Defensive Systems (3200 AD)

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Anti-Missile System (AMS)

The anti-missile system (AMS) is a rapid-fire, point-defense machine gun capable of tracking, engaging, and destroying incoming missiles. While effective, the system's primary drawback is its high ammunition consumption. The AMS is composed of two primary components: radar/target acquisition gear and a 50-millimeter machine gun. To save weight and eliminate the need for a fusion reactor, the system uses a standard (nonGauss technology) machine gun. As a result, the AMS has a significantly shorter range and softer punch than most offensive weapons, even those of lower caliber.

Even though the system is capable of firing rates of over 6000 rounds per minute, space and weight limitations means the AMS carries only enough ammunition for a few minutes of sustained fire. And though the AMS is very effective, it is does not guarantee complete protection against missile attacks.

Titanocarbon Armor

A combination of titanium, stainless steel and a carbon-based polymer, Titanocarbon armor is an extremely durable and lightweight alloy that is used as chiefly as defensive plating aboard interstellar warships. Though its defensive abilities are severely compromised against thermonuclear warheads, it nevertheless functions as an adequate countermeasure to rail-cannon weaponry. It also conducts heat very well, meaning that it can protect against the thermal effects of a nearby nuclear detonation, to an extent. The strength of a plate of titanocarbon armor is determined by its thickness. Starfighters typically are plated in 25 millimeter- thick armor, whereas large capital-scale ships can boast a thickness of up to 45 centimeters as a matter of course.

Cloaking Device

A cloaking device is a form of stealth technology that uses selective bending of light (and other forms of energy) to render a starship or other object completely invisible to the electromagnetic spectrum and most sensors. A cloaking device uses particle radiation to alter the molecular structure of matter in order to allow light and sensor signals to pass through it.

The advantages of a cloaking device are obvious; a cloaked ship or fleet can approach a target undetected, and at the opportune moment de-cloak and launch a surprise attack.

The disadvantages of a cloaking device are many, however, explaining why so few races employ them. Not only does a cloaking device require immense amounts of energy, but it also needs to be tied into the deflector shield grid, thus barring the simultanous use of cloaking and shields. Finally, the energy requirements of a cloaking device more often than not means that a cloaked ship cannot fire its weapons- it simply does not have enough energy. This is not universal, however - the Calandrian Steel Knife-class Light Cruiser is known to be able to fire its weapons while cloaked, although this reduces the effect of the cloak since the trajectory can be calculated, and the position of the cruiser can thus be discovered.

Deflector shields

Deflector shields, also known simply as shields, are translucent or transparent energy fields produced by deflector shield generators. These generators can be placed on planets, droids, starships, space stations and individual buildings. The primary purpose of the shield is to block or deflect projectiles and lasers from hitting the object under protection.

Deflector shields works in a layered defense fashion: A volumetric field effect extends out from the surface of the shield projector, attempting to reduce the coherency of any beam attacks and deflect physical objects. The shield itself behaves in a manner similar to that of a thermally conductive material — energy applied is quickly diffused and re-radiated back into the environment, but the shield itself can also absorb some of the energy. The absorbed energy is shunted into heat sinks, and re-radiated at a lesser rate by the shield and neutrino radiators. The use of deflector shields on starfighters and other small craft, makes them capable of hypersonic speeds in planetary atmospheres.

The strength of a deflector shield is a factor depending on how close the shield is to the projector, the efficiency of the projector, the power applied, and the surface area of the shield. It is common for starship deflectors to be projected a few molecules underneath the hull plating, and then extended outwards to protect hull integrity. Starship shields can handle massive amounts of energy or punishment, although it is possible to disable a shield by concentrating fire on a specific location. However, by diverting other shipboard energy reserves to the shields, the deflectors can be regenerated.

Personal energy shields

A personal energy shield is a defensive technology that projects a field of energy that protects the user from electrical, kinetic, cold, heat, and sonic damage. Most are small enough to be worn on a belt or arm.

When activated, the device protects the wearer with a glowing energy field.

As with most deflector systems, shields requires large amounts of energy in the form of energy cells or a portable generator. Some models features rechargeable energy cells. While the generator provides the most efficiency, it is larger and bulkier. The power requirements means that shields tends to be used only when combat is expected.

Another feature of personal shields is ablation, that is, the shield weakens as it absorbs damage until it either is deactivated, fails, or recharged. As the shields absorb energy, they tend to become extremely hot. Due to the limitations of personal deflector shields, they are usually used in tandem with other forms of protection.

The disadvantage of personal energy shields is that they produce radiation and magnetic fields that can be dangerous for sustained use.

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