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"“Nuclear” Battleships: The U.S. Navy Almost Built..." Topic

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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP03 Apr 2017 4:06 p.m. PST

… a Super Weapon Like No Other.

In 1958, the Navy proposed overhauling the Iowa-class ships by removing all of the 16-inch guns and replacing them with anti-aircraft and anti-submarine missiles.

The new "guided missile battleships" would also carry four Regulus II cruise missiles, each of which could flatten a city a thousand miles distant with a nuclear warhead more than 100 times as powerful as the bomb used on Hiroshima.

The result would have certainly been the most powerful battleship ever, but the concept was riddled with inefficiencies. Under the proposal, 2,000 sailors would have had to sail into hostile waters in an expensive, 900-foot vessel to attack just four targets with nuclear weapons. An Air Force bomber could attack as many targets, at a greater range, with fewer than a dozen crew.

And at $1.5 USD billion in today's dollars, the conversion would have been expensive…"
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Lion in the Stars05 Apr 2017 10:01 a.m. PST

Yup. It's also why only carriers are nuclear powered in the Navy today. Nuclear plants are expensive, and the early designs were quickly obsolete.

Rubber Suit Theatre Inactive Member05 Apr 2017 8:32 p.m. PST


I *knew* that these things were really run by the bikes in the gym!

Lion in the Stars05 Apr 2017 8:55 p.m. PST

No, they're powered by paperwork. evil grin

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP16 Apr 2017 4:44 p.m. PST



Ponder Supporting Member of TMP17 Apr 2017 1:08 p.m. PST

and the early designs were quickly obsolete.

Must be why the Enterprise stayed in service for 50 years (1961 to 2012).

Ponder on,


Lion in the Stars17 Apr 2017 1:22 p.m. PST

@Ponder: getting refueled every 5 years, instead of 10-25 or even longer.

Cheaper to chop a hole in a carrier than in a sub.

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