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Wormhole Assault: MA Style

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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by cthia   » Sun Jun 27, 2021 8:35 am

cthia
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Brigade XO wrote:There is also the question of why you would need to attempt to destroy a Junction or terminus's deployed pods to attack the forts (and any warships that are stationed there.

Even before Dual Drive and now MDM, an attacker could stand outside the powered envelop of the defenders missiles and pump their attack birds in ballistic even if they had to preload or do an update on targeting before they lit off the drives. The fort's don't dodge all that well and mostly it's they and whatever warships assigned that would be feeding targeting data to the pods (well, that and Astro Control who is monitoring the Junction's sensor net)

Other than attempting to eliminated the deployed pods (mines etc) so you could- contemplate - getting closer to engaging the manned defenses, the other major reason would be to clear the way for ships you were going to have attack through the wormhole.

Does that strike you as a reasonable option? If you have secured the Junction or that end of the wormhole, you control the pods etc. Of course, taking out all the forts guarding a SEM terminus is not a trivial undertaking. It is, of course, always possible that SEM has a Go-To-Hell plan buried in the coding for the pods/mines software that could be triggered such that if communications is cut off-either comms are shut down or a code is sent- the pods will set for a series of preprogramed default and do things like kill anything that shows up as coming though the wormhole or lights them up with targeting sensors and them launches at the pods unless they get a stand down instruction.

Colossal Dead Man Switch. Very bad news for everybody involved

You've raised some interesting points.

I assume any navy that is interested in securing the junction will have to take out the pods as well as the forts. To take out the forts, I assume their deployed pods should be taken out first. Strategically, it is the same strategy available when trying to take on warships with massive rolled pods. If you can take out deployed pods that makes one's task a lot easier.

You raised an interesting point in another thread as well. I assumed a vast sea of pods is visible to any ship entering or exiting the junction. So knowing where they are, and that they are, is obvious. (Which is a fact that fueled the discussion about Tsang failing to enquire about the junction's defenses from the DB.)

I also assume that it would be child's play for any major navy to bring enough colliers and missiles to take out deployed pods.

At any rate, the entire discussion begs the question of whether the same force imbalance between a warship and a fort existed before the era of MDMs and/or dual drive missiles.

I'm not certain any navy that attacks Manticore with the hopes of winning would be interested in leaving the MWJ in Manty hands. I'm not certain that controlling the orbitals controls the junction, any more than a super stealthed warship that manages to insert itself into orbit controls the orbitals simply because it can strike at will with impunity. It actually has to take everything out in orbit, i.e., Home Fleet, and stave off any incoming ships.

Now, it seems to be a question amongst some posters of whether the MA can bring along enough graser torps to wipe out the forts. I think they can. Colliers with Spider drives would be akin to invisible CLACs which wouldn't have to be withdrawn from the battle. And I don't think forts are immune to a surprise attack of 3-second firing grasers. And because of that fact, the sea of deployed pods don't have to be taken out to take out the forts, as far as the options available to the MA. Taking out the pods first is only an option which any unstealthed foe must undertake only if it has designs on destroying the forts, and possibly of controlling the junction.

It also begs the question of whether or not the junction's pods can be fired if all the forts and Astro Control are eliminated in a surprise stealth attack. I know everyone is immediately thinking "sure." But is that so? The codes to fire the sea of pods shouldn't be known to all warships. God forbid a cretin like Pavel Young panicking and prematurely giving the orders to fire the pods. And if AC is no more and the forts are no more, where will the order to fire come from? That Massive Dead Man Switch has to be activated and fed targeting data.

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 ThinksMarkedly   » Sun Jun 27, 2021 12:16 pm

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cthia wrote:[I assume any navy that is interested in securing the junction will have to take out the pods as well as the forts. To take out the forts, I assume their deployed pods should be taken out first. Strategically, it is the same strategy available when trying to take on warships with massive rolled pods. If you can take out deployed pods that makes one's task a lot easier.


Makes total sense. As long as there's a fort or warship alive, they can fire whatever pods are left, so you want to limit their firepower. If you could neutralise the combatants without taking the pods, sure, go for that. But I don't think you can.

You raised an interesting point in another thread as well. I assumed a vast sea of pods is visible to any ship entering or exiting the junction. So knowing where they are, and that they are, is obvious. (Which is a fact that fueled the discussion about Tsang failing to enquire about the junction's defenses from the DB.)

I also assume that it would be child's play for any major navy to bring enough colliers and missiles to take out deployed pods.


