Quiltra Queleual-class Zentraedi multi-purpose transport vessel.
Normandie class Terran superdimensional general passenger/cargo vessel (SAG)
These ships were built at numerous locations throughout the Robotech Mercantile Empire and entered service from 1610 through 2010. There has only been one version of the design; though subsystems such as the fold system were upgraded over time, the impacts were not major enough to warrant a new version number.
The exact number of constructed units cannot be given due to the loss of records in the Invid invasion of Tirol and the destruction of the final remnants of the Tirolian fleet over Earth. However, an estimated guess puts their number at 273,500 units.
Of this number, approx. 14,500 were destroyed prior to 2010. The Imperial Fleet contained approx. 75,000 Quiltra Queleual vessels, all sharing in the "infection" of that fleet. Of the remaining Tirolian controlled ships 132,000 were part of the Grand Fleet. After the Zentraedi Holocaust, an estimated 48,000 Quiltra Queleual-class transports remained intact or salvageable in the Zentraedi and Terran fleets. Most of these were decommissioned due to protoculture depletion prior to 2020, though four were retained in REF service as the Normandie class until these too were placed into reserve in 2034-2037 and mothballed on the Moon in 2046.
|SAG-01||UES Normandie||In reserve, Tranquillity depot.|
|SAG-02||UES Titanic||Destroyed, 2013.|
|SAG-03||UES Lusitania||In reserve, Tranquillity depot.|
|SAG-04||UES Queen Elizabeth III||In reserve, Tranquillity depot.|
|SAG-05||UES Andrea Doria||In reserve, Tranquillity depot.|
| Length||:||2991 m over all.|
| Height||:||480 m over all.|
| Width||:||500 m over all.|
| Mass||:||150,000,000 metric tons operational (typical troop carrier).|
|:||210,000,000 metric tons operational (typical tanker vessel).|
| Fuel mass||:||56,000,000 metric tons maximum (typical troop carrier).|
|:||116,000,000 metric tons maximum (typical tanker vessel).|
The hull of the Quiltra Queleual-class is shaped like a rectangular brick, a compromise between atmospheric capability, accessible and usable volume and ease of manufacture. There are six engine clusters in the aft section; all of which can fire forward for braking and other maneuvers; the two upper engines though ports in the upper hull, the lower four engines through forward nozzles that are closed by a hinged hatch when not in use. There is the normal number of attitude thrusters spread over the ship. The aft bulkhead has airlocks along its periphery for access to the auxiliary vessel hangars. The locks, two in the upper half and one in the lower half, are large enough to admit Frandlar Tiluvo trans-orbital transports. There are three more large hatches in the rest of the ship, one in the nose and two in the sides. These hatches cover the entrances to multiple internal decks, and can be used for voluminous cargo. The bottom of a Quiltra Queleual contains extendable elevators and ramps leading to the lower decks; cargo, or, in the troop carrier configuration, troops, can be embarked or disembarked directly onto a surface. It is not necessary for the ship to actually land on a planet in order to do this, typically the anti-gravity systems are used to keep the ship aloft while the embarkation/disembarkation takes place.
Internally, there are seven main deck levels, one half deck and several large hangars. The command center, engineering section, Reflex furnaces, fold drive systems and other related machinery are all located on the double-height center deck. Also on this deck are the quarters for the actual ship's crew and their facilities. The Gnerl air group is housed on the half deck in the uppermost centre half of the Quiltra Queleual, and launch through chutes at the sides. The other six decks, three above and three below the central deck, can be configured as needed by installing prefabricated inner sections. These sections can be made up of cargo holds, fuel tanks, crew quarters, mecha hangars, cold and warm storage holds, ammunition magazines or other, more specialized inner hull parts. It is not necessary for all sections on different decks, or even sections on the same deck, to be of an identical type. This gives the class maximum flexibility, for each ship can be configured or reconfigured as needed to any degree desired. For instance, a ship can carry additional fuel tanks on all decks (tanker version), or supplies on several decks and troops on the other decks (landing ship version), or fuel and cargo, and this in any configuration required. However, such custom configurations were rare, the Zentraedi usually sticking to one of their standard versions. The auxiliary vessels carried by the Quiltra Queleual are hangared in the aft section, just forward of the aftmost pressure bulkhead.
