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All Things Air Defence/AA (merged)

FJAG

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The article itself is innocuous basically telling us that the Army is putting air defence on the front burner but that procurement will be a "long haul" process.

For me the real interesting part about the CBC's article is the hundreds of comments that have come in. If you want a quick lesson in how stupid the Canadian public is when it comes to defence and security issues then you should give this a read. Have a few shots of a good single-malt close at hand, however.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/anti-aircraft-canadian-forces-1.5399461

:cheers:
 

daftandbarmy

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milnews.ca said:
Mod note:  Merged several AA threads into here - will also continue to consolidate more AA stuff here.

Bumped with the latest:

Last month I had a beer with a guy who got blown up in an Iltis, or an equivalent soft skin vehicle, in AFG when we thought that technology would be 'good enough' for a real war zone. A few years later we deployed Leo II.

As usual, we'll likely have to get a bunch of people hurt before we do the right right thing .... a few years later.  ::)
 

Rifleman62

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FJAG
For me the real interesting part about the CBC's article is the hundreds of comments that have come in. If you want a quick lesson in how stupid the Canadian public is when it comes to defence and security issues then you should give this a read. Have a few shots of a good single-malt close at hand, however.

Reading stupid, cheap comments, especially on CBC, deserve only a drink of cheap booze or CWW (Cheap White Wine).
 

The Bread Guy

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Rifleman62 said:
FJAG
Reading stupid, cheap comments, especially on CBC, deserve only a drink of cheap booze or CWW (Cheap White Wine).
At best ...
 

FJAG

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Rifleman62 said:
FJAG
Reading stupid, cheap comments, especially on CBC, deserve only a drink of cheap booze or CWW (Cheap White Wine).

milnews.ca said:
At best ...

:surrender:  I bow to your superior wisdom in this matter.

I do have a bottle of Sherry left over from when my sister-in-law visited. I'll just do with that although I expect that I'll need a lot more of it. ... I don't like Sherry. :boke:

;D
 

dimsum

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FJAG said:
:surrender:  I bow to your superior wisdom in this matter.

I do have a bottle of Sherry left over from when my sister-in-law visited. I'll just do with that although I expect that I'll need a lot more of it. ... I don't like Sherry. :boke:

;D

Or don't read those comments? 

Masochist  :nod:
 

Kirkhill

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Happy New Year from Shanghai

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zh3-Mvrp1Lc

Maybe

https://www.scmp.com/video/china/3044513/shanghais-drone-show-welcoming-2020-reportedly-never-happened-new-years-eve

On the other hand, Singapore

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmpB3SEZ2Rk

Either way - swarms are a reality - what can you do with them on the battlefield?  What do they mean for persistence and networking?

 

Colin Parkinson

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Already non-state actors have used anti-ship missiles twice and the Saudi oil facility attack used drones from a quasi-state. I foresee domestically made drone using components sourced from recreational drones being used more and more. Recreational drones could be sent using pre programmed waypoints and then only switching on their radio connection on target approach, so there would be very little time to notice the approach via RF transmissions and it may have a preprogramed target as a backup if RF is jammed. With a little work you could get a two stage drone that flies slowly to the target area, picks up radar transmissions and then within X distance, goes into high speed mode in an attempt to take out the defending radar.

So for $2000USD, a terrorist group can buy a DJI drone that gives them all the software controller and camera needed. Motor, RC model controls and body components likely another $500USD. Warhead is a PD fuze from a mortar with plastic explosive or similar, likley another $500usd in costs to them. labour is cheap, another $250USD maybe.  So they spend $3500 for a good size long range attack drone, bit less for a recce drone, even less if they use the DJI to drop 40mm rounds. 
 

a_majoor

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While DIY drones, UAV's and UCAV's are a pretty scary thought, conceptually it could be even more difficult to defend against these if they become "self contained" in the sense that they need no external signals to operate or coordinate.

Flocks of birds or schools of fish are not full of individually intelligent actors, but can still carry out complex actions by having a few very simple "built in" rules. I recall an article many years ago where scientists modeled and recreated the behaviour of a flock by giving each "agent" in the computer program some very simple rules to follow, which were essentially "stay no closer to any other agent than "x" distance, but never get further than "y" distance from any other actor". There is obviously a bit more to it than that, and I can't find the article at the moment, but programming a very simple AI into each member of a UAV swarm could elicit similar behaviour.

I suspect that a sort of "hunting" behaviour can also be programmed into a UAV or swarm member, by teaching it things like how we use terrain to mask our movements, or to look at a field and calculate probable weapons emplacements (where would you put a machine gun to cover an approach from this axis of advance?) They then go looking for probable areas where targets may be located, and flock or swarm to cover an area, evade enemy fire and attack from all angles and directions.

