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Wormhole Assault: MA Style

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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Tue Jun 08, 2021 2:53 pm

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cthia wrote:There's no need for them to get so testy. This ruse is carried out in peacetime. I would imagine the only person in the system who is adequately familiar with ALL of the Keys is Honor. Beth and the Ambassador have probably met the Keys, but the chances the relationship is familiar enough to ask personal questions which are not found in a file - a file which even the MA has access to - is probably nil. And Alphas would undoubtedly have studied personal information and mannerisms of the Key in question. And of course, biosculpt will handle the appearance. At any rate, this would be a highly sensitive meeting the Key would be requesting, and, proper political procedure would have to be observed. He could refuse to leave his ship because of sensitive information. Honor would be the best choice for personal authentication.


No. Honor will neither be the only person nor even the one best acquainted with all the Keys. For a major ally like Grayson, the Foreign Office will keep files. There are thousands of people working for the Foreign Office and some of them have as jobs knowing their partners. Plus the Grayson Ambassador, who works for the Grayson government, will be on hand and also has a staff. The Ambassador would be the first one called to speak to the visiting dignatary.

It is possible that one would travel incognito, on a personal yacht, for an unofficial visit. In that case, neither the Embassy nor the Foreign Office might be involved. But in that case, this yacht is not going to get granted any type of priority nor is it going to be allowed in sensitive areas. It'll be directed to the holding area before docking.

In any case, Honor would be the worst person that the MAlign could get to try and pull a fast one on. They don't know that she has treecat powers and can tell when someone is lying.

cthia wrote:IFF and encryption codes will be current. Why wouldn't they? If not, then Grayson's own transponder will work just fine.


A matter of timing. The codes are only valid for a period, before being rotated. A ship that was declared overdue will have its codes revoked and will need to go through a more extensive authentication when returning. That's the type of attention a false flag attack does not want.

cthia wrote:I think the ruse could get them escorted all the way into orbit during peace. Remember, this is an emergency! And once in orbit, as I said before, who knows what manner of madness the MA has concocted. I'd guess this would be an operation which begins, or at least supports, the opening phase of the war. If the ships do manage to get escorted into orbit, this would be a perfect time for MA BCs to hyper in-system. And perhaps those big fat Trojan horses can work their magic while everyone is distracted. Like targeting those brand new platforms which have been set up to detect LDs, and or, they could target the Palace. The Trojans will be destroyed, yes, but before their dirty deed is done?


And I question that they would get into orbit that way before someone becoming suspicious. There are just too many people who may notice something amiss.

Also, do note that the Palace cannot be destroyed from orbit. It has defences.

And if they don't get escorted into orbit, then they'll simply have to go for secondary targets like the infrastructure at the MWJ. Civilian infrastructure. And firing on whatever ships they can. All of the time LDs are maneuvering during the distraction and setting up housekeeping in nests all over the system.


The moment the first graser fires or the first missile separates, the entire system goes on alert, possibly all the way to Case Zulu. That's the worst thing that the LDs would want to happen if they're trying to manoeuvre.
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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by cthia   » Wed Jun 09, 2021 12:43 pm

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ThinksMarkedly wrote:
cthia wrote:There's no need for them to get so testy. This ruse is carried out in peacetime. I would imagine the only person in the system who is adequately familiar with ALL of the Keys is Honor. Beth and the Ambassador have probably met the Keys, but the chances the relationship is familiar enough to ask personal questions which are not found in a file - a file which even the MA has access to - is probably nil. And Alphas would undoubtedly have studied personal information and mannerisms of the Key in question. And of course, biosculpt will handle the appearance. At any rate, this would be a highly sensitive meeting the Key would be requesting, and, proper political procedure would have to be observed. He could refuse to leave his ship because of sensitive information. Honor would be the best choice for personal authentication.


No. Honor will neither be the only person nor even the one best acquainted with all the Keys. For a major ally like Grayson, the Foreign Office will keep files. There are thousands of people working for the Foreign Office and some of them have as jobs knowing their partners. Plus the Grayson Ambassador, who works for the Grayson government, will be on hand and also has a staff. The Ambassador would be the first one called to speak to the visiting dignatary.

