The argument of BIG vs Little


It's been with us for ages: hot rodders arguing over cubic inches vs turbo charged high tech engines, massive mainframe computers serving hundreds of users, against a distributed network of linked personal computers.  Now this argument is applied to the battleship vs DDX debate. 

In an op—ed in the Washington Times, James O'Bryon points out that the battleships have 9 guns firing projectiles with roughly 2 tons of explosive, whereas the DDX has 2 guns firing projectiles having about 44 lbs of explosive. 

Well, true enough.  What O'Bryon didn't point out was the fact that there are only 18 such guns in existence.  (Assuming his plan of reactivating 2 battleships is followed).  He also didn't mention that the 155 mm guns of the DDX just happen to be the same size of the 155 mm artillery pieces being used by the US Army, Marine Corp and most of our Nato Allies.  Meaning that the guns of the DDX will have access to literally millions of already existing and now in development artillery shells.  On the other hand, the development costs of a precision 16 shell will have to carried by two ships and 18 guns, making each shell very very expensive.

O'Bryon also failed to note the Advanced Gun System of the DDX will have a rate of fire of about 12 rounds per minute.  As opposed to the battleships guns which have a rate of fire of roughly 2 per minute.  We can thus extrapolate that the DDX will be able to launch a total of 24 rounds in the same time it takes a battleship to fire 18. 

Lastly, we generally think of bigger has better.  Well, that may not be the case, if you're a Marine in close quarters combat.  Under those circumstances you want fast precise fire support, exactly the kind that the DDX is being designed to deliver.

You know, it is possible to have too much of a good thing. 

Steven W Dugger