For the moment, this would still be high level contractor equipment, but small, cheap computers like Raspberry Pi's and the widespread knowledge of high level computing, neural networks and so on could lead to home built devices much like the $3500 UAV upthread in 10 to 15 years.

Something to ponder.
 

brihard

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Thucydides said:
While DIY drones, UAV's and UCAV's are a pretty scary thought, conceptually it could be even more difficult to defend against these if they become "self contained" in the sense that they need no external signals to operate or coordinate.

Flocks of birds or schools of fish are not full of individually intelligent actors, but can still carry out complex actions by having a few very simple "built in" rules. I recall an article many years ago where scientists modeled and recreated the behaviour of a flock by giving each "agent" in the computer program some very simple rules to follow, which were essentially "stay no closer to any other agent than "x" distance, but never get further than "y" distance from any other actor". There is obviously a bit more to it than that, and I can't find the article at the moment, but programming a very simple AI into each member of a UAV swarm could elicit similar behaviour.

I suspect that a sort of "hunting" behaviour can also be programmed into a UAV or swarm member, by teaching it things like how we use terrain to mask our movements, or to look at a field and calculate probable weapons emplacements (where would you put a machine gun to cover an approach from this axis of advance?) They then go looking for probable areas where targets may be located, and flock or swarm to cover an area, evade enemy fire and attack from all angles and directions.

For the moment, this would still be high level contractor equipment, but small, cheap computers like Raspberry Pi's and the widespread knowledge of high level computing, neural networks and so on could lead to home built devices much like the $3500 UAV upthread in 10 to 15 years.

Something to ponder.

A lot of the small off the shelf commercial drones have the ability to 'return to sender' if they lose signal; they plug in a GPS coordinate to return to and land safely. This would not be something that would be very difficult to reprogram in order to allow recreational drones with a small payload to be 'fired' at point targets. Think stuff you can get an accurate 8 figure MGRS grid off Google Earth and that would be vulnerable to a small payload; fuel storage tanks, etc. Hell, potentially large aircraft parked in known spots on an apron.
 

Colin Parkinson

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It will be interesting to get a engineer to dig into a DJI drone and see which areas in China are hard wired geo-fenced. Geo-fencing means that the drone is programmed at the factory not to take off or enter those areas. So all major airports in the US and Canada are geo-fenced already within the retail software, that can be turned off for advanced used. I suspect however that the Chinese government would hardwire the geo-fencing of some areas, some would be obvious, but others might be quite interesting.
 

Retired AF Guy

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Looks like the recent missile attacks in Iraq may have shaken up some people in Ottawa.

Iran attack underscores need for new air defences: Canadian Army

By Lee Berthiaume, The Canadian Press — Jan 8 2020

OTTAWA — The launching of Iranian missiles against a base housing Canadian soldiers in Iraq has highlighted a long-standing deficiency for the Canadian Army: the inability to defend against air attacks such as aircraft, rockets and drones.

Iran on Tuesday fired missiles at two military bases in Iraq, including one near the northern city of Irbil that has housed Canadian troops for more than five years as part of the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

No one was injured in the missile attack, which was in retaliation for the killing of Iranian Maj.-Gen. Qassem Soleimani by a U.S. drone last week. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau confirmed Wednesday that Canadian soldiers were at the base at the time of the Iranian attack.

Canadian troops in Iraq and elsewhere are routinely deployed with allies who have what are called "ground-based air defences," or GBADs in military parlance, which can include everything from missile interceptors and anti-aircraft guns to electronic jamming devices and lasers.

But Canadian Army spokesperson Karla Gimby said the Iranian missile attack nonetheless demonstrated why a new air-defence system is one of the army's top procurement priorities.

"Iran launching missiles underscores the need for militaries — and the Canadian military — to have GBADs," Gimby said Wednesday, though she added: "It is too early to tell if recent events will impact the GBAD procurement timeline."

Successive Canadian Army commanders have raised the lack of air defences for frontline troops since the military retired the last of its anti-air weapons in 2012.

However, efforts to acquire a new system have been stuck in neutral for years. The Department of National Defence is not expecting delivery of a new system until at least 2026, which is projected to cost between $250 million and $500 million.

Officials have previously suggested that part of the problem is trying to figure out exactly what threats the system will be designed to counter, particularly given rapid advances in technology.

In a recent interview with The Canadian Press, Canadian Army commander Lt.-Gen. Wayne Eyre referenced Iran's use of drones to attack Saudi Arabia's largest oil facility in September as one new airborne threat on the battlefield.

"No army in history has gone to war with all of the resources that it wanted, all the capabilities that it wanted," Eyre said. "That being said, GBAD is one of the ones that I am most concerned about because it is not just a capability shortfall, it's a capability gap. We don't have it."

