Offshore Patrol Vessels

the B2 OPVs are fulfilling exactly the same role as their predecessors which were specifically designed as ‘colonial gunboats’. They are effectively unarmed, yet they will operate alongside sister ships east of Suez that carry medium calibre guns, SHORAD and ASM’s.
They are chronically under armed for their new role, that’s freely accepted by their Lords and Masters. It restricts them to a strictly observer role, they lack any ability to impose alarm and distress upon even the most amateur of Her Majesties enemies. They don’t even have any means to keep an IRGC Boston Whaler with a 23mm and a battery of 107mm rockets at arms length.

And yes, it really is ‘as simple as bolting the damn thing on the front’. People involved with the project fought hard to retain the ability to bolt a gun up to 76mm on the front. Even a Mk4 40mm Bofors, (Which we are taking aboard as a core weapon system), would represent a very substantial increase in lethality, (and would give them a credible air defence capability), at very little extra cost and no extra manning impact.

Oto Melara 76mm isn’t bolt on, it has a magazine below deck and hoists etc from the magazine to the gun
 

PhotEx

On ROPS
On ROPs
I said I wouldn't do this....

Except all the people you have to send off for training including operators, maintainers and Defense munition armorers. Which isn't easy to manage or cheap to manage.

Plus that mount is much more complicated then a DS30M with a KCB 30mm cannon so would probably require a couple more WE maintainers to look after it.

And this gun isn't even in RN service yet!

Sorry, but the Mk Is the new kiddie in the block, all that good support stuff is going to be there anyway.
And no, it’s not much more complex than a DS30. at its heart, it’s the good old Bofors gun. It’s been designed for exactly this role, main armament in minor vessels. You’ll see it spread across the Fleet in due course.
 
Sorry, but the Mk Is the new kiddie in the block, all that good support stuff is going to be there anyway.
And no, it’s not much more complex than a DS30. at its heart, it’s the good old Bofors gun. It’s been designed for exactly this role, main armament in minor vessels. You’ll see it spread across the Fleet in due course.
It's going to be. It's not now. And it's going to take time and money to set it all up ahead of the 31 coming in. They want the B2s out there now.

BAE_systems_Bofors_40Mk4_magazine.jpg


And I can tell you that is not the same level of complexity as the DS30. It's massively more complex. Programmable ammunition, what ever system is moving rounds from intermediate to ready. magazine.

It is possible it's going to replace 30mm on lots of platforms however I wouldn't be surprised if OPVs receive what ever simple system is going to replace 20mm Gambos.
 
Published by: THINK DEFENCE, on 16 August 2021.

Illegal Fishing and the British Overseas Territories.

One of the greatest sources of instability is the lack of access to food as populations grow. The world's fisheries will be increasingly under pressure, and conflict will follow.


It is of course an obvious statement to make but the demand for protein by a growing population will place increasing pressure on the world’s fisheries, and where there is pressure, there is friction, where there is friction, conflict is not far behind.

We are already seeing this with aggressive Chinese fishing fleets all over the world. Although a few years ago, an incident shows how it isn’t just in the South China sea or near their environment, it was off the coast of Argentina.

Argentina’s Coastguard sunk a Chinese flagged fishing vessel (Lu Yan Yuan Yu 010) after she was caught illegally fishing in Argentine waters and actually tried to ram the coastguard vessel.

+ On several occasions, the offending ship performed manoeuvres designed to force a collision with the coast guard, putting at risk not only its own crew but coast guard personnel, who were then ordered to shoot parts of the vessel.

The crew abandoned the ship and were subsequently rescued but this brazen display shows just how big a problem this is. Since 2106 when this happened, there have been numerous incidents of aggressive illegal fishing. Nations have responded by increasing fisheries patrols and providing additional resources. The Ecuador authorities recently commented half of the Chinese vessels operating in their area had turned off tracking systems to avoid monitoring. West Africa is also an area of intense pressure on fishing in the Gulf of Guinea.

Sierra Leone represents an interesting case study, a lack of resources and poor infrastructure meant enforcement action was weak but they still devoted a large proportion of their resources to it, In April this year the Sierra Leone Navy and Sea Shepherd Global conducted a joint operation that culminated in the arrest of four fishing vessels engaged in illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing in their inshore exclusion zone (IEZ). And yet only a few months later, Sierra Leone and Chinese governments announced a $55m deal to build an industrial fishing port and waste processing plant at Black Johnson in the Western Area peninsula.

