Author Topic: Battlestar Fighter Complements  (Read 29336 times)

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Offline karajorma

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Battlestar Fighter Complements
The team have been spending the last 10 minutes trying to figure out what Galactica's current fighter complement is, what it was when it was in fully active service and what Pegasus had in order to balance the Theseus against them.

After a while I pointed out that we have a forum full of Galactica fans who would no doubt be more that  happy to supply an answer/fight to the death over numbers. :)

So how many Vipers/Raptors is it?
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Offline Angelus

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
Hm, in the mini Adama mentions that there is a full squadron MkII's in the Starboard Hangar.
This means there are 40 Fighters ( mentioned by Lee in season one "act of contrition" ).
Also in the Mini, the "remaining Squadron" was destroyed.
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We can assume Galactica had at least 80 Fighters.
For the Raptors, not sure.
They lost many of 'em BEFORE they teamed up with Pegasus, so i guess there are at least 15-20 Raptors on Galactica at the beginning of the show ("33").

My guess is, that Galactica had 80 Fighters ( plus a unknown reserve ) on each Pod during the first Cylon War.
You have always a couple of Fighters down for repair, and you have to maintain a cap.
It is mentioned that 20 fighters aren't enough to maintain a cap ( in "33" Starbuck says that a cap is 3 hours long ).


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For Pegasus: My guess is that the beast has at least 2 times the Fighter complement of the Galactica. Same for the Raptors
.
They used many of 'em in "the passage", and judging from the number of flights the Pilots have to do ( multiple jumps in a short time ), they have at least 25 Raptors ( assuming that they can't repair the damage caused by the nebula within a couple of minutes.




For the Theseus: Depends on the size in comparison to Galactica.
If it's smaller my suggestion would be, 40 Fighters plus a reserve of 5 and 6 Raptors.
If it's the same size, 80 Fighters plus a reserve of 5 and 8 Raptors
« Last Edit: February 01, 2009, 07:09:34 pm by Angelus »
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Offline Flipside

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
According to the BattleStar Wiki, it had 34 Vipers after the original attack, and around 80 after the Battle of New Caprica.

http://en.battlestarwiki.org/wiki/Galactica

 

Offline Angelus

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
According to the BattleStar Wiki, it had 34 Vipers after the original attack, and around 80 after the Battle of New Caprica.

http://en.battlestarwiki.org/wiki/Galactica


In the episode where Athena plugs her to Galactica's computer to get rid of the Virus ( season 2, before they meet Pegasus ) and a HUGE Cylon fighter force is attacking, there are more Vipers on screen then the numbers mentioned in the Wiki.


Apollo says in "act of contrition" that he has 40 Vipers and only 21 Pilots.


The 80 Fighters are indeed confirmed by Tigh in season 4 ( before the Attack on the Hub ).
Although i think he didn't count in the birds that are down for repairs.
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Offline Meleardil

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
According to my knowledge Galactica class ship has 80 vipers + 40 reserve vipers. thats 40+20 for each flightpod. Pegasus had 240 + 80 reserve as "normal".  I don't know about the number of Raptors, but every viper squad has a raptor assigned to them, and a squad is 8+4, 12 vipers. Thats at least 10 raptors for Galactica, and 30 or perhaps 40 for Pegasus.
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Offline StarSlayer

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
I think we were discussing the wartime compliment not the series "Run to the Hills" compliment?  The Viper catapults indicate 80 at the least, however if we used that as a final decider then a Nimitz would have only 4 birds.  Quite frankly a Galactica flightpod is about two to three times the length of a Nimitz class carrier, which holds about 100 planes.  In addition real world planes are substantially bigger then Vipers, (I never got why scifi always made tiny fighters when real combat craft are massive beasts).  Just on the basis of available space a Battlestar probably has the ability to hold hundreds of fighters.  Not that i'm saying gameplay wise we need to have 400 Vipers tooling around, but on a "Fluff" basis i tend to think a Battlestar loaded for boar has the available space to be hauling a truly massive airwing.
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Offline General Battuta

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
In the episode where Athena plugs her to Galactica's computer to get rid of the Virus ( season 2, before they meet Pegasus ) and a HUGE Cylon fighter force is attacking, there are more Vipers on screen then the numbers mentioned in the Wiki.

That's been confirmed by the FX people as an effects goof. Which is good, considering that force included the Blackbird (which wasn't even flight-ready until the end of the episode.)

