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Go Back   Armchair General and HistoryNet >> The Best Forums in History > Current Events > East Asia and the Pacific > North Korea

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North Korea The nuclear crisis in North Korea, including testing, sabre-rattling, sanctions, etc.

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  #1  
Old 01 Dec 17, 07:42
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New Hwasong15 capable of hitting any US city with moderately sized warhead.

The latest missile launched involved a completely new missile, not a simple modified Hwasong-14.

http://www.38north.org/2017/11/melleman113017/

Quote:
Photographs and video released by North Korea reveal that the Hwasong-15 test fired on November 29 is not a modified version of the Hwasong-14, as initially assessed here based solely on flight data. The Hwasong-15 is considerably larger than the Hwasong-14, and initial calculations indicate the new missile could deliver a moderately-sized nuclear weapon to any city on the US mainland. The Hwasong-15 is also large and powerful enough to carry simple decoys or other countermeasures designed to challenge America’s existing national missile defense (NMD) system. A handful of additional flight tests are needed to validate the Hwasong-15’s performance and reliability, and likely establish the efficacy of a protection system needed to ensure the warhead survives the rigors of atmospheric re-entry
Quote:
Taken together, and applying conservative assumptions about the second-stage propulsion system, it now appears that the Hwasong-15 can deliver a 1,000-kg payload to any point on the US mainland. North Korea has almost certainly developed a nuclear warhead that weighs less than 700 kg, if not one considerably lighter.

At this point the last tech hurdle to handle is the survivability of the warhead during re-entry.

Quote:
How many more tests North Korea will undertake depends on the regime’s perceived needs. At least one or two more tests on a standard trajectory are needed to validate its performance as a ballistic missile. Additional flight tests should be performed to determine the missile’s reliability, establish its accuracy and verify the re-entry protection system. However, if low confidence in the missile’s reliability is acceptable, two or three test firings over the next four to six months may be all that is required before Kim Jong Un declares the Hwasong-15 combat ready.
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  #2  
Old 01 Dec 17, 07:56
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Can't help but think that the US has effective means of countering the NorK's ICBM threat using current THAAD systems and upcoming missile defense programs.
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Old 01 Dec 17, 08:04
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"New Hwasong15 capable of hitting any US city"... But... Can it hit the city they aimed at?
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Old 01 Dec 17, 08:28
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If you aim at certain large metro areas, say Los Angeles and San Francisco, does it matter if they land within say, 250 miles? Even a landing offshore will mess up these metro areas. If a missile targets San Diego and hits South of Tijuana, the damage will be felt in San Diego. The huge metroplex of Washington to Boston is also vulnerable. Of course the further away the target the greater the predictable error in landing. Those B@sterds in DC may escape any radiation.

The trick would be to get in retaliation before Japan and China start up with complaints to go easy on the Norks. A lot depends on which way the winds aloft are blowing.

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Old 01 Dec 17, 09:09
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pruitt View Post
If you aim at certain large metro areas, say Los Angeles and San Francisco, does it matter if they land within say, 250 miles? Even a landing offshore will mess up these metro areas. If a missile targets San Diego and hits South of Tijuana, the damage will be felt in San Diego. The huge metroplex of Washington to Boston is also vulnerable. Of course the further away the target the greater the predictable error in landing. Those B@sterds in DC may escape any radiation.

The trick would be to get in retaliation before Japan and China start up with complaints to go easy on the Norks. A lot depends on which way the winds aloft are blowing.

Pruitt
Can they hit the metropolitan area they aimed at? Is the CEP of Hwasong-15 measured in hundreds of meters? Or hundreds of kilometers?

Having a light payload ICBM with a 13,000 km range isn't very useful if its CEP is 130 km.
The second highest-ranking U.S. military official said on Tuesday that despite North Korea's intercontinental ballistic missile's range, Pyongyang does not have the ability to hit the U.S. with "any degree of accuracy," Reuters reported.

[...]

"What the experts tell me is that the North Koreans have yet to demonstrate the capacity to do the guidance and control that would be required," Gen. Paul Selva, the vice chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

[...]
https://www.military.com/daily-news/...y-general.html

Their shorter ranged missiles have fairly wide estimated CEP's. Although no one knows how accurate they would be if fired on a truly ballistic trajectory at a distant target. It's not even clear that the warhead would survive reentry.
"No one, not even the North Koreans, knows the CEP of the HS-12," Mike Elleman, the senior fellow for missile defense at the International Institute for Strategic Studies, told Business Insider, referring to circular error probable, or the distance by which a missile can be expected to miss its target.

"Having said that, we can guesstimate a minimum CEP from first principles," Elleman said. Essentially, even a small task like cutting off the engines a fraction of a second too late can make the missile go miles off course.

"All told, the CEP will be greater than 5 km," Elleman said. (Five kilometers is equal to about 3 miles.) "But this is a very rough estimate. Given the paucity of flight tests, I suspect if used today, the HS-12 would have a CEP considerably larger than 5 km, perhaps 10 km, or more."

