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The New Navy
CSC 1984
SUBJECT AREA Strategic Issues
                               THE NEW NAVY
                               Submitted to
                 The Marine Corps Command and Staff College
                            Quantico, Virginia
                   In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements
                         For Written Communications
                          Commander Mahmoud Y. Rashad
                                 Egyptian Navy
                                 April 6 1984
                         THE NEW NAVY
The Importance of Sea Power
     At wars end, the United States had the greatest fleet
the world had ever seen, about 68,936 vessels and craft of
all sorts and kinds.  Yes, in 1945 after the end of the
World War II, many Americans thought that the U.S. Navy,
which had helped to defeat the German submarines in the
Atlantic and swept the Japanese Navy from the seas of the
Pacific, had worked itself out of a job.
     Air power enthusiasts believed that peace of the world
could be maintained by flying a few American aircrafts
carrying a few atomic bombs, and ground soldiers, might be
needed in small numbers to act as police forces to quell
minor conflicts after the air atomic forces had won a
victory.  Thus, the Navy had nothing to fight.
     The attacks upon sea power persisted in various forms
until the Korean War (1950-1953).  Soon history set the
record straight.  The Korean War demonstrated that navies
were still vital to the successful prosecution of war.
     Sea power has always included more than fighting ships.
This means combat of all kinds.  It also means arms and
equipment that enable them to fight effectively, or a
merchant marine, factories, bases, building yards, resources
to construct and maintain the ships and trained men to
operate all these facilities.  Fundamentally, sea power
exists to use the ocean waterways for exploitation of trade
or for strategical reasons.  It is a fact that seven tenths
of the earth is water.  Today, especially, no nation can
live as an island entirely unto itself.  A nation must
exchange its goods for others.  It must bring in by sea, raw
materials, food and medicines, if it does not possess them.
Naval blockades or maintaining patrolling ships and planes
off the coast of a nation to sever its seaborn supply lines
can quickly strangle a small and vulnerable country and can
slowly weaken a large and powerful one.  In modern war, all
forms of power mutually overlap and are interdependent.
     Some incidents in history that have happened show the
necessity of sea power for nations.  Examples of these
incidents are: (1) the landing of the Marines in Lebanon
during President Eisenhower's administration,  and (2) the
partial blockade of Cuba to force the Russians to withdraw
their missiles from their islands in the fall of 1962.
     We can't forget the great growth of Russian sea power
in the twentieth century.  There is no way to forget that
the Soviet Navy has the largest submarine fleet today and
their surface ships are second only to those of the United
States in number and in tonage.  Also, Red China is becoming
a sea power.
     The technological revolution may be dated from the
invention of the radio,  the airplane and the internal
combustion engine.  This revolution will enable the Navy to
defeat all problems.
     Today, forty years later, modern naval vessels may be
propelled by nuclear power.  The fissionable element will
last normally for years or even for an entire war.
Submarines glide at speeds in excess of 30 knots far beneath
the sea in a depth man had never been penetrated before.
Jet aircraft flying from carrier decks move more than twice
the speed of sound, and hovercrafts may skim at 50 to 100
     If we look to today's weapons,  the gun has been
replaced with a missile that extends sea power for thousands
of miles inland.  Because the dimensions of change are so
fantastic and so considerable, it seems to many that the new
Navy was not descended from the old Navy.  The revolution at
sea has altered everything from keel to the mast head.  The
combined changes have been so great that many navies have
assumed totally new dimensions of strategic power.
Submarines firing missiles with nuclear warheads represent a
potential threat to nearly every city of the earth.
     In a non-nuclear war, helicopters and jet aircraft can
be flown from ships' decks.  Destroyers can protect the
landing forces with anti-craft and surface to surface
missiles, whereas, electronic warfare jaming and deception
are widely conducted and have a significant affect on the
war.  In marine engineering the revolution in propulsion
systems has been profound.  New fuels have been developed
and new systems have been utilized to use these fuels.
     Atomic power has had by far the greatest impact upon
the new Navy.  Small amounts of uranium, which can be
fissioned or split bombardment of neutrons, are encased as a
core of a nuclear reactor.  The rate of fussion can be
accelerated or decreased by controlling the neutron
bombardment.  The fission process gives off great heat that
is used to turn water into steam and the steam is then used
to drive turbines that are geared to a propeller.  However,
nuclear power is the most important new form of marine
propulsion.  Because of the high cost of nuclear power and
its safety problems, the oil burning boiler steam turbine
combination is still the standard marine power plant for all
major high speed ships.
