Author Topic: Protecting Canada by Sub (split fm Canada's New, Liberal, Foreign Policy)  (Read 34509 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Eye In The Sky

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 221,740
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 8,793
    • VP INTERNATIONAL
How about emplacing CAPTORS under the ice and monitoring the field with Gliders with Sonars communicating with AOPS and LRPAs?

The gliders can remain passive, bobbing up and down under the ice, go active when they detect.  They only need to communicate if they make contact.  Then free up the Captors in the region of the contact.  No?

This is pretty far outside my lane.  I'd have to do some basic research to even make a WAG at these systems...

AOPS against a sub;  I am not sure what systems they are planning on putting on those, but I seem to recall reading they will have a relatively slow speed.  I've never seen anything on them having an ASW capability, other than a MH.
Everything happens for a reason.

Sometimes the reason is you're stupid and make bad decisions.

Offline Eye In The Sky

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 221,740
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 8,793
    • VP INTERNATIONAL
Too true about how Canadians and uneducated people in general act when you say "nuclear submarine".

The example I chose is one of the smaller nuclear submarines in service, so it gives the owner the long range and sprint capabilities needed to cover large areas of ocean. In the Canadian context, we do indeed have lots of area to cover, not to mention out affiliations with things like NATO task forces, which require getting across the ocean to marry up with the fleet. All this is outside of the other obvious need to operate near or even under the arctic ice.

Since the Arihant class also carried long range weapons (SLBM's or mini SLBMs), it means any similar capital ship outfitted the same way become that much more potent and flexible. It is capable of both tactical (anti-ship) and strategic missions, and being a submarine, will be very difficult to detect or counter. While still relatively large as submarines (@ 6,000 tonnes displacement vs 2,900 tonnes for the Sōryū-class submarine or 2,050 tons for the Israeli Dolphin class submarines), the flexibility of nuclear power makes it a logical choice for a Canadian capital ship all other factors being equal.

Since it is very clear all other factors are not equal, this is more of a thought experiment than anything else.

Because of the simple expense differences between diesel and nuc, I think if we were to increase our sub force, it would be SSK.

SSKs are no joke either...http://www.janes.com/article/56544/russian-submarine-fires-cruise-missiles-into-syria
Everything happens for a reason.

Sometimes the reason is you're stupid and make bad decisions.

Offline Dolphin_Hunter

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • 16,615
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 1,337
You can set up all the underwater systems you want.  But we will never be able to engage a submarine under the ice.

Heck we can (in theory) drop sonobuoys into the ice and track submarines under the ice.  We still can't reach out and touch someone and contrary to Al Gore's prediction we are a long way from an ice free Arctic.

Call me a cynic but I think the Victoria class submarine will be Canada's last submarines.

Offline Eye In The Sky

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 221,740
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 8,793
    • VP INTERNATIONAL
Call me a cynic but I think the Victoria class submarine will be Canada's last submarines.

But, if we were to upsize the RCN sub strength, would you go diesel, or nuc?  Pretend, for a minute, that Canadians cared about the military and supported an increased sub force.   :blotto:
Everything happens for a reason.

Sometimes the reason is you're stupid and make bad decisions.

Offline George Wallace

  • Army.ca Fossil
  • *****
  • 436,750
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 31,593
  • Crewman
But, if we were to upsize the RCN sub strength, would you go diesel, or nuc?  Pretend, for a minute, that Canadians cared about the military and supported an increased sub force.   :blotto:

If we weren't sending Billions of Canadian Dollars to Indonesia, Vietnam and so many other countries around the world, and instead increased our Defence Budget to at least match the same levels of GDP of our allies, perhaps we could go both routes.  Submarine Warfare has changed a lot over the past eighty years.  The role of submarines has expanded so that we would need a nuclear capability to travel under the Arctic Ice Cap, where that was never ever a concern sixty years ago.  Diesel subs have their advantages over Nuclear, but are incapable of prolonged periods under the ice.   There is a justification for both; most likely having a limited number of two nuclear, and a larger number of diesel.   Unfortunately, we are so cheap, we prefer to put all our eggs in one basket; often not filling that.