Which is an action that has its own consequence. If that were possible, then the pods would be deployed in such a way that it wouldn't be easy. There's a huge volume around the Junction, so simply separating them would increase the number of warheads requires to take them out via nuclear proximity kills. The defenders have had years to deploy them, so their quantity cannot be matched. If the attackers need to spend one missile per pod, that means they need to bring 1/8th as many missiles as the defenders have pre-deployed. That's not feasible.

Even if that is the case, then simply don't pre-deploy them in quantities. The forts have huge internal volumes and pods inside their hulls aren't subject to long-range sniping.

As for Tsang... she was even stupider than that. While we can discuss whether the pod shoals can't be detected at range, whether they can be detected by a dispatch boat, whether any pods thus detected can be determined to be active and not empty, there's no discussing that the forts can be detected. Even if they were all empty of missiles, their energy mounts would still be there.

At any rate, the entire discussion begs the question of whether the same force imbalance between a warship and a fort existed before the era of MDMs and/or dual drive missiles.

I'm not certain any navy that attacks Manticore with the hopes of winning would be interested in leaving the MWJ in Manty hands. I'm not certain that controlling the orbitals controls the junction, any more than a super stealthed warship that manages to insert itself into orbit controls the orbitals simply because it can strike at will with impunity. It actually has to take everything out in orbit, i.e., Home Fleet, and stave off any incoming ships.


Agreed, simply taking over all the defenders in the Junction (which would be a huge task by itself) is not enough, since Manticore can deploy Home Fleet. Such a plan would need to have a solution for dealing with Home Fleet and whatever can transit from Trevor's Star, so the huge task becomes bigger.

But it can settle for economic and political damage to Manticore. Even if they don't take out any forts, the disruption caused by destroying infrastructure and the loss of confidence of everyone who uses the Junction could be a huge impact to Manticore. Add to that a well-coordinated PR campaign against the Manties and you can make a dent in the Manty revenues.

Now, it seems to be a question amongst some posters of whether the MA can bring along enough graser torps to wipe out the forts. I think they can. Colliers with Spider drives would be akin to invisible CLACs which wouldn't have to be withdrawn from the battle. And I don't think forts are immune to a surprise attack of 3-second firing grasers. And because of that fact, the sea of deployed pods don't have to be taken out to take out the forts, as far as the options available to the MA. Taking out the pods first is only an option which any unstealthed foe must undertake only if it has designs on destroying the forts, and possibly of controlling the junction.


They don't have to be taken out to take out some forts. They have to be taken out to take out all defenders. Some forts will have bubblewalls up at the time of the attack, as we've been saying for 60 pages, so even a surprise graser attack will not suffice to take all forts out. Those that survive plus all the warships around using Mycroft would use the pods to fire back. (finding a target is a different story)

On any non-short engagement, the pre-deployed pods may not matter, actually. If the attacking (conventional) force is large enough to pose a threat, then the defenders will fire all the pods. Attacking empty pods is not useful.

Against a stealthed MAN force, they may do the same, just in all directions. Use the missiles as scanning platforms.

It also begs the question of whether or not the junction's pods can be fired if all the forts and Astro Control are eliminated in a surprise stealth attack. I know everyone is immediately thinking "sure." But is that so? The codes to fire the sea of pods shouldn't be known to all warships. God forbid a cretin like Pavel Young panicking and prematurely giving the orders to fire the pods. And if AC is no more and the forts are no more, where will the order to fire come from? That Massive Dead Man Switch has to be activated and fed targeting data.


The AIs aboard the missile control platforms would know who the commanding officers are in its area of operations. More importantly, they'd know that forts exploding means they are under attack -- and this is all assuming the attackers managed a complete surprise attack that is 100% effective and no alarm goes out! That is not a likely scenario. Even if no forts survive (which I will not grant you), they will have had time to transition to "weapons free" and release the pods to any commanding officer who does survive.
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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by cthia   » Mon Jun 28, 2021 2:31 am

cthia
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I still maintain that the author teased me that the LDs are ready. That is a fleet of 100 Spiders. If they are broken down into Wolfpacks of six, that is 16.6 packs. If six of those six-packs are sent to the MBS plus a pack of colliers, I don't think that the forts will survive that kind of party, if indeed the forts are the objective. If the party is indeed a surprise, then bye-bye forts.

But of course, I don't think the MA gives a ratsass about the MWJ, the six six-packs will have other things on its agenda.

An infestation of Spiders doesn't bode well for any system. Wait! Those are huge, invisible, quite deadly Spiders.

And if I am wrong about what the author was teasing, then just like Haven facing the implications of Apollo, the GA better find and destroy Darius before the main weapon is ready.

BTW, the problem with a Dead Man's Switch which fires all of the junction pods is the ease in which nanite compulsion can push that single button, firing at absolutely nothing.

