Campaign of the Month: June 2014
Battletech : The Farscape Campaign
Cormorant Medium Cargo WiGE
Fast Naval Support Vehicle
“Cormorant” Medium Cargo WiGE (70 tons)
Chassis : Gullwing WiGE
Power Plant : 350 ICE
Cruise Speed : 54.4 kph (5)
Flank Speed : 86.6 kph (8)
Heat Sinks : 0
Armor : Industrial Basic (Armor Factor 39 : BAR 6) : 1.5 tons
Front – 7
Right Side – 7
Left Side – 7
Rear – 7
Two (2) SperryBrowning MGs (RS, LS)
Ammo (MG) 100 – (Body)
Cargo Bay : 29.5 tons
Manufacturer : Michaelson Heavy Industries, Ulysses (Federated Suns).
Communications System : Various
Targeting and Tracking System : Various
Notes : Crew = 4 (2+2 gunners). Range = 2580 kms. Features Amphibious Chassis and Controls Modification.
Overview : Worlds boasting significant oceans provide their inhabitants the conventional means of transporting bulk cargo via surface vessels. While economical, such transport is slow. Air transport is faster, but also proportionally expensive. The Terran Hegemony experimented with Wing-in-Ground-Effect craft in the late twenty-fourth century, but their small Thorizer was not a successful combat vehicle. However, the WiGE’s unique qualities make it both a fast and economical option as a fast civilian transport.
Capabilities : Better known for their military designs, the Michaelson Aircraft division of Michaelson Heavy Industries, has manufactured the Cormornat since 2960. The most common WiGE in the Federated Suns, the Cormoran is a typical medium cargo carrier. A large rear-mounted hatch allows for rapid loading and unloading of cargo. Fully amphibious, the WiGE can operate completely independent of a prepared airstrip. Properly fitted and durable cargo can be dropped from the vehicle at high speed, if equipped with flotation devices and parachutes.
The inclusion of machine guns was an effort to add some degree of defense against casual piracy, and given the fact these vehicles often operate on marginal worlds along the Periphery, this addition has greatly increased its market share. Some crews choose to remove the weapons, replacing them with a little more cargo space, as well as reducing crew requirements and its bottom line. The vehicle’s primary use as a priority cargo transport, however, means most private crews choose to keep them.
Deployment : Used primarily by transport companies in the Federated Suns, these vehicles see wide distribution to worlds of that successor state boasting sizable oceans. They are popular in the Periphery among private cargo transport companies, shipping rare bulk cargoes to the world’s starports from coastal towns and cities.
Variants : Many independently-owned crews modify their Cormorants to their own personal specifications, adding laboratories and even infantry bays for high-speed passenger transport.
Rumors persist that the Cormorant is used by House Davion as a paramilitary mine layer for its planetary guard naval fleets. In addition, the vessels often add advanced targeting systems and replace their standard MGs, with lighter MGs to increase their combat range. There is, however, no known official production variant.