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Speaking of Littoral Ships…

October 14, 2009

We picked up this short video of the Finnish Navy’s Hamina class missile boat from Solomon at the Snafu blog. Very good!

8 Comments leave one →
  1. Mike Burleson permalink*
    October 19, 2009 12:51 pm

    A good example Graham. I also study the Mediterranean Solomons Campaign from that war. The further we get from this last great war at sea, even in this missile age, the lessons seem still relevant. Even urgent.

  2. Graham Strouse permalink
    October 19, 2009 11:20 am


    Something to consider when considering the perils of a hostile littoral environment:

    (Battle of Drobak Sound: Norway, 1940)

    A teachable moment which never seems to have been properly taught…

  3. Mike Burleson permalink*
    October 15, 2009 6:54 am

    Let me also add to what I’ve just said, with something from Ronbo at another site, that pretty much sums up what I mean:

    Imagine the sea change that would need to take place in order for Navy leadership to accept small combatants conducting sustained operations with a LCDR in charge. Until we close the gap on the trust and tactics side of the equation the Navy will continue to overbuild and over engineer larger platforms that are multi-mission capable – not because they might need those capabilities in one package but because the fear of failure in deploying single mission vessels is too great.

  4. Mike Burleson permalink*
    October 15, 2009 5:34 am

    Defiant said “range, endurance, sea state capability, crew comfort and missing helicopter ”

    To me all these conditions is what makes the LCS a frigate instead of a corvette. Gold Plate, over-weight, and too expensive just to chase after smugglers or pirates in speeds boats.

    And yes Solomon, we do obsess a little over hardware, as the Navy gives us less and less each year. Having high hopes for the LCS at the start of this decade, we have been decisively under-whelmed at the sea service’s slow response during the War on Terror and Piracy. Where are the Stryker’s at sea and why can the Army increase its equipment stocks quickly and not the Navy? Note that every war has seen rapid expansion of the coastal and riverine forces but we have seen little to nothing of this lately, other than we still seem to be building to fight the Soviets.

    Why not a 1000-1500 ton ship, which is the size of a war era Destroyer Escort, or a RN Hunt class? These size ships fought in the stormy North Atlantic and the far-off Pacific, then went on to serve for years after the war. They would be small enough for mass production and still able to take some of the high tech weapons the military loves, even the ESSM which would easily take care of Galrahn’s helicopters, and some fast jets and cruise missiles too.

    For endurance, add mothership support, and also let it bring the helicopters, or have a focused mission corvette with only a helicopter. Build weapons for the ship, not the ship for the weapon and you return numbers, presence, and affordability to the fleet.

  5. Endre permalink
    October 15, 2009 5:02 am

    Another example is the Skjold – none of these can do the job of the LCS, but they all present interesting conceptual alternatives.

  6. Defiant permalink
    October 15, 2009 4:22 am

    similar sized ship in rougher seas:

    The Haminas certainly fit the name lcs better, but they can’t do the same jobs.
    You can probably do suw, and maybe mcm by dropping the rbs15s, but range, endurance, sea state capability, crew comfort and missing helicopter certainly fail most of the lcs requirements.

  7. leesea permalink
    October 14, 2009 5:35 pm

    The Haminas were indeed fast missile boats FACS meant for the littorals where Finland Navy operatess. The Visby seems to be the better choice with more capablity in more places?

  8. Hudson permalink
    October 14, 2009 5:28 pm

    This is one of my favorite small ships. Like other Scandanavian warships, it is designed mainly for coastal patrols, and therefore its range is quite limited. Yet it is far more powerful than an average OPV. It has a sophisticated sensor suite and weapons to take on serious threats from air, surface, land and sub-surface. It can lay mines or drop depth charges. The Viking peoples still know how to build ships.

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