     The oil burning boiler and steam turbines have been
also refined and improved in so many ways.   Turbines
utilizing various types of chemical fuels are also developed
and in use.  In marine gas turbines, various combinations of
chemicals are burned to provide the power to turn the
     Most gas turbines now use some kind of fuel oil,
usually diesel fuel, and boilers are dispensed with the fuel
is injected directly to turbines and burns.  The burning
gases pass through the turbine blades thus driving the
turbine.  The advantage of this type of propulsion are
simplicity, flexibility and high speed.
     And finally, there is a completely new and as yet
entirely experimental ship-plane combination.  It is a
hovercraft device which travels entirely above the water on
a cushion of air.  There are various kinds of these craft
with different systems utilizing the air cushion for
suspension and propulsion.
     From the invention of the first submarine until now,
submarines have confirmed their significant role as a sea
power.  They now form the most significant threat to both
sea crafts and sea bases as well as cities (and towns) of
the foe as they are now armed with long range nuclear
     Thus the application of nuclear power as a means of
energy in nuclear submarines has solved many significant
problems and made possible the development of undersea craft
capable of indifinite submergence.  The nuclear power plants
utilize tremendous energy released in the form of heat when
atoms are fissioned or broken up.
     The processed materials, U-235, a derivative of uranium
and plutanium, provided a nuclear reactor the fuel that,
when burned, gives off heat.  In a nuclear explosion two so-
called critical masses of fissionable materials are brought
together in a fraction of a second creating a reaction which
would be like a chemical laboratory experiment.  The most
dangerous effect of the nuclear explosion is the great fire
ball with heat which is millions of degrees (as hot as the
sun).  This heat is used in a nuclear reactor but, unlike
warheads or bombs, the reactor is devised with all sorts of
safe guards to prevent explosions.  A nuclear reactor is
thus really a furnace containing carefully packaged and
separate packets of the enriched uranium.
     The potential energy of the Navy is estimated to be a
lump of uranium the size of a golf ball (two pounds) and is
equivalent to 460,000 gallons of fuel oil or 3,000 tons of
     This radio active fuel,  which is a carefully
compartmented core, is constantly giving off neutrons that
dash back and forth in all directions and in the process
fission heat is given off and more neutrons fly about.  The
secret of a nuclear reactor is the control of the neutrons
-- the limitation of the number permitted to strike and thus
fission other atoms.  This is made by means of control rods
of special metal which absorb or slow down the neutrons and
thus control the number of atoms that are split.  The
nuclear reactor has a built in safety factor that if it
happened under certain condition that it emits so much heat,
the fission might become so tremendous that the reactor
might melt, but, there could be no nuclear explosion as
     The great advantage of nuclear reactors for warships is
the elimination of the necessity for frequent refueling and
therefore, offering the ability for cruising at high speed
for a long time.   However,  there are of course some
disadvantages to nuclear powers such as it is a more
expensive system.
     The Navy has about 85 nuclear submarines which are of
two general types -- attack submarine SSN and the fleet
ballastic missile submarine SSBN.  The attack submarine is
used for general purposes.  It has many weapons and is a
high speed deep diving ship designed to attack the enemy
maritime targets, especially the enemy submarines.  It also
scouts and patrols off enemy coasts.  Some classes of SSN
submarines are fitted with a mid-ship torpedo tubes to
launch the new anti-submarine weapon SUBROC with a
destructive warhead nuclear or convention depth charge.  The
SSBN high speed deep diving submarines are armed with about
18 nuclear missiles.  The Trident missile is capable of
destroying targets as far as 4,000 nm.
ASW -- Anti-submarine Warfare
     As the enemies of the submarine, the destroyer is the
major anti-submarine surface ship of the modern fleet.  It
is one of a vast complex of ships weapons and means that
must be organized and integrated against the threat of the
nuclear submarine.
     The Navy envisions its carrier strike forces as the
first line of defense against enemy submarines.  Attack
planes from carriers and perhaps polarized missiles can be
launched from SSBN submarines against the enemy submarines
or against the enemy submarine bases.  The second line of
defense would be our submarines lurking off enemy bases and
the coast searching for the enemy submarines.  The third
line of defense is the so-called anti-submarine barriers.
These barriers are designed to block certain narrow
bottlenecks of the sea which enemy submarines must use to
reach the high seas.  A fourth line would be long range
patrol planes equipped with ASW based at various outlying
bases.  They would cover periodically every segment of the
     So-called HUK (Hunter-Killer) groups each are composed
of aircraft carrier and several ASW destroyers.  The Navy
has nine of these groups in operation.   They range far and
wide on our coast, near carrier strike groups to seek and
destroy enemy submarines.   Detecting and tracking the
enemy's submarines is a complex procedure which needs many
types of units and sensors to confirm the success of the
anti-submarine operation.  Many types of sensors and systems
are being used for detecting a submerged submarine such as:
    1.   The SOFA System (sound fixing and ranging) is
composed of various hydrophones widely spaced around a wide
area.  Here, the intersections of directions are taken from
a source of sounds which could be fixed and the approximate
location of a target could be found.  Then the HUK group
could be sent to detect and destroy the suspected target.