[Edit to add:]

Meanwhile DARPA has for several years been conducting studies on the use of unmanned underwater vehicles for hunting ships.  We have UAVs and Drones in the air, and the USN is looking at using some as Refuelers; so the possibilities are there to employ them underwater in numerous roles.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2016, 09:54:18 by George Wallace »
DISCLAIMER: The opinions and arguments of George Wallace posted on this Site are solely those of George Wallace and not the opinion of Army.ca and are posted for information purposes only.
Unless so stated, they are reflective of my opinion -- and my opinion only, a right that I enjoy along with every other Canadian citizen.

Offline Colin P

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 141,960
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 9,480
  • Civilian
    • http://www.pacific.ccg-gcc.gc.ca
the original nuke sub proposal was as a ASW fleet to hunt and kill subs, but at the expense of the surface fleet which would have been cut back severely. 

Offline Chris Pook

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 206,785
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 12,690
  • Wha daur say Mass in ma lug!
This is pretty far outside my lane.  I'd have to do some basic research to even make a WAG at these systems...

AOPS against a sub;  I am not sure what systems they are planning on putting on those, but I seem to recall reading they will have a relatively slow speed.  I've never seen anything on them having an ASW capability, other than a MH.

I don't think the AOPS is intended to go chasing subs - and you would be right, I think, about its slow speed.  But given its boat deck, its ability to take on board and plug in containers and its 20 tonne crane I think it could act as a barrier tender - monitoring and servicing a variety of remote systems, some piloted, some autonomous, some passive, some active.  The CAPTOR is not necessarily the weapon of choice, I gather there are a lot of mines out there.  I chose the CAPTOR simply because I have heard of it and understand it is available.

Not necessarily a good idea but as technologies keep changing the way the game is played I wonder about what the system demands will look like in 5, 10, 20, 40 years - the life of many of the platforms that the government is buying (maybe).
"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

Offline Thucydides

  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 195,580
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 13,733
  • Freespeecher
Staying on the usual hobby horse, nuclear powered submarines are the only sensible choice, given Canada's circumstances.

We need ships which can cover the vast areas no only of our three coastlines, but also to project power if/when the GoC decides that it is in the National Interest. As a capital ship, modern nuclear submarines can do both tactical and stratigic missions, having speed, range, carrying capability and the ability to mount powerful sensor systems.

SSK's can do many of the same things, but if a navy goes that route, they also limit the range, endurance and speed at which they are able to react. The Russian use of SSK's to launch missiles against targets in Syria is a case in point, the Russian SSK didn't have to go as far as an American or Canadian submarine would potentially have had to transit to do the same mission.

Going to an SSK fleet for Canada means their mission will primarily be coastal defense, with a limited ability to project force and carry out strategic missions.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline Half Full

  • Jr. Member
  • ***
  • 1,670
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 50
Before too much committment to UUVs in the Arctic, there are still many issues with their employment in that environment :

http://breakingdefense.com/2016/03/polar-bears-robot-subs-and-melting-ice-navys-icex-2016/

"The Navy’s new fleet of Unmanned Underwater Vehicles (UUVs) has their own problems up north, said Scott Harper, head of Arctic Research at the Office of Naval Research (ONR). Usually, unmanned mini-subs in trouble have the option to surface and “phone home” or check their position against GPS, he said. But those signals don’t penetrate the ice, and UUVs are too small to break themselves a hole in the ice the way manned subs can. Autonomous systems are a big part of the Defense Departments future, but to get them to function in such extreme conditions, Harper said, roboticists have to find new and more “elegant” solutions.”
 
Even the liquid water can pose a problem. The Arctic Ocean has uniquely strange layering: warmer water on the bottom, colder water on top — the opposite of everywhere else on Earth — with a thin layer of freshwater from melting ice floes on the surface. The resulting mix of temperatures and salinity messes with the buoyancy of UUVs and the propagation of sonar.
 
So a huge amount of ICEX research is just testing sensors: from the UUVs, from the two manned attack submarines that will be involved, and from static hydrophones lowered through holes in the ice.
 
The other part is meteorological. The warming climate actually makes the Arctic harder to figure out, Harper said. The edge of the ice pack has become more dynamic, melting back in summer, only to refreeze in fall. The result is short-lived, local patches of open water and a lot of thinner but much more mobile ice. The floe under the ICEX base camp is currently moving at nine miles a day, Harper said, much faster than in most exercises past."
I would rather be in a boat with a drink on the rocks than in the drink with a boat on the rocks.

