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ECM thoughts--From VT to PD?


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Based on something I saw on YT about Syrian armor and other oddments since, it occurs to me that there may be an ECM aspect which hasn't been considered and would really smart--ECM vs VT aka "prox poppers" or "fuze poppers"--ECM designed not to jam but to prematurely trigger artillery, bomb and missile fuzes operating in VT mode. I first learned of these from Dad, a charter member of the AOC (Association of Old Crows). In the Syrian armor vid I saw a secret Syrian owned, Russian supplied tracked jammer which did exactly that. I subsequently saw pics of the Russian homeland version. Despite a search, and because the designator didn't stick in my memory, I can't find the blasted thing, but it's assuredly real. 

 

Were this sort of capability to be modeled in CMBS, I suspect it would affect terminal effectiveness of antipersonnel fire missions and might force a switch to PD missions only. Thoughts?

 

Regards,

 

John Kettler

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If that were to happen, we would just switch to time fuzes - not as consistent, but just as effective if properly adjusted (or proper altitude is given by the observer initially).

 

I would be interested to hear more about these "fuze poppers" though - never heard it talked about once in the artillery community, but that could just be a general lack of knowledge across the board. Also keep in mind, US VT fuzes do not activate until they are seconds away from detonation - you would need to have good placement of these jammers I imagine, and the results would probably not be consistent unless the jammer was right at the target area.

Edited by SeinfeldRules
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SeinfeldRules,

 

Fuze, MT, if we still have it, is not going to give you the consistent HOB VT will. Were that not the case, it would never have been adopted in the FA. As for evidence of such specialized ECM...US prox buster 1968 test protocol, An entire book on prox fuzes, with coverage of both ECM and ECCM. How about 5 distinct US systems intend to protect against prox, some of which saw combat and worked quite well?

 

Switching to Seinfeld in closing, I late last year got to eat boxed soup put out by the real chef who formed the basis of the famous/infamous soup Nazi. His name is Al Yeganeh, billed as The Original Soupman, with the last two words being his site URL. Got some on clearance (made it affordable for me) at Tom Thumb. Good stuff, Maynard. Have had both the Crab & Corn Chowder and the Chicken Gumbo. 

 

Regards,

 

John Kettler

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  • 2 weeks later...

SeinfeldRules,

 

Today, while looking up a Russian aircraft EW system called Khibiny, I found further proof of my prox popper claim. Turns out the manufacturer of Khibiny also makes a prox buster which has secondary COMJAM capabilities. The manufacturer provided the following description:

 

 

Rtut'-BM: Umbrella against Grads

This EW system is one of the most advanced to date. Rtut' (Mercury) is designed to protect soldiers and equipment from artillery fire, in case the artillery is equipped with proximity fuses.

In order to cause irreparable damage to manpower and weapons, proximity fuse must explode at the height of 3-5 meters. Rtut' affects proximity-fused ammunition making it explode at a safe height, which keeps the troops intact.

It's not only proximity fuses that Rtut'-BM complex is able to counteract. If necessary, it can be used to kill frequencies at which the enemy is radio-communicating.

One complex (similar to an armoured vehicle with a television antenna) is able to protect an area of 50 hectares.

According to the developers, Rtut'-BM has a great export potential and can be supplied to the traditional markets of Asia, Middle East, Africa and Latin America.

 

I'm used to a much greater VT HOB (original Bradley spec required surviving a 152 mm airburst at 18 meters altitude) than what's listed above, but it looks as though what's envisioned here is assured destruction of IFVs and APCs, with tank damage or destruction a bonus. I have no idea what the actual HOB is with early initiation, but if that's the objective, a few tens of meters would help, but I suspect we're looking at, say, 100 meters AGL, maybe more. If I did the math right, YMMV, the radius of the protected zone is 1411 meters, which is appreciable.

