Norwegian Sleipner class Surface Effect Heavy Corvette:


Surface Effect Ships can be considered some of the more unique naval vessel designs. Only the Soviet / Russian Navy and Norwegian Navy developed such designs fully for combatant vessels before the coming of the Great Cataclysm. There were a number of nations which developed civilian Surface Effect Ships and a number of navies built prototypes. During the Nineteen-Seventies, the United States Navy planned a several thousand ton surface effect frigate but the program was canceled before even design work was completed.


When compared to many other navies, the Royal Norwegian Navy was comparatively small but the nation had a huge amount of coastline that they needed to protect. Because surface effect craft designs have shallow draft, they have the ability to duck into the huge numbers of narrow bays in the Scandinavian Peninsula. As a result, the design was considered in many respects ideal for the Royal Norwegian Navy.


Compared to similar sized conventional naval designs, the shallow draft makes these boats have less water resistant and are much faster as a result. Some surface effect craft have reached speeds up to eighty knots. When compared to a conventional air cushion design, surface effect ships differ greatly in that they have rigid sidewalls for stability and support instead of a flexible skirt which contain the lift air. However, the surface effect ship design does have flexible seals or “skirts” forward and aft and uses internal lift fans.


Far larger than the Ravn and Skjold classes, but still smaller than New Soviet designs, the Royal Norwegian Navy Sleipner class were named after various Norse mythical creatures. While generally classified as heavy corvettes, they were smaller than many other navy’s regular conventional corvettes. Still, compared to the Ravn and Skjold classes, they have over twice the displacement.


In total, four Sleipner class vessels were completed, compared to sixteen of the contemporary Ravn class and six of the older Skjold class. As one might expect, the lead ship of the class was named Sleipner and the three others of the class were named Draugr, Fenrir, and Vættir. With one of these heavy corvettes laid down every four years, these vessels were built over a far more extended time than the Ravn class. The first was laid down in the early Twenty-Sixties and the last was not completed until the later part of the Twenty-Seventies.


For many years, the Norwegian Parliament refused to authorize any new construction even with serious tensions around the world including with the reborn Soviet Union. Eventually, tensions further increased where the world seemed to teeter on the edge. This finally forced the parliament to authorize a massive increase in the military. Most significant was the increase in naval spending. All of this occurred as the lead-up to the Great Cataclysm.


Plans were to built a further four surface effect “heavy corvettes” along with sixteen more “light corvette” type surface effect ships. While based on the design of the Sleipner class, there were a number of changes to the design. These include mounting a 100 mm rail gun in the place of the 76 mm gun mount and the radar system would have been replaced by a far more sophisticated radar system. Even though there were a number of other changes planned, these two would have been the most obvious. It was planned for the first of the new class to enter service around 2105 with all completed by around 2120.


With the Great Cataclysm, most of the navies around the world were destroyed. Here and there a warship survived, either because they were in protected bunkers or in isolated areas. It is believed that most of the Royal Norwegian Navy was destroyed as well. Still, many of their warships operated out of quite isolated areas so they are more likely to survive than many. There are quite a number of isolated fiords along the Scandinavian Peninsula that have not been explored since the cataclysm.


Compared to the Ravn and Skjold classes, the Sleipner displaced over twice the tonnage. In common with the smaller surface effect vessels, the Sleipner was designed to have an extremely low radar cross signature. Still, the composites used in the construction of the heavy corvette made the vessel able to withstand incredible abuse for its size. The composites used in the Sleipner were more advanced than those used on New Soviet designs. As a result, the Sleipner were quite a bit lighter than similar sized New Soviet surface effect ship design.


One issue with the Sleipner class was cost and why no additional vessels were initially authorized after the first four. Part of the reason why these vessels were so expensive was due to those same composites, similar to those use on stealth fighter designs. Compared to the New Soviet surface effect ship designs of similar size and firepower, they were also far more expensive.


In overall dimensions, the Sleipner class was longer than the New Soviet Perekat class although it was also narrower. As a result, the two designs had similar overall volume. In common with the Ravn and Skjold classes but unlike most conventional naval vessels of the Royal Norwegian Navy, the Sleipner class were painted in camouflage instead of grey. This was to enable these vessels to hide better in inlets and bays. Unlike the Norwegian surface effect ships, the New Soviet surface effect craft were generally painted in grey.