Offline Thucydides

  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 195,580
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 13,733
  • Freespeecher
Sounds like the other Arctic ship programs, we don't want to actually pay for something that is capable, so we look at partial solutions instead. UUV's might be useful along the edges and approaches to the Arctic to provide warning that someone or something is there, but then a manned ship needs to steam north to investigate or porsecute the target.

Still better than not knowing what is going on there at all...
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline Colin P

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 141,960
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 9,480
  • Civilian
    • http://www.pacific.ccg-gcc.gc.ca
Before too much committment to UUVs in the Arctic, there are still many issues with their employment in that environment :

http://breakingdefense.com/2016/03/polar-bears-robot-subs-and-melting-ice-navys-icex-2016/

"The Navy’s new fleet of Unmanned Underwater Vehicles (UUVs) has their own problems up north, said Scott Harper, head of Arctic Research at the Office of Naval Research (ONR). Usually, unmanned mini-subs in trouble have the option to surface and “phone home” or check their position against GPS, he said. But those signals don’t penetrate the ice, and UUVs are too small to break themselves a hole in the ice the way manned subs can. Autonomous systems are a big part of the Defense Departments future, but to get them to function in such extreme conditions, Harper said, roboticists have to find new and more “elegant” solutions.”
 
Even the liquid water can pose a problem. The Arctic Ocean has uniquely strange layering: warmer water on the bottom, colder water on top — the opposite of everywhere else on Earth — with a thin layer of freshwater from melting ice floes on the surface. The resulting mix of temperatures and salinity messes with the buoyancy of UUVs and the propagation of sonar.
 
So a huge amount of ICEX research is just testing sensors: from the UUVs, from the two manned attack submarines that will be involved, and from static hydrophones lowered through holes in the ice.
 
The other part is meteorological. The warming climate actually makes the Arctic harder to figure out, Harper said. The edge of the ice pack has become more dynamic, melting back in summer, only to refreeze in fall. The result is short-lived, local patches of open water and a lot of thinner but much more mobile ice. The floe under the ICEX base camp is currently moving at nine miles a day, Harper said, much faster than in most exercises past."
I help support experiments by the SFU Underwater Research Lab in the early 90’s. they were working on underwater communications for AUV’s. From that I am a big believer that for most stuff you have a “mothership” ROV that is umbilicaled to the support ship, that goes down o the depth you want and then release the AUV to carry out the work, that way the AUV conserves power and only has to communicate a short distance in same plane. The AOPs could support a couple of larger Hybrid AUV’s that could surface/snort to recharge and then continue on a pattern search and listen mode, they could upon picking up a contact that matches records in it’s memory to release a buoy to the surface to communicate to the Mothership. Who could have another armed AUV that could release hunter killer torps. Combine that with bottom sensor networks, Satellite surveillance and ASW aircraft patrols, plus occasional surface warships then you created a reasonable deterrent.     

Offline Chris Pook

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 206,785
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 12,690
  • Wha daur say Mass in ma lug!
Could you throw some autonomous gliders into the mix together with ScanEagle sized UAVs for surface control and comms relay?
"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

Offline Colin P

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 141,960
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 9,480
  • Civilian
    • http://www.pacific.ccg-gcc.gc.ca
Small UAV's and weather don't always mix. A oil rig resupply boat likely is the best design for launching and recovering fixed wing UAV's

Offline Eye In The Sky

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 221,740
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 8,793
    • VP INTERNATIONAL
Small UAV's and weather don't always mix.

 8)
« Last Edit: March 12, 2016, 09:12:26 by Eye In The Sky »
Everything happens for a reason.

Sometimes the reason is you're stupid and make bad decisions.

Offline GR66

  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • 55,880
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 620
Staying on the usual hobby horse, nuclear powered submarines are the only sensible choice, given Canada's circumstances.

We need ships which can cover the vast areas no only of our three coastlines, but also to project power if/when the GoC decides that it is in the National Interest. As a capital ship, modern nuclear submarines can do both tactical and stratigic missions, having speed, range, carrying capability and the ability to mount powerful sensor systems.

SSK's can do many of the same things, but if a navy goes that route, they also limit the range, endurance and speed at which they are able to react. The Russian use of SSK's to launch missiles against targets in Syria is a case in point, the Russian SSK didn't have to go as far as an American or Canadian submarine would potentially have had to transit to do the same mission.

