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Macronesian Adraeleus class Dreadnought

Class:
Adraeleus Class Dreadnought / Deep Submergence Vehicle (DSV)

Estimated Construction Cost:
Unknown. Intelligence estimates approximately 15 Billion USD per unit

Keel Laid:
Unknown. Figures based on estimates of Macronesian Ship Building industry, as cited by UEO Intelligence.

Adraeleus SB-1 2038
Vespasian SB-2 - 2039
Archangel SB-3 - 2040

Launched:
Adraeleus 2040
Vespasian - 2041
Archangel - Destroyed prior to launch

Commissioned:
Adraeleus 2041 (First seen active)

Dimensions:
Length: 350.0m
Beam: 208.0m
Height: 58.0m

Submerged Displacement:
Estimated greater than 170,000 tonnes

Hull Composition:
Unknown. Speculation based on Alliance ship building techniques implies a double Titanium hull with composite armour/sound attenuating external plates. Observed to have external hull formations providing sophisticated Stealth, Jamming and Active Camouflage defences. Full extent of this system is unknown.


Stealth and Invisibility:
The UEO has frequently come to blows with the vessel known as the Adraeleus since the war began, but has never fully understood the technology of its stealth systems. Long prior to Adraeleus's construction, UEO scientists and military research divisions invested substantial time and effort in to developing the next generation of stealth systems; this included both active camouflage ("cloaking") technology, and 'chameleon' hull plating capable of blending with surrounding environments. These experiments were largely deemed a failure in the early 2020s; the limitations being the size of the generators required, and the fact that the system was never entirely perfected. In the end, it was discovered that UEO bioskin technology achieved the same eventual results, at a fraction of the cost, weight and size within the ship. (Indeed, Bioskin technology does not require an on-board generator to function.)

Alliance interest in this field however appears to have continued well beyond where the UEO ended its experiments. Historically, while the UEO spent more time developing better ship systems, computers, command, control and communications technologies, the Alliance directed its attention to weapons and defence research. The stealth systems aboard Adraeleus appear to be the result of these endeavours. The system, from what has been observed, is two-fold. The ship's hull plating appears capable of imitating the same chameleon technology demonstrated in the past to render itself virtually indestinguishable from its immediate environment. The second part of the system - apparently a result of the raised plating found across the ship's hull - is an evolution of adaptive camouflage theory, and distorts and bends light around the ship's hull; effectively masking it from visual sensors, and laser-based hypersonar arrays as used by the UEO and most other organizations. This, combined with standard sound-attenuating techniques render the ship practically invisible at medium to long range. Conventional targetting systems have difficulty in tracking this technology, and severely hampers weapons performance at even close range.

Crush Depth:
Estimated 17,000 feet

Propulsion:
2 Maynard fusion reactors powering four large, double Aqua-return propulsion drives

Speed:
Unknown. Observed only at slow speed during combat; probably capable of speeds in excess of 150 knots.

Computer System:
Deon Systems integrated optical network

Sensors:
Internal: Hypersonar; active and passive sensor suites
Effective Range : Approximately 200 nautical miles


Hypersonar technology relies on a combination of 'traditional' acoustic monitoring equipment such as active and passive sonar, and laser-based range finding, it stands for Hypersonic Navigation and Ranging; as the name implies, it uses faster-than-sound technology to detect shipping, map terrain and aid in navigation. Like most Alliance vessels, the Adraeleus class mounts a series of parabolic hypersonar arrays mounted bow, stern, midships dorsal and ventral hull. The specifics of these systems - like most Alliance ships - are unknown, but can be assumed to be considerably more advanced than previous systems on older submarines.

Operating passively, hypersonar sensors use broad-spectrum laser sensors to build up a 3D picture of the environment while an integrated passive array intelligently detects and identifies acoustic signatures within that environment. This is the preferred method of operation, as it maintains complete stealth capability for the submarine while still providing at least a marginal picture of the environment around the vessel - while there is no guarantee that a submarine will be detected by the passive components of the array, the laser array ensures that even if targets cannot be identified, they will be detected, ranged and targetted. Only next-generation active camouflage systems - such as those found aboard the Adraeleus - have the capacity to evade passive hypersonar entirely.