While Andersen Air Force Base, the home of the strategic bombers North Korea expressly wanted to target, spans about 35 miles across, North Korea would have greater problems than accuracy.

The massive blast radius caused by a nuclear device, which North Korea, according to news reports this week, is believed to have perfected and miniaturized to deliver on missiles, could make up for a lack of accuracy. But serious questions remain around North Korea's ability to build vehicles to reenter the planet's atmosphere through tremendous pressure and friction. The only test of the Hwasong-12 was done on a lofted trajectory and not a realistic, flatter curve.
http://www.businessinsider.com/north...ot-work-2017-8

Would the Hwasong-15 warhead even survive reentry after a 10,000 km ballistic trajectory? If so, would a missile aimed at Chicago even be able to land its warhead in Illinois?
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Old 01 Dec 17, 09:51
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No one knows for sure if an ICBM will come down where it is supposed to. The US tests its missile accuracy by firing an inert warhead at an atoll in the Pacific. The problem with this is most of the targets are in the other direction! Right now the Norks are test firing in the general direction of the US, but can't say how accurate they are. An increase in several thousand miles should mean a greater error in where they land.

The guidance computers are critical for getting the warhead near the target. Back in the Cold War the US was supplying the USSR with guidance computers! I can't say where the Russians are buying from now.

There are lots of factors in delivering a thermonuclear device by ICBM. The US and USSR used to solve accuracy by sending H-bombs. Now they claim they can land smaller A-bombs in reentry vehicles. I hope we never have to find out! I live too close to Houston for comfort! Sulphur was just as bad with all the refineries. Lots of targets in both places!

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Old 01 Dec 17, 10:00
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jose50 View Post
Can't help but think that the US has effective means of countering the NorK's ICBM threat using current THAAD systems and upcoming missile defense programs.
THAAD is not for ICBM's.

We have two systems that have a chance of hitting one. The Aegis Ballistic Defense system on board ships near NK and the Ground Based Midcourse Defense systems in Alaska and California.

The GBD has show itself to be effective slightly under 50% and a lot of those test that hit were 'rigged' and did reflect an actual enemy missile.

The Aegis system needs an early shot at the missile, lots of assumption on whether that can happen.

That said North Korea is NOT going to launch an ICBM at the US unless it is in the losing stages of a new Korean War.
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Old 01 Dec 17, 10:03
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Combat Engineer View Post
THAAD is not for ICBM's.

We have two systems that have a chance of hitting one. The Aegis Ballistic Defense system on board ships near NK and the Ground Based Midcourse Defense systems in Alaska and California.

The GBD has show itself to be effective slightly under 50% and a lot of those test that hit were 'rigged' and did reflect an actual enemy missile.

The Aegis system needs an early shot at the missile, lots of assumption on whether that can happen.

That said North Korea is NOT going to launch an ICBM at the US unless it is in the losing stages of a new Korean War.
And they would have already fired a lot of shorter ranged missiles at South Korea, Japan and possibly China. The Aegis ships would have probably had some practice shooting at NORK missiles by the time the Human Chia Pet took a shot at the US mainland.
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Old 01 Dec 17, 10:04
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pruitt View Post
No one knows for sure if an ICBM will come down where it is supposed to. The US tests its missile accuracy by firing an inert warhead at an atoll in the Pacific. The problem with this is most of the targets are in the other direction! Right now the Norks are test firing in the general direction of the US, but can't say how accurate they are. An increase in several thousand miles should mean a greater error in where they land.

The guidance computers are critical for getting the warhead near the target. Back in the Cold War the US was supplying the USSR with guidance computers! I can't say where the Russians are buying from now.

There are lots of factors in delivering a thermonuclear device by ICBM. The US and USSR used to solve accuracy by sending H-bombs. Now they claim they can land smaller A-bombs in reentry vehicles. I hope we never have to find out! I live too close to Houston for comfort! Sulphur was just as bad with all the refineries. Lots of targets in both places!

Pruitt
In the late 60's and early 70's the US tried several times to launch from test silo's that were loaded and then let sit for months, just like in real life and then give a launch command. None of them ever launched......

One of the greatest arguments for Submarine based missiles where you have a crew with 24 hour access to the missile.
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Old 01 Dec 17, 10:08
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Combat Engineer View Post
That said North Korea is NOT going to launch an ICBM at the US unless it is in the losing stages of a new Korean War.
Hopefully, in the losing stages of a new (or continuation of the old-)Korean war, the Norks will have already had their nuclear capability neutralized.
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Old 01 Dec 17, 15:01
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pruitt View Post

The trick would be to get in retaliation before Japan and China start up with complaints to go easy on the Norks. A lot depends on which way the winds aloft are blowing.

Pruitt
The thing that would take the longest is sending a message to the Ohio class boomer near the Norks and waiting for her to ease her way up to launch depth. Low angle shot into NK, minimal risks to Japan, China, and SK. And an Ohio has more nuclear firepower than ALL of NK will for some time.
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