Going to an SSK fleet for Canada means their mission will primarily be coastal defense, with a limited ability to project force and carry out strategic missions.

I think Thucydides is bang on with this.  If we intend to use subs in an expeditionary role nuclear is the way we need to go.  Transit time, the ability to keep up with an allied surface group, and no need for refueling support are huge advantages over a diesel sub in this role.

The problem with SSNs is that they are likely an impossible sell to Canadians.  The very word "nuclear" is likely a political 3rd rail.  The strategic expeditionary roles that an SSN is best suited for are also exactly the types of roles that many Canadians could be convinced by the chattering classes are not the types of roles our military should be engaged in.  The cost will be huge and would likely mean we'd have to make cuts in other important areas.  Finally the support and maintenance issue is huge.  I understand that the cost of building a domestic support infrastructure was one of the reasons the original idea for SSNs was dropped.  Having our subs go to the US for maintenance (or leasing them from the US for that matter) would open us to major criticism as being puppets of the US.  I wish it wasn't so, but I think the idea of SSNs for Canada is a non-starter.

So that leaves us with the potential for a small (4-6?) fleet of SSK's which are best suited for defence of our own waters.  The question then is whether this is the most effective and cost-efficient way to control our own territorial waters?  While the best defence against an enemy sub may be our own sub, is a fleet of 4-6 enough to effectively cover the vast area that we need to patrol?  Would the same money if shifted to additional MPA's, MH's and surface ASW hulls provide us as much or more capability than a small number of subs?  What exactly is the sub and surface warship threat in our own waters compared to the overall flexibility that a variety of other platforms might provide?

Offline Eye In The Sky

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 221,740
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 8,793
    • VP INTERNATIONAL
Everything happens for a reason.

Sometimes the reason is you're stupid and make bad decisions.

Offline Karel Doorman

  • Member
  • ****
  • 7,350
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 196
Does Canada Need Submarines?

so if read the article correctly and the conclusion as well Michael(writer)thinks they're not a necessary thing for Canada(subs)just buy extra patrol ships and all will be well  ::) (yeah right)

walter
Karel Doorman(Battle of the Java Sea)

"I'm attacking,follow me"

Offline Chris Pook

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 206,785
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 12,690
  • Wha daur say Mass in ma lug!
Does Canada Need Submarines?

Quote
Denmark has come to the same conclusion. Like Canada, Denmark is a NATO country with substantial maritime zones, largely because of the Faroe Islands and Greenland. Yet in 2006, Denmark decommissioned the last of its German-designed diesel-electric submarines. According to the Danish Ministry of Defence:

The current security environment, including the enlargement of NATO and the EU, is of such a nature that the conventional military threat to the Danish territory has disappeared for the foreseeable future.41

Concurrent with the decommissioning of its submarines, the Danish government increased the size and capability of its surface fleet – including new offshore patrol vessels to provide inspection and fishery protection.

Danish Ministry of Defence, “4 Appendices,” 10 June 2004, p. 8, available at: http://www.fmn.dk/eng/allabout/Documents/ENG_Forligstekst.pdf .

Quote
ABSALON Class (2004)
Ships:
L16 ABSALON (2004)
L17 ESBERN SNARE (2005)

Quote
IVER HUITFELDT Class (2012)
Ships:
F361 IVER HUITFELDT (2012) *)
F362 PETER WILLEMOES (2012) *)
F363 NIELS JUEL (2013) *)

http://www.navalhistory.dk/English/Naval_Lists/Periods/PresentNavy.htm


I think the threat assessment included in that paper may be somewhat dated.   And although the article itself is date (Vol 14 - 2014?)  the data used seems to be, like the Danish information, even more dated and not entirely reflective of anybody's current threat assessment and demonstrated response.

Smoke and rose coloured glasses. 


"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

Offline Thucydides

  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 195,580
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 13,733
  • Freespeecher
I think Thucydides is bang on with this.  If we intend to use subs in an expeditionary role nuclear is the way we need to go.  Transit time, the ability to keep up with an allied surface group, and no need for refueling support are huge advantages over a diesel sub in this role.

