Author Topic: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15  (Read 3546 times)

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Offline SteveAlt

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Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« on: March 03, 2009, 08:44:46 PM »
The two jump squadrons of the Second Striking Force arrived in Archangelsk without interference. The entry of the First Striking Force did not go so smoothly. As soon as the eighteen Commonwealth warships jumped in they detected two thermal signatures right on top of them. Within seconds Tsar Alexander II was hit eleven times by 15cm Near Ultraviolet Lasers. Fortunately for the battlecruiser her armour was thick enough to withstand each individual hit, even though laser fire penetrated more deeply than missile warheads, so she suffered internal damage only when two hits struck the same area of her armour. Even so, she lost three engines and half her missile launchers. With weapons and active sensors inoperable due to the effects of transit, there was no way for the Commonwealth force to immediately reply. Rear Admiral Scott ordered the battlecruiser to retreat back into Budapest while the rest of the Commonwealth ships desperately tried to get their systems online.

Ten seconds after the first volley the Angel defenders fired again. Peter the Great was hit five times and Yuri Gagarin nine times, although neither battlecruiser received any internal damage. Rear Admiral Scott was determined not to be stopped by just two defending ships so he held his position. The Angel warships, which had backed off to thirty thousand kilometres from the jump point, fired again, hitting the battlecruisers a further fifteen times and causing considerable damage. Peter the Great lost four engines, two launchers and half her magazine capacity. Yuri Gagarin lost three engines, two launchers, her active sensor, one of her fire control system and two of her four magazines. Realising his force was taking unsustainable damage, Rear Admiral Scott ordered both crippled battlecruisers, including his own flagship, back into Budapest, leaving Valentina Tereshkova and the escorts to fight on, assuming they could get their weapons into action. A retreat of the whole force at this point would have meant the damage to the battlecruisers had accomplished nothing.

As the battlecruisers retreated, the escort cruisers Iroquois and Sioux and the destroyer escorts Neptune and Téméraire got their weapons and sensors back online, identifying the two Angel ships as the laser-armed destroyers that recently entered Budapest. The 10cm advanced railguns on Neptune and Téméraire only had a 10,000 kilometre range so the Commonwealth destroyers tried to close on the Angel warships, which moved away to keep the range open. Both escort cruisers began launching their anti-missiles in offensive mode. Even as Iroquois and Sioux fired their missiles the Angel warships fired again. Valentina Tereshkova was hit several times and vanished in a blinding flash, leaving nothing but scattered debris. The damage was far too light to cause such devastation so the only explanation was a catastrophic secondary explosion in her magazines. Commodore Kenneth Amalfitano, captain of the Kiowa and senior surviving officer of the First Striking Force still in Archangelsk, was momentarily stunned by the destruction of Valentina Tereshkova. He recovered quickly and ordered all the Trafalgar class escorts to charge the two Angel ships, even if they did not yet have weapons. At least they would be able to push the enemy destroyers away from the jump point.

Spartiate joined the list of active Commonwealth ships but like her sister ships could not bring the faster Angel warships within range of her railguns. The first wave of SS-N-2 Gauntlets and SS-N-1 Grails launched by Iroquois and Sioux reached their target and all twenty-four hit. With anti-missiles and fire control systems designed to hit very fast, small objects, the Angel destroyers were easy targets. Unfortunately, with strength-1 warheads it was going to take a lot of hits to overcome the destroyers' armour and the reload rate of the cruisers was fifteen seconds, compared to ten seconds for the recycle rate of the Angel lasers. Rear Admiral Scott, who was monitoring the situation in Budapest on board Peter the Great considered bringing his three wounded battlecruisers back into Archangelsk but they would suffer new transit effects and he didn't want to risk losing another major warship, even though the Angels were beginning to move away from the jump point. He refrained from giving any further orders, leaving the battle in the hands of Commodore Amalfitano.

Comanche, Shawnee, Orion and Victory all brought their fire control and sensors online. Recalling the recent events in Budapest, Commodore Amalfitano quickly checked the logs and realised that one of the laser-armed destroyers had been hit several times by missiles from Gridley and very likely had significant armour damage. Realising his escort cruisers had been firing at the undamaged ship, he ordered all four active Tribals to concentrate their fire on the other warship. Twenty-four missiles launched from Comanche and  Shawnee while the AML-15 Launchers on Iroquois and Sioux continued their reload cycle. Angel laser fire concentrated on the destroyer escort Neptune, which took ten hits and blew up.

The twenty-four missiles from Comanche and Shawnee streaked across the intervening space in less than three seconds and slammed into the Angel destroyer. Kiowa joined the fight and launched twelve missiles of her own, matched by twelve each from Iroquois and Sioux. The damage to the destroyer obviously had some effect as she didn't fire after the normal ten second recycle time. She was struck by all thirty-six missiles from the follow-up salvo. Her speed dropped and her active sensor went off-line. Leaving the crippled warship to five pursuing Commonwealth destroyers, Commodore Amalfitano ordered the six Tribals, all of which were now active, to switch their fire to the second Angel destroyer, which had just smashed the Téméraire into wreckage with a withering volley.

The damaged Angel destroyer fired five lasers at Sioux from long range, scoring three strength-1 hits, before it was overwhelmed by a blizzard of railgun fire from the Trafalgar class escorts. The second Angel warship continued to run and obliterated Spartiate, the last nearby Commonwealth warship. The five remaining Trafalgars turned away from the wreckage of the first Angel destroyer to chase its sister ship. Gauntlets and Grails began to slam into the alien destroyer, wearing away its armour. Suddenly it turned on its pursuers and Leviathan was torn to pieces by a devastating volley of laser fire, then it ran once more.

[attachment=1:3glqw8nf]Jumppointbattle.GIF[/attachment:3glqw8nf]
A hail of anti-missiles was battering the fleeing destroyer and sensors could barely pick out the warship's signature amid the endless series of explosions surrounding its hull. Its armour was being ground away rather than penetrated. Finally, it began to slow and the surviving Trafalgars moved in for the kill. One last defiant Angel volley crippled the Victory before the destroyer was overrun and shot to pieces. The battle for the jump point was a pyrrhic victory. Two 6250 ton Angel warships had been destroyed at a cost of a 10,000 ton battlecruiser and four 4000 ton escorts lost, three battlecruisers badly damaged and a fifth escort dead in space. The six Tribals were all intact except for minor armour damage to Sioux. They had launched two hundred and sixty-four anti-missiles, or about six percent of their total loadout. Total Commonwealth crew casualties were three thousand, sixty hundred and ninety. A further twelve hundred were in life pods awaiting rescue.

Resuming command of the situation, Rear Admiral Scott ordered the surviving escorts to regroup at the jump point, except for Victory as she would be unable to move until she repaired at least one engine. Andrea Doria moved into Archangelsk to provide sensor cover and pick up survivors. For the moment, the battlecruisers remained in Budapest and began repairs. Even as the battle was taking place, news of the debacle was relayed to Admiral Perti at the Archangelsk - Smolensk jump point and to Fleet Headquarters, where President Vorokov, Fleet Admiral Rentería and Fleet Admiral Morrison were watching the campaign in real time. Admiral Perti ordered Rear Admiral Scott to hold his position and continue repairs while the Second Striking Force moved to the Budapest jump point to absorb the survivors of the First Striking Force.

[attachment=0:3glqw8nf]JPAftermath.GIF[/attachment:3glqw8nf]
Fleet Admirals Rentería and Morrison had not yet pointed out to the President that they had warned against the assault that had just taken place but their silence spoke volumes. President Vorokov pre-empted any comments along those lines by pointing out that if Rear Admiral Scott had shown aggression earlier, instead of alerting the Angels to Commonwealth knowledge of the Budapest - Archangelsk jump point with his ill-advised reconnaissance mission, the First Striking Force could have entered Budapest without resistance. In any event, they were now in the system and the mission would continue.

Over the next twenty-one hours, Peter the Great and Tsar Alexander repaired all their internal damage, using their own maintenance supplies plus over half the supplies of the other ships in the First Striking Force. Yuri Gagarin had repaired her engines, weapon systems and fire control but her active sensor was still out and her magazines were still at half capacity. All three ships had significant armour damage, particularly Gagarin, that could only be repaired in a shipyard. Because the fleet had used so much of its available supplies, the Fleet Support Vessel Aconcagua was ordered to move to Archangelsk from the position at the Budapest - London jump point. She carried enough fuel and supplies to resupply the whole First Striking Force.

After twenty-six hours of effort, the crippled escort Victory finally repaired one of her engines and limped back to the jump point. She barely had any functional systems so she was dispatched toward the Smolensk jump point with enough maintenance supplies to repair a second engine en route. With Aconcagua already heading for Archangelsk, Victory could not transit the Budapest - London jump point so her best option was to escape into Smolensk from where she could reach the shipyards at Xiamen-Kan. The jump cruiser Littorio was positioned at the Archangelsk - Smolensk jump point as a communication relay and picket and would be available to escort Victory through. Thirty hours after the battle, Yuri Gagarin completed her repairs. By this time, available maintenance supplies within the fleet were less than one third of their normal level. There was still no sign of any further Angel resistance. The Second Striking Force was four billion kilometres away and would arrive in ten days.

Three days after the battle, EM sensors on the Andrea Doria detected six active sensors, identical to those used on Angel cruisers, at two hundred and fifteen million kilometres, on an approach vector from the inner system. Assuming they were all cruisers, that doubled the known number of Angel capital ships. It also increased the likely Angel salvo size to one hundred missiles per wave, which would be a challenge even for Commonwealth defences. Rear Admiral Scott recommended retreating into Budapest. Admiral Perti warned Rear Admiral Scott that his caution was unnecessary and ordered him to take his fleet to meet the Second Striking Force. The Commonwealth ships had a 20 km/s speed advantage over the Angel cruisers so they would be able to rendezvous safely. Victory's captain was informed of the situation and he took his ship on a dogleg course so any Angel ships pursuing the First Striking Force would not detect him. All Commonwealth ships in Budapest, including Aconcagua, Yaguar, the collier Castletown and the troop transports Tarawa and Iwo Jima, were ordered to run for the London jump point. Yaguar had proven useful in the past when she was able to shadow the approaching Angel ships without being detected. Unfortunately in Archangelsk she was liable to be detected by planetary sensors and her limited fuel would eventually run out if she was chased around the system. The real problem was Andrea Doria. At 4000 km/s she was too slow to outrun the Angel cruisers so her only option was to jump into Budapest and run for London while the First Striking Force led the Angel fleet away. However, her EM sensor was allowing the Commonwealth to detect the Angel active sensors and as soon as she jumped, that vital information was lost. Once again the need for a fast, capable scout with a full range of sensors was made crystal clear. That was not likely to happen in the near future though. With new engine technology estimated to be less than a year away, all new shipbuilding and ship design work was on hold.