It is possible that one would travel incognito, on a personal yacht, for an unofficial visit. In that case, neither the Embassy nor the Foreign Office might be involved. But in that case, this yacht is not going to get granted any type of priority nor is it going to be allowed in sensitive areas. It'll be directed to the holding area before docking.

In any case, Honor would be the worst person that the MAlign could get to try and pull a fast one on. They don't know that she has treecat powers and can tell when someone is lying.

cthia wrote:IFF and encryption codes will be current. Why wouldn't they? If not, then Grayson's own transponder will work just fine.


A matter of timing. The codes are only valid for a period, before being rotated. A ship that was declared overdue will have its codes revoked and will need to go through a more extensive authentication when returning. That's the type of attention a false flag attack does not want.

cthia wrote:I think the ruse could get them escorted all the way into orbit during peace. Remember, this is an emergency! And once in orbit, as I said before, who knows what manner of madness the MA has concocted. I'd guess this would be an operation which begins, or at least supports, the opening phase of the war. If the ships do manage to get escorted into orbit, this would be a perfect time for MA BCs to hyper in-system. And perhaps those big fat Trojan horses can work their magic while everyone is distracted. Like targeting those brand new platforms which have been set up to detect LDs, and or, they could target the Palace. The Trojans will be destroyed, yes, but before their dirty deed is done?


And I question that they would get into orbit that way before someone becoming suspicious. There are just too many people who may notice something amiss.

Also, do note that the Palace cannot be destroyed from orbit. It has defences.

And if they don't get escorted into orbit, then they'll simply have to go for secondary targets like the infrastructure at the MWJ. Civilian infrastructure. And firing on whatever ships they can. All of the time LDs are maneuvering during the distraction and setting up housekeeping in nests all over the system.


The moment the first graser fires or the first missile separates, the entire system goes on alert, possibly all the way to Case Zulu. That's the worst thing that the LDs would want to happen if they're trying to manoeuvre.

You bring up some interesting points. The MA can easily manufacture a solution to the ambassadors' ability to blow their cover, by proxy of storyline. Of course, they are both out of the system on political business. I warned you that this thing is meticulously planned.

You may be right about the lower chances of getting to orbit, though I am not willing to so quickly throw in the towel. We all know how Murphy alone can be the cause of a perfect storm. Prodded by the proffered hand and mechanistic machinations of the MAlign, I'm betting on Alphas.

But it may be a moot point. What if the objective was simply to get as far inside the system as possible, or simply to get thru the junction without being fired upon. To what ends? ... Who knows. At any rate ...

The RMN's advantage against other navies is its missile technology. In particular ...

  1. Range
  2. ECM
  3. FTL

What if the MA develops platforms that disrupts FTL technology. They don't necessarily have to have mastered FTL themselves to know what disrupts the ability, or what conditions would make it less effective. The MA could conceivably scramble the downrange FTL signal from the ship to the missiles. Platforms could be ejected from the LDs like chaff that would, could, even beat back the effectiveness of the MK23-E control missile. No navy has ever gone after the problem by severing the link.

The MA might not be able to break the secret of FTL, but they may turn the problem on its head, by defeating Manty FTL, thus leveling the playing field. It doesn't matter how far you can chuck missiles if you can't hit anything downrange.

Note: I am not certain that an MK-23E control missile is useful against an LD without the link to the mothership. The control missile won't have the ability to detect the LD. Only the RMN's newly minted specifically developed platforms for this measure hopefully can. But, the coordinates from the platforms may have to be fed to the ships first, then downrange to the missiles. If so, that middle man will inherently weaken the signal itself.

1) If the platforms are destroyed. Game over.

and/or

2) If FTL links are scrambled. Game over.


The MK23-E would then be useless. And the missiles too. The blind leading the blind.

Son, your mother says I have to hang you. Personally I don't think this is a capital offense. But if I don't hang you, she's gonna hang me and frankly, I'm not the one in trouble. —cthia's father. Incident in ? Axiom of Common Sense
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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by Theemile   » Wed Jun 09, 2021 1:01 pm

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cthia wrote:
The MA might not be able to break the secret of FTL, but they may turn the problem on its head, by defeating Manty FTL, thus leveling the playing field. It doesn't matter how far you can chuck missiles if you can't hit anything downrange.

