Frag Out! Magazine

Frag Out! Magazine #27

Frag Out! Magazine

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range may be a good solution here as well - but more of those smaller mis- siles would need to be carried onboard. This is easy, as contemporary missiles make use of VLS solutions such as the US-made Mark 41 Vertical Launch Sys- tem. Long range missiles could be used to act against reconnaissance and patrol aircraft, and the medium range missiles would neutralize the missiles that the enemy could potentially employ. Natu- rally, further layers (SHORAD/CIWS, EW assets) of air defense system should be added. It is also obvious that a vessel as such should feature a broad array of sen- sors, from long range radars to passive sensors. Only a comprehensive sensor suite would allow for effective use of the armament onboard. Most importantly, vessels as such should be perceived as an element of IADS (Integrated Air De- fense System), acting as forward sen- sor/missile posts. They may and they shall work with the remaining elements of IADS, namely land based SAM systems or fighter aircraft, should a need as such emerge. Another capability that bears a high degree of relevance is placed in the ASW/ASuW domain. Warships we are describing could use their own systems and embarked helicopters to conduct this mission. This would create a require- ment to arm these vessels with at least 8 anti-ship missiles and a torpedo launch- er set. Embarked helicopters capable of carrying missiles and torpedoes would need to become an integral element of the ship's combat systems. Finally, artil- lery systems would complement all the armament above. Since newly acquired warships would re- main in service for at least a couple of decades, the space for modernization would also play an important role. New target detection systems and new arma- ment could become available, unmanned assets included. It cannot be ruled out that in the future the frigates would act as motherships for specialized unmanned assets, be it reconnaissance or combat ones. Being large, vessels as such would offer a greater potential to accommo- date such means. We can see that, considering all of the factors listed above, a large vessel would be needed to meet these requirements, with displacement of 5,000-6,000 t, comparable with the Dutch De Zeven Provinciƫn-class, German Sachsen-class or Danish Iver Huitfeldt-class vessels. The latter are a great indicator of the interesting fleet development trends - technically, but also within the frame- work of operational employment. Den- mark's fleet is based around 3 frigates, MCMV component and patrol vessels delegated to conduct policing and res- cue operations in the Greenland region. There are no reasons to believe that Poland would remain unable to procure a similar number of frigates, assuming the defense expenditure is a subject to rational planning. These warships would then become the core of the Polish Navy. NAVY

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