ROBOTECH Technical Files
by Pieter Thomassen, with Peter Walker, Chris Meadows and Robert Morgenstern


FA5 5.56mm Assault Carbine

Southern Cross Seal
FA5 5.56mm Assault Carbine
ArmorWeapon Separator

As popular as the AR-25 Wolverine rifle was with the REF, it did not meet the Southern Cross's need for a carbine. Although carbine conversions were available, the early Southern Cross preferred to remain with the smaller 5.56mm NATO cartridge, especially in light of the enormous stockpiles available from its use as the RDF's standard caliber. For anti-personnel use, the Southern Cross considered the 5.56mm caliber more desirable because its lighter weight meant that, kilogram for kilogram, more rounds could be carried by individual soldiers. Anti-armor use was not a consideration for the Southern Cross's needs at that time, which chiefly involved putting down poorly-equipped human and micronized-Zentraedi insurgencies; a slug-firing carbine was seen primarily as a stopgap until the RRG's research projects could make an arsenal of man-portable energy weapons available. It only remained for the Southern Cross to decide which rifle best met its needs.

Though the AR-21 was available, it was not suited for adaptation into a carbine, and the French industrial combine GIAT offered an alternative. The Fusil Automatique 5 was a very short carbine; offering a full-length stock with a barrel even shorter than that on many submachine guns. Because of this, accuracy was rather limited, but this weapon was still popular with the Southern Cross and GMP. However, longer barrel and gas-tube kits were developed that allowed quick conversion of the weapon to a full assault-rifle (and even sniper-rifle) configuration. Although it briefly saw service in all the armies serving on Earth, with the introduction of the Southern Cross' plethora of energy weapons, only the GMP—especially in remote facilities like the Tokyo Robotech Research Center—kept it in service through the Second Robotech War.

Go to ASC Armor/Weapons Index.

Go to the Robotech Reference Guide Home Page.

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Content by Peter Walker and Pieter Thomassen, with Chris Meadows and Rob Morgenstern
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Copyright © 2006, 1999, 1997 Robert Morgenstern, Pieter Thomassen, Peter Walker