Note: I am not certain that an MK-23E control missile is useful against an LD without the link to the mothership. The control missile won't have the ability to detect the LD. Only the RMN's newly minted specifically developed platforms for this measure hopefully can. But, the coordinates from the platforms may have to be fed to the ships first, then downrange to the missiles. If so, that middle man will inherently weaken the signal itself.

1) If the platforms are destroyed. Game over.

and/or

2) If FTL links are scrambled. Game over.


The MK23-E would then be useless. And the missiles too. The blind leading the blind.



The Mk 23 E Apollo Command missile has the best AI ever placed in a missile - it's superior to light speed ships control outside of single drive missile ranges. It's designed that if the control links are severed it goes into autonomous mode - actually better than just that, it is in a mesh network with the rest of the Mk 23 Es in the Salvo and coordinate their search patterns and attacks together. Cutting the FTL controls will just mildly degrade a Mk 23 E's capability when they are forced to fall back on this mode.
******
RFC said "refitting a Beowulfan SD to Manticoran standards would be just as difficult as refitting a standard SLN SD to those standards. In other words, it would be cheaper and faster to build new ships."
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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by cthia   » Wed Jun 09, 2021 1:07 pm

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Theemile wrote:
cthia wrote:
The MA might not be able to break the secret of FTL, but they may turn the problem on its head, by defeating Manty FTL, thus leveling the playing field. It doesn't matter how far you can chuck missiles if you can't hit anything downrange.

Note: I am not certain that an MK-23E control missile is useful against an LD without the link to the mothership. The control missile won't have the ability to detect the LD. Only the RMN's newly minted specifically developed platforms for this measure hopefully can. But, the coordinates from the platforms may have to be fed to the ships first, then downrange to the missiles. If so, that middle man will inherently weaken the signal itself.

1) If the platforms are destroyed. Game over.

and/or

2) If FTL links are scrambled. Game over.


The MK23-E would then be useless. And the missiles too. The blind leading the blind.



The Mk 23 E Apollo Command missile has the best AI ever placed in a missile - it's superior to light speed ships control outside of single drive missile ranges. It's designed that if the control links are severed it goes into autonomous mode - actually better than just that, it is in a mesh network with the rest of the Mk 23 Es in the Salvo and coordinate their search patterns and attacks together. Cutting the FTL controls will just mildly degrade a Mk 23 E's capability when they are forced to fall back on this mode.

But you're missing my point. The control missiles are fiendishly effective when targeting wedges. It does not have inherent sensors to detect the LD. Only the many(?) newly minted Manty platforms can do that.

Son, your mother says I have to hang you. Personally I don't think this is a capital offense. But if I don't hang you, she's gonna hang me and frankly, I'm not the one in trouble. —cthia's father. Incident in ? Axiom of Common Sense
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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by Theemile   » Wed Jun 09, 2021 1:11 pm

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cthia wrote:You bring up some interesting points. The MA can easily manufacture a solution to the ambassadors' ability to blow their cover, by proxy of storyline. Of course, they are both out of the system on political business. I warned you that this thing is meticulously planned.

You may be right about the lower chances of getting to orbit, though I am not willing to so quickly throw in the towel. We all know how Murphy alone can be the cause of a perfect storm. Prodded by the proffered hand and mechanistic machinations of the MAlign, I'm betting on Alphas.

But it may be a moot point. What if the objective was simply to get as far inside the system as possible, or simply to get thru the junction without being fired upon. To what ends? ... Who knows. At any rate ...


I doubt the Grayson embassy to Manticore - their closest neighbor, would even be depopulated to the point were no one could be contacted within several hours to validate a Key arriving in Manticore. As i said, this has only happened ONCE, so it would be a "wake the staff, rush them to a terminal" event, and such a personage would be equipped with diplomatic codes specifically for the mission (or more importantly, someone from the diplomatic core would be sent along to take care of such things.)