[attachment=2:3glqw8nf]Sept4thMidnight.GIF[/attachment:3glqw8nf]
 

Offline SteveAlt

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2009, 08:48:09 PM »
With the Angel active sensors signatures no longer on sensors, the First Striking Force headed for the rendezvous with the Second Striking Force with no information on the position of the Angel fleet. The assumption was that it was in pursuit of the Commonwealth force but the only warning of its actual location would probably be an incoming wave of missiles. Initially, the Angel ships would be able to close the range on the First Striking Force due to converging courses, although not within the range required for a missile launch against a retreating target. At 14:00 hours on September 8th, the two fleets met one point six billion kilometres from the Budapest jump point and two point seven billion from the Angel population on the third planet. During the last few hours before they joined forces, EM sensors on the Fleet Support Vessel Kilimanjaro had detected the Angel active sensors once more, approximately one hundred and five million kilometres astern of the First Striking Force.

The combined fleet comprised seven battlecruisers, three of which had significant armour damage, twelve Tribal III escort cruisers, eleven Trafalgar class destroyer escorts and Kilimanjaro. Admiral Perti could see no point in delaying the inevitable so the Second Striking Force set course for Archangel III and dared the Angel fleet to do its worst. There was little point in chasing the Angel cruisers as their speed was virtually the same as the Commonwealth fleet and they would likely repeat their previous tactic of staying out of range, firing off their missiles and running home to reload. By heading for the planet, Admiral Perti intended to prevent any reloading, either by forcing the alien fleet to enter missile range or by bombarding the population in retaliation for the Angel destruction of New London. In the meantime, the Commonwealth escorts would have to withstand whatever the Angel fleet could throw at them.

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[attachment=0:3lcanpg4]TacticalSep8th1400.GIF[/attachment:3lcanpg4]

The attack was not long in coming. At 16:17, a wave of one hundred and four anti-ship missiles was detected at 937,000 kilometres. Realising this was probably the first of several similar size waves, Admiral Perti ordered his fleet to change course and head directly away from the incoming missiles. Four Tribals and five Trafalgars were detached from the main body so they could take up a position 200,000 kilometres astern, giving them more time to intercept missiles heading for the battlecruisers. Fifteen seconds after the initial contact and before the first anti-missiles had reached their targets, a second wave of one hundred and four missiles appeared at the edge of sensor range. This engagement was going to provide the sternest test that Commonwealth anti-missile defences had ever faced.

[attachment=2:3lcanpg4]Confused1617.GIF[/attachment:3lcanpg4]
« Last Edit: March 03, 2009, 09:05:06 PM by SteveAlt »
 

Offline SteveAlt

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2009, 08:51:10 PM »
All twelve Tribal III class escort cruisers were launching anti-missiles as fast as their launchers could reload. Cherokee, Comanche, Iroquois and Sioux, the only ships armed with the more accurate but slower SA-N-2 Gauntlets, were all in the escort group, allowing them more time to engage. All four ships had elite crews, making them approximately thirty percent more effective than a crew fresh from the academy. The combination of high quality crews and the latest anti-missiles gave them a kill rate in excess of seventy percent. The other eight Tribals, armed with SA-N-1 Grails, had personnel of varying quality, ranging from the elite crews of Cheyenne and Kiowa to the relatively inexperienced Chippewa and Choctaw. Their kill rates ranged from thirty-six to forty-five percent. Forty seconds into the engagement, with twenty-two of the first wave missiles remaining, a third wave of one hundred and four entered sensor range.

The last of the first wave missiles were destroyed fifty seconds after they were first detected. By that time the second wave missiles were within 680,000 kilometres of the escorts and 875,000 kilometres of the main body. Fortunately, because the Angel anti-ship missiles were relatively slow at 10,200 km/s and the Second Striking Force was moving directly away at 4500 km/s, they would take almost three minutes to cross the engagement envelope. In the same situation the Commonwealth SS-N-3 Scarab, with its velocity of 19,200 km/s, would cover the same distance in just sixty-five seconds due to the much higher closing speed.

With twelve Tribal IIIs, each with twelve AML-15 Launchers firing every fifteen seconds, the Second Striking Force could launch almost six hundred anti-missiles per minute. In practice the actual rate was slightly lower as the escort group was sometimes firing on missiles outside the range of the main body and smaller salvos were used against stragglers that broke through. Even so, it was a huge weight of defensive fire and despite the strength of the incoming waves, they were being held at bay. When the last missile of the third wave was destroyed well short of the fleet, the fourth wave was still 700,000 kilometres from the escort group and barely within engagement range of the main body. Similarly, when the fourth wave was wiped out, the fifth was at 670,000 kilometres.

[attachment=1:109jg936]Interception.GIF[/attachment:109jg936]
In all, twelve equally strong waves attacked the Second Striking Force plus a small thirteenth wave of just eighteen missiles, totalling one thousand, two hundred and sixty-six anti-ship missiles. Not one managed to get within half a million kilometres of the Commonwealth fleet. The Tribals expended twenty-eight hundred and twenty anti-missiles, including seven hundred and thirty-five SA-N-2 Gauntlets, or approximately six months production for the ordnance factories on Eden. Admiral Perti breathed a huge sign of relief. His fleet had taken the Angels' best shot and suffered no damage. The Second Striking Force resumed its course for Archangelsk III. All of the six active sensor contacts headed for the same destination, no doubt heading home to reload.

[attachment=0:109jg936]Archangel0909-22-26.GIF[/attachment:109jg936]
« Last Edit: March 03, 2009, 09:04:49 PM by SteveAlt »
 
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Offline SteveAlt

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2009, 08:59:23 PM »
By 9am on September 15th, the Angel fleet had reached the planet with the Commonwealth fleet eighty-four million kilometres away. Shortly thereafter, three of the six active sensor contacts began moving toward the Second Striking Force while the other three remained in orbit of the planet. Even though they entered maximum Commonwealth missile range at 10:15, Admiral Perti refrained from firing in case they reversed course as they had so many times in the past. Before expending his limited supply of anti-ship missiles, he was determined to ensure any targets could not escape.

A new Angel attack began at 10:52. Despite fears of having to defend against another thousand plus missiles, Commonwealth sensors detected only three waves of fourteen missiles each. They were easily dealt with for the expenditure of one hundred and twenty-six anti-missiles. Three minutes later four more salvos of fourteen and a fifth of just four arrived, approximately thirty seconds apart. These were a much faster missile used previously by the Angel destroyer in the London system. At 18,000 km/s, they were a tougher target than the 10,200 km/s missiles that seemed to be the standard armament of the Angel cruisers, although they appeared to have a shorter range. In greater numbers they might have presented a problem. Against such small salvos the Second Striking Force didn't even slow down, charging straight at them while anti-missiles streaked ahead to blow them out of the fleet's way. By the time the last Angel missile was destroyed, the fleet was within range of Archangelsk III. Admiral Perti ordered the Second Striking Force to halt and considered his options.

The three closest Angel cruisers were only thirty million kilometres away, along with a fourth smaller ship that had been detected when the aliens entered Commonwealth active sensor range. Three more cruisers were in orbit of the planet, along with a large shipyard complex with an estimated capacity of 70,000 tons. The small scale of the recent missile attacks suggested the Angel ships had run out of ordnance so, rather than use his precious anti-ship missiles on enemy warships that were likely to be no immediate threat, Admiral Perti decided to eliminate the long-term problem by targeting the planet. As the Commonwealth knew the Moravian language, Admiral Perti intended to exact revenge for New London and then demand their  unconditional surrender. Five salvos were fired, the first three of SS-N-3 Scarabs and the other two a mixture of Scarabs and SS-N-2 Sunburns, which split into separate smaller salvos due to the speed differential. Even as the missiles closed on the planet, the group of Angel ships closest to the Commonwealth fleet began moving back toward the planet. Admiral Perti let them go.

The first wave of seventy Scarabs struck Archangelsk III  at 11:47am. Immense mushroom clouds burst up though the stratosphere as Moravian cities and industrial sites were obliterated. There was no sign of any defensive or anti-missile fire. Even as the second wave approached its target, Admiral Perti broadcast his surrender terms. The initial response was a blast of hissing defiance in Moravian, evidently from a senior official of the government but not its leader. More explosions rent the atmosphere, sending shockwaves ripping across the surface while temperatures to rival those in the heart of a star vapourised buildings and Moravians without distinction.  The next communication was from someone who identified himself as the  Moravian Great Leader, who demanded that the bombardment cease instantly and the Commonwealth ships surrender or humanity would be exterminated. Admiral Perti's curt reply was simply "Ten seconds until the next salvo hits. I have full magazines", then he cut the connection.

Death and destruction rained down on Archangelsk III for a third time, sending vast clouds of dust and ash into the air and further irradiating the biosphere. The Great Leader hailed the fleet again, this time on visual. Plainly fighting against his natural predatory instincts and speaking with the Angel equivalent of gritted teeth, he offered the unconditional surrender of his world and asked that the additional waves of missiles that the Moravians had on planetary sensors be halted. Admiral Perti issued the command and the missiles were sent into a holding pattern while their fuel lasted. Then he demanded the Moravians surrender their ships. A flash of defiance crossed the Great Leader's face before he accepted the inevitable and issued the order, admitting to Admiral Perti that his ships had exhausted their missiles and could not resist.

