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Battle of Hypatia questions

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Battle of Hypatia questions
Post by lyonheart   » Wed Oct 20, 2021 7:27 am

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Howdy all!

Sorry that I've been away for years, but life does that.

If it isn't a dead horse, I'm curious about the following.

Now that TeiF is out, which I haven't read yet (I'm sorry) I thought I'd share some reactions to UH; even though I'm still trying to figure out how the 396 missile salvo's were arranged if the Nike were only launching one 50 missile volley in each of the 19 salvo's, and was was again surprised it launched only one 32 missile broadside of CM's at a time when both off bore broadside launches are SOP, NTM a lot more Lorelei's could be carried than by Tremaine's TG, which they out massed by almost 2.66 times.

The lengths RFC had to go to get Admiral Kotouc to lose his 4 ships at Hypatia are pretty severe in order to craft a suicide mission.
I wonder if RFC ever regretted all the advantages he had to pare off the RMN to make it more even for this scene.

RFC's obvious lesson for the SLN being that the the RMN even without pods is vastly superior to it and it should avoid combat, i.e. terminate the war ASAP.

Between all the pods (From SoS, larger RMN warships averaged 12,000 tons per pod; DD's and CL's 9-10,000 tons per pod; so 35 per Sag-B and 200-201 for the Nike, a total of 316 are possible) and rotating fire control (7X) not to mention better stand off range, even if they were all Mark-16's or 4424 missiles versus 3160 Mark 21's or 2528 Mark 23D's, more than enough to deal with 98 SLN BC's in a single volley.

Even if Admiral Kotouc forgot, After almost 20 years of war that I'd expect RMN SOP to require all warships leaving a system to carry full pod loads, so all the captains would have reminded him, but human error is a Galactic constant, so it's possible they all flubbed this one.

Yet the ~6600 Mark16's aboard Phantom mean the Sag-B's could have controlled a lot of Mark-16's before getting so close to the SLN, depending on how long the Mark-16 can wait after launch before acceleration. ??

The Sag-B's could apparently double stack 42 missile broadsides but had only half the redundancy of the Sag-C or 30% for only 109 fire control links for 327 plus the Nike which I wouldn't surprised if it could fire 5 of both broadsides or 250 missiles plus 60% redundancy would add another 150 FC links for 400 total or 727 for all four ships.

Just one additional Sag-C could have drastically changed the possible tactics; or even if there were no pods, if the Sag-B's had controlled Mark-16's launched but not yet triggered before their first salvo, more of the Phantom's missile magazines might have been expended than the obvious 950 Mark-16's of the 19 volleys. Considering the Sag-B's limited missile magazines ~1008? 78 ton cruiser missiles versus the Sag-C's 1200 plus 120 warload (SoS) means the bulk of the 7524 RMN missiles (4500) were Mark-16's, requiring 90 launches lasting 27 minutes, the first 71 being just by the mass drivers, as Commander Peterson did.

I realize and prefer RFC to write rather to respond to questions such as mine, but someone who knows or has figured out the above details I be very grateful.

Thanks ahead of time,

Lyonheart

Any post by RFC is great!
Any snippet or post from RFC is good if not great!
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Re: Battle of Hypatia questions
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Thu Oct 21, 2021 1:02 am

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lyonheart wrote:Now that TeiF is out, which I haven't read yet (I'm sorry)


Better plan ahead. We've got another Honorverse book coming out in February, though it's a Manticore Ascendant one.

The lengths RFC had to go to get Admiral Kotouc to lose his 4 ships at Hypatia are pretty severe in order to craft a suicide mission.
I wonder if RFC ever regretted all the advantages he had to pare off the RMN to make it more even for this scene.


Indeed. He gave them one Nike and one Roland as the only modern ships. The rest were Saganami-B, which were at this time about 10 years old, dating from before the end of the first war with Haven.

In-universe, we understand why that happened. Hypatia moved very quickly to claim its independence after the Second Battle of Manticore. The RMN had to scramble to find ships, since Lacoön II was happening, so the forces were spread thin to hold the wormholes and to keep supply-chain working. Plus, Honor wasn't giving too many ships from her Grand Fleet, lest it lose its teeth and be unable to face the SLN if they decided to actually attack with SDs again.

RFC's obvious lesson for the SLN being that the the RMN even without pods is vastly superior to it and it should avoid combat, i.e. terminate the war ASAP.


