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Old October 5th, 2012, 10:47 PM
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Default Striker Book 3 Chemical round revisited

Evening all,

Two items are buzzing around in my bonnet concerning the chemical round.

Looking at the tables associated with CPR gun design the lowest tech level listed is 5.

The first bee buzzing around

Is a chemical round available at tech level 5?

The second bee concerns the initial cloud size which in the earlier discussion I suggested using the cloud sizes for smoke rounds.

After more thought I think I was really off the mark and would like to suggestion using the burst size for the HE round to indicate the initial cloud size for a chemical.

A third item just popped into my head. Can a CBM round contain a chemical round?
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Old October 6th, 2012, 12:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snrdg082102 View Post
Evening all,

Two items are buzzing around in my bonnet concerning the chemical round.

Looking at the tables associated with CPR gun design the lowest tech level listed is 5.

The first bee buzzing around

Is a chemical round available at tech level 5?
Game rules don't set a minimum tech that I know of. The WW-I Germans were arguably TL 5, at least starting out, and a Brit chemist came up with an idea for cyanide shells in 1854. The 1899 Hague Conference issued a declaration on the laws of war which included an agreement "to abstain from the use of projectiles the object of which is the diffusion of asphyxiating or deleterious gases." Of course, we all know how much good that did.

Quote:
Originally Posted by snrdg082102 View Post
The second bee concerns the initial cloud size which in the earlier discussion I suggested using the cloud sizes for smoke rounds.

After more thought I think I was really off the mark and would like to suggestion using the burst size for the HE round to indicate the initial cloud size for a chemical.
Yup.

Quote:
Originally Posted by snrdg082102 View Post
A third item just popped into my head. Can a CBM round contain a chemical round?
The CBM round is rather precisely described in the rules. Ergo, a CBM gas round - or more correctly, a CBM round filled with submunitions containing gas agents - would be an IMTU thing. However, if a gas round's cloud is the same as the burst size of an HE round, a 4 cm HE round doesn't get a significant burst size until TL 11, which could be used to argue that it wouldn't work until TL 11.

I'm not entirely sure real-world examples would support that "not till TL 11" interpretation - in fact, I think they don't - but if you're doing an IMTU thing for a wargame, you need to be prepared for the guy across from you to argue against the bright idea you're about to use on him.
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Old October 6th, 2012, 08:57 AM
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Morning Carlobrand,

Quote:
Originally Posted by Carlobrand View Post
Game rules don't set a minimum tech that I know of. The WW-I Germans were arguably TL 5, at least starting out, and a Brit chemist came up with an idea for cyanide shells in 1854. The 1899 Hague Conference issued a declaration on the laws of war which included an agreement "to abstain from the use of projectiles the object of which is the diffusion of asphyxiating or deleterious gases." Of course, we all know how much good that did.
Yep, the game doesn't implicitly provide a minimum tech level for chemical (warfare) rounds. After posting that the Design Sequence Table book suggests tech level 5 I looked back at ammunition and saw that minimum or available tech levels were mentioned for rounds that were not a tech level 5 item.

I'm even more in favor of stating that the chemical round is available at tech level 5, at least in the CT Striker universe.

Yes, like most laws the a majority people played by rules until someone broke them.

Quote:
Yup.
I'm glad I finally caught on that the HE burst size = the initial chemical gas cloud. Took a while though since I focused on the smoke round parameters.

[/QUOTE]The CBM round is rather precisely described in the rules. Ergo, a CBM gas round - or more correctly, a CBM round filled with submunitions containing gas agents - would be an IMTU thing. However, if a gas round's cloud is the same as the burst size of an HE round, a 4 cm HE round doesn't get a significant burst size until TL 11, which could be used to argue that it wouldn't work until TL 11.

