US Navy DDG 1000 Zumwalt Class


Curious George

New Member
I don't know what's so "revolutionary" about this design. Its basically just a submarine that can't dive (ie always stuck on "surface cruise"). I don't know why they didn't just make it into a proper submarine with superior surface cruising capabilities, at least that way it can be truly stealthy as it could actually dissapear under the sea instead of just being "low observable".
 

Anton Gregori

New Member
Subs have different design requirements and trade-offs than surface combatants. Trying to combine the two would result in a ship that's either a lousy sub, or a lousy surface combatant. The visual similarity between this and a sub is just skin-deep.

What keeps other countries from developing similar ships is mostly money. Money for the R&D and money for the ships themselves. But economics always favours the followers when it comes to R&D. If the design is successful, then China (or India, Brazil, etc.) will borrow its ideas in 10 or fifteen years. If the design fails, then that's a few billion that China won't have to spend because somebody else took the risk.

Maintaining a technological edge requires huge amounts of continuous investment. I don't see the U.S. being able to outspend the rest of the world on this for the next 50 years, but this ship will keep the lead alive for an extra decade or so.
 

delft

Brigadier
They would have to replicate and beat the technology...and they believe it will take belligerent nations 50 years to do so. Time will tell.
Don't know why, but I always felt that the carrying capacity of LPDs are not that great. They give me the impression of rockets, huge in size, but very low capacities. These hips sounds huge in number, usually 20-30,000 tons, some exceeding 50,000. But in reality, they can only carrying 10-15 medium size tanks and few hundred soldiers. This sounds like a lot but they are really negligible in real battles, as demand for men power can easily exceed 5 digits. The PLA would need more than at least 20 of these to even make a difference on the battlefield. It is the same story for the American Navy and Marines, they seem to have a lot of ships. BUt in reality, it is still cargo planes that are most commonly used. Ships just don;t carry enough and not quick enough.

Let's be honest, the only possible major battlefield where China really need these ships would be Taiwan. The rest can be done with planes and destroyers. If they still don't do the job, aircraft carriers would be needed and sending LPDs would be pointless. Taiwan has a very decent military and it will be fighting a defensive local war. The mainland would need an overpowering number of troops to do win the battle, and this require a lot of LPDs.
 
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kwaigonegin

Colonel
I don't know what's so "revolutionary" about this design. Its basically just a submarine that can't dive (ie always stuck on "surface cruise"). I don't know why they didn't just make it into a proper submarine with superior surface cruising capabilities, at least that way it can be truly stealthy as it could actually dissapear under the sea instead of just being "low observable".
every once in a while a post comes along that makes me scratch my head!
 

delft

Brigadier
I just looked at the web site for the gun:
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and saw a muzzle velocity mentioned of 825 mps. A modern tank gun reaches twice that. A large caliber gun would achieve with that muzzle velocity about four times the range, 400 km. That might be 155 mm shells out of a 180mm smooth bore.
How can't other countries not improve on DDG1000?
 

Spartan95

Junior Member
I just looked at the web site for the gun:
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and saw a muzzle velocity mentioned of 825 mps. A modern tank gun reaches twice that. A large caliber gun would achieve with that muzzle velocity about four times the range, 400 km. That might be 155 mm shells out of a 180mm smooth bore.
How can't other countries not improve on DDG1000?
The bore length of this gun is 9.610m (from the link you provided).

While the muzzle velocity does not sound impressive, a key limiting factor in current gun technology is the material strength of the gun barrel (particularly the bore). Typically, the longer the barrel, the higher the muzzle velocity. This also translates into greater range and accuracy (hence sniper rifles are longer than assault rifles which are in turn longer than carbines).

Having a longer barrel allows the gas pressure pushing the round out the barrel to act on the projectile for a longer period of time. It also means that the pressure that the barrel needs to withstand is likely to be greater. In this case, the working pressure of the barrel is indicated as 20 tons/in2 (3,164 kg/cm2) (from the AGS link). That's serious pressure there.

Than, there's the issue of barrel droop. This is where the heat from the firing combined with the weight of the barrel causes it to bend slightly due to gravity. This problem is particularly acute for longer barrels and is often a limiting factor on how long a barrel can be (weight management) and how fast its rate of fire is (heat management).

Looking at the muzzle velocity of the AGS, I'd say its likely to be a rifled gun (didn't see any specific mention of this). The modern tank guns that you are using for comparison are smooth-bore guns. Smooth-bore guns have a much lesser heat problem as a lot less heat is generate per firing, and as less energy is wasted in the barrel (as compared to rifled guns where part of the energy is used to make the round spin), it translates into a higher muzzle velocity.

If the AGS is indeed a rifled gun, changing it to a smooth-bore gun will be an improvement in itself.
 

Jeff Head

General
Staff member
Super Moderator
The fact of the discussion is that US Planners have put together a slate of technology capabilities for the DDG 1000, and the capability to incoprprate new technology that they believe belligerent nations to the US will not be able to counter in the next fifty years...whomever they are, and however they got thata way. Time will show whether they were right or not.

The AGS is achieving its range and accurcy as much from the projectiles themselves as the fireing mechanism. Lots of neat technology in those projectiles. The mechanism itself is also geared towards more rapid rates of fire and automation.
 
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Wow, after reading Jeff's info on the class these ships are impressive indeed!

I firmly believe that the US is 20+ years ahead of any possible opponent (namely Russia or China) in fielding comparable operational equipment. Not just in the naval arena, but in aerospace and ground based weapons as well.

Even comparing the US to allies, assuming they tried to develope similar technologies individually, it probably has 5 to 10+ years lead time on any of the Western European countries, Japan, or South Korea.
 

Jeff Head

General
Staff member
Super Moderator
US Navy plans for more DDG 1000 Zumwalts

The US Navy seems now committed to the 3rd DDG-1000 vessel in funding...and is puttiing together plans for seeking more DDG 1000s. This is good news. 3 vessels just is not enough. They should at the very least build 6-8 of them.

Bath Iron Works Secures funding for all three DDG-1000s
SaltLine MariTime Community July 28,2011
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Navy to Present Plans to purchase more DDG-1000s
Miltary.com August 1, 2011
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Bltizo

Lieutenant General
Staff member
Super Moderator
^ what are the chances that they will get more funding? I mean the us only just managed to extend their debt ceiling now, and from the us's perspective the ddg-1000 (while a very capable vessel) might not be the best ship for a confrontation with china (air sea battle) -- it doesn't have procision for sm-3 (it seems?) and it might be wiser to divert funding for burke class flight 3?
 

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