The best naval artillery weapon depends on how you weigh the performance in different roles.
Short range anti-missile work favors the smaller weapons with high slew rates (to engage multiple widely spaced targets) and high rates of fire (for multiple hits). Anti-aircraft and longer range anti-missile engagements against maneuvering targets favors the mid size guns with moderate rates of fire and proximity fused munitions. Bombardment roles are mostly indirect fire and require heavy projectiles for penetration of hard targets. In the anti-personnel role most of the weapons have potential. Anti-ship applications in direct fire are somewhere in between depending on the nature of the target.
Here is a sample of a range of potentially available western weapons and some notes.
1. Maximum range for all weapons except the Goalkeeper and Millennium Gun is for indirect fire.
2, ?ready rounds? are the amount of ammunition that can be fired without the gun crew reloading the mount.
3. Weights are for the whole projectile and the explosive content of the HE round.
4. The ?total on target? weights are for a 1 minute of continuous firing or the ready ammunition, whichever is less.
5. The 127mm and 155mm guns have 2 ranges. The first is for conventional ammunition, the second for extended range guided projectiles (still in latest iteration of development) with a heavier propellant charge.
Data is from the Navweaps site
Range is also important for a bombardment weapon because modern warships lack effective armor against same class weapons. This means indirect fire, unless you want to chance an artillery duel, which you could easily lose if the opposition includes a MBT. When fired indirectly impact velocities are limited by the freefall velocity in air for the projectiles. The 30mm and 35mm projectiles will probably lack the energy to penetrate most roofs. The 57mm projectile can probably penetrate unreinforced roofs. The 76mm should penetrate most roofs, but not bunke
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