I'm not entirely sure real-world examples would support that "not till TL 11" interpretation - in fact, I think they don't - but if you're doing an IMTU thing for a wargame, you need to be prepared for the guy across from you to argue against the bright idea you're about to use on him.[/QUOTE]

Guess what, I wasn't as out to lunch as I thought about using the Smoke round cloud size. The smoke round rule states that weapons with a bore size less than 6.5 cm generates a 1 cm cloud. A CBM round dropping chemical round bomblets create an initial gas cloud 1 cm x 1 cm.

Thanks Carlobrand for the comments which are inputs I need to help pull together my errata submission for the chemical round. Of all the ammunition the chemical round, in my opinion, needs more information to be usable.
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Old June 10th, 2021, 09:35 PM
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I beg pardon for the thread necromancy, however, there are a few factors that were not considered in this discussion, along with one major error.

The major error is equating the radius of a gas cloud with the effective area of burst of a High Explosive shell. A U.S 155mm artillery round weighs 95 pounds and carries about 15 pounds of high explosive. The effective area of burst for one round is approximately an oval of 180 feet perpendicular to the trajectory of the shell and 54 feet along the path of the shell. This is taken from FM 101-10, Staff Officer's Guide for 1956. It might be a bit optimistic, as the 1959 edition gives a more limited area. That may be based on a different angle of burst, as the area covered by a shell burst varies greatly depending on the angle of impact with the ground. It should also be noted that the effective burst area is defined as the area where a standing, motionless man on level ground has a 50% chance of being hit by an effective fragment.

A 155mm chemical round has a weaker shell body so as to be shattered by only a burster, basically a tube of explosive running down the center of the shiell body, the chemical filling, and the burster tube. Fragmentation is minimal. The purpose of any chemical shell is to place a lethal concentration of gas in a given area You do not fire just one chemical shell. The most effective weapon for delivery in World War One of phosgene, chlorine, or a mixture of the two, was the Livens projector, an 8 inch smoothbore mortar that fired a gas canister to an effective range of 1450 yards. The British used them in massive batteries to place a lethal concentration of gas on specific areas, such that a single breath without a mask was possibly lethal. You can find the 1942 manual for the Livens projector online if you look for it.

The next thing that was not considered is exactly what the chemical round was loaded with. Generally, you were looking at phosgene, some form of a tear gas agent, hydrogen cyanide (which did not work that well), or liquid mustard agent. Mustard was not a gas, but a persistent liquid that was best as a blister agent, although if you had bad luck, it might kill you. The gases dispersed fairly quickly, hence the use of massive numbers of shells, and had this distressing tendency to drift downwind. That means that the user needs to take weather conditions into account before cutting loose, otherwise you might just gas your own men. That did happen. Mustard, being a liquid, did release some vapor over time, which did the eyes no good at all, and could stick around for anywhere from several days to several weeks, again depending on the weather. During World War One, where for a while the Germans had a monopoly on mustard, the Allies figured out that the Germans did not shell areas they were planning to attack with mustard, because of its persistence. So, if you were shelled by mustard, you probably were not going to the target of an attack in the next couple of weeks. Mustard also makes for a great land mine filler.

Smoke shells are typically base-ejection rounds, using a time fuze to blow the base of the shell of, and then eject 3 to 5 smoke candles alson the trajectory of the round. That way the smoke is not all concentrated in one spot. Now, if you decide to use Adamsite smoke candles, you get both a smoke screen, and a nice cloud of vomiting agent. There are other chemicals that are used for smoke rounds without the vomiting bonus. White phosphorus is simply a shell filled with white phosphorus and a burster to spread the white phosphorus around, making for a nice smoke cloud, and also burning the daylights out of anyone hit by a piece.

The current crop of nerve agents are similar to the World War One gases in how they are delivered, with a lot lower lethality limit. VX is the equivalent of mustard for nerve agents, as it is also a persistent liquid, and not a gas at all.

Using chemical rounds is not a simply or easy matter, but it is an efficient means of causing casualties. Then you also have chemical bombs, the mustard land mines mentioned, cloud gas attacks, and the aerial spray tanks.
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Old June 11th, 2021, 02:20 AM
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