Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Battlestar Profile 018 : BSG 20 Fox Class Battlestar Fox

The Fox class is sometimes referred to as a "pocket" Battlestar.  Cheap to produce and run, the Fox has all the features of a regular Battlestar, a feat achieved by a serious re-thinking of Battlestar design.  Capable of carrying up to 4 squadrons of fighters, the Fox has 9 main double turrets, four of which serve as forward batteries, but can be reconfigured to fire broadsides if necessary.

Although much smaller than many Battlestars in service, it uses a unique computer node system which dramatically reduces crew requirements.  Each nodes is a small bank of networked computers.  A special master system assigns tasks to various nodes, adding or removing systems as required.  This system allows tasks be spread out between as many units as required and reducing computer idle time, which often occurs in more dedicated systems.  As a result the Fox has 20% less crew than vessels of comparable size, but still maintains a full complement of pilots, marines and flight personnel.  An unfortunate side effect of this system has been the very difficult integration of the new CNP program used by the Colonial Fleet, which required the attention of Professor Baltar himself.

Another unusual feature are the engines, mounting only a pair of thrusters, the Fox is still remarkably fast thanks to a hybrid system of conventional systems and the Vulcanus engines used during the Cylon War.  The thrusters use regular tylium fuel, but a special injection chamber gives the Fox a potential turbo boost, increasing speed if necessary.  This system so far has proven to be reliable, but other ships have yet to use this design.  Thanks to her short length the Fox is quite nimble and has a short turning circle.

The Fox class is popular with their crews, though maintenance and the somewhat cramped conditions are often a source of crew fatigue.  As a result Foxes are mostly used for system defense and rarely operate along the Armistice Line for extended periods.  Another potential problem are the thrusters, with only a pair of them, any damage could seriously harm mobility or even cripple it, though designers have assured that the thrusters are heavily armoured and are not easily knocked out.

The Fox is the lead Battlestar of her class.  She suffers from a few minor flaws that have been ironed out in subsequent ships, though she is planned to be refitted within the next three years.  The Fox is considered a lucky ship having escaped two collisions with other Battlestars.  A crash with a fuel tanker resulted in only minor damage to the left flight pod.

Commander : Commander Alden Thorson
XO : Colonel Ilyra Tessan
CAG : Captain Riven "T-Bone" Walker
Complement : 2-4 squadrons of fighters, up to 8 Raptors
Armament : 4 double forward batteries, 5 twin turrets, 350 StarSweeper III CIWS.  8 missile bays.

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