mersenneforum.org  

Go Back   mersenneforum.org > Extra Stuff > Soap Box

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 2019-08-22, 14:11   #144
Uncwilly
6809 > 6502
 
Uncwilly's Avatar
 
"""""""""""""""""""
Aug 2003
101×103 Posts

100001110001002 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Sardonicus View Post
Waidaminnit! A cruise missile powered by a nuclear reactor?!?
Google "flying crowbar"
Uncwilly is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 2019-08-22, 16:32   #145
kladner
 
kladner's Avatar
 
"Kieren"
Jul 2011
In My Own Galaxy!

17·19·31 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncwilly View Post
Google "flying crowbar"
Why am I not surprised? Cold War insanity knew no bounds. Who knows what is being cooked up in CW 2.0 (ongoing) besides the Russian missile?
kladner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2019-08-23, 12:02   #146
Dr Sardonicus
 
Dr Sardonicus's Avatar
 
Feb 2017
Nowhere

3×5×233 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncwilly View Post
Google "flying crowbar"
Thanks for the search topic!

Fascinating. Apparently it's an old idea, a proven technology, rugged and reliable (which led to the moniker), born of good old American know-how, but shelved as obsolete with the advent of ballistic missiles.

But then, the calutron, used at the dawn of the nuclear age for separating isotopes of uranium, was shelved as obsolete and not terribly practical. The plans were even declassified. The thing is, though, clunky though they were, they did actually work, and Saddam Hussein resurrected the old technology to further his nuclear ambitions.

What really got me going waidaminnit! was the idea, "A nuclear reactor in a flying machine. What could possibly go wrong?"

It would appear the Russians have encountered at least one answer to that question. I say "encountered" rather than "discovered," because it is possible that, at this point, nobody knows. It seems that some of the people best qualified to determine what may have gone wrong died in the explosion.

The possibilities include the reactor itself went kerflooey, or (if the Russians have resurrected the reactor-powered ramjet idea) that one or more rocket boosters blew up. The official line is that a reactor went kerflooey.

Aside: It also occurred to me that the scientists who reportedly died in the explosion, might have died another way. You may recall that, when engineers at Morton Thiokol tried to tell management about problems with the O-rings on the Space Shuttle, their warnings were disregarded and, in some cases, the engineers were demoted. Well, imagine Russian engineers trying to warn about one of Vladimir Putin's pet projects being a disaster waiting to happen. They would, no doubt, be ordered to keep working and keep their mouths shut. But when the predicted disaster actually happened, those who had warned of it might well be blamed, and immediately punished by facing the firing squad. They might be publicly honored, and their deaths reported as accidental. This gloomy scenario could be discounted if the dead scientists' families do not suffer any form of official retribution.

But I was thinking more along the lines of what might go wrong once the thing is actually flying. It might go off-course and crash somewhere other than its intended target. Even if the warhead failed to explode, the reactor would probably make quite a mess.
Dr Sardonicus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2019-08-23, 16:15   #147
tServo
 
tServo's Avatar
 
"Marv"
May 2009
near the Tannhäuser Gate

2·7·37 Posts
Default Here's another one

Quote:
Originally Posted by kladner View Post
Why am I not surprised? Cold War insanity knew no bounds. Who knows what is being cooked up in CW 2.0 (ongoing) besides the Russian missile?
Absolutely amazing! Proof positive that insanity knows no bounds. Besides the fact that it was actually considered for production is the fact that they ran its engine for 5 FULL MINUTES out west.

My nominee is not as amazing, but has its own insane qualities: the Davey Crockett nuclear mortar:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Davy_C...uclear_device)

It had a range of only 1.5 to 2.5 miles and could be carried on a jeep. Its yield was 10 to 20 tons making it one of the smallest warheads ever deployed.
The special insanity award goes to the fact that 2100 of these things were built and ACTUALLY DEPLOYED all over Europe, but especially West Germany. in the late 1950s and 1960s.
tServo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2019-08-23, 16:24   #148
tServo
 
tServo's Avatar
 
"Marv"
May 2009
near the Tannhäuser Gate

2×7×37 Posts
Default Still more insanity

How about a nuclear Titanic?
It was just launched.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world...cid=spartanntp
tServo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2019-08-23, 16:26   #149
xilman
Bamboozled!
 
xilman's Avatar
 
"𒉺𒌌𒇷𒆷𒀭"
May 2003
Down not across

1026510 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by tServo View Post
Absolutely amazing! Proof positive that insanity knows no bounds. Besides the fact that it was actually considered for production is the fact that they ran its engine for 5 FULL MINUTES out west.

