wardialer
Topic Author
Posts: 1139
Joined: Fri Sep 14, 2001 1:08 pm

GPS On Cruise Missiles?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 6:05 pm

Since the Libian war, there were several Tomahawk cruise missiles launched at various targets.
My question is, how are the target GPS coordinates loaded onto the missile's guidance system?
is it done via a standard PC computer?

thx.
 
BladeLWS
Posts: 358
Joined: Wed Dec 14, 2005 12:41 pm

RE: GPS On Cruise Missiles?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:02 pm

It's a different when you're asking about technical details that are classified and not of public knowledge. It's not something to ask a public forum because you have no idea on who you're talking to and why they are asking about it.
 
DiamondFlyer
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Joined: Wed Oct 29, 2008 11:50 pm

RE: GPS On Cruise Missiles?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:04 pm

Quoting BladeLWS (Reply 2):
It's a different when you're asking about technical details that are classified and not of public knowledge. It's not something to ask a public forum because you have no idea on who you're talking to and why they are asking about it.

So, since the guy asked, why don't the people who know the system just not talk about it, rather than you spout off about how "this is an OPSEC issue" and want to be like a certain WWII country in regards to free speech?

A basic answer on missile operations would probably satisfy the question asked.

-DiamondFlyer
From my cold, dead hands
 
BladeLWS
Posts: 358
Joined: Wed Dec 14, 2005 12:41 pm

RE: GPS On Cruise Missiles?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:10 pm

Quoting DiamondFlyer (Reply 3):
So, since the guy asked, why don't the people who know the system just not talk about it

Because we'd rather not talk in detail about the specifics of an operational weapon system.

Quoting DiamondFlyer (Reply 3):
rather than you spout off about how "this is an OPSEC issue" and want to be like a certain WWII country in regards to free speech?

Discussing stuff is fine but talking about the intricacies of how its programmed to operate is not.
 
Woodreau
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Joined: Mon Sep 24, 2001 6:44 am

RE: GPS On Cruise Missiles?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:18 pm

There's a whole bunch of people (CMSA) that does the targeting, weaponeering, and target mensuration. Some of it can be done locally in theater, but usually when cruise missiles are involved you are talking about strategic level targets

The targeting data gets uploaded to the ship. The ship uploads it into the missile via the SWG-3. The ship drives into the launch box and sends it on it's way. Tomahawks are one of the easier missiles to shoot because the targets aren't moving ones and the ship has no input or idea other than a general idea as to what or where it's missiles are hitting or where they're going. It's go and shoot.
Bonus animus sit, ab experientia. Quod salvatum fuerit de malis usu venit judicium.
 
mandala499
Posts: 6458
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2001 8:47 pm

RE: GPS On Cruise Missiles?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 9:43 pm

Quoting DiamondFlyer (Reply 3):
A basic answer on missile operations would probably satisfy the question asked.

Yes, let's break all National Security protocols and giveaway top secret information!!!!!!   

Targetting coordinates and enroute waypoints entered into the targetting computer on the ship/launch platform.
Same with details of the terminal guidance (ie: the information it needs for the final impact trajectory... such as trajectory type, or which window in a building it needs to go into, and how far into the building it needs to go before blowing itself up, depending on what it has on the nose).
All that gets loaded onto the missile's targetting computer electronically through a physical data port connection which detaches itself when it launches.

As for the further details... "I don't know"   

Now, if the above is too detailed, blame Discovery and National Geographic channels...   
For the rest, look at woodreau's post.

Quoting BladeLWS (Reply 4):
Because we'd rather not talk in detail about the specifics of an operational weapon system.

Bloody hell! He's not asking about details, he's just asking a general question on the data transfer flow method.

Quoting wardialer (Thread starter):
is it done via a standard PC computer?

Well that computer is not and doesn't run on commercial off the shelf OS. US DOD-MIL-STD documents cover the systems requirements... and yes, you can download them if you know where to look...

Quoting BladeLWS (Reply 2):
It's a different when you're asking about technical details that are classified and not of public knowledge. It's not something to ask a public forum because you have no idea on who you're talking to and why they are asking about it.

Then perhaps you should ask for those documentaries on advanced weaponry to not be aired on TV or ask the US Govt. to stop putting some documents online or review it's documentation classification standards. This is airliners.net and not wikileaks for crying out loud!

Mandala499
When losing situational awareness, pray Cumulus Granitus isn't nearby !
 