At horrific losses, the RMN of 1912 could be beat. The SLN must have had thousands of Nevada and Indefatigable-class BCs. Of course, no one in their sane mind would take that exchange.

Mandarins do not usually figure under "sane mind."

Between all the pods (From SoS, larger RMN warships averaged 12,000 tons per pod; DD's and CL's 9-10,000 tons per pod; so 35 per Sag-B and 200-201 for the Nike, a total of 316 are possible) and rotating fire control (7X) not to mention better stand off range, even if they were all Mark-16's or 4424 missiles versus 3160 Mark 21's or 2528 Mark 23D's, more than enough to deal with 98 SLN BC's in a single volley.


Where are you getting pods from? None of those ships are pod-layers. Are you thinking limpet pods tractored to the hull?

Because they were only carrying missiles from their internal magazines, only HMS Phantom had Mark 16s. The Sag-Bs only carried Mark 14s, which was the plot device and reason why they had to fire so close (4.5 minutes' flight time) to the SLN and expose themselves to counter-fire. No one had Mark 23.

Anyway, they were also not using rotating fire control. They had all the salvos under full control all the time, except for the mast minute when they actually struck the SLN. This significantly increased their accuracy, allowing each salvo to kill or mission-kill 5 BCs at a time. You may be right that a massive alpha launch could have destroyed far more, but proportionately less than they actually did. So the question is: how far from running dry were they when they were destroyed? And would they have been able to achieve complete destruction of the SLN task force if they had used a different strategy?

Also, could they have known this?

Even if Admiral Kotouc forgot, After almost 20 years of war that I'd expect RMN SOP to require all warships leaving a system to carry full pod loads, so all the captains would have reminded him, but human error is a Galactic constant, so it's possible they all flubbed this one.


Might not have been his choice. He may have been told "get to Hypatia now" because he was already in Beowulf. Beowulf, at this time, was still a League member and would not have supplied missiles (not that their own manufacture would have been any good). I doubt that the RMN had missile caches in Beowulf, considering they're just one transit away from Manticore and all the supply they need.

But I agree that this was a logistics blunder. Because Manticore is just one transit away, it shouldn't take more than a few hours to get an RMN collier to make the transit and transfer the supplies they needed. Whether your calculations are correct and they could've carried that many pods, I don't know.

Yet the ~6600 Mark16's aboard Phantom mean the Sag-B's could have controlled a lot of Mark-16's before getting so close to the SLN, depending on how long the Mark-16 can wait after launch before acceleration. ??


If they only used the Phantom's missiles and used all four ships to control their missiles instead of sending a mix of Mark 14 and 16, they couldn't have put as many missiles in each salvo. They'd be limited by the Nike's throw rate. A Nike's broadside is 25 missile tubes only (50 missiles on a double-broadside). Each Saganami adds another 19 per broadside, or 114 more missiles per launch. I don't see a reason why they shouldn't use the Mark 14s.

Provided they're in range. We've discussed this before: should he have launched his Mark 16s earlier? The problem with launching earlier is that it tells the SLN earlier that someone is there and start looking for him. He'd be further away so more difficult to detect, but there's a very good chance he'd be detected sooner. That means the total number of missiles launched would be smaller, allowing a greater number of SLN ships to survive.

In the absence of pods, he couldn't have done a big Alpha launch.

The Sag-B's could apparently double stack 42 missile broadsides but had only half the redundancy of the Sag-C or 30% for only 109 fire control links for 327 plus the Nike which I wouldn't surprised if it could fire 5 of both broadsides or 250 missiles plus 60% redundancy would add another 150 FC links for 400 total or 727 for all four ships.


Control link capacity does not seem to be the limiting factor.

Just one additional Sag-C could have drastically changed the possible tactics; or even if there were no pods, if the Sag-B's had controlled Mark-16's launched but not yet triggered before their first salvo, more of the Phantom's missile magazines might have been expended than the obvious 950 Mark-16's of the 19 volleys. Considering the Sag-B's limited missile magazines ~1008? 78 ton cruiser missiles versus the Sag-C's 1200 plus 120 warload (SoS) means the bulk of the 7524 RMN missiles (4500) were Mark-16's, requiring 90 launches lasting 27 minutes, the first 71 being just by the mass drivers, as Commander Peterson did.


