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"USS Donald Cook" Topic


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JimDuncanUK12 Apr 2018 11:56 a.m. PST

Does anyone have a better breakdown of the ship-to-shore missile capability than that quoted on Wikipedia?

1 29 cell, 1 61 cell Mk 41 vertical launching systems with 90 RIM-156 SM-2, BGM-109 Tomahawk or RUM-139 VL-ASROC missiles.

Have any of these weapons systems been upgraded recently?

Lion in the Stars12 Apr 2018 6:04 p.m. PST

I think those should be a 32-cell forward and a 64-cell aft, the cranes that used to take up 3 cells in each bay have been removed since they weren't strong enough to handle the newer missiles.

There's a new-ish version of the Tomahawk, the Block IV, it has a datalink back to the launcher and in-flight-retargeting capabilities. That's the BGM109E 'Tactical Tomahawk', which has at least been tested with a multi-purpose warhead (both blast-frag and bunker-busting in the same missile), and other tests with the seeker from the AGM88E antiradar missile. There's also a Raytheon initiative to add a millimeter-wave radar seeker for anti-ship work, at the expense of some fuel capacity/range. And the Navy's labs are working on a way to deliberately make a Fuel-Air Explosive out of any unburned fuel. While I don't think all those capabilities have been stacked together yet, I expect them to be in the next 5-7 years. Makes for a very capable missile, if expensive.

Also, there has been a test of a TacTom where it was used as an expensive drone, taking pictures of the target and then loitering while the powers-that-be decided what to do with the target.

There's also a strong possibility of some of those cells carrying RIM162 ESSM 'quad-packs', 4 missiles per cell.

Since the primary mission of a Burke-class is air defense, I'd expect most of the missile capacity to be SM2s, with probably 8x VL-ASROCs, and not more than a dozen Tomahawks. The ESSMs are for own-ship point defense, so I usually assume about 4 cells (16 missiles). 90-24=36x SM2 missiles, though obviously that can change for the mission at hand.

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