UH60FtRucker
Posts: 3252
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2005 9:15 am

RE: GPS On Cruise Missiles?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 9:58 pm

Quoting HaveBlue (Reply 1):
Quoting DiamondFlyer (Reply 3):
Quoting mandala499 (Reply 6):

It's funny that you guys are giving BladesLWS crap for flipping out on the OP.... but in the process you're all flipping out on him. Christ you guys, chill out!

If anything, there was nothing wrong with him reminding us to air on the side of caution. Especially since the military has way too many service members unknowingly post sensitive information on forums, chatrooms, facebook, etc. Perhaps he could have been more polite -- but no use derailing this thread over it (which is exactly what has happened).

Anyway, lets move on:

Quoting wardialer (Thread starter):
My question is, how are the target GPS coordinates loaded onto the missile's guidance system?
is it done via a standard PC computer?

Simple answer: data load cartridge. On board systems will feed current GPS location, target GPS location, and a terrain map of the desired route, into data cards housed in the missile. During cruise, the missile uses GPS and terrain association to accurately pinpoint its location. Should it lose its GPS datalink, the missile will continue on course using the terrain association, albeit with reduced accuracy.
Your men have to follow your orders. They don't have to go to your funeral.
 
HaveBlue
Posts: 2104
Joined: Fri Jan 30, 2004 3:01 pm

RE: GPS On Cruise Missiles?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:38 pm

[

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 7):
but in the process you're all flipping out on him. Christ you guys, chill out!

Um I think threatening to report the thread starters question for OPSEC reasons was flipping out. Asking him to relax was not. And someone apparently agreed, because his original response is now gone.  

And how bout if you're going to act like the moral authority, you don't resort to name calling, as you do below. I'm done.

[Edited 2011-03-21 16:02:33]
Here Here for Severe Clear!
 
UH60FtRucker
Posts: 3252
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2005 9:15 am

RE: GPS On Cruise Missiles?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:48 pm

Quoting HaveBlue (Reply 8):

Anyway children, moving on...

Here's a really interesting piece on the nuclear tipped TLAM-N, and indirectly, their navigation systems.

http://www.flightglobal.com/airspace...n/archive/2009/12/14/tomahawk.aspx
Your men have to follow your orders. They don't have to go to your funeral.
 
rfields5421
Posts: 5547
Joined: Thu Jul 19, 2007 12:45 am

RE: GPS On Cruise Missiles?

Tue Mar 22, 2011 2:05 am

Cruise Missile navigation concepts have never been classified. One of the ideas behind the missile is for the 'enemy' to know just how accurate the things are.

Just offer this suggested resource

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cruise_missile#Guidance_systems

Or this one

Quote:
The Block III version incorporates engine improvements, an insensitive extended range warhead, time-of-arrival control and navigation capability using an improved Digital Scene Matching Area Correlator (DSMAC) and Global Positioning System (GPS) — which can significantly reduce mission-planning time and increase navigation and terminal accuracy. Tomahawk Block IV (TLAM-E) is the latest improvement to the Tomahawk missile family. Block IV capability enhancements include: (a) increased flexibility utilizing two-way satellite communications to reprogram the missile in-flight to a new aimpoint or new preplanned mission, send a new mission to the missile en route to a new target, and missile health and status messages during the flight;



Source - US Navy Fact File - http://www.navy.mil/navydata/fact_display.asp?cid=2200&tid=1300&ct=2



[Edited 2011-03-21 19:10:11]
 
User avatar
Aesma
Posts: 7482
Joined: Sat Nov 14, 2009 6:14 am

RE: GPS On Cruise Missiles?

Tue Mar 22, 2011 3:59 am

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 7):
Simple answer: data load cartridge. On board systems will feed current GPS location, target GPS location, and a terrain map of the desired route, into data cards housed in the missile. During cruise, the missile uses GPS and terrain association to accurately pinpoint its location. Should it lose its GPS datalink, the missile will continue on course using the terrain association, albeit with reduced accuracy.

Isn't there also an inertial navigation system ?
New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
 
wardialer
Topic Author
Posts: 1139
Joined: Fri Sep 14, 2001 1:08 pm

RE: GPS On Cruise Missiles?

Tue Mar 22, 2011 5:06 am

Why dont you report the Author who wrote this book???

http://books.google.com/books?id=NVE...sec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false

I was just asking a simple question on how these systems work. Thats all.

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