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Bravo! Military Practicing Old-School Nav


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#1 shep854

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 0907 AM

https://www.strategy...s/20181205.aspx

"Ten heavy bombers (B-52, B-1B and B-2) flew in while the GPS was off and tested their skills at navigating without GPS..."

"It was found that without GPS the younger troops, sailors and pilots could still do it old school and seemed to relish the challenge."


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#2 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 0931 AM

Wonder if there is room to retrofit one of these in a B1?


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#3 Josh

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 0946 AM

For an aircraft, couldn't you use radar mapping to get a very good fix if you were overflying a know area? This is how TERCOM worked. In that case the waypoints would be very specific, but I would have thought strategic bombers now adays could carry the radar imagery of an entire theater for reference purposes. This would mean illuminating your radar, but depending on the threat or stand off range, that would be acceptable in most situations. If nothing else, it might allow precise terminal weapon delivery and presumably the gig is up once you start releasing weapons anyway.


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#4 GARGEAN

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 1004 AM

For an aircraft, couldn't you use radar mapping to get a very good fix if you were overflying a know area? This is how TERCOM worked. In that case the waypoints would be very specific, but I would have thought strategic bombers now adays could carry the radar imagery of an entire theater for reference purposes. This would mean illuminating your radar, but depending on the threat or stand off range, that would be acceptable in most situations. If nothing else, it might allow precise terminal weapon delivery and presumably the gig is up once you start releasing weapons anyway.

Pretty hard to perform while flying over Pole or ocean...
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#5 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 1007 AM


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#6 shep854

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 1019 AM

Arctic nav is a real headache, even with GPS.  Radio get really screwy towards the poles.


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#7 Josh

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 1027 AM

deleted


Edited by Josh, 05 December 2018 - 1031 AM.

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#8 Josh

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 1030 AM

 

For an aircraft, couldn't you use radar mapping to get a very good fix if you were overflying a know area? This is how TERCOM worked. In that case the waypoints would be very specific, but I would have thought strategic bombers now adays could carry the radar imagery of an entire theater for reference purposes. This would mean illuminating your radar, but depending on the threat or stand off range, that would be acceptable in most situations. If nothing else, it might allow precise terminal weapon delivery and presumably the gig is up once you start releasing weapons anyway.

Pretty hard to perform while flying over Pole or ocean...

 

I wasn't implying it should be a singular source of navigation, but it would allow PGM delivery where as most other nav methods short of GPS would not. Presumably you could refine your position when you made landfall.

 

Arctic nav is a real headache, even with GPS.  Radio get really screwy towards the poles.

 

Besides the bad radio conditions, I was under the impression GPS orbits were sub optimal for good coverage over the poles as well.


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#9 Chris Werb

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 1647 PM

First of all, how accurate is a modern, high end INS over say an hour? If you then have something like a sniper pod it could update your INS in clear weather by locking onto an object of known location and tracking and ranging it. Alternately, with two such pods you could do it passively by triangulation.
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#10 Chris Werb

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Posted 05 December 2018 - 1705 PM

I found one source claiming that "modern" INS used by aircraft drift by c. 0.6 nautical miles per hour. That's lousy for even a strategic weapon used over the poles, but it would get a human crew within sight and certainly within radar range of known objects to get a fix on even after a transpolar flight. RC135s use celestial to update their INS. I wonder how accurate that is?
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#11 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 0324 AM

I found one source claiming that "modern" INS used by aircraft drift by c. 0.6 nautical miles per hour. That's lousy for even a strategic weapon used over the poles, but it would get a human crew within sight and certainly within radar range of known objects to get a fix on even after a transpolar flight. RC135s use celestial to update their INS. I wonder how accurate that is?

 

It was certainly adequate for civilian airliners flying the Atlantic or the Pacific until the not too distant past. Or at least was, assuming it wasn't flown by a South Korean.

 

Its worth remembering that RAF Black Buck operations would also have been flown near exclusively by  INS. I seem to recall the Black Buck Vulcans were fitted with an INS system that had been removed from VC10's awaiting conversion into RAF Tankers. Thats 3300 nautical miles.


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#12 DB

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 0833 AM

For an aircraft, couldn't you use radar mapping to get a very good fix if you were overflying a know area? This is how TERCOM worked. In that case the waypoints would be very specific, but I would have thought strategic bombers now adays could carry the radar imagery of an entire theater for reference purposes. This would mean illuminating your radar, but depending on the threat or stand off range, that would be acceptable in most situations. If nothing else, it might allow precise terminal weapon delivery and presumably the gig is up once you start releasing weapons anyway.

Pretty hard to perform while flying over Pole or ocean...
You can't rely on GPS at high latitudes, either.
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#13 shep854

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 0949 AM

KC-135s no longer carry dedicated navigators, though the mount for celestial nav is still in the roof.  As far as I know, celestial navigation is no longer used aboard US aircraft.


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#14 Chris Werb

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 1912 PM

KC-135s no longer carry dedicated navigators, though the mount for celestial nav is still in the roof.  As far as I know, celestial navigation is no longer used aboard US aircraft.

 

RC-135s have this, Pete.

 

http://www.northropg...ents/ln120g.pdf

 

http://www.defense-a...on-(aug-4).html


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#15 shep854

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Posted 07 December 2018 - 0919 AM

Thanks,Chris! :)

 I was harking back to a FAMFLIGHT I took on a KC-135 back around '05 or so.  The fitting for the navigator's sextant was still in the flight deck overhead, but the actual flying/navigating was done by the pilot/copilot.

I'm sure the automated systems are much faster and more accurate.


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