You're right that if he had Sag-C, that ship and his HMS Phantom could have fired Mark 16 and possibly made a sufficient difference to warrant launching earlier.

But he had no Sag-C. If wishes were fishes, he should have wished for HMS Vukodlak (his CLAC) to be present.
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Re: Battle of Hypatia questions
Post by kzt   » Thu Oct 21, 2021 1:34 am

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Due to plot device pods can't be attached to a ship for over a week or so. Even though electrical outlets were apparently never invented in the honorverse it's been implied that even if you velcoed to the pods to the hull they wouldn't last more than a few weeks.

It's a David thing, you wouldn't understand. Or so it seems.
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Re: Battle of Hypatia questions
Post by Loren Pechtel   » Thu Oct 21, 2021 11:44 pm

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kzt wrote:Due to plot device pods can't be attached to a ship for over a week or so. Even though electrical outlets were apparently never invented in the honorverse it's been implied that even if you velcoed to the pods to the hull they wouldn't last more than a few weeks.

It's a David thing, you wouldn't understand. Or so it seems.


How does the Honorverse radiation shielding work? Is something tractored to the outside of the ship shielded?
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Re: Battle of Hypatia questions
Post by Joat42   » Fri Oct 22, 2021 12:19 pm

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Loren Pechtel wrote:
kzt wrote:Due to plot device pods can't be attached to a ship for over a week or so. Even though electrical outlets were apparently never invented in the honorverse it's been implied that even if you velcoed to the pods to the hull they wouldn't last more than a few weeks.

It's a David thing, you wouldn't understand. Or so it seems.


How does the Honorverse radiation shielding work? Is something tractored to the outside of the ship shielded?

The ships have particle shields and the strength of the shield determines how fast a ship can travel. For example, merchant ships have weaker shields that war ships.

There is no real textev how it really works but the textev available hints at that it can protect humans on the hull for short periods of time until the exposure starts doing damage.

That would also indicate that equipment attached to the hull will be exposed and in the case of pods they most likely don't have enough passive shielding to avoid degradation over time.

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Re: Battle of Hypatia questions
Post by Relax   » Fri Oct 22, 2021 4:57 pm

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kzt wrote:Due to plot device pods can't be attached to a ship for over a week or so. Even though electrical outlets were apparently never invented in the honorverse it's been implied that even if you velcoed to the pods to the hull they wouldn't last more than a few weeks.

It's a David thing, you wouldn't understand. Or so it seems.

Joat42 wrote:
Loren Pechtel wrote:
How does the Honorverse radiation shielding work? Is something tractored to the outside of the ship shielded?

The ships have particle shields and the strength of the shield determines how fast a ship can travel. For example, merchant ships have weaker shields that war ships.

There is no real textev how it really works but the textev available hints at that it can protect humans on the hull for short periods of time until the exposure starts doing damage.

That would also indicate that equipment attached to the hull will be exposed and in the case of pods they most likely don't have enough passive shielding to avoid degradation over time.


Radiation shielding is fixed to exterior of ships as shown by Honor at Cerberus where RFC says the radiation shielding was warped, melted, slagged, and buckled(and exterior) when a certain ship blew up too close to others.

That being said... Are you honestly telling everyone here, ~2000 years from now people do not know how to use LEAD in the Honorverse for even CRUDE particle shielding? Let alone vastly superior pre existing Honorverse particle shielding using far less mass?

They have only been using PODS for 15+ years now are you honestly going to say that every single captain of every single ship does NOT want those attached to his hull? As if the crews going to long distance foreign stations would not throw their own $$$ at slapping on dirt cheap LEAD plating on a pod or 4 just to have long range hitting power.

Not to mention there are supposedly Tens of thousands of pods sitting at the junction being bombarded by radiation for months ~ years at a time.
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Re: Battle of Hypatia questions
Post by tlb   » Fri Oct 22, 2021 5:44 pm

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kzt wrote:Due to plot device pods can't be attached to a ship for over a week or so. Even though electrical outlets were apparently never invented in the honorverse it's been implied that even if you velcoed to the pods to the hull they wouldn't last more than a few weeks.

It's a David thing, you wouldn't understand. Or so it seems.

Loren Pechtel wrote:How does the Honorverse radiation shielding work? Is something tractored to the outside of the ship shielded?