Shortly thereafter, six Angel warships broadcast their locations to Admiral Perti. Five were identified as Covadonga class missile cruisers, the type that had caused such devastation in the London system, while the sixth was a Colima class jump cruiser. Unfortunately a seventh ship, quickly identified by the Great Leader as a Vicario class destroyer escort, refused the call to surrender and promptly opened fire on the ships that had surrendered. The Vicario was escorting the group of ships closest to the Commonwealth fleet, a Colima and two Covadongas. It was armed with three quad 10cm laser turrets, which while short-ranged had huge destructive power within that range. Her commander, despite refusing the orders of his government, was no idiot and chose the thin-skinned Colima as his target, inflicting considerable damage. Admiral Perti ordered the two helpless Covadongas to head for the Second Striking Force then ordered his own ships to launch a salvo of forty SS-N-2 Sunburns at the Angel destroyer.

Code: [Select]
Covadonga class Missile Cruiser    12500 tons     1330 Crew     1894 BP      TCS 250  TH 1120  EM 0
4480 km/s     Armour 5-47     Shields 0-0     Sensors 6/6/0/0     Damage Control Rating 8     PPV 72
Annual Failure Rate: 156%    IFR: 2.2%    Maintenance Capacity 758 MSP    Max Repair 126 MSP
Magazine 872    

Magneto-plasma Drive E7 (14)    Power 80    Efficiency 0.70    Signature 80    Armour 0    Exp 5%
Fuel Capacity 250,000 Litres    Range 51.4 billion km   (132 days at full power)

Size 4 Missile Launcher (18)    Missile Size 4    Rate of Fire 40
Missile Fire Control FC42-R95 (2)     Range 119.7m km    Resolution 95

Active Search Sensor S126-R95 (1)     GPS 11970     Range 119.7m km    Resolution 95
Thermal Sensor TH1-6 (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  6m km
EM Detection Sensor EM1-6 (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  6m km
Code: [Select]
Colima class Jump Cruiser    12500 tons     1398 Crew     2130 BP      TCS 250  TH 1120  EM 0
4480 km/s    JR 4-50     Armour 1-47     Shields 0-0     Sensors 6/6/0/0     Damage Control Rating 8     PPV 56
Annual Failure Rate: 156%    IFR: 2.2%    Maintenance Capacity 852 MSP    Max Repair 529 MSP
Magazine 706    

J12600(4-50) Jump Drive     Max Ship Size 12600 tons    Distance 50k km     Squadron Size 4
Magneto-plasma Drive E7 (14)    Power 80    Efficiency 0.70    Signature 80    Armour 0    Exp 5%
Fuel Capacity 300,000 Litres    Range 61.7 billion km   (159 days at full power)

Size 4 Missile Launcher (14)    Missile Size 4    Rate of Fire 40
Missile Fire Control FC42-R95 (2)     Range 119.7m km    Resolution 95

Active Search Sensor S126-R95 (1)     GPS 11970     Range 119.7m km    Resolution 95
Thermal Sensor TH1-6 (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  6m km
EM Detection Sensor EM1-6 (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  6m km
The 10cm lasers on the renegade destroyer fired every five seconds and made short work of the jump cruiser, destroying it with two more devastating volleys, then she raced after the retreating Covadongas. Fortunately in the fifteen seconds it had taken the escort to wreck the Colima, the missile cruisers had moved outside the range of her lasers. With no speed advantage the destroyer could not catch her larger quarry as they headed for the safety of the Second Striking Force. It must have especially galling for the crews of the Angel cruisers to have to rely on a species that had just bombarded their home world for their own salvation.

Even as Commonwealth missiles homed in on the Angel destroyer, Admiral Perti looked at the information forwarded to him by the Moravians regarding their fleet. The other three Covadonga class missile cruisers were in orbit of Archangelsk III. Nine hundred million kilometres away, where they had fled to avoid the approaching Commonwealth fleet, were seven freighters, one of which was a larger version with twice the cargo capacity. There were also three Tapajo class jump-capable geological survey ships and a Zarco class gravitational survey ship deployed outside of Archangelsk. Admiral Perti was disturbed to learn that two of the Tapajos were in the London system, surveying its outer asteroid belt. These were presumably the ships that had first detected civilian transponder signals in that system and summoned Angel warships. A third Tapajo was in the Nottingham system, which was connected to Budapest. The Great Leader was vague about the location of the gravitational survey ship, stating it was probably in the Sheffield system, located beyond another of Budapest's jump points, but warning that its commander was a known maverick who might not choose to acknowledge a message broadcast by Commonwealth ships.

Code: [Select]
Tapajo class Geosurvey Ship    2150 tons     206 Crew     352.2 BP      TCS 43  TH 240  EM 0
5581 km/s    JR 3-50     Armour 1-14     Shields 0-0     Sensors 6/1/0/1     Damage Control Rating 1     PPV 0
Annual Failure Rate: 36%    IFR: 0.5%    Maintenance Capacity 102 MSP    Max Repair 100 MSP

J4500(3-50) Jump Drive     Max Ship Size 4500 tons    Distance 50k km     Squadron Size 3
Magneto-plasma Drive E7 (3)    Power 80    Efficiency 0.70    Signature 80    Armour 0    Exp 5%
Fuel Capacity 100,000 Litres    Range 119.6 billion km   (248 days at full power)

Thermal Sensor TH1-6 (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  6m km
Geological Survey Sensors (1)   1 Survey Points

Code: [Select]
Zarco class Survey Ship 2950 tons     281 Crew     595.4 BP      TCS 59  TH 320  EM 0
5423 km/s    JR 3-50     Armour 1-18     Shields 0-0     Sensors 6/1/3/0     Damage Control 1     PPV 0
Annual Failure Rate: 180%    IFR: 2.5%    Maintenance Capacity 126 SP

J4500(3-50) Jump Drive     Max Ship Size 4500 tons    Distance 50k km     Squadron Size 3
Magneto-plasma Drive E7 (4)    Power 80    Engine Efficiency 0.7    Armour 0    Exp 5%
Max Fuel Capacity 100,000 Litres    Range 87.2 billion km   (186 days at full power)

Thermal Sensor TH1-6 (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Signature 1000: 6m km
Gravitational Survey Sensors (3)   3 Survey Points
Code: [Select]
Angel Cargo class Freighter    4300 tons     191 Crew     344.2 BP      TCS 86  TH 400  EM 0
4651 km/s     Armour 1-23     Shields 0-0     Sensors 6/1/0/0     Damage Control Rating 1     PPV 0
Annual Failure Rate: 147%    IFR: 2.1%    Maintenance Capacity 50 MSP    Max Repair 40 MSP
Cargo 25000    Cargo Handling Multiplier 5    

Magneto-plasma Drive E7 (5)    Power 80    Efficiency 0.70    Signature 80    Armour 0    Exp 5%
Fuel Capacity 100,000 Litres    Range 59.8 billion km   (148 days at full power)
Thermal Sensor TH1-6 (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  6m km
Code: [Select]
Angel Large Cargo class Freighter    8400 tons     362 Crew     652.8 BP      TCS 168  TH 800  EM 0
4761 km/s     Armour 1-36     Shields 0-0     Sensors 6/1/0/0     Damage Control Rating 1     PPV 0
Annual Failure Rate: 564%    IFR: 7.8%    Maintenance Capacity 49 MSP    Max Repair 40 MSP
Cargo 50000    Cargo Handling Multiplier 10    

Magneto-plasma Drive E7 (10)    Power 80    Efficiency 0.70    Signature 80    Armour 0    Exp 5%
Fuel Capacity 200,000 Litres    Range 61.2 billion km   (148 days at full power)
Thermal Sensor TH1-6 (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  6m km
The forty SS-N-2 Sunburns intercepted the rogue destroyer at 12:10pm. Point blank defensive fire by its laser turrets destroyed seven missiles and it evaded ten more. The other twenty-three hit in rapid succession and the last Angel warship exploded. Admiral Perti gave permission for the two Covadongas to pick up survivors from the destroyer and from the Colima class jump cruiser and ordered all five Covadongas, including the three in orbit of Archangel III, to rendezvous with the Second Striking Force so he could put prize crews aboard. The seven freighters were ordered to head back to the planet.

With the initial excitement over, Admiral Perti had time for a detailed examination of the newly conquered world. The Moravians had suffered over one hundred and fifty million dead in the bombardment and their industry had been virtually wiped out. More than payback for the annihilation of New London. The surviving population of three hundred and eighty million would likely shrink further due to the background radiation, although not significantly. The orbital shipyards had survived intact and comprised the primary shipyard with four slipways of 15,000 ton capacity, a second yard with single slipway of 13,000 tons and a third yard with a single slipway of 12,500 tons. The remaining planetary-based industry consisted of the following:

3x Research Facility
84x Construction Factory
24x Ordnance Factory
55x Fuel Refinery
142x Mine
22x Automated Mine
12x Maintenance Facility
2x Deep Space Tracking Station
6.8m litres of fuel.

Unlike the situation on Xiamen-Kan, where the population was not unduly upset by the overthrow of their Monarch, it was obvious the Moravians greatly resented their defeat and had only surrendered to prevent their imminent extinction. There was little hope of the Moravians becoming productive members of the Commonwealth in the foreseeable future. In the meantime, the planet had to be guarded to prevent the Moravians ignoring the surrender terms and attempting to rebuild their military forces. In the short-term that meant retaining a fleet presence in the system and over the longer term bringing in a ground force to  occupy the planet. Admiral Perti's first order of business was to call forward the colliers Castletown and Ramsey, waiting at the London jump point in Budapest, and the collier Manxman which was already in Archangelsk, to resupply his fleet. Several other ships were holding position at the Budapest - London jump point. Iwo Jima and Tarawa, carrying a mobile infantry division, a heavy assault division and three garrison divisions, were ordered to head for Archangelsk and debark their troops on the planet. The fleet support vessel Aconcagua remained on station as jump point escort and communication relay while Yaguar was no longer needed so she headed for home. Andrea Doria was given the mission of contacting the Angel survey ships in Nottingham and Sheffield. The other two troop transports in Commonwealth service, Saipan and Makin Island, were sent from Sparta orbit to Mars, where they collected six garrison divisions and set off on the eight-week journey via London and Budapest to Archangelsk.