When the Canadian military put away the last of its anti-air weapons in 2012, it was on the assumption that Canada and its allies would have air superiority in any battle and not have to worry about airborne attacks, said defence analyst David Perry of the Canadian Global Affairs Institute.

"The Taliban never had any of that kind of stuff. (ISIL) really didn't have any of that kind of stuff," Perry said. "So we've been deploying in places where it hasn't been a problem."

The Iranian attack demonstrates the importance of Canadian troops on the ground being able to protect against airborne threats, he said.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on Jan. 8, 2020.

Lee Berthiaume, The Canadian Press

Link

 

Journeyman

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Retired AF Guy said:
Looks like the recent missile attacks in Iraq may have shaken up some people in Ottawa.
Did you mean "waken up"?  :whistle:
 

tomahawk6

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The Pentagon has become more aware that the Army needs more Patriot batteries. The bases in Iraq had none they are in SA. More THAAD would also help. Of course the USN could provide an umbrella of sorts. We have become used to adversaries with no aircraft. If we have to deal withChina or Russia then a more robust ADA capability would be needed.
 

Loch Sloy!

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As an aside, there was a thread around here awhile ago suggesting that the "easy" solution to the Cdn Army's current lack of an AD capability was to just give AD weapons systems to infantry units. This incident illustrates why that is not a good idea. The easy part is part is firing the missile. The hard part is understanding the overal airspace control structure and situation. It takes years of expertise to effectively command and control an air defence unit.

Strongly disagree. While completely abdicating Air Defence to the Infantry isn't a solution to the overall capability gap, infantry very much need an integral SHORAD capability. With proper training and control measures MANPADS (or perhaps LAV mounted systems) are an appropriate weapon system for infantry and would pose minimal risk to civil aviation. It would greatly enhance the ability to suppress enemy attack helicopters and ground attack aircraft along the FEBA in a peer conflict. Relying only on integrated higher level air defence systems is a recipe for system failure. Integral/ intimate SHORAD capability with the infantry (not reliant on fully functioning higher level C2 networks) is an important layer to the AD cake.
 

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I was the one who suggesting the MANPADS as an interim solution....in reading the doctrine points that were provided....I concur with them.  Having a weapon without a proper, effective means to employ them within our doctrine is...not a solution.

 

daftandbarmy

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NavyShooter said:
I was the one who suggesting the MANPADS as an interim solution....in reading the doctrine points that were provided....I concur with them.  Having a weapon without a proper, effective means to employ them within our doctrine is...not a solution.

The British, thrust directly from a 'theoretical peace time Anti-Air mode' (kind of like us now), were rudely surprised by the realities imposed upon them by Argentinian air force, which very nearly cost them the war. Sound joint services doctrine, backed by the right training, weapons and other gear, at all levels, is clearly essential:

"The Battle for San Carlos lasted 21 to 25 May. The British called the waters around the landing area and the beachhead “Bomb Alley” because of the aggressive Argentine air attacks. Flying just above the wave tops, the Argentine based attack aircraft made repeated attacks on the British Task Force with bombs and Exocet anti-ship missiles.

The Argentine air attacks proved devastating. From 21 to 25 May the Argentine air attacks sank one British destroyer, 2 frigates and one container ship (Atlantic Conveyor). Additionally, two more destroyers, three frigates, and three logistic landing ships were damaged.

In addition to the air attacks on British fleet, the Argentine air force attacked the beach head which was defended by Rapier surface to air missiles. The Rapiers were also intended to protect the British naval ships around San Carlos. Once ashore, three Skyhawks dropped twelve bombs on the brigade maintenance area, killing six men, wounding twenty-seven, and starting a major fire in 45 Commando’s heavy weapons ammunition dump. Brigadier Thompson visited the area, profoundly alarmed. The entire brigade’s operations had been planned on the assumption of keeping its logistics afloat. The [Argentine’s] air assault had forced them to instead to create huge dumps [on land] at Ajax Bay.  Where else could they go? …The answer was nowhere. It was fortunate for the land force that the enemy never attacked Ajax again after inflicting the one, deadly fright.

Effects of the air attacks immediately impacted the British land forces timeline. Establishing the British Army Falklands Beach Support Area took much longer than expected because after the initial attacks at San Carlos the various stores ships were withdrawn with only those unloading allowed in the area. Enemy action had an effect on the build up in a way that was simply not envisaged.

These delays meant naval vessels had to endure more punishment in Bomb Alley and ammunition dumps established at various locations which because of the slow build up were vulnerable. Clearly, the inability to build up the Beach Support Area at speed was having a very real impact on losses and if the Argentine commander was sharper and used this delay to counter attack who knows what would have happened."

https://smallwarsjournal.com/jrnl/art/area-denial-falklands-war-lessons-learned-implications-for-land-warfare-2030-2040-after-the
 
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