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design by Eamon Watters
Nebula Award Winner
In detailing our entry, let's start with the armament - the most vital part of any warship. Our ship is fitted with 4 Instellarms 'Ravager' X-ray barbettes, of 729 Mj intensity, capable of firing at a rate of 13.334 times a minute. Any standard warship of sub 10,000 dTons caught in their glare is going to feel a whole universe of hurt fast. A secondary battery of two Instellarms 'Fusillade' X-ray turrets can add to this onslaught or concentrate on other vessels, and with a fire rate of almost 27 times a minute they are guaranteed a hit. Their output intensity is 289 Mj. The offensive weaponry is rounded out by a 25 Ton missile bay, with a reload magazine of 24 missiles. An additional 6 missiles can be carried in the 3 launchers associated with the bay, and the autoloaders that feed them. All of these weapons are manned, providing control under the most trying of circumstances. In normal operation 4x300,000 km range MFDs will provide guidance.
Before we go on to talk about the defences of the ship - we have to make some points about our choices for armament. I'm sure some people in the industry will be surprised at the lack of a Spinal Mount System. On reviewing the opponents our kids will have to go up against we decided against such an option. Whilst a Spinal PAW might impress opponents in Close Escorts and Destroyers, Fleet Escorts will just shrug them off. Meson Guns? Forget them! A gun to fit into a sub 1000 dTon hull is not going to have much effect on even a Destroyer Escort with a reasonable screen. X-ray lasers provide the penetration and damage necessary to hurt Fleet Escorts.
With that point addressed, on to defences. Firstly, the heavily armoured hull, this is durable enough that it will require the attentions of a Fleet Escort to make an impression. Meson protection is provided by an INIstd2 Screen. Eight decoy dispensers with a total capacity of 1280 decoys, coupled with EM masking and a 300,000 km jammer make the Persistence a slippery customer. Unwanted missile attention can be dealt with by the 4 dual X-ray CIWS, rated with a ROF equal to that of the secondary battery. Two dedicated MFDs provide targeting for these unmanned weapons. The defences are rounded out with a standard sand turret.
With 7G's acceleration, and a duration of almost 9 hours at max acceleration, this ship has the edge over even our own Imperial Navy - and that's as it should be. However - it possesses the same tactical limitation of most SDBs - no jump capability. Whilst lack of a Jump Drive frees up the space to make SDBs deadly effective in combat, it leaves them with less scope for retreat, limiting the types of survivable engagements possible. We have combated this by adding a low acceleration Fusion Rocket, with enough tankage for 150 days thrust. Using the Heplar tankage could multiply this by a factor of a hundred. There's nowhere in a system off-limits to this ship, so the blow against the enemy could come from any direction!
Even with this ship's superb performance, damage is inevitable in combat, which is why the sensors have multiple redundancy. The 480K range AEMS is covered by a 300K back-up, and the 240K PEMS is backed up by not only one 210K unit, but 3 fixed 120K units - when other ships will be running for cover to repair themselves, our ship will be delivering the deathblow. Two 240K ladars provide for lock-ons. And when combat is over, the machine and electronics shops provide aid for repairs.
Given a choice between crew comfort and survivability, comfort usually suffers. Accommodation is tight, only the Captain has a staterooms to himself, the other six officers share a stateroom each. Everyone else must hot-bunk, but stateroom occupation does not exceed 3 per stateroom. To alleviate this a dedicated rec. lounge, of 4 dTons has been provided for crew entertainment, in addition to the usual dual purpose canteen/lounge.
The ship hull is a 55.52 metre airframed cylinder, resembling the Petty class merchant in form.
The ship is rounded out with almost 7 dTons of cargo space, leaving the ship well equipped for long duration missions.
In conclusion, we feel that our submission has the durability, defensibility and armament to fulfil the requirement. In addition, its superb acceleration, coupled with it's long duration fusion drive expands its effectiveness enormously, allowing the ship's commander to engage and disengage enemies successfully under most condition. This is the ship the Navy needs.
Persistance System Defense Boat
|Displacement: 800 tons||Hull Armor: 251|
|Length: 55.52 meters||Volume: 11,200 m3|
|Price: 647.1 MCr||Target Size: M|
|Configuration: Cylinder AF||Tech Level: 15|
|Mass (Loaded/Unloaded): 9173.7 / 8698.5.5|