Used actively, hypersonar becomes a double edged, but ultimately infallible sword - First sweeping the area with a high-sensitivity laser array to gather preliminary data, the ship's computer then isolates targets of opportunity which are then battered with a series of uni-directional audio pings, the system literally bounces sound waves off specific solid objects in the water repeatedly and reflects them back to the array, with each ping building up an incredibly detailed picture of the target in real time. The only draw back to this system is that the target being 'illuminated' will also have access to the same information - acoustics work both ways.
Nonetheless, the system is a marked improvement over first-generation active sonar technology used throughout the later part of the 20th century where a single ping could be detected by any submarine in the area. The new directed-array used in hypersonars will limit the 'saturation' of the ping to one specific vector, thus maintaining the submarine's stealth against any other target in the area. Only a sophisticated inter-ship battle network (Such as the encrypted, globe-spanning communications system used by the UEO military) would be able to make use of another ship's sensor information in real time, and forces which do posess such communications ability are very rare; most certainly, the Battlenet has been one of the UEO's major advantages over the Macronesian navy's own (and significantly less advanced) command and control network.

Combining active hypersonar on a single ship with such a network between a taskforce would enable an entire battlegroup to receive real-time and incredibly detailed target information without revealing their locations.

Adraeleus has so far been able to avoid all acoustic measure of detection; presumably through the composition of its hull. It would be unlikely that the Alliance would go to such effort to create an active camouflage system which is invisible to passive sensors, but not cover the other bases of detection; including active acoustic sounding (a much older method of detecting submarines during the later half of the 20th century)

Armament:
26 auto-loading 21" torpedo tubes
18 Minotaur-II Particle Decelerator Rifles (PDRs), otherwise known as "Subduction guns"
12 Medium-range Pulse Particle Lasers
20 VLS tubes mounting Griffon-II Hypersonic Cruise Missiles (nuclear or conventional payload) (mounted midships)

Defensive systems:
Intercept Torpedoes
ECM Packages and Noise Makers
Active Camouflage
Optical Distortion Field

The Adraeleus represents the pinnacle of Alliance naval technology to date; being the most advanced, heavily armed and most well-protected submarine ever produced by the shipyards of Macronesia. Armed with more weapons systems than even the UEO's well-feared Reverence class Battlecruiser, the Adraeleus serves as the flagship of the Alliance fleet; boasting an impressive primary armament of 26 auto-loading torpedo tubes and a devastating battery of 18 Minotaur-II Subduction cannons.

On occasions where the vessel has come to blows with even the UEO's mightiest Atlantis class vessels, Adraeleus has managed to hold a steady line; dishing out more punishment than even the DSVs were capable of returning. (With Atlantis's inability to detect the Adraeleus, the Alliance vessel was virtually untouchable.) Only 'creative' use of blind-fire tactics were able to stave away the Adraeleus, and against lesser vessels, the Adraeleus is a force to be truly reckoned with.
The Minotaur-II guns mounted on the vessel have at least twice the yield of the smaller Minotaur-I cannons mounted on Tempest class cruisers, and a full salvo is capable of completely gutting a medium-sized capital ship instantly, to speak nothing of a small SSN that makes up the bulk of UEO taskforces.

Exactly how particle decleration - better known as subduction - works is still not well understood by UEO scientists. While the theory is well established, the actual method, delivery and execution is a complete mystery. As the name implies, particle declerators slow down the speed of electrons orbiting the nucleus of atomic structures, and as a result, break down inter-molecular bonds. At a practical level, this means that even the most hardened of hulls are reduced to metal slag nearly instantly, and there is no effective defence against it. The weapon has been known to be deployed in the form of torpedoes fired from Subfighters, pulse weaponry fired from energy cannons on capital ships, and has even been delivered on a strategic scale to destroy landmasses - Subduction is responsible for the radical change in the Earth's geology and landscape; barely recognisable to the coastlines of the early 21st century, and has been completely outlawed by the UEO.

