ALV Sephias' Spear
The ALV Sephias' Spear is an Aniki Labs star carrier designed to help the organization carry out commerce raiding in the Evermorn System as a counter to Cobalt Protectorate agression in the ongoing Armoa Conflict.
The Spear is powered by a small nuclear reactor embedded in a pocket of asteroid iron near the pointy end of the vessel. Large nano-foliated capacitors along the ship's central axis provide auxiliary power for when the reactor is damaged or lasers are being fired in combat. Should both the reactor and capacitors both fail, tertiary power for the limping trip back to Armoa is derived from Brayton-cycle generators mounted to the main exhaust plenum; at this level of damage, the vessel is considered mission-killed unless it can make it back for refit.
Like the cruisers attached to it, the Spear is propelled by a nuclear salt water rocket.
Weapons & Armament
A large number of laser emitter ball turrets adorn the edges of the Spear, serving as outputs for a centrally-pumped laser array as well as inputs for the multispectral scope and interstellar laser communications systems. The dorsal and ventral spines of the vessel are lined with missile tubes filled with countless shaped fusion charge missiles, each of which is designed to fire gouts of radioactive particles and gamma rays at enemy spacecraft who fail to intercept them before detonation.
Armor and defense
As with many starships, the Spear is mostly empty space - a network of support trusses and individually packaged support systems strung within a protective external shell. The vessel gains its name from the nature of this shell specifically: a shard of sculpted asteroid metal coated in water ice and shaped like a fat spearpoint. In addition to providing excellent protection from ballistic attack, this monolithic armor plating is undergirded with a network of heat pipes and fieldproof meshing designed to ensure that radiological attacks, electronic warfare attacks, and laser blasts have a difficult time damaging the vessel. The unique shape of the Spear has the additional benefit of deflecting attacks away from the vital innards of the ship, though docked cruisers (see Hangars & Docked Vessels) do not share this protection in their spherical berths. Indeed, the Spear is most vulnerable when launching or berthing its complement of cruisers, exposing the less durable 'bottoms' of the drydocks. The water ice painted thickly onto the inner and outer surfaces of the hull is meant to flash to vapor and provide open-cycle cooling to the spacecraft in the event of heavy laser fire or power usage, though it serves primarily as an additional layer of armor for the vessel. Vapor generated within the hull is vented through various ports on the exterior of the craft, allowing the Spear to subtly and randomly adjust course in combat to complicate distant enemy firing solutions.
Additional & auxiliary systems
A pair of internal ring habitats houses the crew and any visiting cruiser crews. These habitats provide paltry gravity when spun, but this is partially mitigated by infusions of grav serum produced by onboard yeast colonies. The Spear features a closed ecological life support system (CELSS) similar to that found on Cobalt Knight ships of the line, allowing it to operate for long periods away from home. As a carrier for commerce raiders, the Spear features a large amount of empty cargo racking and inflatable sphere modules along its central support spine in hopes of carrying the riches of the Evermorn System home. Fertilizer, uranium, life-essential dietary minerals, and rare metals are all sought after for transportation to Armoa.
Hangars & docked vessels
The Spear carries up to four tetrahedral cruisers - of approximately the specifications of the ALV Pyre Dawn - into battle in spherical hollows in the aft end of each dorsal and ventral facet. These spherical hollows are inflatable, pressurizeable drydocks with double membrane exteriors, the interstitial spaces of which are filled with water to provide maximum protection from the elements while in transit or during repairs. Cruisers dock nose-in to protect the carrier's crew from the radiation of the fusion salt water rockets. Heavy irises on the outfacing ends of the drydocks seal off the exhaust plenums of docked cruisers, allowing a docked vessel to be safely inspected from most angles by drastically reducing the radioactivity caused by neutron activation or uranium crusts on the inner plenum surfaces. On the other hand, these irises may be opened to allow for emergency maneuvering thrust by firing the thrusters of any docked cruisers, giving the Spear excellent evasion for a ship of its size. Because the Spear must rely on resources gathered in the field, as the Cobalt Knights expeditionary forces have begun to cut off Aniki Labs from important supply lines in their home system, the drydocks are designed to accept connections with any port featuring the standardized General Purpose Module (GPM) dimensions. This allows the vessel to harvest valuable fusion or fission fuels - as well as prisoners of war - from captured vessels and GPM. In addition to the four cruisers, the Spear fields a complement of up to 32 attack drones, 8 reconnaisance drones, and 8 resource extraction drones, each of which is housed and launched from missile cells at the midline edge of each dorsal and ventral facet.
Complement / Crew
100 humans, plus 8 HLAI
Cargo & Passenger Capacity
See Hangars & Docked Vessels