My nominee is not as amazing, but has its own insane qualities: the Davey Crockett nuclear mortar:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Davy_C...uclear_device)

It had a range of only 1.5 to 2.5 miles and could be carried on a jeep. Its yield was 10 to 20 tons making it one of the smallest warheads ever deployed.
The special insanity award goes to the fact that 2100 of these things were built and ACTUALLY DEPLOYED all over Europe, but especially West Germany. in the late 1950s and 1960s.
Neither were insane in the context of the geopolitical and technological circumstances of their day.

Unpleasant, arguably, but not insane.

In the event of Warsaw Pact armies sweeping across West Germany towards France and the Netherlands, most inhabitants of those countries would have preferred NATO to be lobbing 15 t devices around than 15kt tactical nukes. I dare say they still would.

A stand-off cruise missile with an in-air duration of weeks or months also made a lot of sense before low-altitude radars rendered them ineffective. Not even stealthing the fuselage would work these days because their exhausts would be obvious to orbiting IR-telescopes.
xilman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2019-08-23, 16:54   #150
Uncwilly
6809 > 6502
 
Uncwilly's Avatar
 
"""""""""""""""""""
Aug 2003
101×103 Posts

22×2,161 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by xilman View Post
A stand-off cruise missile with an in-air duration of weeks or months also made a lot of sense before low-altitude radars rendered them ineffective. Not even stealthing the fuselage would work these days because their exhausts would be obvious to orbiting IR-telescopes.
One of the ideas was to fly the thing around the enemy territory after releasing the weapon. It would be spewing radiation out the back end and get some 'bonus kills'.
Uncwilly is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 2019-08-23, 17:44   #151
kladner
 
kladner's Avatar
 
"Kieren"
Jul 2011
In My Own Galaxy!

17·19·31 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by tServo View Post
How about a nuclear Titanic?
It was just launched.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world...cid=spartanntp
You found two more suitably horrifying examples. In terms of floating reactors, isn't there a nuclear sub or two which are no longer floating, but sitting on the sea floor? Those have to start leaking reactor contents sooner or later.
kladner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2019-08-23, 17:45   #152
kladner
 
kladner's Avatar
 
"Kieren"
Jul 2011
In My Own Galaxy!

17·19·31 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by xilman View Post
Neither were insane in the context of the geopolitical and technological circumstances of their day.

Unpleasant, arguably, but not insane.

.....
Given that the context was inherently insane, I suppose the devices were unremarkable.
EDIT: Also, what were the real chances of a Warsaw pact invasion when the forces could, and in those days probably would have been nuked?

Last fiddled with by kladner on 2019-08-23 at 17:49
kladner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2019-08-23, 18:45   #153
xilman
Bamboozled!
 
xilman's Avatar
 
"𒉺𒌌𒇷𒆷𒀭"
May 2003
Down not across

5·2,053 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by kladner View Post
EDIT: Also, what were the real chances of a Warsaw pact invasion when the forces could, and in those days probably would have been nuked?
Who knows?

One argument is that the collateral damage of a strictly limited nuclear response with 10-100kt tactical nukes would be sufficiently unpleasant that continental European members of NATO would not have countenanced it. The (apparently) significantly greater capabilities of Warsaw Pact conventional forces may well have meant they would have reached or crossed the Rhine before being brought to a halt by a NATO conventional response.

The above assumes that neither side would escalate to a full strategic response.

Last fiddled with by xilman on 2019-08-23 at 18:45
xilman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2019-08-23, 19:36   #154
ewmayer
2ω=0
 
ewmayer's Avatar
 
Sep 2002
República de California

263768 Posts
Default

A little recent history on the Cold War 2.0 arms race from Moon of Alabama:

MoA - Why The End Of The INF Treaty Will Not Start A New Arms Race
Quote:
Yesterday the U.S. left the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty. The end of this and other treaties that eliminated or restricted the deployment of nuclear systems is seen by some as the beginning of a news arms race:

William J. Perry - @SecDef19 - 7:37 PM · Aug 2, 2019
The U.S. withdrawal from the INF Treaty today deals a great blow to nuclear arms control and global security, we are sleepwalking into a new arms race.

The former Secretary of Defense is wrong. The race will not happen because Russia (and China) won't run. Or said differently, they already won. To understand why that is the case we have to look at the history of the nuclear treaties and their demise...