EVA Assets:
Presumed to carry an unknown number of subfighters. Estimated to be:
36 SA-29/C Lysander Subfighters
24 SA-33/A Broadsword Subfighters
12 SA-35 Nosferatu Stealth Fighters (UEO designation "Shadowfire")
Up to two dozen maintenance and transport craft

Not much is known about the carrier abilities of the Adraeleus class. As observed in combat, the vessel has been seen directly supported by large numbers of Alliance subfighter craft; primarily Lysanders. As the war has progressed, more of the newer SA-33 Broadsword fighter came in to service, and are presumably gradually replacing the Lysanders aboard the Adraeleus. The origins and number of the mysterious Alliance stealth fighter which uses the same technology as the Adraeleus - known as the Nosferatu - is not known, but at least one squadron has been seen operating from the ship during 2041, and were assumed to be responsible for a high number of casualties suffered by the VF-107 Rapiers in April of the same year. Should more of these fighters be assigned to the Adraeleus, the potential for massive and devastating ambushes and surprise attacks against UEO forces is almost assured; thus far only sustained pressure from UEO subfighter forces have kept this from becoming a reality.

Crew Complement:
Assumed to be a large crew supported by pilots and Alliance marines in excess of 1000.

Command History:
Archangel - NA
Vespasian - Unknown at time of destruction
Adraeleus - Colonel Song (First name unknown); January(?) 2041 - April 2041. Captain Edward Drake; May 2041 - Present


Development history and class background...

The ANS Adraeleus has beginnings long before the beginning of the UEO-Alliance war... and even before the formation of Macronesia itself.

In 2021; five years before the treaty of Macronesia was signed, the UEO flagship seaQuest DSV was central to averting one of the largest tragedies the world would have ever seen when it hunted down and destroyed a rogue, unmmaned submarine that had launched its nuclear arsenal at the UEO capital city of New Cape Quest. The rogue submarine was difficult to hunt down due to prototype active-camouflage technology installed aboard, and the incident led to the UEO cancelling all further development in to both the active camouflage technology and the prototype AI that ran the ship. (New ventures in to AI technology wouldn't happen for another 25 years - culminating in the Atlantis DSV's AI, "ANNIE")

Files and research in to the technology were classified by the UEO military command and would never again resurface in view of the public eye. Another incident in 2021; this time in the South American Confederation; led to the development of another form of active camouflage that was capable of bending light around the camouflage generator. The technology was quickly confiscated by the UEO's clandestine Section Seven counter-intelligence organization, and never again reappeared until 2041...

By the time Macronesia began its steady rise to power in the late 2020s, submarine design philosophy around the world largely reverted back to more "conventional" designs after nearly a decade of experimental projects conceived to build upon the UEO's highly successful seaQuest class DSV. Ultimately, all of these designs failed - the simple reason being that the technologies could not be easily or affordably adapted to vessels on a smaller scale. (The seaQuest was over 1000 feet long; rivalling the length of many supercarriers) The philosophies of small, nimble submarines evolved (or perhaps regressed...) to increasingly larger hulls built for speed and strength above all else. Of all the world's powers, only the UEO and Macronesia truly capitalized on this idea; each side producing their own classes of "cruiser" submarines designed to fill the role of capital warship and long-range carrier. Shortly after the seaQuest returned to service with the UEO, rumours began circulating in Macronesia that the UEO was working on a newer, larger replacement for the ageing DSV. While Alliance industry was capable of producing vessels of that scale with relative ease, the forseen difficulties in building something that large prompted the Macronesian leadership to believe that such a warship was still well out of the UEO's industrial and technological reach. The massive Section Seven effort to hide the UEO's alarming increase in naval R&D was successful in staving off inquisitive Alliance intelligence officers, and Macronesia never even suspected the possiblity of what would become known as the Atlantis class less than a decade later.

Nevertheless, the re-emergence of the seaQuest DSV did much to hasten Macronesia's need for a large warship capable of standing gun-for-gun against the UEO's present flagship, and design work commenced in 2033 on a class of vessel that would be capable of meeting this requirement. The design brief called for a capital-sized gunship/carrier with the capacity to function as a taskforce of its own, independant of the support of other fleet units. Macronesia's vast efforts in weapons research played a major role in the realiztion of the concept; including the growing interest in ship-mounted Subduction weapon systems.

How and when in this development phase Macronesia gained knowledge of the UEO's classified (and abandoned) stealth technologies is not known; but since the realization that Section Seven has been working against the UEO for its own goals, several major holes have become apparent in the UEO's counter-intelligence community, and it's highly likely that the information may have been deliberately leaked, passed on, or bought by Alliance intelligence agents from or with the collaboration of officers within Section Seven.