The problem with SSNs is that they are likely an impossible sell to Canadians.  The very word "nuclear" is likely a political 3rd rail.  The strategic expeditionary roles that an SSN is best suited for are also exactly the types of roles that many Canadians could be convinced by the chattering classes are not the types of roles our military should be engaged in.  The cost will be huge and would likely mean we'd have to make cuts in other important areas.  Finally the support and maintenance issue is huge.  I understand that the cost of building a domestic support infrastructure was one of the reasons the original idea for SSNs was dropped.  Having our subs go to the US for maintenance (or leasing them from the US for that matter) would open us to major criticism as being puppets of the US.  I wish it wasn't so, but I think the idea of SSNs for Canada is a non-starter.

So that leaves us with the potential for a small (4-6?) fleet of SSK's which are best suited for defence of our own waters.  The question then is whether this is the most effective and cost-efficient way to control our own territorial waters?  While the best defence against an enemy sub may be our own sub, is a fleet of 4-6 enough to effectively cover the vast area that we need to patrol?  Would the same money if shifted to additional MPA's, MH's and surface ASW hulls provide us as much or more capability than a small number of subs?  What exactly is the sub and surface warship threat in our own waters compared to the overall flexibility that a variety of other platforms might provide?

Which is a huge problem. Despite the fact that no one seems willing to admit it, we have pretty much always done "expeditionary forces" (Deploying to the North West Territories or the Boer War were certainly "expeditionary" in their day), and you can reel off a long list of "expeditionary" missions since the 1990's right up to the present. Maybe nuclear or conventional submarines won't be useful for every mission, but there have been plenty of missions where the RCN has a big presence, and by extension subs would have contributed as well.

The other factor you allude to is also significant: we have the longest coastline in the world, so 4 to 6 of anything is simply not enough (with 6, you essentially can have one vessel on patrol, with another in transit and one in dock being fitted out per coast). I doubt you can convince the chattering/political classes you would need at least 12 and probably closer to 18 submarines to properly cover Canada's maritime needs (SSK or SSN). Not to mention many more surface vessels, patrol aircraft, SAR assets and so on....
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline Eye In The Sky

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 221,740
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 8,793
    • VP INTERNATIONAL
I think the threat assessment included in that paper may be somewhat dated.   And although the article itself is date (Vol 14 - 2014?)  the data used seems to be, like the Danish information, even more dated and not entirely reflective of anybody's current threat assessment and demonstrated response.

Smoke and rose coloured glasses.

Unfortunately I wasn't able to find anything else more recent, which makes me question if pieces such as this will be considered by the current government come time to decide to replace or not.

Bit over my pay grade and outside my lanes.  I think, overall, we are far too willing to just toss away capabilities that are extremely hard to get back once they've gone away. 
Everything happens for a reason.

Sometimes the reason is you're stupid and make bad decisions.

Offline Oldgateboatdriver

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • 140,665
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 3,645
I hope both of you gentlemen know who Professor Michael Byers is: He is a relatively young (I think mid-thirties) professor with law degrees and poli-science degrees who has never lived outside of academia and was a NDP candidate in Vancouver for the last general election. He fully endorses the NDP unilateral "there will never be wars again" agenda, so it's not surprising that he endorses no-submarines policies, just like he endorsed no-F-35 when that issue came up. And BTW, he has not spent a single day in uniform of any service in his lifetime (I don't know about Cadets, though!)

Unfortunately for us, one of his area of knowledge (sort of) is the legal aspects of Arctic sovereignty claims. I say sort of, because he claims certain understandings of facts that he doesn't know or understand.

For instance, his claim that Allies share information on whereabouts of their submarines for search and rescue purposes or to avoid submarines collisions is just laughable.

First, submarines, like any other vessels, are responsible for their own collision avoidance, something you do by looking (or in the case of submarines, listening) where you are going. Nobody tells any body else where its submarines are for collision avoidance purposes, except in exercises, where we do so by setting submarine emergency surfacing areas, for safety purpose.

Second, nobody tells everybody else where their submarines are for SAR purposes: We don't rely on other nations for SAR of own submarines (besides, when was the last time you heard of a submarine SAR ops? I recall a Russian sub about fifteen years ago. That was the last. Submarines in peacetime are not in any serious danger that would require permanent tabs kept on them for "SAR" purposes.

Allied nations, however, do trade partial info on sub operations in two ways: first, area of operations are created and assigned to either submarines, surface ships, and sometimes, MLRPAs. These areas are created so that a surface ship, for instance, that gets a possub contact in a zone where no allied submarine is supposed to be operating then knows it is somebody else's submarine (usually Russian in the Atlantic and Chinese in the North Pacific/Indian Ocean).

