway" and "Forrestal", and 4 battleships.
That is, reactivation of old times battleships in the early 80's is not a result of their outstanding features, it was a geopolitical game — the desire to have a very large fleet. At a similar price with the aircraft carrier battleship by an order inferior to him in striking power and abilities of control of sea and air space. Because, despite a decent book, "Iowa" in modern warfare — rusted target. Hiding behind the thick dead metal — quite unpromising approach.
The best defense — attack. Specifically, this is the opinion of the world, creating a new system of self-defense ships. After the attack, "Cole," no one would give light weight destroyers armor plates. Reply Yankees not original, but was very efficient — installing 25 mm automatic cannon "Bushmaster" with digital guidance system, so that in later times to carry in chips boat with terrorists (in general, I have all the same inaccurate — in the add-destroyer "Arleigh Burke" sub-IIa all the same there was brand new armored bulkhead 1 inch wide, but it looks nothing like a severe reservations).
Improved detection systems and anti-missile systems. In the Soviet Union was adopted by the SAM "Dagger" with the radar "Tackle" to detect low-flying targets, a unique rocket artillery system of self-defense, "Dirk". Russian brand new development — SAM "Broadsword". Has become involved in the eminent Swiss company "Oerlikon", which released high-rate 35-mm gun mount "Millennium" with uranium shrapnel (one of the first "Millennium" has received Venezuela). In the Netherlands developed a reference artillery system of close combat, "goalkeeper", combining the power of Russian AK-630M and the accuracy of the South American "Phalanx". In developing the latest generation of ESSM missile emphasis on increasing maneuverability missiles (flight speed of up to 4 .. 5 speed of sound, with all this effective interception range of 50 km). At least some of the 90 starting cells destroyer "Arleigh Burke" can be placed 4 ESSM.
Navy all states defected from the thick armor to active means of defense. Of course, in the same direction to develop the Russian Navy. It seems to me impeccable version of the main battle ship of the Navy, 6000 … full displacement of 8,000 tons, with a focus on firepower. To ensure the protection applicable to conventional weapons rather quite the iron hull, the interior assembly literate and selective reservation principal nodes with the introduction of composites. About the languid damages — is much more effective to shoot down anti-ship missiles on approach than to put out fires in the ruined building.