But once again, why get close? We've already shown that the MAN's best weapon, the grav torpedo can get close, do sufficient damage and destroy itself in the process, without endangering a ship (which once again would be inside multiple layers of sensors and weapon systems, ensuring it's quick demise.) This is taking undue risk for no extra benefit.

Also, no ships are allowed near the planets under their own power these days - they have to be under the power of a Manticorian Tug so someone cannot suicide into the planet.
******
RFC said "refitting a Beowulfan SD to Manticoran standards would be just as difficult as refitting a standard SLN SD to those standards. In other words, it would be cheaper and faster to build new ships."
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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by Theemile   » Wed Jun 09, 2021 1:16 pm

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cthia wrote:But you're missing my point. The control missiles are fiendishly effective when targeting wedges. It does not have inherent sensors to detect the LD. Only the many(?) newly minted Manty platforms can do that.


Missile terminal acquisition is done via radar and lidar on missiles, not gravity waves. Missiles do not attack or sense wedges.

As for the rest, why would the RMN not update the attack capability of their main attack weapon? If their know how to target a Spider ship, they will update the Mk 23 E to do so first.
******
RFC said "refitting a Beowulfan SD to Manticoran standards would be just as difficult as refitting a standard SLN SD to those standards. In other words, it would be cheaper and faster to build new ships."
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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Wed Jun 09, 2021 1:48 pm

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cthia wrote:You bring up some interesting points. The MA can easily manufacture a solution to the ambassadors' ability to blow their cover, by proxy of storyline. Of course, they are both out of the system on political business. I warned you that this thing is meticulously planned.


Of course.

The point I'm trying to make is that planning alone doesn't suffice. A false flag attack of the type you're describing depends on variables completely outside of their control.

They can't control which ship they'll acquire. GSN and RMN ships are extremely difficult to capture intact. Plus, any ship that would be carrying a Steadholder is not likely to be travelling in singletons in the first place, so that reduces the availability. They can't change the transponders and identification if they're trying to go into the home system or close ally of that ship, since those will know the drive signatures and even which hull plates should be discoloured.

They can't control when they'll acquire the ship. When it happens, if it happens, they have to use that ship, before it is declared overdue and the codes change. That means they can't control who is going to be in the target system in the window the ship is available. They could attempt to manufacture a cause for some people to leave, but as Theemile said above, the entire embassy will not be evacuated. Plus, they don't control who's supposed to be aboard the ship.

And because they don't control the timing, they can't control the conditions in the system either. Suppose the objective is to get close to a fleet, but said fleet has sortied on exercises when the ship arrives? Or suppose the Steadholder is claiming to want a secret audience with the Queen, but she's out inspecting the Manticore-B system when the ship arrives and shall be back in 6 hours? That's a long time when the ruse can be detected.

You may be right about the lower chances of getting to orbit, though I am not willing to so quickly throw in the towel. We all know how Murphy alone can be the cause of a perfect storm. Prodded by the proffered hand and mechanistic machinations of the MAlign, I'm betting on Alphas.


Of course, but no planner relies on luck. You can't plan for an operation that assumes everything will go right.

This can be a case of "we've got a ship, what have we got to lose?" That was like the HMS Ellipsis: the PN had acquired the ship relatively intact and it was a major asset. But they had no purpose for it. So what could they do in the window of opportunity?

But it may be a moot point. What if the objective was simply to get as far inside the system as possible, or simply to get thru the junction without being fired upon. To what ends? ... Who knows. At any rate ...


That's up to you to say. You're the one contriving these particularly complex scenarios, so you're on the hook to provide a justification why anyone would go through all the trouble. :)

What if the MA develops platforms that disrupts FTL technology. They don't necessarily have to have mastered FTL themselves to know what disrupts the ability, or what conditions would make it less effective. The MA could conceivably scramble the downrange FTL signal from the ship to the missiles. Platforms could be ejected from the LDs like chaff that would, could, even beat back the effectiveness of the MK23-E control missile. No navy has ever gone after the problem by severing the link.


What you're describing is jamming. And I do think that FTL comm jamming is possible, in theory. We may see it in some future book, or not. My point is that RFC could add it to the books and it would not be out of place or completely out of the blue.