This perfectly illustrates the tension between illegality and legal exploitation, a very difficult problem.
The UK’s Blue Belt Programme supports the UK Overseas Territories with the protection and sustainable management of their marine environments., some 4 million square kilometres of ocean.

+ Between 2016 to 2021, the Blue Belt programme was funded by nearly £25 million from the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund. The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office will directly fund the Programme for 2021/22, with £8 million funding confirmed.

Interestingly, it does not include the Falkland Islands that already has a very comprehensive and effective fisheries management programme.

1629546276367.png


One of the five key themes for Blue Belt is supporting compliance and enforcement and to support this the programme has funded research into long-range uncrewed aerial vehicles.

+ Supporting marine biosecurity toolkits guidance, developing environmental databases for Tristan da Cunha and St Helena and using satellite surveillance to monitor Illegal, Unreported Unregulated, fishing- are just some of the examples of Blue Belt work over the past year. The Blue Belt programme has created a Blue Belt Surveillance and Intelligence Hub – a centralised point to collate, analyse and disseminate intelligence to the UK Overseas Territories.

+ The Blue Belt Programme is collaborating with the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) to trial long-range unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for maritime surveillance. Over the past year, trials have taken place in the British Indian Ocean Territory and Uganda. The trials highlighted both the potential and the challenges that drones offer.


They continue to support monitoring and enforcement action.

The question for UK defence, given increasingly aggressive illegal fishing, when does it start to climb the priority stack and increasing the resources allocated? There are 4 million square kilometres of ocean in our purview.

It seems soon . . .

Discussing the Pitcairn Islands, Admiral Sir Tony Radakin, said . . .
"One of the world’s largest marine protected areas which we should be looking to police as part of our responsibilities as a maritime power . . ".

As part of the wider approach, DSTL is working with the UK Space Agency and SSTL to exploit the Nova-SAR satellite to detect vessels with no AIS, or AIS switched off . . .


1629546141507.png
[photo: HMS Severn on Exercise with the Fishery Protection Squadron].



Click below to view a presentation on the subject . . . .

https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/cgi/...article=4764&context=smallsat&type=additional
 
Last edited:
It does, that’s why we’ve bought it.
We are going to buy it because it comes with the T31 and we can't afford to change it to anything else whether we want it or not. The whole point was we bought what won the contract and no fiddling took place. People (and I'm sure even you) complained massively about the 40mm and the 57mm being fitted to it!

That doesn't change any of the problems involved with actually being able to afford or support the system coming into service early and whether that cost, and disruption is worth the extra capability added to OPV in the short term.

It takes more than big guns to run a navy........
 

PhotEx

On ROPS
On ROPs
We are going to buy it because it comes with the T31 and we can't afford to change it to anything else whether we want it or not. The whole point was we bought what won the contract and no fiddling took place. People (and I'm sure even you) complained massively about the 40mm and the 57mm being fitted to it!

That doesn't change any of the problems involved with actually being able to afford or support the system coming into service early and whether that cost, and disruption is worth the extra capability added to OPV in the short term.

It takes more than big guns to run a navy........

No, the RN came to the conclusion after substantial homework and tyre kicking in the 70’s, the correct answer to close defence on major vessels and Primary weapon for minor vessels was a radar guided automatic 40mm Bofors. The 30mm mounts were never the right answer - they were the off the shelf quick fix in the aftermath of the Falklands war.
The 30mm DSI simply isnt fit for purpose, it’s a does nothing well gun. The Mk4 Bofors is the gun the Navy always wanted, and will be eventually be fitted to many more vessels than the T31.
 

jrwlynch

LE
Book Reviewer
No, the RN came to the conclusion after substantial homework and tyre kicking in the 70’s, the correct answer to close defence on major vessels and Primary weapon for minor vessels was a radar guided automatic 40mm Bofors.

No, they did not: that was the solution in the 1940s and 1950s, with the Simple Tachymetric AA Gun (STAAG) Bofors fitted with Type 262 gun-laying radar.

