Sisyphean Heavy Freighter
The Sisyphean Heavy Freighter is a common class of civilian cargo spacecraft across human inhabited space. Initially designed by the Bernard’s Star Industrial Collective in 2143, it is one of the most popular civilian starships in service in the 2250s over a hundred years since its introduction.
The CSS Infinite Grace is a Sisyphean class freighter based out of Altair and a common example of the 2240 refit model.Given its mammoth size and modular construction, any two ships of the class can vary quite significantly but this article will mostly discuss the 2240 refit model in its standard configuration. Calling in at 240 metres from the top of the command deck to the bottom of the engine nozzles, the core of the spaceframe is roughly 70 metres square. The entire lower half of the ship is dedicated to a massive cargo hold. Two pairs of blast doors 70 metres tall by 30 metres wide protect the cargo, however the hull panels around this area are designed to be removable to support access to oversized cargo. Even in its standard configuration the ship has a standard cargo capacity exceeding 25,000 standard containers. A common usage of the ship’s large cargo capacity is to transport ship components or even smaller spacecraft between manufacturing centres or to their final customers. In the ship’s midship are two four-bay through hangar decks allowing for access by shuttles and tugs, and most ships have a standard compliment of four “workerbee” cargo transfer tugs which are traditionally stored in the lower hangar. One consistent criticism of the design are the small elevators running either side of the hangars from the cargo bay to the hab section above which are generally cramped and claustrophobic. Extending from the sides of the midship are two protruding modules. Generally filled with engineering equipment, on military or militarised variants these modules can be replaced with turret mounting for railguns or single use missile launchers. Above the hangars are the pressurised sections and hab module. Comprised of two towers, each generally containing around eleven decks, this section contains crew quarters, recreational space, a small amount of pressurised cargo space and the command decks. In the usual configuration, the ship has a crew of forty, and often includes space for ten to twenty travelling guests. Whilst these ships do not represent the fastest route between planets or stations, they are quite cheap especially for passengers willing to supplement their fare with work. Additionally, this section includes a landing pad and airlock for personnel transfers using shuttlecraft larger than can fit in the hangar. At the very bottom of the ship are six massive Banch-Xiao ion drives powered by two high power fusion reactors. Each drive has its own propellant tanks directly above the drive cones, giving the engines their distinctive appearance. Much of the engineering section is sealed, only designed to be maintained in drydock, but the reactors are accessible from within the cargo bay. This is widely considered a design flaw and can make in-flight repairs much harder. The ship is, despite its flaws, well considered by the interstellar freight community. Thousands remain in active service across human space in the hands of civilian haulers, militaries and everyone in between. There are dozens of licensed shipyards that produce new and customised spaceframes for customers with specific requirements, and there exists a vibrant second hand market for those with lower budgets or less demanding requirements.
2 high-output fusion reactors, plus backup hydrogen power cells
6 Banch-Xiao "Superfreight" oversized ion drives
Weapons & Armament
Two optional standard anti-shipping weapon hardpoints
Communication Tools & Systems
Standard short range radio array plus long range
Hangars & docked vessels
Two throughship hangar decks with four berths each, plus one open topped landing pad. Standard compliment of four "workerbee" cargo transfer tugs.
0.3G sustained acceleration under full load
Complement / Crew
Requires minimum 10 crew, generally operated with 30-50.
Cargo & Passenger Capacity
Space for 10-20 passengers, plus 20-50 tonnes of pressurised cargo, plus 25,000 TEU of cargo in the main hold.
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