The second way to trade info, is if, for any particular reason you are trading joint maritime picture information with another Navy. Then you get where their submarines are.

And Arctic ops, BTW, were highly classified and the info on "who was where" traded only between the two NATO nations that participated: The US and the UK. And no, they didn't tell us anything "for SAR purposes".

So Prof. Byers is completely wrong here.

He is also full of it (since he hasn't a clue on how submarines work, it's not surprising) where it comes to  submarines being "available off-the-shelf" and "with the lead time, training to operate them could occur".

First of all, there is no such thing as a "shelf" stocked with submarines (or, as I have explained before anything else for that matter in the maritime world). The fact that some yards have a design of a sub on hand (and built some of them for other people) doesn't mean they "have them on hand". It means they are peddling a design and if and only if they make a sale, start getting the parts they need and working on construction, with deliveries two to three years in the future. That can't help you if you need something NOW, nor may it help you if tension in the world starts rising and everybody (the nation with sub building capacity first) starts to build submarines: You get to the end of the line and wait even longer). Moreover, these peddler of "off-the-shelf" designs may not have what you need (a submarine isn't a submarine isn't a submarine: you need the right one for your circumstances). In fact, as of right now, only one builder makes a submarine that meets Canada's requirement: Kawasaki heavy industries, and they are only now, for the first time accepting to let the design to someone else, the Australian's, in view of their common threat: China.

Finally, his view that you can train the crew during the lead time of construction is simply ridiculous. First, where would you be able to train a sufficiently large number of people simultaneously to take over a whole boat when they all have to start with the very demanding submarine qualification? Second, and this is true of a lot of military specialized fields of operations but even more so in submarines, the problem is never getting enough of the lower rung/beginners qualified. The problem is getting your senior personnel, charged with the more specialized technical requirements and with the advanced tactical knowledge qualified. I am sorry but you cannot take a surface ship CERA and put him down into a submarine after a short two year stint to do submarine qualifications. He needs the lead time of having done his basic quals a long time ago, then served as junior engineer, then as a watch keeper engineer and then as A/CERA all on submarines, to be safe as a CERA. Same goes for sub captains. unless they did their basic sub OOW qual right after getting their OOW cert, then went back as a sub divisional officer, then back as a sub combat Officer and/or XO, they are not fit to take command, and someone who served on the surface ship all his years cannot just step into it. That takes 15 to 20 years, not two or three (and these lead times are getting longer - not shorter). Moreover, the tactical knowledge required is past down AT SEA from submariner to submariner in that osmosis that happens as you serve in ever higher position onboard tour after tour, so that even if you could have the "15 years" lead to send everyone to train here and there in advance at various other nation's facilities, they would not tactically gel as a Canadian submarine crew for years after being put together nor develop  a "Canadian" approach to submarine ops for quite some time thereafter.

BTW, Prof. Byers misses one important reason for continuing to operate submarines. Assuming that he is correct and that the defence of Canada's coasts does not require submarines (I disagree, but what the hell, for argument sake), it remains that a large number of nations have and are building even more submarines out there, and Canadian surface ships regularly deploy and operate near these nations. They need the training of facing a real submarine to be able to safely defend themselves, and contrary the good professor's view, nations don't easily "loan" boats to one another for that purpose (in fact, and contrary to what he believes, even the US has a hard time getting non-nuke boat time from allies to train the US Navy - submarines in all nations are heavily tasked, including OWN nation surface force training - so rarely available to loan to others or for extra tasking).

 :cheers:

All this would be lost by not having submarines.   
« Last Edit: March 13, 2016, 10:21:36 by Oldgateboatdriver »

Offline S.M.A.

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 132,380
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 6,530
VADm Mark Norman reiterates need for subs in interview
« Reply #46 on: March 13, 2016, 20:56:41 »
In this long interview, RCN chief Vice Admiral Mark Norman weighs in on a number of issues that affect the fleet, including the need for submarines:

Embassy News

Quote
A conversation with the commander of the navy

Vice-Admiral Mark Norman talks naval capabilities, the need for submarines and more.

Quote


(...SNIPPED)

On what the Royal Canadian Navy needs

“Canada needs a balanced fleet that allows us to not only defend our interests here directly at home, defend our sovereignty...but we also need to be able to go anywhere in the world that Canada needs us to go at a time of our choosing, under the conditions of our choosing. And that kind of global reach and flexibility is not about ambition. It’s about practicality.