How effective was it? Well, when Sea Cat looks like a better solution to the problem... then the radar-guided automatic Bofors wasn't winning the argument, and it certainly didn't measure up to Sea Wolf.

Of course, you've got the Ship's Cover for HMS Broadsword, describing the arguments about whether to fit radar-aimed Bofors guns or Sea Wolf as their point-defence systems? No?

The 30mm mounts were never the right answer - they were the off the shelf quick fix in the aftermath of the Falklands war. The 30mm DSI simply isnt fit for purpose, it’s a does nothing well gun.

Also wrong, but against such ignorance the Gods themselves rage in vain...

A little story for anyone interested in the facts, the rush-job 30mm were GCM-A03 mounts with twin KCB cannon, fitted midships to the 42s as "better than nothing" pending Phalanx.
1629625469308.png


The 30mm DSI mount was brought in to replace the random scatter of WW2-vintage 20mm Oerlikons, 40mm L/60 Bofors and such that ships had been carrying for close-range work, and was originally a single 30mm KCB on a stabilised, power-operated mount. Of course, this lacked accuracy, range and firepower compared to its US equivalent, a manually-pointed, unstabilised 25mm M242 Bushmaster... oh, wait. (We also had some 20mm GAM-B01s for ships really short of topweight, or to add where weight and space were short)

The next step of improvement was to give the DS30 mount proper off-mount fire control, and swapping the gun for the 30mm Bushmaster (more reliable, less maintenance, dual feed) was a useful opportunity; hence the Automated Small Calibre Gun. Still only deterrent capability for AA against fast-movers, but that's true of any small-calibre non-CIWS these days; but a huge leap in capability against low slow flyers and small surface craft, which is the job it's meant for. (For reasons that were annoying but expensive to fix, the Type 45s got built with automated KCBs - so, SCGs not ASCGs - which may have since been rationalised)

The Mk4 Bofors is the gun the Navy always wanted, and will be eventually be fitted to many more vessels than the T31.

Sadly, that's not true; did you have to pay your proctologist extra to extract that piece of nonsense?

A little hint - the Mk 4 Bofors started sea trials in 2011, at which point we were launching the last Type 45s. It didn't feature on the Type 26 even as a paper proposal (obviously the Navy wanted it so much they didn't mention it), on the carriers, or on the B2 OPVs. So, the Navy apparently really, really wanted this gun so much they never told anyone, asked for it, specified it...?

It's coming because it was fitted to the winning bid for the Type 31s, where we were willing to take MOTS offerings on armament (at one point we were spinning up to do a JSP655-compliant comparison of Rolling Airframe Missile, Barak and Sea Ceptor, until the lifecycle costs were pointed out and Sea Ceptor mandated as the SAM option) - not because the RN were demanding it. Similarly, the T31s are getting 57mm guns because that was the best fit for the requirements specified, not because there was a preferred candidate.

There was a detailed analysis of the performance of the Type 31 contenders against the above-water threat set specified done, as well as a Type 23 frigate and a B2 River as controls, to inform the competition and downselect; I'll offer a large cash bet that PhotEx hasn't ever seen it...

Since it's now in service, it's got a toe in the door, but there's no guarantee it won't end up a one-off: the next opportunity is probably going to be the Type 4X which is far enough out that the close-range armament's going to have everything from updated CIWS through newer PDMS to frickin' laaaasers competing for space, weight and power...
 
No, they did not: that was the solution in the 1940s and 1950s, with the Simple Tachymetric AA Gun (STAAG) Bofors fitted with Type 262 gun-laying radar.

How effective was it? Well, when Sea Cat looks like a better solution to the problem... then the radar-guided automatic Bofors wasn't winning the argument, and it certainly didn't measure up to Sea Wolf.

Of course, you've got the Ship's Cover for HMS Broadsword, describing the arguments about whether to fit radar-aimed Bofors guns or Sea Wolf as their point-defence systems? No?



Also wrong, but against such ignorance the Gods themselves rage in vain...