The six smaller Angel freighters were pressed into service to begin transporting installations from the Moravian home world to Xiamen-Kan, which was the closest major Commonwealth world and had the population to man them. The single large freighter began moving maintenance facilities from Archangelsk III to New London, where a small colony of 150,000 had already been re-established. President Vorokov had ordered that the former fleet base would be recreated and using Moravian-built maintenance facilities was a symbolic gesture. The two Tapajo class geosurvey ships in London were contacted and given sufficient evidence of their race's capitulation, then ordered to New London where prize crews would go on board. From there they would head to Mars where a decision would be taken on whether to keep them in service or scrap them. The five captured missile cruisers presented more of a problem. At 12,500 tons they were too large to be escorted through a jump point by any Commonwealth jump cruiser and the only Angel jump cruiser had been blown to pieces by the Vicario class destroyer escort. For the moment, they were directed to the Archangelsk - Smolensk jump point where they would be guarded by three Arleigh Burke V class DDGs until a jump gate could be built.

By using all of the missiles brought by the three colliers and removing all the missiles from Yuri Gagarin and three Tribal IIIs, Admiral Perti was able to fill the magazines of the other six battlecruisers and nine escort cruisers. He then detached Peter the Great, Tsar Alexander II and Yuri Gagarin, as all three had substantial armour damage, and dispatched them to Sparta along with six Tribals, including all those with empty magazines, and five Trafalgars. While Xiamen-Kan was closer, its shipyards were not large enough to accommodate the battlecruisers. A sixth Trafalgar, the badly damaged Victory, was en route to the Xia system. The other four battlecruisers, six Tribals and six Trafalgars moved into orbit of Archangelsk III, along with the fleet support vessel Kilimanjaro.
 

Offline SteveAlt

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2009, 09:28:13 PM »
The Moravian Empire was ahead of the Commonwealth in several areas of research and the first contacts with the Moravian scientific establishment yielded a number of important advances. The Magneto-plasma drive technology, currently being researched on Sparta, was in operational use by Angel ships and their active sensors were almost a third more efficient, which explained the huge sensor range of the Covadonga. Commonwealth laser technology, which was almost non-existent, was massively boosted by the knowledge of 15cm focal sizes and near-ultraviolet wavelengths. Similarly, the Moravian Empire was at least a generation ahead of the Commonwealth in shield technology, although neither side had deployed any warships protected by such shields. Other technological gains included thermal reduction for engines, better EM sensors and more efficient jump gate construction techniques. A radical review of Commonwealth ship designs was planned to take advantage of the new technology as well as to incorporate lessons learned from the Angel War.

In the meantime, three new engines were designed. A basic magneto-plasma drive that was more fuel efficient than the Moravian design, a more expensive version that had only half the thermal signature and a new corvette engine that utilised advances in power boosting to provide it with 110% more power than the standard ship drive. Once development of the new engines and other newly designed systems (see below) was completed, the research facilities on Sparta would begin work on an updated missile drive, based on magneto-plasma technology. It was fortunate the Moravians had not developed this technology for themselves or it would have been much harder to defend against their missile attacks.

A new series of fire control and sensor systems were developed using the improved technology obtained from Moravian databases. As part of the ongoing effort to institute Commonwealth naming systems, rather than relying on old nation-specific names or designations chosen by the manufacturer, the electronic systems were identified using a Commonwealth version of the Joint Electronics Type Designation System (JTEDS) used by the United States. The first letter indicated the type of platform on which the system was intended to be installed. As of September 2047, this included S for ship, P for planetary defence centre, B for orbital base and C for corvette or fast attack craft. The second letter was the type of technology involved, which included G for gravitational pulse, T for thermal and E for electromagnetic. The third letter was the intended purpose, such as S for an active search sensor, P for passive sensor, B for beam weapon fire control system and M for missile fire control systems. As an example, the SGS-1 Missile Detection Array was intended to be mounted on ships (S), incorporated gravitational pulse technology (G) and was used as an active search sensor (S). If new platforms, technologies and purposes were developed in the future, the intention was that new codes would be added so they could be built into the same naming system. In summary, the name codes were as follows:

Platform
B - Orbital Base
C - Corvette or Fast Attack
P - Planetary Defence Centre
S - Ship

Technology
E - Electromagnetic
G - Gravitational Pulse
T - Thermal

Purpose
B - Beam Fire Control
M - Missile Fire Control
P - Passive Sensor
S - Active Search Sensor

Examples of some of the new electronic systems are shown below:

Code: [Select]
SGS-1 Missile Detection Array
Active Sensor Strength: 126
Sensor Size: 6 HS    Sensor HTK: 1
Primary Mode:   Resolution: 1    Maximum Range: 1,260,000 km
Chance of destruction by electronic damage: 100%
Cost: 126    Crew: 30
Materials Required: 31.5x Duranium  94.5x Uridium
Development Cost for Project: 1260RP
Code: [Select]
SGM-2 Missile Fire Control
Active Sensor Strength: 42
Sensor Size: 2 HS    Sensor HTK: 1
Primary Mode:   Resolution: 1    Maximum Range: 1,260,000 km
Chance of destruction by electronic damage: 100%
Cost: 42    Crew: 10
Materials Required: 10.5x Duranium  31.5x Uridium
Development Cost for Project: 420RP
Code: [Select]
SGS-3 Area Search Sensor
Active Sensor Strength: 126
Sensor Size: 6 HS    Sensor HTK: 1
Primary Mode:   Resolution: 80    Maximum Range: 100,800,000 km
Chance of destruction by electronic damage: 100%
Cost: 126    Crew: 30
Materials Required: 31.5x Duranium  94.5x Uridium
Development Cost for Project: 1260RP
Code: [Select]
STP-10 Thermal Sensor Array
Thermal Sensor Sensitivity: 80
Sensor Size: 10 HS    Sensor HTK: 1
Chance of destruction by electronic damage: 100%
Cost: 80    Crew: 50
Materials Required: 20x Duranium  60x Uridium
Development Cost for Project: 800RP
With the acquisition of Moravian laser technology, the long-standing Commonwealth need for an effective non-missile anti-ship weapon was finally resolved. The 15cm C3 Near Ultraviolet Laser was a copy of the Moravian weapon and would become the primary Commonwealth energy weapon system once suitable fire controls were designed

Code: [Select]
15cm C3 Near Ultraviolet Laser
Damage Output 6     Rate of Fire: 10 seconds     Range Modifier: 3
Max Range 180,000 km     Laser Size: 4 HS    Laser HTK: 2
Power Requirement: 6    Power Recharge per 5 Secs: 3
Cost: 22    Crew: 40
Materials Required: 4.4x Duranium  4.4x Boronide  13.2x Corundium
Development Cost for Project: 220RP
One of the strategic lessons learned from the Angel War was the need for a dedicated planetary assault element within the Commonwealth Navy. If such forces had been available during the war then a huge quantity of installations could have been seized on Archangelsk III, the considerable environmental damage would have been avoided and the task of pacifying the planet made far easier. The four Tarawa II class ships were a start but they carried a maximum of twelve divisions in total and they were too slow and too fragile to operate with the battle fleet. There were also insufficient numbers of assault divisions to form a rapid deployment force while retaining sufficient heavy divisions for the defence of major worlds. The Commonwealth ground forces in October 2047 comprised the following divisions, with the current deployments listed separately.

4x Headquarters
12x Heavy Assault Division
4x Mobile Infantry Division
2x Assault Infantry Division
23x Garrison Division
6x Engineer Division

Sparta: 3x HQ, 9x HVA, 2x AST, 1x INF, 6x ENG
Xiamen-Kan: 1x HVA, 2x INF, 6x GAR
Archangelsk III: 1x HVA, 1x INF, 3x GAR
Mars: 1x HQ, 1x HVA, 1x GAR
Eden: 3x GAR
Lisbon V: 3x GAR
Budapest II: 1x GAR
Saipan and Makin Island: 6x GAR

In conjunction with the President, the Fleet Admirals laid out a new ground forces and planetary assault strategy. More divisions were needed, particularly assault divisions for attacking hostile worlds and mobile infantry divisions, which provided flexible defensive forces. As there were only three ground force training facilities in the entire Commonwealth, two of which were on Sparta and the third on Xiamen-Kan, more had to be built in order to support the expansion of the Commonwealth ground forces. With construction factories only operating on Mars and Xiamen-Kan, those were the logical choices to build the new facilities. Larger and more capable troop transports would be built that were capable of operating within a hostile combat environment, relegating the existing Tarawa IIs to an internal transport role.

The forty-seven divisions and four headquarters of the Commonwealth still bore their original national designations, which in several cases meant the same name with a different national prefix. As part of the new integrated approach to ground forces they would be renamed with new Commonwealth designations. Instead of the ad hoc deployment and organization that had been a feature of surface forces since the final war on Earth, a number of separate combat corps would be created, each comprising approximately five divisions plus a dedicated headquarters. Each combat corps would then be assigned to one of the existing Barrack class PDCs for training purposes. New Barracks would be built in prefabricated sections and assembled on planets where the troops would be deployed for any significant period. The design for the planned assault ships included a requirement to transport an entire combat corps so that the units could remain together. The overall ground forces organization would be known as the Commonwealth Atmospheric Combat Force (CACF), within which would be a Commonwealth Marine Corps dedicated to planetary assault. Although it was still being debated within the Commonwealth's military hierarchy, it seemed likely that the assault ships would actually be part of the Marine Corps rather than the Commonwealth Navy.

On October 5th, Andrea Doria entered Nottingham and contacted the third Tapajo class geological survey ship. Sufficient evidence was presented to the ship's commander to convince him of the situation and he was ordered to move through Budapest to New London. Andrea Doria re-entered Budapest and set course for the Sheffield jump point to find the Zarco class gravitational survey ship. By this time, the Commonwealth had thoroughly examined Moravian astrogation databases and found that Archangelsk had only the two jump points to Smolensk and Budapest. The extent of Angel exploration appeared to be the systems surrounding Budapest, comprising London, Nottingham and Sheffield.