“I think we’ve got a pretty good road map right now for what Canada needs for the next half of this century. We need to basically recapitalize most of the fleet. We need to deliver on the shipbuilding program that’s already in place. We need offshore patrol vessels that we can use offshore and in the Arctic. We need surface combatants. We need submarines. We need helicopters.

“We need everything that supports all that, and that often gets lost in the conversation. That includes the infrastructure, that includes the people, that includes the training system and everything else that allows us to do that. We need motivated, well-educated young Canadians who want to go to sea.”

(...SNIPPED)
Our Country
--------------------------------
"A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: We did it ourselves."   - Lao Zi (老子)
-------------------------------------------
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm."
- Winston Churchill

Offline Thucydides

  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 195,580
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 13,733
  • Freespeecher
Boeing announces a UUV:

http://nextbigfuture.com/2016/03/boeing-echo-voyager-unmanned-submarine.html

Quote
Echo Voyager, Boeing’s latest unmanned undersea vehicle (UUV), can operate autonomously for months at a time thanks to a hybrid rechargeable power system and modular payload bay. The 51-foot-long vehicle is the latest innovation in Boeing’s UUV family, joining the 32-foot Echo Seeker and the 18-foot Echo Ranger.

The size of the new Echo Voyager is in the middle of the German U-Boat lengths which were 40-60 feet long depending upon design.

U-boats dominated the seas for several years due to the fact that thousands were produced.

A militarized Echo Voyager could have a similar role if they were mass produced at low cost in the event of a conflict.

The Echo Voyage has a dive depth of about 11000 feet or nearly 2 miles.

The smaller Echo Seeker can go to a depth of 20,000 feet (3.7 miles)

http://www.boeing.com/features/2016/03/bds-echo-voyager-03-16.page

Sadly the website which posted this seems to be confused about the difference between feet and metres, so I cut that part.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline Colin P

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 141,960
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 9,480
  • Civilian
    • http://www.pacific.ccg-gcc.gc.ca
I hope both of you gentlemen know who Professor Michael Byers is: He is a relatively young (I think mid-thirties) professor with law degrees and poli-science degrees who has never lived outside of academia and was a NDP candidate in Vancouver for the last general election. He fully endorses the NDP unilateral "there will never be wars again" agenda, so it's not surprising that he endorses no-submarines policies, just like he endorsed no-F-35 when that issue came up. And BTW, he has not spent a single day in uniform of any service in his lifetime (I don't know about Cadets, though!)

Unfortunately for us, one of his area of knowledge (sort of) is the legal aspects of Arctic sovereignty claims. I say sort of, because he claims certain understandings of facts that he doesn't know or understand.

For instance, his claim that Allies share information on whereabouts of their submarines for search and rescue purposes or to avoid submarines collisions is just laughable.

First, submarines, like any other vessels, are responsible for their own collision avoidance, something you do by looking (or in the case of submarines, listening) where you are going. Nobody tells any body else where its submarines are for collision avoidance purposes, except in exercises, where we do so by setting submarine emergency surfacing areas, for safety purpose.

Second, nobody tells everybody else where their submarines are for SAR purposes: We don't rely on other nations for SAR of own submarines (besides, when was the last time you heard of a submarine SAR ops? I recall a Russian sub about fifteen years ago. That was the last. Submarines in peacetime are not in any serious danger that would require permanent tabs kept on them for "SAR" purposes.

Allied nations, however, do trade partial info on sub operations in two ways: first, area of operations are created and assigned to either submarines, surface ships, and sometimes, MLRPAs. These areas are created so that a surface ship, for instance, that gets a possub contact in a zone where no allied submarine is supposed to be operating then knows it is somebody else's submarine (usually Russian in the Atlantic and Chinese in the North Pacific/Indian Ocean).

The second way to trade info, is if, for any particular reason you are trading joint maritime picture information with another Navy. Then you get where their submarines are.

And Arctic ops, BTW, were highly classified and the info on "who was where" traded only between the two NATO nations that participated: The US and the UK. And no, they didn't tell us anything "for SAR purposes".

So Prof. Byers is completely wrong here.