A little story for anyone interested in the facts, the rush-job 30mm were GCM-A03 mounts with twin KCB cannon, fitted midships to the 42s as "better than nothing" pending Phalanx.View attachment 598384

The 30mm DSI mount was brought in to replace the random scatter of WW2-vintage 20mm Oerlikons, 40mm L/60 Bofors and such that ships had been carrying for close-range work, and was originally a single 30mm KCB on a stabilised, power-operated mount. Of course, this lacked accuracy, range and firepower compared to its US equivalent, a manually-pointed, unstabilised 25mm M242 Bushmaster... oh, wait. (We also had some 20mm GAM-B01s for ships really short of topweight, or to add where weight and space were short)

The next step of improvement was to give the DS30 mount proper off-mount fire control, and swapping the gun for the 30mm Bushmaster (more reliable, less maintenance, dual feed) was a useful opportunity; hence the Automated Small Calibre Gun. Still only deterrent capability for AA against fast-movers, but that's true of any small-calibre non-CIWS these days; but a huge leap in capability against low slow flyers and small surface craft, which is the job it's meant for. (For reasons that were annoying but expensive to fix, the Type 45s got built with automated KCBs - so, SCGs not ASCGs - which may have since been rationalised)



Sadly, that's not true; did you have to pay your proctologist extra to extract that piece of nonsense?

A little hint - the Mk 4 Bofors started sea trials in 2011, at which point we were launching the last Type 45s. It didn't feature on the Type 26 even as a paper proposal (obviously the Navy wanted it so much they didn't mention it), on the carriers, or on the B2 OPVs. So, the Navy apparently really, really wanted this gun so much they never told anyone, asked for it, specified it...?

It's coming because it was fitted to the winning bid for the Type 31s, where we were willing to take MOTS offerings on armament (at one point we were spinning up to do a JSP655-compliant comparison of Rolling Airframe Missile, Barak and Sea Ceptor, until the lifecycle costs were pointed out and Sea Ceptor mandated as the SAM option) - not because the RN were demanding it. Similarly, the T31s are getting 57mm guns because that was the best fit for the requirements specified, not because there was a preferred candidate.

There was a detailed analysis of the performance of the Type 31 contenders against the above-water threat set specified done, as well as a Type 23 frigate and a B2 River as controls, to inform the competition and downselect; I'll offer a large cash bet that PhotEx hasn't ever seen it...

Since it's now in service, it's got a toe in the door, but there's no guarantee it won't end up a one-off: the next opportunity is probably going to be the Type 4X which is far enough out that the close-range armament's going to have everything from updated CIWS through newer PDMS to frickin' laaaasers competing for space, weight and power...
The next place to see if it ends up is FSS.
 

PhotEx

On ROPS
On ROPs
It's going to be. It's not now. And it's going to take time and money to set it all up ahead of the 31 coming in. They want the B2s out there now.

View attachment 598133

And I can tell you that is not the same level of complexity as the DS30. It's massively more complex. Programmable ammunition, what ever system is moving rounds from intermediate to ready. magazine.

It is possible it's going to replace 30mm on lots of platforms however I wouldn't be surprised if OPVs receive what ever simple system is going to replace 20mm Gambos.

it’s not particularly complex, it’s just a Bofors gun, and it’s an extremely reliable system that ticks all the boxes.
BTW, you don’t have to put the 3P rounds on it and can drive it with just the remote station on the bridge if you fit it on something not terribly warlike.
 

PhotEx

On ROPS
On ROPs
A little hint - the Mk 4 Bofors started sea trials in 2011, at which point we were launching the last Type 45s.

Here‘s a hint, the gun that caught the RN‘s eye in the 70’s was the DARDO Fast Forty.
Just think, the Armada Argentina had them in 1982, what a difference those little scamps might have made on our ships in Bomb Alley,
But Fast firing light guns were so last year, LW Seawolf was the future!

What’s that, even ancient hand cranked WWII veteran Bofors mounts proved more effective than allegedly ‘superior’ systems at San Carlos.

And here we are, nearly 50 years on, buying a fully automatic Bofors gun for Her Majesties war canoes. I guess they really had got the answer right in 1975.

and what’s that? No ones bothered to fit the 30’s on the carriers? Now there’s an opportunity.
 

jrwlynch

LE
Book Reviewer
Here‘s a hint, the gun that caught the RN‘s eye in the 70’s was the DARDO Fast Forty.
Just think, the Armada Argentina had them in 1982, what a difference those little scamps might have made on our ships in Bomb Alley,

Absolutely - a radar-aimed 40mm.