Battlestar Wiki suggests the Pegasus might carry as many as 180 Mark VIIs. The source is an 'Intelligence Debrief' in the Battlestar Galactica official magazine, so its canonicity is doubtful, I should think.
« Last Edit: February 01, 2009, 08:34:01 pm by General Battuta »

 

Offline Angelus

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
I think we were discussing the wartime compliment not the series "Run to the Hills" compliment?  The Viper catapults indicate 80 at the least, however if we used that as a final decider then a Nimitz would have only 4 birds.  Quite frankly a Galactica flightpod is about two to three times the length of a Nimitz class carrier, which holds about 100 planes.  In addition real world planes are substantially bigger then Vipers, (I never got why scifi always made tiny fighters when real combat craft are massive beasts).  Just on the basis of available space a Battlestar probably has the ability to hold hundreds of fighters.  Not that i'm saying gameplay wise we need to have 400 Vipers tooling around, but on a "Fluff" basis i tend to think a Battlestar loaded for boar has the available space to be hauling a truly massive airwing.


I tend to agree about the wartime complement.
The Columbia class was supposed to fight the Cylon Hades class ( TOS style ) Basestar, which seems to be larger then the Columbia class.
The TOS version had 300 Fighters, so we can assume that the RIS version of the Hades class is almost the same.
So it would make sense to have at least 80 fighters per pod plus a reserve ( 40 ? Vipers total or per pod ?).

Lets assume this numbers are right, 160 fighters plus a reserve of 40 for the Columbia class, double these numbers for the Mercury class Battlestars and use this as a base ( adjust from here ) for the Theseus.

Galactica has 20 launchtubes on each pod, how many has the Theseus atm?
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Offline StarSlayer

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
Galactica has 40 per pod 2 between each rib
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Offline FraktuRe

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
I'd have to agree on the general consensus of 80 per flight pod.
Or something.
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Offline FUBAR-BDHR

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
What's the max you could pack in there model wise and still have room for combat landings?  You would think in a war situation it would be packed to the max initially.  In normal times probably not so much as squadrons would probably rotate with some being stationed planet side. 
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Offline karajorma

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
According to the BattleStar Wiki, it had 34 Vipers after the original attack, and around 80 after the Battle of New Caprica.

http://en.battlestarwiki.org/wiki/Galactica

Unfortunately the Wiki doesn't cite its sources very well.
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Offline Deckard

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
According to my knowledge Galactica class ship has 80 vipers + 40 reserve vipers. thats 40+20 for each flightpod. Pegasus had 240 + 80 reserve as "normal".  I don't know about the number of Raptors, but every viper squad has a raptor assigned to them, and a squad is 8+4, 12 vipers. Thats at least 10 raptors for Galactica, and 30 or perhaps 40 for Pegasus.

As Meleardil has well said.. These are the numbers, IMHO. Take into account that  Pegasus had technology to produce fighters and Raptors  its self  and  also that  "The Beast" resuplied Galactica with new toys  before the Cain vs. Adama' situation.
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Offline FSW

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
Wasn't the starboard flight pod turned into a gift shop?

 

Offline General Battuta

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
Wasn't the starboard flight pod turned into a gift shop?

Yeah, but it was clearly brought at least partially online later -- Major Adama landed his Raptor there when returning from the infected base ship in 'Torn/A Measure of Salvation'.

The starboard hangar deck became Camp Oilslick and later Dogsville.

 

Offline Herra Tohtori

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
I never got why scifi always made tiny fighters when real combat craft are massive beasts

Well, FreeSpace ships can't really be accused of that. :p

As far as size goes though, WW2-style combat aka dogfights are more cinematic (to the public) with close range and better maneuverability (or lower velocities, much the same thing really) so it makes more sense that the planes are sized more like those birds, which are surprisingly small. Early jet fighters are comparable in size as well (like Ta-183, F-86 Sabre and MiG-15 with swept wings and one engine in the fuselage...)

Another reason is that most of the area that fighterplanes take is because of the weight requirements which are a lot bigger for jet fighters than WW2 fightercrafts, due to increased fuel consumption and range and weight of weapons systems and other assorted stuff in the plane - not to mention the requirements that arise from supersonic structural integrity and other things like that. So the baseline is that our fighters have to weight a lot to do what they need to do, and the weight means they need a lot of wing area, which defines their overall dimensions.

Vipers have a lot different mission profile; it's obvious that they aren't primarily designed for atmospheric combat (or alternatively they have some advanced gravimetric stuff that is pulled out of writers' collective ass but I don't want to think so...). Even then, the more advanced engine technology allows the fuel tanks to be substantially smaller which already reduces weight and physical dimensions of the plane, and when you add the fact that the physical dimensions aren't slaved to atmospheric performance, other things are possible to prioritize - like the flight deck handling, which is helped by smaller dimensions.
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Offline Snagger

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
As said, a lot of a modern combat aircraft is made up of the cockpit, the life support systems, the avionics, the engines and fuel tanks.  A Viper in theory has a smaller life support system because it doesn't appear to have a pressurised cockpit, the pilot wearing a sealed suit instead, has no apparent anti-G system and appears to have simpler avionics (the weapons system alone must be very simple, given they just use guns and unguided rockets).  The bulk of the Viper fuselage seems to be engines, but again, they're smaller because there is no drag to fight against in space, and the fuel tanks are smaller for the same reason.  It's not unrealistic to have space fighters smaller than air fighters.