Andrea Doria arrived in Sheffield on November 4th and broadcast a signal to the Angel gravitational survey ship. There was no response. After remaining in the system for several hours without success she transited back into Budapest and sent a message to Fleet Headquarters via Aconcagua and the jump gate network. While a single, unarmed ship could present no immediate threat to the Commonwealth, if left unhindered it could potentially contact other alien races and pass on information that would pose a serious threat to Commonwealth security. Sheffield had five jump points, connecting to the systems of Budapest, Douglas, Peterhead, Brighton and Newport. Of these Budapest and Newport had been surveyed, with Newport a cul-de-sac system. The Fleet Admirals decided that they could not allow the survey ship to roam free so they organised a pursuit force comprised of the three Scharnhorst class missile cruisers in Xia. These were old ships with out of date systems but more than capable of destroying the Zarco. The main problem was speed as the Angel survey ship was capable of 5423 km/s, faster than any Commonwealth combatant except the Molniya class corvette. Therefore, when the pursuit force arrived in Sheffield it would split up and cover the jump points to Douglas, Peterhead and Brighton, attempting to detect and destroy the Zarco before it even saw the warships. The main problem was that at their maximum speed of 2500 km/s the Scharnhorsts would not arrive for fifty days, so it was possible the Zarco would already be gone.

The shipyards of Xiamen-Kan built an Arleigh Burke V and three Molniya class corvettes on November 11th 2047, the last ion-powered warships to be built by the Commonwealth. At this point the new designs had yet to be finalised but no new hulls were being laid down. As soon as the Commonwealth research establishment had completed their task of developing actual systems based on the new Moravian technology, the design process would begin in earnest.

The first missile based on magneto-plasma technology was developed in March 2048. Although the SS-N-4 Shadow had a warhead only 75% as powerful as the SS-N-3 Scarab, it had a range of ninety-seven million kilometres and a speed of 24,000 km/s, compared to sixty million and 19,200 km/s for the Scarab. The design philosophy behind the Shadow reflected the experience of the Commonwealth in the Angel War. Facing an opponent with longer ranged, slow missiles led to a theory of missile design in which missile range was more important than warhead strength, especially when facing an opponent of equal or greater speed, and that sufficient speed to defeat hostile defences would make up for any reduction in the impact of individual warheads. The warships capable of employing the new missile to its full potential were still on the drawing board.

Code: [Select]
SS-N-4 Shadow
Missile Size: 4 MSP  (0.2 HS)     Warhead: 6    Armour: 0     Manoeuvre Rating: 10
Speed: 24000 km/s    Endurance: 68 minutes   Range: 97.5m km
Cost Per Missile: 3.1
Chance to Hit: 1k km/s 240%   3k km/s 80%   5k km/s 48%   10k km/s 24%
Materials Required:    1.5x Tritanium   1.35x Gallicite   Fuel x3250
Development Cost for Project: 310RP
The equivalent Commonwealth anti-missile was the SA-N-3 Gladius, which used a similar combination of speed and agility as the successful SA-N-2 Gauntlet. It was estimated to be a third more accurate than the Gauntlet, with a seventy-eight percent chance of hitting a target moving at 10,000 km/s.

Code: [Select]
SA-N-3 Gladius
Missile Size: 1 MSP  (0.05 HS)     Warhead: 1    Armour: 0     Manoeuvre Rating: 22
Speed: 35500 km/s    Endurance: 1 minute   Range: 1.5m km
Cost Per Missile: 1.142
Chance to Hit: 1k km/s 781%   3k km/s 242%   5k km/s 156.2%   10k km/s 78.1%
Materials Required:    0.25x Tritanium   0.63x Gallicite   Fuel x12.5
Development Cost for Project: 114RP
On March 24th, the tug Eos arrived at New London towing one of the smaller Angel shipyards, which had a single slipway with a capacity of 13,000 tons. By this time the population of New London had risen to two point six million and a dozen maintenance facilities were in place, allowing the maintenance of ships up to 2400 tons. The Second Corvette Flotilla, which had defended the system against the Moravians and was forced to pull back to Mars after the destruction of the colony, was back on station. There was a long way to go but a new colony and base was slowly rising out of the ashes.

The results of the wide-ranging six-month Commonwealth ship design review were published in April 2048. The aggressive strategy of President Vorokov in attacking the Angel home system was praised, although it has to be noted that several of the President's political allies were involved with the review. Admiral Perti's tactic of heading straight for a key objective while brushing off the attacks of the Angel fleet was viewed equally favourably. Destroying the Moravian's Empire's ability to continue the war without having to eliminate their fleet brought the conflict to an early conclusion and resulted in several valuable prizes being taken. Using these successes as the basis for the review led to the conclusion that Commonwealth missile defences were the primary reason for success in the war, allowing the Striking Forces to operate with impunity within their protective umbrella. However, the fragility of the escorts was of considerable concern. Several Trafalgars had been destroyed during the entry into Archangelsk and if the Tribals had been targeted they would have suffered equally badly, depriving the battlecruisers of their primary missile defence. Speed, which had been a primary design driver in the past, was not viewed as a significant factor in the recent victory. Instead, the recommendations of the review concentrated on defence and survivability. The future offensive doctrine of the Commonwealth Navy would be to identify and eliminate key economic objectives, using well protected ships to advance through any defending enemy forces. Elimination of hostile mobile forces would be of minor importance compared to the destruction or capture of their major planets.

The first result of the review's recommendations was the Athena class Battlestar. The design incorporated the abilities of all three current battle fleet units protected by an unprecedented depth of defence. It was equipped with same offensive armament as a Peter the Great II class battlecruiser and the same number of anti-missile launchers as a Tribal III class escort cruiser, plus a twenty-five percent greater magazine capacity than the two ships combined. The new Mk 3 Guided Missile Launch System had a ten second reload time compared to the AML-15 launchers on the Tribal III, which had the same effect as increasing the number of launchers by fifty percent. Six newly designed Advanced Rapid-fire Railguns formed a second defensive line. While this was only two-thirds of the point blank firepower of a Trafalgar III, the new model railguns recharged twice as fast. The formidable armour was twice as thick as the battlecruisers and because of the Athena's much greater size, the overall amount of armour was almost four times as great. This was also the first Commonwealth ship to feature shields, which provided an extra layer of protection that could regenerate relatively quickly. Finally, a recently developed ECM system was fitted, making the Athena harder to hit than any other major Commonwealth warship. Any missile-armed enemy would have to penetrate the Athena's point defence missiles and her railguns, overcome the fire-confusion ability of her ECM, beat down her shields and then penetrate her impressive armour belt. A beam-armed enemy would have to face up to two hundred and sixty SS-N-4 Shadow anti-ship missiles if they tried to close. Unlike the existing battle fleet formations, all of the Athena's anti-missile defences were extremely well protected.

The only controversial aspect of the design was the modest increase in speed over the previous generation of capital ships. The Athena devoted thirty percent of her tonnage to propulsion, compared to thirty-seven point five percent for the Peter the Great battlecruiser. In contrast, only ten percent of the battlecruiser's tonnage was devoted to passive defences compared to twenty-one percent for the Battlestar. The design reflected the recommendations of the review board, concentrating on smashing through enemy defences to reach key objectives rather than trying to chase down hostile fleet units. A fortunate side effect was that existing battle fleet units, capable of 4500 km/s, could operate alongside the Athena without significantly slowing down the new design. Retooling began in the Syria Planum shipyard on Mars, which had three slipways of 25,000 ton capacity.

Code: [Select]
Athena class Battlestar    25000 tons     2105 Crew     3908.6 BP      TCS 500  TH 2400  EM 1920
4800 km/s     Armour 8-76     Shields 64-300     Sensors 24/24/0/0     Damage Control Rating 14     PPV 70
Annual Failure Rate: 357%    IFR: 5%    Maintenance Capacity 1362 MSP    Max Repair 126 MSP
Magazine 1852    

NPO Energomash Magneto-plasma Drive (30)    Power 80    Efficiency 0.60   Signature 80    Exp 5%
Fuel Capacity 600,000 Litres    Range 72.0 billion km   (173 days at full power)
Gamma R300/12 Shields (32)   Total Fuel Cost  384 Litres per day

10cm Advanced Rapid-Fire Railgun (6x5)    Range 30,000km    TS: 4800 km/s    Power 3-3    RM 3   ROF 5        
SGB-12 Railgun Tracking System (2)    Max Range: 48,000 km   TS: 6000 km/s     79 58 38 17 0
Stellarator Fusion Reactor (3)     Total Power Output 18    Armour 0    Exp 5%

Mk 3 Guided Missile Launch System (12)    Missile Size 1    Rate of Fire 10
Mk 1 Guided Missile Launch System (10)    Missile Size 4    Rate of Fire 60
SGM-4 Long Range Fire Control (2)     Range 100.8m km    Resolution 80
SGM-2 Point Defence Fire Control (2)     Range 1.3m km    Resolution 1
SS-N-4 Shadow (260)  Speed: 24,000 km/ Range: 97.5m km   WH: 6    Size: 4    TH: 80 / 48 / 24
SR-N-2 Raptor Recon Drone (8)  Speed: 3,000 km/s   Range: 226.5m km   WH: 0    Size: 4    TH: 10 / 6 / 3
SA-N-3 Gladius (780)  Speed: 35,500 km/s   Range: 1.5m km   WH: 1    Size: 1    TH: 260 / 156 / 78

SGS-1 Missile Detection Array (1)     GPS 126     Range 1.3m km    Resolution 1
SGS-3 Area Search Sensor  (1)     GPS 10080     Range 100.8m km    Resolution 80
STP-5 Thermal Sensor (1)     Sensitivity 24     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  24m km
SEP-6 EM Sensor (1)     Sensitivity 24     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  24m km

ECM 10
The design review also examined the problems of guarding colonies and decided that the Arleigh Burke V was not an ideal solution. While it had a reasonable offensive punch for its size, it could not provide its own anti-missile defences, making it very vulnerable to attack. In addition it was not sufficiently well-protected to compensate for its slow speed so it didn't fall within the new doctrine of survivability or the old doctrine of speed means life and it was unable to effectively operate with the Battle Fleet. Both the Arleigh Burke V and the Sentinel Missile Defence Base suffered from gradual systems failure when they were deployed at a planet without suitable maintenance facilities which, given the specialised nature of many Commonwealth colonies, was a common problem. A new approach was needed. The requirement was three-fold; sufficient defences for colonies to resist missile attack, a way to confront or investigate intruders within Commonwealth space and a low maintenance requirement.