In order to produce the power required, the Sleipner mounted four fusion reactors compared to the two reactors on the Ravn class. The larger vessel also had a total of four water jets compared to two for the smaller surface effect craft design. As a result of the power to mass ratio not having been as great on the Sleipner class as on the Ravn class, top speed is slightly less on the larger craft. On calm waters, top speed for the Sleipner class was around sixty-eight knots. Due to greater size and mass, the Sleipner class did better in comparison with a top speed in rough waters of fifty knots. However, when compared to similar New Soviet designs, the Norwegian surface effect vessels designs were considered far slower under most conditions.


Through the use of extensive automation, these vessels were designed to be operated by a quite small crew. Standard crew was only twenty six composed of twenty one enlisted and five officers. However, these vessels were designed with enough berthing to embark a crew up to thirty.


Weaponry was generally similar to the smaller Norwegian surface effect ship design. On the bow, the Sleipner class mounted the same super rapid 76 mm gun as was mounted on the Skjold and Ravn classes. Still, the 76 mm gun on the larger corvette had a much larger payload. In general, the gun mount was expected to be used against smaller surface targets and also for possible use against airborne targets. Fire control was considered accurate enough to engage missiles as well.


While the vertical launchers on the rear deck were identical to those carried on the Ravn class, payload was increased from eight to thirty-two missiles. Unlike many vertical launch systems, these launchers were not designed to be able to fire medium range missiles. One major change from the Ravn and Skjold classes was that these launchers would often carry a number of anti-submarine rocket boosted torpedoes and well as multi-purpose missiles capable of engaging aircraft. Commonly, four to eight anti-submarine type missiles might be carried. Of course since the vessel did not mount any torpedo tubes, this was the only way it could engage submarines.


For closer range anti-aircraft and anti-missiles defense, the Sleipner mounted a pair of “Freya VIII” short range missile launchers. An enlarged version of the launchers carried on the Ravn class light corvette, each had the ability to fire eight missiles simultaneously. With an automatic reload systems, the launchers had the magazine space for an additional eighty short range missiles for each launcher. In total, the heavy corvette could carry a total of one hundred and seventy six short range missiles including both those in the launchers and those carried as reloads.


Compared to the smaller Ravn class, the Sleipner class carried a much more sophisticated electronic suite with the ability to actively jam radar systems. One issue however is that the jamming can actually defeat these vessel’s abilities to evade detection because the jamming itself can be detected. In addition, a number of weapons can home in on jamming signals. Even so, in certain circumstances, it can be extremely useful.


The MRR-3D-NX radar system mounted on the Ravn class was not considered equal to what was required for the Sleipner class. However, when these heavy corvettes were original developed, there were only a few effective lightweight radar systems available. One of these was known as “Sampson Ultra-Light” and was originally developed as a private venture and not widely adopted. Ultimately selected, it was modified version of the British “Mini Sampson.” While the ultra-light active phased array radar system had less tracking than the original system, it was otherwise quite comparable.


One vessel of the class, the Vættir, had the original radar system replaced by the American designed SPX-1L. Also an rotating active phased array radar system, the American system gave both twice the range and much greater tracking ability. Before the coming of the Great Cataclysm, the plan had been for the new heavy corvette class to mount this more advanced radar. In addition, there was consideration giver towards replacing the original radar system on the other three Sleipner class surface effect corvettes.


For additional defense against various threats, the Sleipner class mounted a pair of “Softkill II” decoy systems. These were mounted on the front sides of the superstructure instead of the bow. Able to launch both torpedo and missile decoys, these launchers have a much greater payload than those carried on the lighter corvette.


While the Sleipner class were not really designed for anti-submarine warfare, they did mount a much more effective towed array sonar than the Ravn class. However, they did not mount any hull sonar. When these vessels are operating at high speeds, the sonar is not considered especially effective. When the towed array sonar is used, a common tactic was to sprint between used of the sonar.


Author Note: With respect to time line, these designs may or may not reflect our modern time line. The time line of these writeups diverged from our time line starting around 1999. Consider the universe that these designs are created for to be an alternate universe not bound by ours.


Model Type: Sleipner class Surface Effect Patrol Boat (Project 6310).

Class: Ocean, Surface Effect Ship (Heavy Corvette).

Crew: 26 (5 officers and 21 enlisted) - Has berthing for thirty crew.


Robots, Power Armors, and Vehicles:

M.D.C. by Location:

 

[1] OTO-Melara Super Rapid 3 inch (76-mm)/62-cal DP Barrel (1, gun mount):

60.