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   » Mon Jun 28, 2021 8:19 am

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cthia wrote:I still maintain that the author teased me that the LDs are ready. That is a fleet of 100 Spiders. If they are broken down into Wolfpacks of six, that is 16.6 packs. If six of those six-packs are sent to the MBS plus a pack of colliers, I don't think that the forts will survive that kind of party, if indeed the forts are the objective. If the party is indeed a surprise, then bye-bye forts.

But of course, I don't think the MA gives a ratsass about the MWJ, the six six-packs will have other things on its agenda.

An infestation of Spiders doesn't bode well for any system. Wait! Those are huge, invisible, quite deadly Spiders.

And if I am wrong about what the author was teasing, then just like Haven facing the implications of Apollo, the GA better find and destroy Darius before the main weapon is ready.

BTW, the problem with a Dead Man's Switch which fires all of the junction pods is the ease in which nanite compulsion can push that single button, firing at absolutely nothing.


I still do not know how you are getting that assertion that the LD fleet is complete and those numbers you give from this post:

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cthia wrote:

And of course, the MA's tech was/is still unfinished. So who's to say how stealthy the final versions will be. Even before decades of more work. Or even what accompanying tech there will be.

I'd like to know how powerful the RFN will be.



Really?

I'll have to get back to you on that.

At some point. :twisted:
******
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   » Mon Jun 28, 2021 2:09 pm

cthia
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Theemile,

I could be wrong about what he meant, though I don't think so. You had to have been there. :D I'd like to think I'm right, you know me. :D It makes things all the more interesting. But, as I wrapped up that last paragraph, does it really matter? You don't think the MA will attack again in earnest until they are ready, do you? And, as I summed it up in that last paragraph, the GA better find Darius and destroy them before the main weapon is ready.

Oh! The target number of LDs to be completed is given somewhere in textev, supported by the Wiki.


****** *

I have been mulling over the notion of destroying pre-deployed defensive pods, and the fact that they are probably deployed at some distance apart to prevent easy targeting, as someone mentioned. But always lurking in the back of my brain there has been a special ship and or missile designed to sweep away mines and every manner of pre-deployed pods ...

So it came to me. Currently, laserheads align with their targets just before detonation to focus the brunt of its energies on said target. But pods are a lot less invincible than warships, and they shouldn't need so much of a laserheads focus, or energies. So, I'm thinking a new type of missile can be designed to rotate amidst a sea of pods, destroying quite a number of them. It would probably have to be an appropriately staggered launch to prevent destroying your own missiles. But it sounds good on paper. It might not even require a new missile, rather than updated system programming. We can call them "mine sweepers." Or "pod sweepers." Or simply missiles placed in that "mode."

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   » Mon Jun 28, 2021 3:06 pm

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cthia wrote:Theemile,

I could be wrong about what he meant, though I don't think so. You had to have been there. :D I'd like to think I'm right, you know me. :D It makes things all the more interesting. But, as I wrapped up that last paragraph, does it really matter? You don't think the MA will attack again in earnest until they are ready, do you? And, as I summed it up in that last paragraph, the GA better find Darius and destroy them before the main weapon is ready.

Oh! The target number of LDs to be completed is given somewhere in textev, supported by the Wiki.


****** *

I have been mulling over the notion of destroying pre-deployed defensive pods, and the fact that they are probably deployed at some distance apart to prevent easy targeting, as someone mentioned. But always lurking in the back of my brain there has been a special ship and or missile designed to sweep away mines and every manner of pre-deployed pods ...

So it came to me. Currently, laserheads align with their targets just before detonation to focus the brunt of its energies on said target. But pods are a lot less invincible than warships, and they shouldn't need so much of a laserheads focus, or energies. So, I'm thinking a new type of missile can be designed to rotate amidst a sea of pods, destroying quite a number of them. It would probably have to be an appropriately staggered launch to prevent destroying your own missiles. But it sounds good on paper. It might not even require a new missile, rather than updated system programming. We can call them "mine sweepers." Or "pod sweepers." Or simply missiles placed in that "mode."


It's always been said that pods are susceptible to proximity hits. Part of that is probably down to the fact that each laserhead on a missile is powered by the focused plasma wave created by a nuclear explosion.

Prior to the introduction of the laserhead, the "burn" function of a warhead had been able to focus out to 10,000 Km or more and have the power to overload a warship sidewall. Seeing that the laserhead requires that same focused plasma wave - and the previous 60 years has seen even better focusing of the plasma wave - this could be what was feared to take out pods - the residual focused plasma wave that powered the laserheads. Even a plasma wave insufficient to damage a sidewall could easily fry unshielded pods - the plasma wave would continue towards the target ships on the heels of the lasers, and at a distance it would become less focused, but still might be focused enough to have enough effects on unshielded targets.

