Re: GPS BASICS: WAS:Re: BASICS: Property Rights

Michael Lorrey (
Thu, 10 Dec 1998 19:52:48 -0500

my inner geek wrote:

> Michael Lorrey <>:
> > system. Now most of the cost of one of those is just the engine. So we get
> > smarter battlefield technologies for less money thanks to gps. Also THOR is a
> > line of sight system is it not? Well, most preferred weapons can kill over
> > the horizon....
> I said "THOR", I meant "THEL". Yes, it's a line of site laser, yet can
> be space based. Check your calendar, is the moon visible from
> your location? Imagine a few hundred of these on the moon!
> Actually, what's the point in sending a Tomahawk from an off-shore
> Destroyer or human-piloted fighter/bomber, when you can send
> something up in a parabolic trajectory that uses GPS to steer while
> decending upon its target?


  1. objects in ballistic trajectories tend to trip major alarms in the HQ's of the Strategic Nuclear command centers...
  2. a Tomahawk can fly under the radar pattern of most countries self defense networks, giving the attack the element of surprise, which is much more usefull.
  3. an object in a ballistic trajectory needs a much faster responding guidance system than just GPS. GPS is good for merely confirming course waypoints, but not useful for second by second course and thrust corrections that determine the accuracy of a ballistic weapon.
  4. the Tomahawk now has multi-mission capability, negating the advantage that a ballistic weapon can have with MIRV warheads. The latest model, the TLAM-D, can carry four warheads which can be independently dropped automatically at programmed waypoints. With a 1000 statute mile range, a Tomahawk can attack widely spaced targets with precision, while a ballistic missile's MIRV is limited to attacking targets in a small area.
  5. the next model is supposed to have hunt and kill capabilities to attack mobile targets like SCUD or SAM launchers within a given area. Useful for targets that the satellites said were at a given point x minutes ago.

As for THEL, well I like laser guns as much as anybody, but anything that is line of sight can be attacked by the attackee. Put a THEL on the moon and next thing you know every nation is gonna have its own pet Russian laser scientist....

Lasers are best used as a means of destroying the other guys ability to see whats on the battlefield. Wiping out the other guys satellites, radar dishes, etc just before you attack with a force from over the horizon not only gives you surprise, but an overwhelming advantage in C3I during the battle. Its merely an extension of electronic warfare.

Mike Lorrey

Mike Lorrey