The armament is limited, as the Quiltra Queleual-class was not designed to stand in the battle-line. There are ten torpedo tubes forward of the Gnerl launch bays. As the Tou Redir-sized vessels the Quiltra Queleual was designed to hold off cannot mount as extensive anti-torpedo batteries as larger ships, this number of launchers sufficed. The cannon armament does not follow the normal Zentraedi lay-out of heavy fire forward and medium fire on the other arcs, rather, the turrets are mounted, like the defensive missile system, for spherical coverage.
After their home had been bombarded by the loyal Zentraedi armada, the surviving Ci'Vonians and their allies declared war on the Robotech Mercantile Empire. As part of their efforts, small flotillas of Tou Redir ships were sent into the Empire to raid the interstellar commerce which provided the Tirolian treasury a large part of its wealth. The first Tirolian counter against this form of warfare was a system of convoys escorted by loyal Zentraedi ships, but while effective, the inevitable delays lowered the volume of transported goods with 40%. Clearly, a more effective counter was required. This came in the form of the Quiltra Queleual armed merchant, which carried sufficient armament to hold Tou Redir sized ships off long enough to effect an escape. The threat of larger ships remained, but the required number of Zentraedi escort vessels was far less than with smaller, unarmed cargo ships.
The Quiltra Queleual was not a privately owned ship, but a military vessel with a Zentraedi crew. Officially licensed transport companies could rent volume and mass on these large vessels, which kept up a regular service between the Empire's planets. As the threat of the Disciples of Zor waned and more Quiltra Queleual-class ships became available, other uses were found for voluminous ships. From the start, a Zentraedi troop transport function had been foreseen, but within two centuries the Quiltra Queleual became the exclusive supply ship for the Zentraedi fleets as well. As the depredations of the Disciples had become mere minor nuisances by the 1880's, the civilian transport services were stopped and all Quiltra Queleual-class vessels were incorporated into the Zentraedi fleets as landing ships and underway replenishment vessels.
As a tanker, the Quiltra Queleual-class carried more than twice its normal fuel load, and could refuel numerous reconnaissance frigates, several heavy cruisers, or one force or fleet flagship. However, as it was very unusual for Zentraedi ships to burn their fuel tanks dry (standard procedures called for a minimum supply of 65% maximum capacity), one tanker usually sufficed to refuel a normal Zentraedi flotilla. The landing ship configuration could carry 12,000 troops, their weapons and supplies, and the means to land these on a planet; however, this number of troops was rarely needed save for planetary invasions. Usually, troops were added to the tender/underway replenishment combination; the resulting fleet support configuration could carry 4000 troops and their weapons and surface transports, sufficient stores to supply a normal Zentraedi deployment through several battles, and serve as a tender to the smaller Tou Redir scouts and the various auxiliary ships in the flotilla. Thus, a normal Zentraedi fleet deployment included two to four Quiltra Queleual-class vessels, divided equally between the fleet support and the tanker version.
Most of the Quiltra Queleual-class was brought to the Sol system with either the Imperial fleet or the Grand Fleet, for both forces expected massive ammunition and fuel expenditures and thus needed large fleet trains to resupply them. As a result, most of the class was destroyed in the Zentraedi Holocaust over Earth, with the survivors rapidly losing power due to protoculture depletion.
The RDF used five of the former Zentraedi vessels to transport the bulk of the supplies, assembly lines, dismantled production centers and dependants of the early REF. These ships, known as the Normandie class, had their upper two decks converted into comfortable micronian sized housing areas. Their middle decks were dedicated to stores and prefabricated parts, and their lower decks contained additional reaction mass tanks to refuel the REF combat ships. The four surviving Normandie class vessels (one was destroyed shortly after conversion) returned to the Sol system in 2046 and immediately entered the Tranquillity reserve depot on the Moon.
See additional design notes.
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