On the other hand - At the start of the war, RMN laserhead standoff range was ~30,000 KM - the PRH version had less standoff range, and used a larger warhead to accomplish the same effect. So Pods in 1905 were much closer to larger plasma waves caused by laserheads than they are in 1923 pd (RMN standoff range >50,000). So current missiles might be less capable against pods than early missiles.
Last edited by Theemile on Tue Jun 29, 2021 9:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
******
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   » Mon Jun 28, 2021 8:22 pm

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cthia wrote:I still maintain that the author teased me that the LDs are ready. That is a fleet of 100 Spiders. If they are broken down into Wolfpacks of six, that is 16.6 packs. If six of those six-packs are sent to the MBS plus a pack of colliers, I don't think that the forts will survive that kind of party, if indeed the forts are the objective. If the party is indeed a surprise, then bye-bye forts.


And we repeat there's simply no way they are ready, by the conclusion of UH. We know that they were still in construction at the launch of Oyster Bay, around November 1921. We know those were the first LDs ever, because Oyster Bay had none to use. We know Manticore was the fastest builder of SDs, at 9 million tonnes in just under 24 months. We know that the LDs are bigger than that.

So the only way for them to be ready now (end of UH) is if the MAlign went "all in" in a single, untested strategy, laying down 100 ships and building them simultaneously before the first was ready and had finished its shake-down cruise to find bugs. That would be incredibly reckless and not at all in alignment with the Alignment's past practices (pun intended).

If you mean "now" as in "10 years after the end of UH" or even more than that (which would allow for Raoul and Katherine to be young adults), then I give you a "shmaybe." Except that the GA won't let them stay hidden for so long -- we'll need to revisit this the day "To End in Fire" is released (because we're all going to buy it and read in one day, won't we?)
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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Mon Jun 28, 2021 8:31 pm

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cthia wrote:I have been mulling over the notion of destroying pre-deployed defensive pods, and the fact that they are probably deployed at some distance apart to prevent easy targeting, as someone mentioned. But always lurking in the back of my brain there has been a special ship and or missile designed to sweep away mines and every manner of pre-deployed pods ...

So it came to me. Currently, laserheads align with their targets just before detonation to focus the brunt of its energies on said target. But pods are a lot less invincible than warships, and they shouldn't need so much of a laserheads focus, or energies. So, I'm thinking a new type of missile can be designed to rotate amidst a sea of pods, destroying quite a number of them. It would probably have to be an appropriately staggered launch to prevent destroying your own missiles. But it sounds good on paper. It might not even require a new missile, rather than updated system programming. We can call them "mine sweepers." Or "pod sweepers." Or simply missiles placed in that "mode."


Whatever it is has to kill the majority of pods within about 2 seconds. More than that and it might eat a missile.

When you described the above, I was thinking "stealth drone." Mount a laser (not graser) or five on a recon drone's broadside, let it wander across the pod storage, identify targets and then start shooting. The MAN has the Silver Bullet, which is very stealthy, powered by a spider and has enough energy budget to fire a lot of shots. Deploy a dozen of those and synchronise their clocks so they begin their attack runs at the same time.

But even a dozen firing from 10 mounts are 120 shots. If those are CM-powered lasers, they may get 16 shots per second, for a total of 1920 pods destroyed. Maybe they get a second full cycle, 3840. After that, any of those pods will probably fire at them and destroy, if not one of the grasers from OWP. Remember that the entire Junction volume is within energy weapons range of the forts.

I'd be surprised if 3840 pods is more than 38.4% of all pods at the Junction.

And having a dozen Silver Bullets hit by grasers means debris for the defenders to examine.
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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by kzt   » Tue Jun 29, 2021 12:05 am

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IF my math is right, you can easily install a 300 gigaton fusion warhead on a torpedo.

Wonder what the soft kill radius that has?

Wonder what that in burn mode would do to a fortress bubble sidewall....
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Re: Wormhole Assault: MA Style
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Tue Jun 29, 2021 8:35 pm

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kzt wrote:IF my math is right, you can easily install a 300 gigaton fusion warhead on a torpedo.

Wonder what the soft kill radius that has?

Wonder what that in burn mode would do to a fortress bubble sidewall....


I'm pretty sure the blast in boom-mode nukes was directional. To kill pods, I assume they need a spherical propagation, which means it will fall off with the square of the radius.

Also, would a 300-gigation warhead be detectable on sensors? Wouldn't that thing leak radiation like there's no tomorrow?
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