But as Theemile has said above, the ACM is actually pretty good without the control links. Just see the results for Operation Fabius on Beowulf: even with the Silver Bullets having destroyed the Mycroft platforms and therefore the FTL control links, those missiles performed really well to crush the SLN attack. This was a specific case of severing the FTL control link, so it has happened.

And even before that, on the Battle of Spindle, Terekhov launched Apollo missiles without FTL control links from his heavy cruiser squadron. Those were more than a match for Adm. Crandall's task force, about 60 million km downrange.

The MA might not be able to break the secret of FTL, but they may turn the problem on its head, by defeating Manty FTL, thus leveling the playing field. It doesn't matter how far you can chuck missiles if you can't hit anything downrange.


If it is jamming, then note that jamming is the exact opposite of stealthy. A jamming platform is the single brightest source anywhere and therefore would be targeted with extreme prejudice. There's probably no missile that could fail to see it.

If it is some other mechanism besides jamming, then it would be more unexpected. But even then, that is not levelling the playing field, because the Mk23 are the single best missiles out there by a lot. In fact, the other Mk23 missiles are probably a generation ahead of anything else even without the ACM helping them along. See other replies above.
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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by kzt   » Wed Jun 09, 2021 2:30 pm

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There are other types of jamming besides noise jamming. But they are mostly useful in actual combat and people will notice odd things.
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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by cthia   » Wed Jun 09, 2021 2:56 pm

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@Theemile

I disagree. The wedge is needed to even see a ship, much less target it.


But... you are still missing the point. Think about the implications of what you are saying. You are assuming ...

1) The RMN is developing "something" to detect the LD.

2) That "something" is not so huge that it has its own zip code. (Practical for tactical use).

3) The tech is small enough to deploy on ships. (Practical for mobile deployment).

4) The technology works on a mobile platform.

5) The tech actually works in the field.

6) The tech is small enough to deploy on missiles. It sounds like a whole lot of extra electronics that will need to be shoehorned into the already bloated MK23-E.

7) That the enormous speeds of the command missile makes it all feasible anyway.


The MK23-E has no experience seeking out targets it can not sense.

Son, your mother says I have to hang you. Personally I don't think this is a capital offense. But if I don't hang you, she's gonna hang me and frankly, I'm not the one in trouble. —cthia's father. Incident in ? Axiom of Common Sense
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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by Theemile   » Wed Jun 09, 2021 3:15 pm

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cthia wrote:I disagree. The wedge is needed to even see a ship, much less target it.


But... you are still missing the point. Think about the implications of what you are saying. You are assuming ...

1) The RMN is developing "something" to detect the LD.

2) That "something" is not so huge that it has its own zip code. (Practical for tactical use).

3) The tech is small enough to deploy on ships. (Practical for mobile deployment).

4) The technology works on a mobile platform.

5) The tech actually works in the field.

6) The tech is small enough to deploy on missiles. It sounds like a whole lot of extra electronics that will need to be shoehorned into the already bloated MK23-E.

7) That the enormous speeds of the command missile makes it all feasible anyway.

The MK23-E has no experience seeking out targets it can not sense.


Missiles do not have gravitational sensors - every description has been of lidar and radar on missiles. And those sensors do not sense the wedge. Missiles do not aim at the wedge, they aim at the ship... and the sidewalls/wedges get in the way. Find a reference otherwise.


I'll agree, we have no text-ev of Manticore having a counter to the Spider at the moment. We DO have text-ev of statements that they know how OB was accomplished and they are confident they know how to sense a repeat attack and stop it - but no specific evidence if they believe they can see the spider drive or burn through MAN Stealth. It was you that posted that only the latest RMN platforms have the capability - which is your assumption that the RMN CAN penetrate such stealth features... with the right hardware.

However, if they do manage to sense the Spider drive, I believe we can all agree that one of Manticore's logical first objectives is to give their missiles the capability to attack them.... or what is the point of the entire exercise?

So, if they do find a way to see the spider drive or burn through the MAN stealth - the Mk 23E will have that capability VERY soon thereafter.
******
RFC said "refitting a Beowulfan SD to Manticoran standards would be just as difficult as refitting a standard SLN SD to those standards. In other words, it would be cheaper and faster to build new ships."
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