Echen F'don TACFLEET Summary
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WRITING GROUPS: Star Fleet: PRIME (SD- 2427) | Star Fleet: ORIGINS (SD- 2261)- DEFUNCT | Star Fleet: BEYOND (SD- 2771)- DEFUNCT
- INFORMATION CLASSIFICATION: TOP SECRET
- RELIABILITY CLASSIFICATION: A (multiple direct contacts by multiple Star Fleet assets)
The Office of Star Fleet Intelligence, in collaboration with TACLFEET's Emerging Threat Assessment Bureau (ETAB), has only begun to assemble a cohesive picture of Fardon technology, naval architecture and design. Scans taken during the Charlemagne and Resolution missions, supplemented by material gleaned from the latter's away team to a subsequently destroyed Fardon listening post and sensor array, have given analysts the basis for making educated guesses. Nevertheless, Fardon ship design standards are very poorly understood in comparison with Klingon, Romulan, Cardassian, or even Jem'Hadar and Dalriada technologies.
Linguistic analysis has confirmed that 'sla' is the Fardon word for 'cruiser', or more generically perhaps, 'naval vessel.' The suffix system of superlatives (and prefix system of diminuitives) mirrored in their rank structure is used to roughly divide vessels into classes. Star Fleet assets have identified the following four distinct classes:
- CC: Sla'astec (command cruiser) - encountered during USS Charlemagne first contact mission
- CL: Sla'tec (light cruiser) - encountered during USS Resolution mission to Dorado II.
- LAC: J'Sla (light attack craft) - observed during USS Charlemagne mission as part of Sla'astec battle group.
- SF: Hirq (freighter) - observed by USS Panache (PATRON-77) making supply run to listening post discovered by the USS Resolution.
At first blush, Fardon engineering appears to be an ecletic hodgepodge of technologies in use by known powers; closer examination, however, has revealed unifying principles, the most important of which being Fardon mastery of gravitic manipulation. ETAB estimates Fardon space to lie substantially coreward of other Beta quadrant powers, which may in part explain the direction Fardon science has taken.
The power source on Fardon ships appears to be similar to that in use by the Romulans, namely the process of capturing power from the immense gravitational field of a quantum singularity. The Fardons have also been observed employing matter/anti-matter reactors, at least in their forward bases and listening posts.
Fardon propulsion involves a marriage of gravity planing drives with inertial reduction technology, offering subtantial advantages in manueverability at sublight speeds over Federation equivalents.
As with Kzin gravity planing drives, ship architecture necessarily involves a 'gravity plane' which runs through the center of mass of the ship. Fardon architecture is thus symmetric about the X-Y plane, as is the artificial gravity. Fardon turbolifts pass through null-g locks which re-orient the cars. The orbital station (listening post and sensor array) boarded by the Resolution employed the same architecture and appeared to be modular in design; this, coupled with construction records, suggest the Fardons are capable of safely and reliably tractoring and towing other vessels and similarly sized objects in warp.
Though it leaves a distinct signature, Fardon warp technology is believed to be similar to that employed otherwise unremarkable. It is not known whether or not the Fardons have developed dimension warp. On the one hand, dimension warp is a gravitic technology; on the other hand, Fardon warp technology may well be sophisticated enough to render dimension warp irrelevant. The upper ranges of Fardon warp provided in the specs are simply extrapolations based upon better-known Romulan designs.
The Fardons employ a gravitic cloak which is more efficient at obscuring particle emissions than the Romulan and Klingon versions; nevertheless, Fardon vessels do not appear to possess the capability of firing when cloaked. Fardon stealth technology is augmented by a particularly dense metal alloy (dubbed 'kirellium'), the primary use of which appears to be to protect Fardon vessels from the shearing forces of gravity planing drives and gravitic weapons. Supplemented by various coatings, the secondary feature of the very high density is to frustrate many sorts of scans.