He is also full of it (since he hasn't a clue on how submarines work, it's not surprising) where it comes to  submarines being "available off-the-shelf" and "with the lead time, training to operate them could occur".

First of all, there is no such thing as a "shelf" stocked with submarines (or, as I have explained before anything else for that matter in the maritime world). The fact that some yards have a design of a sub on hand (and built some of them for other people) doesn't mean they "have them on hand". It means they are peddling a design and if and only if they make a sale, start getting the parts they need and working on construction, with deliveries two to three years in the future. That can't help you if you need something NOW, nor may it help you if tension in the world starts rising and everybody (the nation with sub building capacity first) starts to build submarines: You get to the end of the line and wait even longer). Moreover, these peddler of "off-the-shelf" designs may not have what you need (a submarine isn't a submarine isn't a submarine: you need the right one for your circumstances). In fact, as of right now, only one builder makes a submarine that meets Canada's requirement: Kawasaki heavy industries, and they are only now, for the first time accepting to let the design to someone else, the Australian's, in view of their common threat: China.

Finally, his view that you can train the crew during the lead time of construction is simply ridiculous. First, where would you be able to train a sufficiently large number of people simultaneously to take over a whole boat when they all have to start with the very demanding submarine qualification? Second, and this is true of a lot of military specialized fields of operations but even more so in submarines, the problem is never getting enough of the lower rung/beginners qualified. The problem is getting your senior personnel, charged with the more specialized technical requirements and with the advanced tactical knowledge qualified. I am sorry but you cannot take a surface ship CERA and put him down into a submarine after a short two year stint to do submarine qualifications. He needs the lead time of having done his basic quals a long time ago, then served as junior engineer, then as a watch keeper engineer and then as A/CERA all on submarines, to be safe as a CERA. Same goes for sub captains. unless they did their basic sub OOW qual right after getting their OOW cert, then went back as a sub divisional officer, then back as a sub combat Officer and/or XO, they are not fit to take command, and someone who served on the surface ship all his years cannot just step into it. That takes 15 to 20 years, not two or three (and these lead times are getting longer - not shorter). Moreover, the tactical knowledge required is past down AT SEA from submariner to submariner in that osmosis that happens as you serve in ever higher position onboard tour after tour, so that even if you could have the "15 years" lead to send everyone to train here and there in advance at various other nation's facilities, they would not tactically gel as a Canadian submarine crew for years after being put together nor develop  a "Canadian" approach to submarine ops for quite some time thereafter.

BTW, Prof. Byers misses one important reason for continuing to operate submarines. Assuming that he is correct and that the defence of Canada's coasts does not require submarines (I disagree, but what the hell, for argument sake), it remains that a large number of nations have and are building even more submarines out there, and Canadian surface ships regularly deploy and operate near these nations. They need the training of facing a real submarine to be able to safely defend themselves, and contrary the good professor's view, nations don't easily "loan" boats to one another for that purpose (in fact, and contrary to what he believes, even the US has a hard time getting non-nuke boat time from allies to train the US Navy - submarines in all nations are heavily tasked, including OWN nation surface force training - so rarely available to loan to others or for extra tasking).

 :cheers:

All this would be lost by not having submarines.   

Yes and our lack of that ability cost us dearly in the first half of WWII and was a significant issue till the O-boats came along. People don't realize that our Subs are sometimes used as part of the NATO Perisher (like) course for training sub captains. The Victoria class have a good range for a sub, something that both Canada and Australasia need.

Offline GR66

  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • 55,880
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 620
I have no doubt about the utility of subs in general or for Canada specifically.  The question I have though is if there is a certain minimum number required to make the expense worth the opportunity cost lost to other capabilities?

Does the relative usefulness of just 4-6 subs with all the overhead related to having subs (infrastructure, support, training & manning issues, etc.) equal the same amount of money added to other capabilities like additional MPA's, surface hulls, UUV's, satellites, etc. 

If having just 4 (or 6?) subs realistically means we can only have one (or two?) on active deployment at any given time then is that capability really effective?  Say we are in a conflict with Russia and are able to deploy one sub to defend each coast at any given time.  While individually the sub may be a much better anti-sub platform than an MPA, can it provide enough coverage to be militarily effective?  Would 5 x MPAs instead be more effective in overall terms?

Again, not questioning if subs are an effective and important platform.  But in a Canadian context how many would we realistically need to be worth the expense?  Is four enough?