Sufficed to say - and clearly from the results - whatever research and development of the technology which the Alliance conducted during the 2030s bore results that were generations ahead of anything the UEO had ever achieved; the ability to effectively render a 350-meter-long battleship hull completely invisible to visual, acoustic and electronic detection was as shocking for the UEO as it was devastating. In the final months of the Adraeleus's development, President Bourne ordered the project to be accelerated at all possible speed to match the threat posed by the equally shocking revelation of the Atlantis class DSVs. How far complete the hull of the Adraeleus was at the time of Atlantis's launch isn't known, but it is a testament to the urgency of the situation that the Adraeleus was at least partially operational and at sea less than three months later.

Adraeleus was first encountered by the UEO Aquarius DSV in January 2041, while engaged in combat against Alliance forces in the Marshall Islands. During the engagement, Aquarius was assailed by an unknown and apparently invisible force - later confirmed to be Adraeleus - at nearly point-blank range. The skirmish was brief; Adraeleus, unproven in combat and still presumably not fully operational was unable to cause significant damage to the UEO DSV, and quick action by Aquarius's Captain, Lauren Hornsby, enabled the larger DSV to swiftly and decisively respond; blind-firing a full barrage of particle lasers and torpedoes at the origin of the attack, and forcing the Adraeleus to withdraw.

It would not be the ship's last engagement against a UEO DSV. In April 2041, just a few short months after Adraeleus's trial by fire, the Atlantis DSV assaulted and destroyed the hidden base where the Adraeleus class were being developed; Marinduque Island - deep within the Philippines. Adraeleus's sistership - the Vespasian - still incomplete and lacking any of her sister's sophisticated stealth systems - engaged the Atlantis in a last, desperate stand to defend the island. The engagement proved the vulnerability of the ship when removed from it's stealth systems as the Atlantis quickly and brutally destroyed the outgunned Vespasian in just one salvo from its extensive torpedo batteries. The third vessel of the class; Archangel; was destroyed when the Island was subducted in a subsequent attack orchestrated by Section Seven. Archangel was still under construction in Marinduque Island's drydock facilties at the time of the attack.

It is worth noting that Marinduque Island is located within Chaodai waters; and the base served as a major staging area for the Chaodai fleet, possibly and likely implying that the Chaodai Confederation - previously enemies of the Alliance - may have had some form of role in the development of the class. The Chaodai have long been known to posess very advanced weapons systems of their own, and a collaboration between the Alliance and the Chaodai would mean that the Adraeleus class posesses many systems far more advanced than the UEO may presently believe.

Not long after the events on Marinduque Island, Adraeleus herself spearheaded the Alliance assault on the UEO's Pacific fortress of Pearl Harbor; a battle at which all three of the UEO's Deep Submergence Vehicles - seaQuest, Atlantis and Aquarius - were present. The two flagships clashed during the battle after the Adraeleus assaulted the newly-commissioned seaQuest III with a barrage of subduction fire which put the DSV out of commission for the rest of the battle. Atlantis responded quickly, engaging the Adraeleus in a close-quarters, blind gun duel during which both vessels suffered considerable damage. Ultimately, Adraeleus pulled back with the arrival of a rebel Nycarian Nexus class battleship.
During the battle, Adraeleus served as the flagship of the Macronesian military Commander in Chief, General Henry Adamson.

Adraeleus's present whereabouts and base of operations within the Alliance is not known, but it's suspected that the ship is under the command of former-UEO Captain Edward Drake; an officer well-placed within the Macronesian Navy, and it may well be the current base of operations for the feared 188th Tactical Fighter Squadron - the Blackravens.

To date, this is the only imagery that the UEO has been able to record of an uncamouflaged Adraeleus class warship; shown here, the ANS Vespasian shortly after breaking dock in the Philippines, only minutes before its first and final confrontation with the UEO Atlantis DSV. Note the incomplete stealth plating over the surface of its dorsal hull.

 

 

Copyright 2006-2009 James Ward. All reference pertaining to "seaQuest DSV" and "seaQuest 2032" are copyrights of Universal/Amblin enterainment and no claim is made to these titles. Atlantis DSV and all related themes are copyright of James Ward and associated writers.

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