...In June 2002 U.S. President George W. Bush, under the influence of one John Bolton, withdrew from the ABM treaty which led to its termination. The U.S. deployed ABM system in Alaska and California but during tests the systems proved to be unreliable. The U.S. claimed at that time that ABM was needed to defend against nuclear missiles from North Korea and Iran. That was always obvious nonsense. At that time North Korea had no missile that could reach the United States and Iran has no nukes and limits the range of its missiles to 2,000 kilometer.

Russia saw the U.S. step as an attempt to achieve a first strike capability against it. It immediately started the development of new system that would make the U.S. anti-missile defense irrelevant.

The U.S. also pressed NATO to deploy ABM systems in Europe. Iran was again cited as the main danger. Plans were developed to deploy Patriot and THAAD anti-missile system in Poland and Romania. These did not immediately endangered Russia. But in 2009 President Obama canceled the deployment and came up with a more devilish plan. The AEGIS system used on many U.S. war ships would be converted into a land based versionand deployed in an alleged ABM role. AEGIS consist of radar, a battle management system and canister missiles launchers. The big issue is that these canisters can contain very different types of missiles. While the Standard Missile-2 or 3 can be launched from those canisters in an ABM role, the very same canisters can also hold nuclear armed cruise missile with a range of 2,400 kilometer.

Russia had no means to detect which type of missiles the U.S. would deploy on these sites. It had to assume that nuclear intermediate range nuclear missiles will be in those canisters. In 2016 the U.S. activated the first of these AEGIS ashore systems in Romania. It was that step that broke the INF treaty.

That Obama had earlier signed a nuclear agreement with Iran that made sure that Iran would never build nukes made it obvious that Russia is the one and only target of those system...

It was John Bolton who was behind the demise of the ABM treaty and it was John Bolton who convinced Trump to terminate the INF treaty. With Bolton in the lead the New Start treaty, which limits intercontinental systems but ends in 2021, will likely not be renewed. Soon the whole system of treaties that limited U.S. and Russian nuclear weapons and delivery means will be gone.

Why is the U.S. so eager to end all these? It is known John Bolton hates anything that restricts the U.S., but there is also a larger strategy behind it. The U.S. believes that it defeated the Soviet Union by creating an arms race that the Soviets lost. It hopes that it can do the same with a recalcitrant Russia. But that calculation is wrong. President Putin has long said that Russia will not fall for it:

Moscow will not engage in an exhausting arms race, and the country’s military spending will gradually decrease as Russia does not seek a role as the “world gendarme,” President Vladimir Putin said.
Moscow is not seeking to get involved in a “pointless” new arms race, and will stick to “smart decisions” to strengthen its defensive capabilities, Putin said on Friday during an annual extended meeting of the Defense Ministry board.

As Patrick Armstrong explains well:

Putin & Co have learned: Russia has no World-Historical purpose and its military is just for Russia. They understand what this means for Russia's Armed Forces:
Moscow doesn't have to match the US military; it just has to checkmate it.

And it doesn't have to checkmate it everywhere, only at home. The US Air Force can rampage anywhere but not in Russia's airspace; the US Navy can go anywhere but not in Russia's waters. It's a much simpler job and it costs much less than what Stalin, Khrushchev and Brezhnev were attempting; it's much easier to achieve; it's easier to plan and carry out. The exceptionalist/interventionist has to plan for Everything; the nationalist for One Thing.

Russia already has all the weapons it needs to defend itself. U.S. warfare depends on satellite communication, air superiority and missiles. But Russia's air defense and electronic warfare systems are first class. They demonstrated in Syria that their capabilities exceed any U.S. systems.

When the U.S. left the ABM treaty Russia started to develop new weapons. In 2018 it was ready and demonstrated weapon systems that defeat any ABM system. The U.S. can not longer achieve first strike capability against Russia no matter how many ABM systems and nukes it deploys. There is no defense against hypersonic systems, nuclear torpedoes or nuclear powered cruise missiles with unlimited reach.
ewmayer is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Water security Nick Soap Box 66 2018-08-03 17:16
security of the webpage? Unregistered Information & Answers 4 2013-02-08 04:42
Key fob security. Xyzzy Science & Technology 13 2007-03-09 02:39
A security puzzle T.Rex Puzzles 12 2007-02-11 11:54
PrimeNet Security Damian PrimeNet 7 2005-06-21 12:46

All times are UTC. The time now is 01:57.

Thu Oct 1 01:57:44 UTC 2020 up 20 days, 23:08, 1 user, load averages: 1.52, 1.54, 1.50

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

This forum has received and complied with 0 (zero) government requests for information.

Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation.
A copy of the license is included in the FAQ.