 

OTO-Melara 3 inch (76-mm)/62-cal Super Rapid (1, bow):

200.

 

Vertical Long Range Missile Launchers (32, fantail):

80 each.

 

“Freya VIII” Short Range Missile Launchers (2, superstructure):

120 each

 

[1] Soft Kill II” Chaff / Decoy Launchers (2, superstructure):

10 each.

 

[2] Type 1065“Sampson Ultra-Light” Rotating Active Phased Array (three vessels):

60.

 

[2] SPX-1L Rotating Active Phased Array Radar System (one vessel):

150.

 

Bridge / Superstructure:

325.

 

[3] Propulsion Water-Jets (4, rear):

100 each.

 

[3] Skirts (2, forward and aft):

80 each.

 

[4] Main Body:

850.


Notes:

[1] These are small and difficult targets to strike, requiring the attacker to make a “called shot,” but even then the attacker is -4 to strike.

[2] Destroying the Type 1065 “Sampson Ultra-Light” / SPX-1L rotating phased array radar panel will destroy the vessel’s main fire control systems but the vessel has backup systems with a shorter range (Equal to robot vehicle sensors.)

[3] Destruction of a single water-jet only causes a minimal reduction in top speed. Destruction of two water-jets will reduce top speed by one quarter. Destruction of three water jets will reduce top speed by half. Destruction of the skirt will reduce prevent the craft traveled on an air cushion and top speed is reduced to 13.8 mph (12 knots/ 22.2 kph).

[4] Destroying the main body destroys propulsion and power systems, disabling the vessel. The vessel is fitted with an advanced polymer armors that allow the vessel to withstand up to -200 M.D.C. before losing structural integrity and sinking. There are enough life preservers and inflatable life boats to accommodate everyone on the vessel.


Speed:

On Water, Hull Borne: 13.8 mph (12 knots/ 22.2 kph).

On Water, On Air Cushion: Calm Seas: 78.3 mph (68 knots/ 126.0 kph). Rough Seas: 57.6 mph (50 knots / 92.7 kph).

Range: Unlimited due to fusion engines (needs to refuel every 20 years and requires maintenance as well). Vessel carries two months of supplies on board.


Statistical Data:

Draft:    Hull Borne: 19.03 feet (5.80 meters) and On Air Cushion: 7.22 feet (2.2 meters).

Width:   63.98 feet (19.50 meters).

Length:  223.92 feet (68.25 meters).

Displacement: 880 tons fully loaded.

Cargo: Can carry 25 tons (22.68 metric tons) of nonessential equipment and supplies. Each enlisted crew member has a small locker for personal items and uniforms. Vessel’s officers have some more space for personal items. Most of the vessel’s spaces are taken up by extra ammo, armor, troops, weapons, and engines.

Power System: Four nuclear fusion reactors with an average life span of 20 years.

Black Market Price: 400 to 600 million credits on the black market for an intact model.


Weapon Systems:

  1. One (1) OTO Melara 76mm/62 Super Rapid Naval Gun: The vessel mounts a rapid fire three inch gun mount near the bow of vessel. The gun is very reliable and fires very rapidly (About 120 rounds per minute). The main weaknesses of the gun are its relatively short range and the fact it cannot use rocket assisted projectiles. The gun was carried on many ship classes around the world until well into the Twenty First century. The guns can be used against other ships, ground targets, aircraft, and even missiles. These guns were among the smallest that could use a proximity fuse for their warheads.

    Maximum Effective Range: 4.9 miles (4.3 nautical miles/8.0 km) for standard projectiles.

    Mega-Damage: High Explosive: 1D4x10 M.D.C. with 10 foot (3 meters) blast radius per single shot and 3D4x10 M.D.C. with 20 foot (6.1 meters) blast radius for three round burst. High Explosive Armor Piercing: 1D6x10 M.D.C. with 4 foot (1.2 meters) blast radius per single shot and 3D6x10 M.D.C. with 8 foot (2.4 meter) blast radius for three round burst. Plasma: 2D4x10 M.D.C. with 12 foot (3.7 m) blast radius per single shot and 6D4x10 M.D.C. with 25 foot (7.6 meter) blast radius for three round burst.

    Rate of Fire: Equal to the combined hand to hand attacks of the gunner (Three round bursts count as one attack.)

    Payload: 85 Rounds ready to fire. Vessel normally carries usually carries an additional 240 rounds divided between 80 High Explosive, 80 High Explosive Armor Piercing, and 80 Plasma.

