Campaign of the Month: June 2014
Battletech : The Farscape Campaign
Wind Dirigible (35 tons)
Power Plant : Meteor 35 ICE Gas Turbne
Cruise Speed : 12.0 kph (1)
Flank Speed : 24.2 kph (2)
Armor : Industrial Iron Plate (BAR 7) – (Armor Factor 11) : 0.5 tons
Front – 3
Right Side – 3
Left Side – 3
Rear – 2
Armament : None
Crew : 1 Pilot, 1 Engineer (Unrated)
Cargo : 6.5 tons Standard (One door – Rear)
Light Cargo Winch (800 kgs Cap)
Features : GPS, Headlights, Spotlight, Environmental Sealed Chassis and Controls Mod, Six (6) Passenger Seats (0.5 tons – Body), Advanced Stateroom (10 tons – Body), Infrared Radar Imaging Systems (2 kms – 0.5 tons), Tactical Secure Radio (10 kms).
Cost : 300,000 C-Bills.
Overview : Dirigibles are small, lighter-than-air craft used by many nomads on the planet of System – Gollere as home and workshop. Although quite fragile, they are inexpensive and readily available, with countless known variants and designs. The “Wind”-Class, is easily the most popular, not only for it’s capability to house an entire family, but also to provide a cheap and easily manufactured vehicle for independent transport.
Capabilities : Dirigibles tend to be remarkably stealthy for vehicles of such girth and technical simplicity: the gas bag is constructed of spun polymer fibers that do not reflect radar waves, and its single gas turbine is buried deep within the structure of the gondola, muffling its noise and heat emissions. The engine supplies power to two steerable fan units via a pair of drive shafts, a simple, yet elegant, design.
Although not built for combat, Wind Dirigibles are often equipped with a single forward-mounted minigun MG for close-in defense against boarders. Some also add an LRM launcher, but at the expense of its slung cargo capacity. Attachment rings under the gondola allow extra cargo to be slung and carried, a common source of frontier transport.
A common sight on the frontier colony world of Gollere, “Wind” Dirigibles are both cheap and economical to field and maintain. Carefully avoiding storms, dirigible pilots often ply independent trade routes, bringing exotic goods to the most remote communities and hauling away their produce to market. Some go so far as to evolve into “Wind Steadings”, where entire families use the vehicle as their home and business, living a gypsy life as they float across the planet, and tending to favour the windy deserts and polar regions.
Deployment : Often seen in frontier settlements throughout the Periphery, usually in a cargo-hauling role, dirigibles are a popular choice for frontier and colony world. The Wind model is known only to be employed on Gollere.
Variants : While military versions are common, each private owner remodels their own Wind Dirigible to their own specifications. The base model is either gutted to provide more cargo carrying capability, or is converted almost exclusively to stateroom housing for larger families; though most dirigibles form convoys and travel together for safety and protection. Such convoys are often called Wind Cities.