Military Ship Classifications: Dreadnoughts

The dreadnought is the ultimate arbiter of space warfare; millions of tons of metal, ceramic, and polymer dedicated to the projection of firepower against an enemy vessel of like ability. No sane commander would face a dreadnought with anything less than another dreadnought.

A dreadnought’s power lies in the length of its main gun. Dreadnoughts range from 800 meters to one kilometer long, with a main gun of commensurate length. An 800-meter mass accelerator is capable of accelerating one 20 kg. slug to a velocity of 4025 km/s every two seconds. Each slug has the kinetic energy of 38 kilotons of TNT, three times the energy released by the fission weapon that destroyed Hiroshima.

When used to bombard planets, some of this kinetic energy is lost due to atmospheric re-entry friction. As a rule of thumb, each Earth-atmosphere of air pressure saps approximately 20% of a projectile’s impact energy.

The Turian fleet presently has 37 dreadnoughts; the Asari, 21; and the Salarians, 16. Humanity has six with an additional hull under construction at Arcturus Station. Alliance battleships are named for the mountains of Earth.

Everest-class: Everest, Fuji, Elbrus.

Kilimanjaro-class: Kilimanjaro, Tai Shan, Shasta, Aconcagua (under construction).



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