Rineunadou Lojmeuean class Monitor
These ships were built at numerous locations throughout the Robotech Mercantile Empire from 1590 through 1850 and at the Robotech Factory Satellite from 1850 through 2007. There has only been one version of the class, but subsystems such as sensors and weapons were continuously upgraded as the ships came in for refits, thus keeping them up-to-date. The total number of Rineunadou Lojmeuean class monitors constructed is 73,687.
Of this number, 5,137 were destroyed prior to 2010. Due to their low rate of production, these vessels were among the first to feel the protoculture shortages. While all Rineunadou Lojmeuean-class vessels still capable of fold travel were incorporated into the Grand Fleet, their numbers did not amount to more than approximately 13,600. The Terrestrial salvage crews counted 435 Rineunadou Lojmeuean wrecks among the ships that had crashed onto the planet. The remaining ships of the Grand Fleet had been destroyed outright. All other Rineunadou Lojmeuean-class ships had become incapable of fold travel, and were left in their guard positions over the Empire's planets. Most of these were scuttled by their Zentraedi crews, acting under orders not to let these ships be captured by the Invid or Disciples of Zor.
The best known capability of the Zentraedi armada was to effectively destroy planets with heavy Reflex cannon salvos, and the Rineunadou Lojmeuean were the ships built to carry out the bombardments. Apart from planetary bombardment, the Reflex cannon armed vessels also served as very capable guardships over the Empire's planets.
The Rineunadou Lojmeuean-class was made from the two booms of the Reflex cannon, with the reaction engines added to the back. Two armour flanges stood out at about 60 degrees upward from the engines, giving the impression of short and stubby wings. The two main reaction engines were positioned vertically, with the two nozzles of the auxiliary engines to the sides of these, buried in the roots of the 'wings'. The total impression was that of a flying brick equipped with a Reflex cannon, which was of course the correct one. This vessel was often mistaken for a Queadol Magdomilla-Whouva force command ship bow section or a Thuverl Salan by the untrained eye.
There were numerous sensor spikes; one large one, a rudimentary fold sensor, was mounted at the lower stern, directly under the lower main engine. Four sensor spikes were mounted directly forward, three on the dorsal nose and three on the ventral nose, six were mounted around the fold sensor and one large EM receiver was mounted on a bridge-like structure on top of the main hull, behind the cannon section.
Internally, there were five decks. The upper deck housed the air group and its personnel, the lower deck housed the Regult teams and their armaments, and the decks in between were the main decks of the vessel itself with command, engineering, and personnel sections for all other tasks. The Reflex cannon booms were not intended for habitation, but much of the free space in them was used as the supply lockers, since the cannon was rarely fired anyway. This did mean that some supplies became irradiated after a main battery salvo, but it never led to any operational problems. The two shuttles were carried on top with the fighter pods.
The armament was not as diverse as on other Zentraedi ships. The Reflex cannon was the weapon of choice against enemy starships, although its rate of fire was not impressive. However, Rineunadou Lojmeuean-class vessels usually deployed in flotillas of thirty to fifty, and few enemies remained after a combined salvo from such a group. The other armaments did not include heavy anti-ship cannons or torpedo tubes. There were the normal medium energy cannons and defensive missiles. These were mounted for spherical coverage as their main tasking was to defend the monitor against attacking ships. Due to the small size of the crew space (the Reflex cannon made up most of the ship), the mecha forces stationed aboard were small, with only a rudimentary air group and an equally sized Regult group to back them up. The Rineunadou Lojmeuean-class relied mostly on escorts and numbers for defense.
The ultimate in Tirolian firepower was the Reflex Cannon. This cannon, which could destroy entire cities with one shot, was difficult to construct, as well as a weapon with major political impact. In the first centuries of the Tirolian Mercantile Empire, the Reflex Cannon was therefore reserved for the Tirolian Masters themselves and the most reliable Zentraedi. This meant that the cannons were only installed in Tirolian ships and rare Zentraedi vessels. However, as the Empire's enemies began to press harder on the core, and the fringes became so extended that they became unwieldy for normal patrols, it was decided to built Reflex cannon in numbers, and mount them both on Zentraedi fleet units and Border Fleet vessels. The Zentraedi platforms would be stationed in flotillas near the Empire's most important systems and installations (like Tirol and the Homebase) were they would be under firm political control, and also highly visible to would-be rebels. This would also preclude the misuse of Reflex cannons by wayward or triggerhappy Zentraedi commanders.
The Rineunadou Lojmeuean monitor, or 'Cannon Ship' as it was also known, was designed as the most economical way to mount numerous Reflex cannons. Although it was as mobile as other Zentraedi line vessels, it was designed to be the smallest, yet still technically feasible platform for a Zentraedi-manned Reflex cannon, and as a consequence the Monitor carried little in the way of secondary batteries or mecha, relying on their escort ships instead.
The monitors were built and deployed as was planned. Occasionally, they were to marshalled into bombardment fleets, and send out to support a large offensive against the Invid or the Disciples of Zor, or to raze an entire planet's surface, if such a demonstration was necessary in the eyes of the Masters. The Rineunadou Lojmeuean-class performed well in its designed tasks, forming feared bombardment fleets as well as providing a very strong fleet cover for the vital planets.
Later, near the end of the Tirolian Empire, the Rineunadou Lojmeuean-class, like all Tirolian vessels, suffered from protoculture depletion. Dolza incorporated all operational Rineunadou Lojmeuean vessels into the Zentraedi Grand Fleet, and they folded with him to Earth. Fortunately, energy depletion was so progressive at this point that most vessels could fire their cannons only at reduced power, or the Earth would not have seen any survivors of the Holocaust. All Rineunadou Lojmeuean were priority targets for the allied fleet and none survived the battle. The SDF-1 Macross was destroyed by a refurbished ship of this class that had crashed on Earth, and this ship was destroyed with the SDF-1.
See additional design notes.
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Copyright © 2004, 1997, 1996, 1995 Robert Morgenstern, Peter
Walker, Pieter Thomassen