One small success within the New London debacle was the performance of the Molniya fast attack craft. Its ability to strike quickly from outside its opponent's detection range could have turned the battle if more corvettes or a more substantial supply of modern missiles had been available. While its fuel consumption and lack of range made it unsuitable for offensive operations, it was a useful defensive asset and required little in the way of maintenance. Therefore the review recommended that the primary colony defence should be based on an updated corvette produced using the latest technology and that missile defence should be carried out by PDCs rather than orbital bases in cases where there were minimal or non-existent maintenance facilities. While PDCs were more limited in the sense that they could not be moved once constructed or assembled, they had no maintenance requirement and could be built by construction factories rather than shipyards then shipped to their destination by freighter. Assembly on site would be carried out by construction factories or engineers. As an example of this technique, a Barrack class PDC was already being assembled by engineers on Eden to house the ground forces defending the colony.

Furthermore, the review board recommended two new studies should be carried out immediately. The first on the feasibility of developing the necessary technology for larger ships to transport corvettes over strategic distances, retaining the corvette's advantages of stealth and speed while eliminating their lack of range, and the second on the possibility of creating a smaller vessel by developing a new compact engine with an even higher power to mass ratio than the corvette engine. The object of the second study was quickly dubbed the fighter engine, although in reality vessels powered by such an engine would likely be on the order of 100-200 tons, compared to approximately 1000 tons for the corvette.

The requirement for a defensive PDC was filled by the Spaceguard class. The compact size meant that the components for a Spaceguard could be carried within the holds of a single freighter, making deployment very easy. With fifteen of the new PDC-specific Mk 4 GMLS, it could provide significant defensive firepower at minimal cost. Compared to the Tribal III and the new Athena class, the Spaceguard had limited magazine capacity but as it would be deployed on a planetary surface, it could easily draw from the planetary stockpiles.

Code: [Select]
Spaceguard class Planetary Defence Centre    2450 tons     240 Crew     441 BP      TCS 49  TH 0  EM 0
Armour 5-16     Sensors 1/126     Damage Control Rating 0     PPV 15
Magazine 375    

Mk 4 Guided Missile PDCLS (15)    Missile Size 1    Rate of Fire 5
SGM-2 Point Defence Fire Control (2)     Range 1.3m km    Resolution 1
SA-N-3 Gladius (375)  Speed: 35,500 km/s   Range: 1.5m km   WH: 1    Size: 1    TH: 260 / 156 / 78

SGS-1 Missile Detection Array (1)     GPS 126     Range 1.3m km    Resolution 1
The Molniya II class corvette was designed as the follow-up to the successful Molniya I and incorporated several improved features. A new missile, the SS-N-5 Scimitar, was developed specifically for the Molniya II  and had a warhead fifty percent larger than the SS-N-4 Shadow at the expense of range. As the corvettes were capable of approaching far closer to enemy fleets without detection than the Commonwealth's larger warships, range was not as important. The speed of the Scimitar was matched to that of the Shadow so that if a larger ship choose to carry both types, they could be used within the same salvo if required. The CGM-8 Corvette Fire Control system was only half the size of its equivalent on the Molniya which allowed more fuel storage, doubling the corvette's range and providing the flexibility for both multi-system missions and ease of deployment. Finally, the new NPO Energomash Supercharged Magneto-Plasma Drive gave the Molniya II a top speed of 8800 km/s, allowing it to evade pursuit, rearm and return for multiple strikes against an intruder fleet.

Code: [Select]
Molniya II class Corvette    1000 tons     47 Crew     147.2 BP      TCS 20  TH 176  EM 0
8800 km/s     Armour 1-8     Shields 0-0     Sensors 1/1/0/0     Damage Control Rating 1     PPV 9.6
Annual Failure Rate: 8%    IFR: 0.1%    Maintenance Capacity 92 MSP    Max Repair 44 MSP
Magazine 64    

NPO Energomash Supercharged MPD (1)    Power 176    Efficiency 7.20    Signature 176    Exp 30%
Fuel Capacity 100,000 Litres    Range 25.0 billion km   (32 days at full power)

Mk 2 Guided Missile VLS (16)    Missile Size 4    Hangar Reload 30 minutes    MF Reload 5 hours
CGM-8 Corvette Fire Control (1)     Range 50.4m km    Resolution 80
SS-N-5 Scimitar (16)  Speed: 24,000 km/s   Range: 52.5m km   WH: 9    Size: 4    TH: 80 / 48 / 24
The third area covered by the review board was the survey operations of the Commonwealth, in particular the potential for future alien contact. Copenhagen, Newton and Kepler had all been lost during first contact situations. Although the circumstances of each loss were not known in detail, all three were investigating habitable worlds at the time of their disappearance and they had very limited sensors, leading to the obvious conclusion that they had been forced to get too close to the planets in question and had been spotted by alien sensors. Any intercepting forces would not have been detected until it was too late. One option considered by the review board was that all investigations of new systems should be carried out by specialised scout ships but that was eventually dismissed as impractical. Suspending survey operations until a scout could be called forward would be extremely time-consuming, especially as at least one survey ship would have to pull back to a system from which they could communicate with the rest of the Commonwealth. Keeping a scout close to the survey ships would be a waste as it would spend ninety-nine percent of its time with nothing to do. Therefore the board recommended that all gravitational survey ships should be equipped to handle scouting operations, in particular the investigation of habitable planets from a safe distance.

The Magellan class Survey Cruiser was the result of the board's recommendations. Twice the size of the existing Galileo class Gravsurvey Ship, the Magellan was intended for long-range stealthy operations and was an extremely capable multi-role scout. The thermal emissions of its specialised engines were reduced by fifty percent, making the ship considerably harder to detect on passive sensors. It had the same SGS-3 Area Search Sensor as the Athena class Battlestar, allowing it to detect ships at up to a hundred million kilometres, although it would only use the active sensor when absolutely necessary to avoid giving away its location. The passive sensor suite included the same gravitational sensors as the Galileo plus the latest EM and thermal sensors. The unusual flexibility of the Magellan was provided by its two Mk 5 Guided Missile Launch Systems, which were twice as large as the Commonwealth's normal missile launchers, plus the SGM-4 Long Range Fire Control System. As well as being able to fire all the Commonwealth's normal missiles, the Mk 5 allowed the deployment of several specialised items of ordnance (see below the Magellan's summary).

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Magellan class Scout Cruiser    8000 tons     789 Crew     1668 BP      TCS 160  TH 400  EM 0
5000 km/s    JR 3-50     Armour 1-35     Shields 0-0     Sensors 24/24/3/0     DCR 5     PPV 16
Annual Failure Rate: 102%    IFR: 1.4%    Maintenance Capacity 652 MSP    Max Repair 126 MSP
Magazine 376    

Rolls-Royce Merlin-8 Jump Drive     Max Ship Size 8000 tons    Distance 50k km     Squadron Size 3
NPO Energomash Low Emission MPD (10)    Power 80    Efficiency 0.60    Signature 40    Exp 5%
Fuel Capacity 550,000 Litres    Range 206.3 billion km   (477 days at full power)

Mk 5 Guided Missile Launch System (2)    Missile Size 8    Rate of Fire 80
SGM-4 Long Range Fire Control (1)     Range 100.8m km    Resolution 80
SR-N-3 Raptor-L Recon Drone (15)  Speed: 3,000 km/s   End: 744.2m    Range: 354m km   WH: 0    Size: 8  
SB-N-1 Geosurvey Buoy (16)  Speed: 0 km/s   End: 180d    Range: 0m km   Size: 8    
SS-N-7 Starfish (16)  Speed: 8,000 km/s   End: 156.2m    Range: 77.4m km   WH: 0    Size: 8  

SGS-3 Area Search Sensor  (1)     GPS 10080     Range 100.8m km    Resolution 80
STP-5 Thermal Sensor (1)     Sensitivity 24     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  24m km
SEP-6 EM Sensor (1)     Sensitivity 24     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  24m km
Gravitational Survey Sensors (3)   3 Survey Points
The SR-N-3 Raptor-L was a normal SR-N-2 Raptor Recon Drone on top of a second stage that increased its range to over three hundred and fifty million kilometres, allowing the Magellan to launch sensor drones from well outside the range at which it was likely to be detected.

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SR-N-3 Raptor-L Recon Drone
Missile Size: 8 MSP  (0.4 HS)     Warhead: 0    Armour: 0     Manoeuvre Rating: 10
Speed: 3000 km/s    Endurance: 744 minutes   Range: 134.0m km
Cost Per Missile: 1.4053
Second Stage: SR-N-2 Raptor Recon Drone x1
Second Stage Separation Range: 220,000,000 km
Overall Endurance: 1 day   Overall Range: 360.4m km
Chance to Hit: 1k km/s 30%   3k km/s 10%   5k km/s 6%   10k km/s 3%
Materials Required:    0.3x Uridium   0.108x Gallicite   Fuel x9050
Development Cost for Project: 141RP
The SB-N-1 Geosurvey Buoy was an entirely new piece of technology. When deployed in orbit of a planet or other system body, it could gather geological survey data in the same way as geological survey sensors on a ship. Although the sensor on the SB-N-1 had only seven percent of the power of a single ship-mounted geological survey sensor, it could remain in orbit for several months until sufficient data was gathered. If a habitable planet was discovered, the Magellan would able to visit the planet and launch one or more SB-N-1s which could survey for mineral deposits or ruins while the Magellan continued with its gravitational survey. In the past, such surveys had to be put on hold until a geological survey ship was available. In fact the review board had recommended a study to determine if all normal geological survey activity should be left to the private sector. With the Magellans investigating any interesting planets as they were discovered, the civilians could visit the system later and complete the survey. In this scenario, the existing geological survey ships would be sold to the civilian sector. Several officers in the Commonwealth Navy, particularly those serving on survey ships, were appalled at the idea of relinquishing the ability to conduct complete geological surveys of a system but the review board cited the potential savings in fuel, maintenance and administration.