 

Regards,

 

John Kettler

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danzig5,

 

Thank you! That's exactly what I saw and couldn't for the life of me find again, a problem greatly complicated by looking for a vid! Bookmarked that most useful site. Here's what an intact and in combat order SPR-1 looks like. That near side area where it looks like the side armor and roof armor have come apart is the result of the taut tarp stretched over the hatch covers

 

https://www.flickr.com/photos/angus-macvicar/8221422892/

 

The SPR-2 abandoned tracks and went wheeled on the BTR-70. There's a wealth of info here, with pics being the least of the goodies. How about operating freqs, target handling figures, operational requirements, where deployed and why?

 

Nice pic of the SPR-2.

 

http://bastion-karpenko.ru/VVT/SPR-2_05.jpg

 

Am reasonably certain there is an SPR-3, though so far I've found nothing. I strongly suspect that new device will wind up in the SPR-4, presuming there's already an SPR-3, which seems likely given the age of the chassis.

 

Regards,

 

John Kettler

Edited by John Kettler
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How close to the actual strike would an EW unit have to be to have any effect on the sensor in the shells?

 

Basically directly under the newer shells. They have sidelobe suppression features installed so pushing RF through the sides doesn't work; it has to come from the front or back.

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Basically directly under the newer shells. They have sidelobe suppression features installed so pushing RF through the sides doesn't work; it has to come from the front or back.

 

So essentially every vehicle would need its own? Self protection rather than area protection? A different kind of APS, sort of?

 

Michael

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So essentially every vehicle would need its own? Self protection rather than area protection? A different kind of APS, sort of?

 

Michael

 

Not every vehicle, but one per platoon of dismounts or something like that. And hoping your opponent isn't grimey enough to simply throw DPICM instead.

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The new complex is supposed to be able to cover 50 hectares, but my math brain is offline, so I couldn't say what radius of effect that works out to being. I strongly suspect this system is/will be the latest such in the Russian Army, and I seriously doubt the Russian Army would be interested in something effective only against a shell more or less directly overhead. Such systems, as you can see in the discussion for SPR-2 previously linked to, where it details the missions for such a jammer, are doing a lot more than protecting one AFV. If you look at either SPR, though, especially the SPR-2, it becomes instantly apparent why the notion of having one on each AFV, or even one per platoon, is patently ridiculous. The thing is a Yagi fest and towers over the already tall AFV carrying it. 

 

(Cut to)

 

Would you believe the previously missing SPR-3 just turned up?  Radius of protection is listed as 400 meters vs artillery and 280 meters vs mortars. Judging from the graphics, which also depict capability vs air delivered munitions, the Russians have been able to dramatically minimize (as in tiny now) jammer and antenna size.  There is a pic showing the difference between what happens when you don't jam and when you do. As for DPICM, SFW and the like, don't they all rely on VT fuzing to know when to open?

 

I'd say the prox poppers aren't really a matter of concern at platoon-company level, but really do matter at battalion and up. Absolutely at regiment, and I guarantee you we'll have people playing at that level, especially given the operational layer someone will absolutely figure out a way to make. Higher has the jamming assets and parcels them out according to higher's plans, just as this is done with artillery and combat aviation. You'd find them protecting CPs, bridges, dams, radar sites and the like. Nor is there any fundamental reason they couldn't be included without having to invoke the current triple tier ECM options. Such ECM doesn't affect anything within the purview of the current modeling, after all. 

 

I don't pretend to have all the answers here. Indeed, I've been doing some serious catching up. But I do believe I've identified something which bears looking at for a game which has some degree of ECM depicted within it. As I've shown, both the US and the Russians have and have used such weapons in combat. If the Syrians have the SPR-1, then it seems reasonable to expect the Ukraine Army to have at least that level of capability, but likely, much better, say, SPR-2 minimum. From what I see here, it's clear Ukraine has robust ECM capabilities, at least in terms of what it can manufacture. Presently, though, Ukraine is sucking wind on the COMJAM front, thanks to very sophisticated Russian supplied EW gear and Russian soldiers to operate it.

 

Research continues.

 

Regards,

 

John Kettler

Edited by John Kettler
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