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The Fleet Ship designs, strategies, and tactics.

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  #1  
Old June 17th, 2003, 11:51 AM
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This is sort of a supplement to my "OTU Equiv. of Carrier BG" post.

In the OTU/YTU, what is the purpose of escorts, as well as their tactics and formations? Also, what are the modern day equivalent, and are there any references?
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Old June 17th, 2003, 12:18 PM
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Last modern world use of escorts I know of was destroyer escorts of merchant traffic during WWII to protect from u-boat attacks.

Escorts were very common during the Napoleonic wars to protect merchants from privateers. Both privateers and escorts were, as in Traveller, much smaller than ships of the line. A frigate was about as large as an escort got.
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Old June 17th, 2003, 01:55 PM
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Escorts do just that, they escort more vulnerable vessels through dangerous waters. There are several kinds of escort tactics, depending on the threat. The tactics used by a destroyer picket at the Battle of Leyte Gulf would by nessessity be different that those of a corvette escorting convoys through the North Atlantic in WWII. As an aside, the last know use of a full convoy type system would probably have to be the British thrust at the Falklands during that war. I'll have to defer to the Brits in the building for the Operational title.

In the OTU, it is much the same thing. Comparatively few Gazelle-class ships escort battle fleets. They are more of an anti-piracy vessel. Even Vargr corsair bands would really slow up with a squadron of 6 or 8 of these bad boys come out of the gas giant. Battle Fleets would use Chrysanthemum-class or Midu Agashaam-class ships, with a Sloan-class as the escort command vessel.

Quick aside to Mythmere,
Don't forget that in the Napoleanic era, the frigate WAS the big-dog on the open sea. No other vessel matched the frigates manuverablity with it's firepower. That's a little different than the defininition nowadays of something smaller than a destroyer.
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Old June 17th, 2003, 05:00 PM
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Napoleonic escorts would have been sloops and brigs, 200-500 tons ea, rather than 500-2000 ton frigates. Of course, at this time a Ship of the Line was only 2-4,000 tons.
USS Constitution (44 gun Frigate): 2000 tons
HMS Victory (100 gun Ship of the Line): 3500 tons

At that time a merchant ship would run 300-600 tons, with the big East India men running over 1000.

Hmm, that sounds a lot like CT before Book 5. Especially since there are about 2 wet-navy displacement tons for every Traveller dTon.
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Old June 17th, 2003, 05:21 PM
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It depends on what you mean by escorts.

In the most general terms, almost anything could be an escort for something else. Generally, the ship being escorted has the escorts to deal with whatever it can't/doesn't want to deal with directly and to provide operational flexibility.

For example, in a current carrier battle group, the carrier has escorts in the form of a guided missile cruiser, destroyers, frigates, and submarines partly in order to deal with submarine, surface, and air (missile) threats that it can't deal well directly.

In the Traveller universe, a mercenary cruiser could have two gazelles as escorts. At the same time, a huge dreadnought might have a whole flock of cruisers, destroyers, and Gazelles as escorts.

So, it depends on what you mean.

Ron
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Old June 17th, 2003, 05:37 PM
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Quote:
Don't forget that in the Napoleanic era, the frigate WAS the big-dog on the open sea. No other vessel matched the frigates manuverablity with it's firepower. That's a little different than the defininition nowadays of something smaller than a destroyer.
You're forgetting the ships of the line. Frigates were the big dogs of the non-capital ships, but they were too small to fight in the line of battle.
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Old June 17th, 2003, 05:41 PM
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Hey, Ron, I'm in Sugar Land! m f i n c h 2 @ houston.rr.com
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Old June 17th, 2003, 06:51 PM
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As an aside, is anybody but me really looking forward to Pirates of the Caribbean and Master and Commander? For me, the Super Hero thing is being done, but I'm really lookin' forward to a kickass pirate flick!
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Old June 17th, 2003, 07:38 PM
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Counting the days till Master and Commander!
My wife and I are still talking about who else might have been cast in those roles.

Gerard Depardieu would have been a great Aubry - only flaw being French, particular problem in this context.

THe guy who is professor Snape for Stephen. Who else? We had a lot. Dang, I can't remember.
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Old June 17th, 2003, 09:48 PM
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The most important use for escorts is increasing sensor coverage!

Today's navies use small boys and aircraft to extend radar coverage beyond max range for a single unit. Two way datalinks allow the entire battlegroup to see the combined radar picture. The specific C&C capabilities are very impressive.

Traveller escorts would/should/could be used the same way, positioned several light minutes away, to allow the high value unit maximum reaction time to potential threats. Escorts also allow for long range scouting and multi-vector attacks.
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