Campaign of the Month: June 2014
Battletech : The Farscape Campaign
Light VTOL Transport
Model number: Skycrane JetVTOL
Unit type: Heavy Lift Support VTOL
Weight Class: Light (10 tons)
Manufacturer: Various IS sources.
Operator: Civilian Industries
First deployment: Terran Hegemony
Accommodation: 3 : 1 Pilot, 1 Radio Operator and 1 Cargo Master (Main Cabin).
Dimensions: 29.67 m Long x 21.95 m Wide.
Cargo: 21 tons (External Payload)
Armor materials: None. Military variants often mount light plate armor of a single ton.
Powerplant: 2xPratt & Whitney T73-P-700 Turboshaft ICE, 1.75 hours endurance.
Propulsion: 2xTurboshaft Jet Turbine, 185 kph/240 kph.
Equipment and design features: Heavy Cargo Winch (20 tons Cap), Tactical Radio (10 km Secure), Infrared Radar (0.5 km).
Fixed armaments: None. Military variants mount light support MGs with a ton of ammo.
Deployment History : The Skycrane is a heavy lift helicopter with no internal passenger or cargo capacity. It has only engines, rotors, controls, and a small crew pod forward. Cargo is slung by cables from a central attachment point beneath the main rotor while the Skycrane hovers, and is carried externally while the Skycrane is in flight.
As civilian aircraft, these helicopters haul out-sized cargo such as loads of timber from remote logging sites, hoist machinery to otherwise inaccessible locations, and carry cargo containers from starships direct to on-planet destinations such as construction or industrial sites.
Military Skycranes retrieve downed aircraft – including other helicopters – and haul supplies and ammunition to forward bases or outposts. Customized 10-ton pods containing command posts, medical and surgical facilities, communications equipment, and remote repair shops may be attached to the Skycrane and flown to forward locations.
Variants : The difference between variants is usually minimal, though military variants often mount light MGs and minimal armor to keep stray fire from damaging the vehicle, and always at the expense of slung cargo.
Civilian models tend to be painted bright orange and other colors for ease of identity. Military models are painted in schemes of tan or simple military green, rarely more complex patterns.