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SB-N-1 Geosurvey Buoy
Buoy Size: 8 MSP  (0.4 HS)    
Reactor Endurance: 6 months
Geo Sensor Strength: 0.07    Maximum points: 302.4
Cost Per Buoy: 2.6
Materials Required:    1.2x Boronide   1.4x Uridium
Development Cost for Project: 260RP
In the past, Commonwealth scout ships and survey ships had been unable to defend themselves or even attack targets of opportunity. As the Magellan had two missile launchers, its designers were keen to provide it with a limited offensive capability. One option was simply to arm it with SS-N-4 Shadows or SS-N-5 Scimitars, which could still be fired from the larger launchers. An alternative was a new larger missile, perhaps with a large warhead to compensate for the lack of missiles in each salvo. Several missile designs along those lines were examined and ultimately discarded. Eventually, the designers decided on a radical new approach. The SS-N-7 Starfish had a creditable range of seventy-five million kilometres but was even slower than the Angel anti-ship missile used in the recent war. However, once it closed within two point four million kilometres of its target, the Starfish released four SS-N-6 Scorpion sub-munitions, each with a speed of 22,400 km/s and a strength-4 warhead. With two Mk 5 GMLS, the Magellan would be able to create salvos of eight missiles, giving the point defence of its foes a much more difficult task. The Commonwealth's warship designers were interested in the possibilities of the Starfish, although concerned about the tactical limitations of its slow first stage. Despite that it provided the Magellan with far more striking power than would be expected from a dedicated survey vessel.

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SS-N-7 Starfish
Missile Size: 8 MSP  (0.4 HS)     Warhead: 0    Armour: 0     Manoeuvre Rating: 10
Speed: 8000 km/s    Endurance: 156 minutes   Range: 75.0m km
Cost Per Missile: 6.9355
Second Stage: SS-N-6 Scorpion x4
Second Stage Separation Range: 2,400,000 km
Overall Endurance: 3 hours   Overall Range: 77.8m km
Chance to Hit: 1k km/s 80%   3k km/s 20%   5k km/s 16%   10k km/s 8%
Materials Required:    4x Tritanium   1.6855x Gallicite   Fuel x5000
Development Cost for Project: 694RP
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SS-N-6 Scorpion
Missile Size: 1.25 MSP  (0.0625 HS)     Warhead: 4    Armour: 0     Manoeuvre Rating: 10
Speed: 22400 km/s    Endurance: 2 minutes   Range: 2.9m km
Cost Per Missile: 1.4672
Chance to Hit: 1k km/s 224%   3k km/s 70%   5k km/s 44.8%   10k km/s 22.4%
Materials Required:    1x Tritanium   0.2172x Gallicite   Fuel x30
Development Cost for Project: 147RP
Design of the new assault transport for the Commonwealth Marine Corps was completed in May 2048. The Fearless class could carry six divisions, was well protected by both armour and point defence railguns and with a speed of 4800 km/s could operate with the battle fleet. In situations where taking out planetary defences would inflict too much collateral damage, the Fearless provided the capability to land troops in the face of hostile fire. With the new survivability doctrine of the Commonwealth Navy, its designers could envisage situations where Commonwealth fleets units would escort the Fearless into planetary orbit so its marines could capture defending planetary defences centres. Retooling began at the Utopia Planitia shipyard on Mars and construction of the first Fearless was expected to begin in August 2048.

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Fearless class Assault Transport    15000 tons     1116 Crew     1783.2 BP      TCS 300  TH 1440  EM 0
4800 km/s     Armour 5-54     Shields 0-0     Sensors 1/1/0/0     Damage Control Rating 7     PPV 24
Annual Failure Rate: 257%    IFR: 3.6%    Maintenance Capacity 515 MSP    Max Repair 50 MSP
Troop Capacity 6 Divisions    

NPO Energomash Magneto-plasma Drive (18)    Power 80    Efficiency 0.60    Signature 80     Exp 5%
Fuel Capacity 350,000 Litres    Range 70.0 billion km   (168 days at full power)

10cm Advanced Rapid-Fire Railgun (8x5)    Range 30,000km     TS: 4800 km/s    Power 3-3    RM 3   ROF 5        
SGB-12 Railgun Tracking System (2)    Max Range: 48,000 km   TS: 6000 km/s     79 58 38 17 0
Stellarator Fusion Reactor (4)     Total Power Output 24    Armour 0    Exp 5%
SGS-9 Missile Detection Array (1)     GPS 21     Range 210k km    Resolution 1

ECM 10
[attachment=0:1xakpztr]CoreSystemsJune2048.GIF[/attachment:1xakpztr]
In late June, the construction ships Stephenson and Telford built jump gates either side of the London - Budapest jump point, connecting Budapest and Archangelsk to the rest of the Commonwealth. Jump gates were already in place at the Budapest - Archangelsk jump point. A third jump gate was built by Brunel at the Xia - Smolensk jump point. If a second gate was constructed on the Smolensk side and two more gates at the Smolensk - Archangelsk jump point, it would be possible to travel from Xia to Archangelsk without the need for a jump cruiser. However, there was still a hostile alien race beyond the Smolensk - Zagorsk jump point so building any jump gates in Smolensk would open a highway for them into the Commonwealth. Fortunately there had been no sign of them during the Angel War or in the nine months since the conflict ended. The Commonwealth still had over half its Battle Fleet in Archangelsk so all contact had been avoided in an effort to maintain the status quo. For that same reason, the construction of any further jump gates would be put on hold until sufficient forces were available to defend the Smolensk - Zagorsk jump point. At least with the completion of the gates on the London - Budapest jump point, the five captured Angel cruisers could be moved out of Archangelsk and into the Commonwealth's core systems. The fleet support vessel Aconcagua was able to end its escort duty and head home to Sparta.

Seventeen divisions were in position on Archangelsk III and the Second Striking Force was in orbit. The three Arleigh Burke class destroyers that had been guarding the Angel cruisers were also en route to the planet. The Fleet Admirals estimated that a force equal to five battlecruisers, or eight Arleigh Burkes, would be necessary to maintain order in Archangelsk so they decided to try and assemble the latter so that the Second Striking Force would be available to use against the aliens in Zagorsk, or at least to defend the point of contact. The First Striking Force was in Sparta orbit with all three battlecruisers repaired.

Thirteen Arleigh Burkes were in service. Three were already in Archangelsk, four were in Sparta orbit, three had just arrived in Xia after being transferred from Sparta when the First Striking Force arrived and one each  was in orbit of Lisbon V, Eden and the Xiamen colony in the Saratov system. The three that had just arrived in Xia were ordered to refuel and resupply at Xiamen-Kan then head into Archangelsk. Two more were sent from Sparta via Sol, London and Budapest. Two alternatives to the Arleigh Burkes were the four Nagatos and the three Scharnhorsts. All seven were out of date but sufficient for guard duty. However, the Nagatos were virtually falling apart after their long picket duty at the Xia - Smolensk jump point and were returning to Xiamen-Kan on a regular basis for resupply. One had lost its active sensor and was unable to repair it. As soon as the Second Striking Force could be released, the Nagatos would be overhauled or finally withdrawn from active duty. The Scharnhorsts were still picketing the jump points out of Sheffield in an attempt to spot the missing Moravian survey ship. It was beginning to look as if they arrived too late but the Fleet Admirals wanted them to remain for the moment.

The five Moravian-built Covadonga class missile cruisers arrived in Sparta orbit on August 1st 2048. They were soundly constructed ships and could have operated with the existing battle fleet with no modifications, especially as their speed of 4480 km/s matched almost perfectly with the existing battle speed of 4500 km/s. Their electronic systems were already capable of operating the new SS-N-4 Shadow anti-ship missile to its fullest extent. However, bearing in mind the new fleet doctrine of survivability and the emphasis on multi-role ships that were capable of defending themselves without escort, the Fleet Admirals ordered the design of a new class, retaining as many of the original Covadongas' systems as possible to reduce refit costs while adding the latest anti-missile systems and their associated electronics. Eight of the Covadonga's eighteen anti-ship missile launchers were removed and replaced with an SGS-1 Missile Detection Array, two SGM-2 Point Defence Fire Controls, ten MK 3 GMLS point defence launchers, extra magazine space and extra fuel. The existing engines, armour, fire control and sensors were all left intact. The refitted design was named the Redoutable class and, in anticipation of their forthcoming refit, the five cruisers were renamed as Redoutable, Scipion, Formidable, Santa Ana and Santisima Trinidad. Retooling of the BAE Systems Shipyard on Sparta in order to carry out the refits began immediately.

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Redoutable class Missile Cruiser    12500 tons     1183 Crew     2047 BP      TCS 250  TH 1120  EM 0
4480 km/s     Armour 5-47     Shields 0-0     Sensors 6/6/0/0     Damage Control Rating 8     PPV 50
Annual Failure Rate: 156%    IFR: 2.2%    Maintenance Capacity 819 MSP    Max Repair 126 MSP
Magazine 1094    

Magneto-plasma Drive E7 (14)    Power 80    Efficiency 0.70    Signature 80    Armour 0    Exp 5%
Fuel Capacity 300,000 Litres    Range 61.7 billion km   (159 days at full power)

Mk 3 Guided Missile Launch System (10)    Missile Size 1    Rate of Fire 10
Angel Size 4 Missile Launcher (10)    Missile Size 4    Rate of Fire 40
Missile Fire Control FC42-R95 (2)     Range 119.7m km    Resolution 95
SGM-2 Point Defence Fire Control (2)     Range 1.3m km    Resolution 1
SS-N-4 Shadow (170)  Speed: 24,000 km/s   Range: 97.5m km   WH: 6    Size: 4    TH: 80 / 48 / 24
SR-N-2 Raptor Recon Drone (3)  Speed: 3,000 km/s   Range: 226.5m km   WH: 0    Size: 4    TH: 10 / 6 / 3
SA-N-3 Gladius (440)  Speed: 35,500 km/s   Range: 1.5m km   WH: 1    Size: 1    TH: 260 / 156 / 78

Active Search Sensor S126-R95 (1)     GPS 11970     Range 119.7m km    Resolution 95
SGS-1 Missile Detection Array (1)     GPS 126     Range 1.3m km    Resolution 1
Thermal Sensor TH1-6 (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  6m km
EM Detection Sensor EM1-6 (1)     Sensitivity 6     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  6m km
With the major design projects resulting from the review all completed, attention turned to the workhorse classes of the Commonwealth, in particular the freighters and colony ships. New versions of both, featuring the magneto-plasma drive,  were designed. The existing thirty-four Alaska III colony ships would be refitted by the Argos Shipyard at Sparta and the Hephaestus Shipyard at Xiamen-Kan. Because engines were the primary cost associated with building freighters, there would be no refits of the existing Atlas II and Atlas III classes as it would be cheaper to build new ships. Fifty Atlas IIs and fifteen Atlas IIIs were in service. As the former were capable of only 2000 km/s, they would be sold off to the civilian sector once sufficient quantities of the Atlas IV were available.