     2.   The sonar bouy is one of the significant sensors
that may be placed around the suspected area by plane or
helicopter.   These bouys are of two types -- passive
(Jezebel) and active (Julie).  The active type uses small
explosive charges to send out sound waves which may be
reflected back from a submarine's hull and will indicate
distance and direction from a submarine.
     3.    Other means of more precisely locating and
detecting submarines are the anti-submarine  helicopters
which carry dunking sonars.  A variable depth sonar, housed
in a contraption that looks like a dolphin, can be lowered
from a ship's stern to different depths to get beneath the
blanking thermal layers that hide a submarine.
     4.    Powerful new sonars are the "Bottom-Bounce"
sonars.  These sonars bounce sound waves off the sea bottom
and the waves splatter and bounce up and down off the bottom
to reach tremendous distances from twenty to over hundreds
of miles.
     5.   Other devices that are indicators of a submarine's
presence and that may assist in localization (rather than in
original detection) are many, such as:
          a.   Infrared sensors mounted in aircraft or
helicopters which will pick up at short range, the hot
exhaust gases from the diesel engine running on or near the
          b.   The MAD (Magnetic Anomaly Detector) gear
carried by aircraft to discover any sudden change in the
normal magnetic field of the earth.
     At very close ranges these devices are very accurate.
In narrow waters, like the Strait of Gibralter, they are
used to identify contact already made by other means.
     6.   ASW aircraft are primarily of three types:
          a.   The newest long range,  the four engined
11,000 mile Locheed, has a capability for detection and
destruction.  They are flown from ASW carriers (Gruman SZD
Tracker) which carry  sonar bouys (Jezebel and Julie), radio
direction finder, MAD gear, snifer gear, search radar and
anti-submarine homing torpedos or depth charges.
          b.   The other type of aircraft is the Sikorsky
all-weather Sea King (SH-3A) equipped with dunking sonar and
torpedoes.  Later weapons are varied such as homing and
spiraling torpedo like the long range Mark 37, the high
speed short range Mark 44, 45, or 46 ASROC. ASROC, the
Navy's major surface ship ASW, is a powerful rocket with a
long range reach of 5-6 miles.  ASROC rocket carries a
payload of either nuclear depth charge or a spiraling
          c.   DASH (Destroyers Anti-submarine Helicopter)
is a destroyer carrying two pilotless helicopters of simple
light design with each helicopter being able to mount a
homing ASW torpedo.
     In conclusion we can say that many types of units,
sensors and weapons are being committed to modern ASW.
The Aircraft Carrier
     The aircraft carrier dan be defined as a floating
airfield which can steam quickly to the vicinity of any
troubled spot in the world.  The aircraft carrier can
conduct many operations such as:
     - launching a strike with nuclear weapons or conven-
tional bombs,
     - providing air support or a defensive air umbrella for
the amphibians landing forces,
     - beinging the flag ship of the HUK (Hunter-Killer)
     Now the aircraft carrier is the mother ship of the
broad heilcopters which the Marines now use in their
vertical envelopments.
The Destroyers
     They are defined as "the hours of the fleet" because of
their capability to conduct most of the fleets missions.
Because they are armed with a variety of weapons and
sensors, are capable of cruising for a long time at high
speeds, and have a relatively small displacement, destroyers
have been given the privilege of conducting most of the
fleet's missions.
     Destroyers are used to protect and guard the fleet and
merchant ships from any attack -- surface,  sub-surface or
even air attack.  They are also used for escorting and
patrolling of the shore.  They protect the harbors and naval
bases from any threats coming from the direction of the sea.
Also, destroyers can offer the required fire support for the
amphibious forces ashore.
     The high seas cover approximately 140 million square
miles which is about 2/3's of the total size of the earth.
Sea power is very significant for the United States and its
42 ally countries.  Most trade import and export is via the
high seas.  Furthermore, we shouldn't forget that about 40
percent of the U.S. Army is stationed overseas.  For all
these vital reasons the United States and its allies should
devote their efforts to maintaining sea power to control the
seas since it is necessary for survival and victory.
Baldwin, Hanson W.  The New Navy.  E. P. Dutton & Company,
     Inc.  New York.  1964.

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