That doesn't have time to get from detection, track formation, a fire-control solution and firing, before the Argentine aircraft coming over the ridgeline have dropped their bombs and are on the wrong side of the ship.

Why, it's almost as if you don't know anything about how search radars, combat systems and fire control systems work.... and are just looking at a brochure someone picked up at a Royal Navy Equipment Exhibition

But Fast firing light guns were so last year, LW Seawolf was the future!

Obviously not if your knowledge is limited to glossy brochures and video games, where "moar dakka!" is always the answer...

What’s that, even ancient hand cranked WWII veteran Bofors mounts proved more effective than allegedly ‘superior’ systems at San Carlos.

Really? Sea Wolf got three kills in San Carlos, before the 22s were moved out to protect the carriers. 40mm Bofors got... about three "multi-kill credits" where (for instance) an A-4B Skyhawk (tail number C125) was shot down, while being engaged by two Rapier firing posts, Argonaut's Sea Cat and one of Fearless's 40mm.

Even Sea Cat did better than 40mm!

And here we are, nearly 50 years on, buying a fully automatic Bofors gun for Her Majesties war canoes. I guess they really had got the answer right in 1975.

This would be the 1975 when nobody, anywhere, was putting fully-automatic Bofors guns on any RN ship anywhere? When we wanted the Mk 4 Bofors that began sea trials in 2011? Good thing we decided not to wait for it!

Here‘s a hint, the gun that caught the RN‘s eye in the 70’s was the DARDO Fast Forty.
Just think, the Armada Argentina had them in 1982, what a difference those little scamps might have made on our ships in Bomb Alley,
But Fast firing light guns were so last year, LW Seawolf was the future!

What’s that, even ancient hand cranked WWII veteran Bofors mounts proved more effective than allegedly ‘superior’ systems at San Carlos.

And here we are, nearly 50 years on, buying a fully automatic Bofors gun for Her Majesties war canoes. I guess they really had got the answer right in 1975.

and what’s that? No ones bothered to fit the 30’s on the carriers? Now there’s an opportunity.

Phalanx 1B has a surface mode, for anything that's got past the escorts.

A point we had to make to D Scrutiny to get Phalanx on the 45s and 26s, while keeping the ASCGs - they overlap enough that you'd pick Phalanx if you only took one, but for an escort getting between the MEUs and the threat it benefits from both.

You were involved in those discussions, weren't you? Did you read the analysis? Raise any concerns at the time? Or were you banned from the meeting for endless fact-free burbling about Bofors guns?
 

TC20

Old-Salt
Absolutely - a radar-aimed 40mm.

That doesn't have time to get from detection, track formation, a fire-control solution and firing, before the Argentine aircraft coming over the ridgeline have dropped their bombs and are on the wrong side of the ship.

Why, it's almost as if you don't know anything about how search radars, combat systems and fire control systems work.... and are just looking at a brochure someone picked up at a Royal Navy Equipment Exhibition



Obviously not if your knowledge is limited to glossy brochures and video games, where "moar dakka!" is always the answer...



Really? Sea Wolf got three kills in San Carlos, before the 22s were moved out to protect the carriers. 40mm Bofors got... about three "multi-kill credits" where (for instance) an A-4B Skyhawk (tail number C125) was shot down, while being engaged by two Rapier firing posts, Argonaut's Sea Cat and one of Fearless's 40mm.

Even Sea Cat did better than 40mm!



This would be the 1975 when nobody, anywhere, was putting fully-automatic Bofors guns on any RN ship anywhere? When we wanted the Mk 4 Bofors that began sea trials in 2011? Good thing we decided not to wait for it!





Phalanx 1B has a surface mode, for anything that's got past the escorts.

A point we had to make to D Scrutiny to get Phalanx on the 45s and 26s, while keeping the ASCGs - they overlap enough that you'd pick Phalanx if you only took one, but for an escort getting between the MEUs and the threat it benefits from both.

You were involved in those discussions, weren't you? Did you read the analysis? Raise any concerns at the time? Or were you banned from the meeting for endless fact-free burbling about Bofors guns?

You seem an intelligent sort of a chap, apart from one thing, why bother responding to such drivel?
 

New Posts

Latest Threads

Top