I believe Galactica was meant to have four Viper squadrons, two per pod, plus a Raptor squadron and a few shuttles.  In this case, a full complement of 80 Vipers sounds reasonable, and would allow each fighter to be stowed in the entrance to the launch tube ready for launch under normal combat ops, where there would be less issues regarding supplies, crew, maintenance and so on.  You don't over-stuff warships, because then the excess gets in the way and slows down operations.  You also don't leave equipment and supplies cluttering gangways, where they pose a fire risk and can block access if they fall over, but the show abandons these practices.

 

Offline Adalla

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
Quote from: Angelus
In the episode where Athena plugs her to Galactica's computer to get rid of the Virus ( season 2, before they meet Pegasus ) and a HUGE Cylon fighter force is attacking, there are more Vipers on screen then the numbers mentioned in the Wiki.

RDM admitted in an interview that there were more Vipers than actuality and that the shot was done only to "look cool".

Dont trust on-screen viper numbers.

Quote from: Battlestar Wiki
[Mercury Class Battlestar]This, probably the largest of the battlestars, may be able to carry a maximum of 180 Viper Mark VII fighters (six to eight squadrons and one reserve squadron) [2].

List of Vipers

Also somewhere in the wiki I had seen that Galactica type Battlestars carry 4 squadrons of 20 Vipers and a complement of Raptors.

2 per pod. That's at full operational capacity of course.

As others have said, wiki says after attack Galactica had 34 vipers. After Pegasus destruction it had about 80.

 
Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
It's kind of annoying that they took off the Viper tally article, where it sourced exactly how they were counting the vipers for the first season and a half. The 80-vipers figure comes from Sine Qua Non, where they mention that half the vipers were transferred to the Rebel Baseship, so they only had 40 left. Which leads to the odd situation where Starbuck complains about the difficulty of flying a CAP around the fleet with so few birds. I can only assume they'd gotten soft with such an embarrassment of planes, since back in season 1, they had more ships to protect with a smaller number of Vipers.

Incidentally, I used to think the number 80 was a little low after they said it, considering that there were about 80 vipers just assing around Pegasus for no reason in half of the shots of that ship, but I just realized that it solves the earlier problem I had, which was that by taking on the Pegasus squadrons, Galactica would've had more Vipers than she could carry. Eighty is about the max you could fit in one pod, judging by the layout of the hanger deck. As for what happened to the extras, I'd guess they were disassembled and stored, possibly used for parts.

 

Offline StarSlayer

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Re: Battlestar Fighter Complements
Bollocks

A Nimitz class super carrier is 1,040 feet at the waterline, compared to a Galactica type which is 4,640 feet in length.  Her pod alone is 2018 feet long; nearly double the length of the Nimitz.  A Nimitz carries 90 fixed wing and rotary aircraft, in nearly half the space.  In addition those aircraft are much larger then a their BSG counterparts.  A F/A-18E/F Rhino is  60 ft 1¼ in long with a wingspan of 44 ft 8½ in compared to a Mk VII which is 32.3 feet long and a wingspan of only 18.4 feet.

By comparison a WW2 Essex class carrier which was only 872 ft long and could carry 90-110 aircraft that were Viper sized.  A F4U Corsair was 33 ft 4 in in length and had a wingspan of 41 ft.  Thats still larger then the aforementioned Viper in a space about 43% of the length of the flight pod.  Galactica should comfortably fit 400 Vipers let alone 80 between 2 flight pods.  Not that gameplay wise having 400 Vipers tooling around is a viable option but fluff wise unless the colonials severely underutilized the space on their battlestars then 80 Vipers is ruddy shenanigans.


Galactic vs Nimitz: http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y53/ColonialMarine/Galactica%20et%20al/800px-Bsg-2-cvn-1.jpg

Galactica: http://en.battlestarwiki.org/wiki/Galactica_type_battlestar

Nimitz: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Nimitz_(CVN-68)

F-18:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F/A-18_Super_Hornet

Viper MK VII:  http://en.battlestarwiki.org/wiki/Viper_Mark_VII

Essex: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Essex_class_aircraft_carrier

F4U Corsair: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F4U_Corsair
« Last Edit: February 04, 2009, 04:37:14 pm by StarSlayer »
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