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Alaska IV class Colony Ship    4250 tons     211 Crew     788.2 BP      TCS 85  TH 400  EM 0
4705 km/s     Armour 1-23     Shields 0-0     Sensors 1/1/0/0     Damage Control Rating 1     PPV 0
Annual Failure Rate: 144%    IFR: 2%    Maintenance Capacity 116 MSP    Max Repair 40 MSP
Colonists 50000    Cargo Handling Multiplier 5    

NPO Energomash Magneto-plasma Drive (5)    Power 80    Efficiency 0.60    Signature 80    Exp 5%
Fuel Capacity 100,000 Litres    Range 70.6 billion km   (173 days at full power)
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Atlas IV class Freighter    4250 tons     186 Crew     338.2 BP      TCS 85  TH 400  EM 0
4705 km/s     Armour 1-23     Shields 0-0     Sensors 1/1/0/0     Damage Control Rating 1     PPV 0
Annual Failure Rate: 144%    IFR: 2%    Maintenance Capacity 50 MSP    Max Repair 40 MSP
Cargo 25000    Cargo Handling Multiplier 5    

NPO Energomash Magneto-plasma Drive (5)    Power 80    Efficiency 0.60    Signature 80    Exp 5%
Fuel Capacity 100,000 Litres    Range 70.6 billion km   (173 days at full power)
By August 2048, the fuel problems suffered by the Commonwealth since its inception were finally being overcome. In small part this was due to the one hundred and twenty fuel refineries in operation on Hannover-B II and the one hundred and sixty-five operating on Xiamen-Kan. Most of the latter were scheduled to be moved to the Xiamen colony on Saratov III to free up manpower for the arrival of the major shipyard being towed very slowly to Xia from the Moravian home world. The real solution to the fuel crisis though was the fifty-one Jovian class fuel harvesters orbiting Warsaw VI. Each one was capable of extracting half a million litres of Sorium per annum from the atmosphere of the gas giant and with an experienced commander that could rise to more than six hundred thousand litres. Together they were producing thirty million litres of fuel per annum. The fuel harvesters represented a huge investment by the Commonwealth. Had the same wealth and materials been spent on warships, it would have paid for thirty-eight Peter the Great II battlecruisers or thirteen Athena class battlestars. Despite this investment and the importance of the Jovians they were totally undefended, a serious oversight that the Fleet Admirals finally corrected on August 18th with the assignment of the Arleigh Burke class destroyers McCampbell and Michael Murphy. Additional forces would be dispatched as new construction became available. Plans were also made for the establishment of a military outpost on the innermost moon of Warsaw VI, which would feature planetary sensors and Spaceguard class planetary defences centres.

Eight Arleigh Burke V destroyers were assembled in orbit of Archangelsk III in late August, forming the Archangelsk Guard Force. This was deemed a sufficient force to ensure cooperation of the occupied Angel population so the Second Striking Force entered the Smolensk system and took up station on the Smolensk - Xia jump point. While a forward deployment to the Smolensk - Zagorsk jump point would have effectively covered both Xia and Archangelsk, it risked the Second Striking Force if the Zagorsk aliens, the capabilities of which were completely unknown, sent a powerful fleet into Smolensk. This deployment protected the Xiamen home world and provided an easy retreat route. The Smolensk - Archangelsk was picketed by the jump cruiser Littorio and Archangelsk III was protected by the eight Arleigh Burkes. Even so, the Moravian home world was not vital to the security of the Commonwealth so it would be abandoned if necessary. With little chance of bringing the Moravians into the Commonwealth due to their racial outlook and their anger at the huge damage caused to their world, their assets were being stripped and taken away to other worlds. Both smaller shipyards had already been towed to New London and Xiamen-Kan and the third, much larger, yard was en route to the Xiamen home world. The Moravian fuel stockpile was gone, most taken by tanker to Sparta and the rest used by Commonwealth freighters as they took away construction factories, mines and fuel refineries. A significant number of installations remained, including three research facilities, but it only a matter of time before everything was removed. With that in mind, the Fleet Admirals decided to adopt a wait and see attitude with regard to the Zagorsk aliens, planning to commence offensive operations once new construction was available, in particular the assault ships and Battlestars.

Steve
« Last Edit: March 04, 2009, 07:12:54 AM by SteveAlt »
 

Offline Beersatron

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2009, 09:57:01 PM »
Thats one hell of a write-up :-)
 

Offline waresky

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2009, 11:24:53 AM »
Awesome.
Though Campaign Steve..
A hard good,war lesson.
Nice to read,useful for warship and tactical doctrine.

Ty for ur great work.
 

Offline Sotak246

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2009, 08:23:13 PM »
Incredible write up, very entertaining, yet I learned quite a bit from it that I can use.  Your write ups are just like a very enjoyable tutorial.  
Keep up the good work, and thanks.
Mark
 

Offline welchbloke

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2009, 02:58:00 AM »
Quote from: "Sotak246"
Incredible write up, very entertaining, yet I learned quite a bit from it that I can use.  Your write ups are just like a very enjoyable tutorial.  
Keep up the good work, and thanks.
Mark
I certainly learnt something useful.  I've been refitting my freighters with new engines instead of building new ones.  I wonder how much wealth I've wasted........
Welchbloke
 

Offline waresky

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2009, 02:29:40 PM »
Step by Step,Commonwealth posture turn in a more spacefarer aggressive society,like as an cinic Imperial Governement (like as Rule of man on early stage of Solomani Vs Vilani First Interstellar War,yeah Steve?:))..
Am curious to read if Commonwealth politic turn off from "Real Democracy" in a sort of semi-olygarchy...:D
History never change.
probably we show a born of a Admiral Sergeji Vassileev Lermontov..then CoDominium Age..then..Solomani Imperium.
 

Offline Michael Sandy

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2009, 03:37:53 PM »
I like the Starfish missile concept.

Combined with firing a series of these high endurance missiles at a waypoint, you can get an enormous first strike capability.

A couple of possible counters:

For a solo ship closing on an unidentified contact, fire a recon drone that can keep pace with the target, with enough high resolution sensors on the drone to detect a missile wave passing by.

On a combat approach, have sensor platforms of some kind capable of detecting missiles capable of MIRVing before they would be able to effectively split, along with some long ranged antimissile capability.

I wonder what the best use of the geosurvey drones is.  You could have a survey vessel simultaneously survey a gas giant and all of its moons, but you would probably have a lot of unused time on the drones doing that.  Is it possible to recover and refurbish drones?

Firing a geosurvey drone at a habitable planet would certainly be less risky than approaching with a manned survey vessel that lacks advanced sensors.  It might make sense to have all capital missile ships to have a collection of various drones in their magazines.  One case for going with larger missile launchers would be to have the capability of launching long endurance drones with various sensor capabilities instead of warheads.

How much endurance could you pack into a missile/drone designed to go just slightly faster than the fleet, in order to maintain position at 2 million or 5 million or whatever distance from the fleet as it approached a target?
 

Offline Erik Luken

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2009, 10:12:49 PM »
Fire an EM drone at the inner system, to see if there is a population. Of course you don't wan to do this from right on top of the JP.
 

Offline SteveAlt

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #12 on: March 12, 2009, 05:57:42 AM »
Quote from: "Michael Sandy"
I like the Starfish missile concept.

Combined with firing a series of these high endurance missiles at a waypoint, you can get an enormous first strike capability.

A couple of possible counters:

For a solo ship closing on an unidentified contact, fire a recon drone that can keep pace with the target, with enough high resolution sensors on the drone to detect a missile wave passing by.

On a combat approach, have sensor platforms of some kind capable of detecting missiles capable of MIRVing before they would be able to effectively split, along with some long ranged antimissile capability.
I can see that happening once races start to encounter MIRVing missiles. Of course, then the sub-munitions could be designed with greater endurance to counter that and the guessing game begins.

Quote
I wonder what the best use of the geosurvey drones is.  You could have a survey vessel simultaneously survey a gas giant and all of its moons, but you would probably have a lot of unused time on the drones doing that.  Is it possible to recover and refurbish drones?
No, the drones are one-use only. They are relatively cheap though. Unless you are carrying a lot of them, I think the best use of the drones will be to survey potentially habitable planets for minerals or ruins. Geosurvey ships can arrive later to cover all the smaller bodies.

Quote
Firing a geosurvey drone at a habitable planet would certainly be less risky than approaching with a manned survey vessel that lacks advanced sensors.  It might make sense to have all capital missile ships to have a collection of various drones in their magazines.  One case for going with larger missile launchers would be to have the capability of launching long endurance drones with various sensor capabilities instead of warheads.
That's true. The Commonwealth has several sensor drones in its inventory now and since designing the Magellan I have been thinking about a scout with larger launchers and more capable drones

Quote
How much endurance could you pack into a missile/drone designed to go just slightly faster than the fleet, in order to maintain position at 2 million or 5 million or whatever distance from the fleet as it approached a target?
It depends on the speed of the target fleet, the size of the drone, the division between sensor space and fuel capacity and the fuel efficiency technology of the designing race.

Steve
 

Offline SteveAlt

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #13 on: March 12, 2009, 05:59:06 AM »
Quote from: "Erik Luken"
Fire an EM drone at the inner system, to see if there is a population. Of course you don't wan to do this from right on top of the JP.
I hope that is what the Raptor series of drones will allow the Commonwealth to do, although they have a combined thermal/EM sensor package so a purely EM drone would have slightly greater range.

Steve
 

Offline Michael Sandy

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Re: Trans-Newtonian Campaign - Part 15
« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2009, 07:07:38 PM »
Forcing the enemy to increase the MIRV range reduces the effectiveness of the missile, which is a good payoff.
 

 

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