  2. Thirty-Two (32) Long Range Vertical Launch Tubes: On the deck near the fantail of the patrol vessel are thirty-two vertical launch tubes for long range missiles. On anti-ship strikes, the vessel will usually race towards an enemy craft, fire off all of its anti-ship missiles, and then race off as fast as possible before being engaged. Any type of long range missile can be carried although most will be special surface skimming missiles. Often sixteen of these type will be carried with four to eight rocket boosted anti-submarine types (See revised Rifts torpedoes for details) and eight to twelve general purpose missiles usually used against aircraft.

    Maximum Effective Range: As per long range missile type (Surface skimming missiles have 25% less range than normal long range missiles, see revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Mega-Damage: As per long range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Can fire long range missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), four (4), or eight (8) long range missiles with all launchers operating together.

    Payload: One long range missile each launcher for a grand total of thirty-two (32) long range missiles - Normal load out is sixteen (16) anti-ship surface skimming missiles, four (4) rocket boosted torpedoes, and twelve (12) general purpose long range missiles. Has no additional long range missiles in storage for reloads.

  3. Two (2) “Freya IV” Short Range Missile Box Launchers: Mounted on each side of the superstructure are a pair of box launchers which automatically reload. The launchers can rotate 360 degrees and have a 90 degree arc of fire. The missile launchers reload extremely rapidly and are ready to be fire on the next attack. The system is designed to be able to target multiple incoming missiles simultaneously. It can be fired against surface targets as well as against air targets.

    Note: SAM style missiles are missiles that sacrifice payload for higher speeds, see Chris Curtis’ modified missile table for specifics.

    Maximum Effective Range: Varies by short range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details - SAM style missiles normally.)

    Mega-Damage: Varies by short range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details - SAM style missiles normally.)

    Rate of Fire: Can fire short range missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2) four (4), or eight (8) short range missiles each launcher. Launchers retract and are ready to fire for next melee attack.

    Payload: Eight (8) short range missiles each launcher for sixteen (16) short range total. The vehicle carries eighty (80) short range missiles as reloads for each launcher for a total of one hundred and seventy-six (176) short range missiles total. If a launcher is damaged, those missiles cannot be accessed except manually (Sometimes additional missiles are carried in the cargo hold for reloads.)

  4. Two (2) “Softkill II” System: Located on the front of the superstructure of the vessel, this system is designed to confuse incoming missile and torpedo threats. Launchers can fire either missile decoys / chaff or torpedo decoys at one time. Torpedo decoys work by firing patterns of decoys in the water and are noisemakers that act to confuse and decoy torpedoes. With both decoy systems, Rifts Earth decoys systems are assumed to not be effective against Phase World / Three Galaxies ordnance due to technological differences.

    Range: Around Vessel.

    Mega Damage: None.

    Effects:

      Missile Decoys:

        01-35

        Enemy missile or missile volley detonates in chaff cloud - Missiles are all destroyed.

        36-60

        Enemy missile or missile volley loses track of real target and veers away in wrong direction (May lock onto another target.)

        61-00

        No effect, enemy missile or missile volley is still on target.

        For missile decoys, reduce effects by 20% against smart missiles (Add +20% to rolls for smart missiles) and reduce effects of launchers by 10% per launcher not used (Add +10% to rolls per launcher not used.) Missile decoys are only useful against missiles, not useful against torpedoes underwater.

      Torpedo Decoy / Noisemakers:

        50% of decoying normal torpedoes and 20% of decoying smart torpedoes. Reduce effects by 5% for each decoy launcher not firing torpedo decoys. Torpedo decoys are only useful against torpedoes, not useful against missiles in flight.

    Payload: Missile Decoys: Four (4) each for a total of eight (8) canisters. Thirty-two (32) reload canisters are carried. Torpedo Decoy / Noisemakers: Two (2) decoys / noisemakers each for a total of four (4) decoys / noisemakers. Sixteen (16) additional decoy / noisemakers are carried. Reloading launchers requires two melee rounds.

Special Systems:

The ship has all systems standard on a robot vehicle plus the following special features:



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[ Beyond the Supernatural®, Heroes Unlimited®, Nightbane®, Ninjas & Superspies®, Palladium Fantasy®, and Rifts® are registered trademarks owned by Kevin Siembieda and Palladium Books Inc. ]


Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).


Copyright © 2011, 2017, & 2018, Kitsune. All rights reserved.



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