Joat42 wrote:The ships have particle shields and the strength of the shield determines how fast a ship can travel. For example, merchant ships have weaker shields that war ships.

There is no real textev how it really works but the textev available hints at that it can protect humans on the hull for short periods of time until the exposure starts doing damage.

That would also indicate that equipment attached to the hull will be exposed and in the case of pods they most likely don't have enough passive shielding to avoid degradation over time.

Relax wrote:Radiation shielding is fixed to exterior of ships as shown by Honor at Cerberus where RFC says the radiation shielding was warped, melted, slagged, and buckled(and exterior) when a certain ship blew up too close to others.

That being said... Are you honestly telling everyone here, ~2000 years from now people do not know how to use LEAD in the Honorverse for even CRUDE particle shielding? Let alone vastly superior pre existing Honorverse particle shielding using far less mass?

They have only been using PODS for 15+ years now are you honestly going to say that every single captain of every single ship does NOT want those attached to his hull? As if the crews going to long distance foreign stations would not throw their own $$$ at slapping on dirt cheap LEAD plating on a pod or 4 just to have long range hitting power.

Not to mention there are supposedly Tens of thousands of pods sitting at the junction being bombarded by radiation for months ~ years at a time.

Radiation shielding (also called particle shielding) is not fixed to the hull, instead it behaves similar to a bow buckler (but not the same). Here is a quote about that from Storm from the Shadows, chapter 30:
Given the toughness of warship armor, even two or three T-centuries ago, that was simply too little to have any appreciable effect, especially since the resultant laser still had to blast its way through not just a warship's sidewalls, but also its anti-radiation shielding, just to reach the armor in question.

The author talked about the operation of the particle shielding in the following Pearl:
Kinetic Anti-ship Attacks
Here is the relevant portion:
As far as the effectiveness of a "down-the-throat" attack on a major combatant, the particle shielding definitely would present difficulties. I'd have to run the numbers, but the particle shielding is basically designed to handle collisions with solid objects massing up to about two metric tons at velocities of up to 60% of light-speed. More massive objects can be dealt with it lower velocities, and as the velocity rises above .6c, the size of the object the system can handle goes down. There is, however, a reason warships mount massively redundant point defense to cover the bow-aspect of their wedges, and a reason besides the need to engage an enemy vessel for mounting the most powerful chase weapons possible and mounting them in multiple numbers, instead of simply settling for the biggest, nastiest spinal mount weapon you can cram in. When an object too large for the particle shielding to deal with turns up, it is automatically engaged by the ship's point defense and -- if the ship has been cleared for action -- its chase energy weapons, as well. And the fire control on those systems is designed to engage targets coming in at better than 80% of light-speed. and they're also designed to begin engaging them at ranges in excess of 200,000 kilometers. So, I doubt that you'd be able to get your warhead close enough to score a hit before detonating, even if the slug were massive enough to punch through the particle shielding in the first place. Obviously, you'd have a better shot at scoring a hit with an "up-the-kilt" shot, where the particle shielding wouldn't be a factor… except for the minor point that the after end of the ship is designed to be the forward end of the ship when the vessel is decelerating. Which means -- you guessed it -- that the stern hammerhead is equipped with exactly the same sort of massively redundant, space debris-killing energy weapons and particle shielding as the bow.


Here is a description of what happened to the Farnese from Echoes of Honor, chapter 46:
Yang's visual display blanked as the dreadful, white-hot boil of fury overpowered the filters. Attila was less than six hundred kilometers from Farnese when she went, and the flagship's hull fluoresced wildly as the stripped atoms of her eviscerated sister slashed across her. Only her standard, station-keeping particle screens were up, and those were intended mainly to keep dust from accumulating on her hull. They had never been intended to deal with something like this, and threat receivers and warning signals wailed.
It was only later that Yang realized that only one of Attila's plants had actually let go. The fail-safes on the other two must have functioned as designed. If they hadn't, Attila would have taken Farnese and probably Wallenstein, as well, with her. As it was, the flagship's damage was incredibly light. Her starboard sensors, communications arrays, and point defense laser clusters were stripped away, half her weapon bay hatches were warped and jammed, up to a half meter of her armor was planed away in some places, and she lost two beta nodes out of her forward ring and three more out of her after ring, but her port side was untouched, and the sensors and com lasers on the roof and floor of her hull survived more or less unscathed.