Fardon gravitic shielding (like the Federaton version) uses a highly efficient series of phase-synchronoized graviton polarity generators. In the initial encounter (Charlemagne mission), the combination of the effectiveness of the shielding and the inability to conduct effective scanning led some observers to conclude falsely that the Fardon shields involved some kind of rudimentary phasing technology. The Fardons also appear to employ a standard range of electronic counter-measures on par with Federation versions, as well as point defense systems.
The exteriors of their command cruiser (Sla'astec-class) to have spikes (spines), the purpose of which is unknown. Two theories vie for dominance: the first is that this is some kind of focused plasma beam weapon, the second is that the ships use them for ramming. [NRPG: in reality, this is part of a gravitic weapons system which Star Fleet has yet to encounter as of early 2411, but will be described below for player knowledge.]
Fardon weaponry is most effective at medium and short range. Unlike Federation quantum and photon torpedoes, the Fardon energy torpedo (MagTorp) is caseless, its payload is suspended in a 'magnetic bottle.' Its maximum range is only 2,000,000 kilometers, and it appears to have four discrete power levels, and it dissipates rapidly at higher ranges.
A photon torpedo is 18.5 isotons, a quantum torpedo is 22.5 isotons The signature Fardon beam weapon is a phased X-ray laser similar to that used by the Romulans and Dalriada. As with the Romulan version, it is believed to be less tunable with respect to phase, but is a more efficient and more precise cutting beam than Federation phasers. The Sla'astec and Sla'tec variants appear to have both continuous and pulse modes.
[The most powerful Fardon weapon is one one yet unobserved by Star Fleet, though rumors of Scutum Art Rift pirates using knock-offs has caused a rash of speculation at TACFLEET. The 'spikes' on the Sla'astec-class ships are actually part of a gravitic disruptor system which creates powerful 'gravity cones'. The range of this devastating weapon is less than 200,000 km.]
Fardon subspace communications appear to work on similar principles to that of the major powers. Fardon long range sensor technology appears to be functionally equivalent to (but substantially more powerful) the ORACLE/DELPHI suites on the Federation's heavy cruiser/explorers. Short range electro-magnetic scanning is comparable to that on standard Federation vessels. Fardon transporters employ a folded space technology not dissimilar to that of the Borg and Jem'Hadar, permitting them to beam through shields. Its effect on humanoid lifeforms is unknown, but presumably is safer than the version outlawed in Federation.
While it was originally believed that the individual An'oke (the humanoid species which appears to dominate the Fardon military) could fool sensors (much like Angosians), it appears far more likely that they widespread use of chameleonoid intelligence operatives caused field officers to draw erroneous conclusions in this regard.
Further, their boarding parties use personal folded space transporters ("blink tech"), as well as chameleon suits, the latter of which are standard issue for special warfare branches of the militaries of most of the major powers.
Moreover, Fardon ground troops are highly mechanized. They have impressive landing vehicles, sub-atmospheric assault craft, and employ battle armor (as observed by the Charlemagne surface) far more extensively than those of most of the major spacefaring races. While this makes their ground troops slower to deploy and more sluggish in responding, it would imply that they rely heavily on seige tactics, buttressed by orbital firepower.
Finally, Sla'astec command cruisers (and possibly the light cruisers as well, though this is unsubtantiated) use J'Sla-class light attack craft (LAC) (there is a gap in the SFE classification scheme for a non-warp capable vessel with the armament characteristics of a corvette, but which is otherwise not warp capable) in their battle groups. These vessels can ride as embarked craft or may dock upon the exterior of the crusier's hull, using what is presumed to be some kind of tractoring system supported by a mechanical docking harness. Employed as screens in battle, these vessels can be devastating to Federation escorts and in the first encounter with a Sla'astec, three of them aided in dispatching two Thunderbolt class vessels serving as screens for the Charlemagne and Wyvern.
In general, Fardon vessels are to be considered fully on par with their Federation counterparts. While their function appears to be primarily military (rather than scientific and exploratory as well), they present dangerous adversaries with significant advantages at sublight speeds and in short range combat.
- This brief was prepared by D'Maris Coffman.