Here is an ovserver's view from Ashes of Victory, chapter 1:
His jaw set as his pilot, obedient to his earlier orders, swept down the big ship's starboard side and he studied her damage. Her heavy, multilayered armor was actually buckled. The boundary layers of antikinetic armor seemed to have slagged and run; the inner, ablative layers sandwiched between them were bubbled and charred looking; and the sensors and antimissile laser clusters which once had guarded Farnese's flank were gutted. White Haven would have been surprised if half her starboard weapons remained functional, and her starboard sidewall generators couldn't possibly have generated any realistic defense against hostile fire.


RFC has commented on particle shielding for pods: there is none for pods built to be carried within a pod layer (since that is redundant), meaning that carrying them tractored to the hull will result in degradation. However system defense pods are supplied with such shielding. Here is where Duckk passes on RFC's words about pod degradation, power cords and radiation shielding:
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Re: Battle of Hypatia questions
Post by Jonathan_S   » Fri Oct 22, 2021 6:48 pm

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tlb wrote:Here is an ovserver's view from Ashes of Victory, chapter 1:
His jaw set as his pilot, obedient to his earlier orders, swept down the big ship's starboard side and he studied her damage. Her heavy, multilayered armor was actually buckled. The boundary layers of antikinetic armor seemed to have slagged and run; the inner, ablative layers sandwiched between them were bubbled and charred looking; and the sensors and antimissile laser clusters which once had guarded Farnese's flank were gutted. White Haven would have been surprised if half her starboard weapons remained functional, and her starboard sidewall generators couldn't possibly have generated any realistic defense against hostile fire.


RFC has commented on particle shielding for pods: there is none for pods built to be carried within a pod layer (since that is redundant), meaning that carrying them tractored to the hull will result in degradation. However system defense pods are supplied with such shielding.

And further in EoH is says
Echoes of Honor: Ch. 48 wrote:Modern warships did not succumb to proximity soft kills—unless, like Farnese or Hachiman, the proximity was very close and the explosion very violent indeed and none of their passive defenses, like impeller wedges, sidewalls, and radiation shielding, were on-line.
So while the multilayered armor probably has some particle shielding effect it's not the ship's main radiation and particle protection; which is some form of powered field/shield projected from the ship. And of course we're explicitly told that Farness didn't have her radiation shielding online (which even without sidewalls sounds like it would have reduced the damage to her armor).
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Re: Battle of Hypatia questions
Post by Loren Pechtel   » Fri Oct 22, 2021 9:22 pm

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Relax wrote:That being said... Are you honestly telling everyone here, ~2000 years from now people do not know how to use LEAD in the Honorverse for even CRUDE particle shielding? Let alone vastly superior pre existing Honorverse particle shielding using far less mass?

They have only been using PODS for 15+ years now are you honestly going to say that every single captain of every single ship does NOT want those attached to his hull? As if the crews going to long distance foreign stations would not throw their own $$$ at slapping on dirt cheap LEAD plating on a pod or 4 just to have long range hitting power.

Not to mention there are supposedly Tens of thousands of pods sitting at the junction being bombarded by radiation for months ~ years at a time.


Relativistic "vacuum" is rather nasty, not something you're stopping with a thin sheet of lead.

An answer from Worldbuilding on StackOverflow I think does a good job of showing how nasty: The question was a IIRC 1 ton tungsten sphere aimed at Earth, 99.9% c, starts from Pluto's orbit. The question is what it would do to Earth and the answer surprisingly is basically nothing. It's going to be vaporized in minutes just by the interplanetary medium. While Honorverse ships aren't going that fast they're exposed to considerably denser medium.
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Re: Battle of Hypatia questions
Post by kzt   » Fri Oct 22, 2021 10:27 pm

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Relativistic particles don't just interact with the surface like normal particles, they interact with a much deeper amount of the object that stops them. This is also true of physical objects as well as atoms or subatomic particles. They are like high energy (tens of MeV) gamma rays, which you are not going to block with a thin sheet of lead.

You need a lot of material to stop them. And the energy they release when you stop them gets converted to heat, so the shield gets eroded.

However the ship gets eroded by this same effect. So, unless every trip through hyperspace they need to replace a few CM of hull, I find this explanation non-persuasive.

But it is what it is.
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