Class Name: Lysander
Principal Function: Rapid troop transport
Atmospheric Flight Capability: None
The Lysander is the big beast of troop transport shuttles. While other shuttle classes are highly configurable and used for many purposes, the Lysander is generally reserved to perform a single purpose well: to quickly move large numbers of Marines or other combatants through the void.
It boasts six compartments each capable of carrying 75 Marines in battlesuits plus a limited amount of heavy equipment. Marines are secured in quick-release acceleration-proof harnesses. For docking under safe conditions, each compartment has a separate airlock with an extending docking tube.
When disembarking in a hostile environment, each compartment can open to the void in under a second. The quick-release harnesses are linked to the compartment opening system, and the suit AIs. Even before the compartment has finished opening, the occupants are released from their harness and being propelled out toward the void in carefully designed trajectories that avoid collisions, and spreads the Marines out as they begin to deploy under suit power alone.
The main configuration option for Lysanders is to add up to two extra-large compartments on wing extensions. This sacrifices some of the shuttle’s acceleration, and a great deal of its agility, but increases its troop-carrying capacity by a total of 300 Marines.
The Lysander is large and powerful enough to be equipped with a forward force shield projector and a zero-point engine. As a result Lysanders have successfully made interstellar journeys, although they are a bad design for traveling interstellar distances. Anyone living who makes such a journey will need to be cryogenically frozen the whole distance, and hope someone at journey’s end has the equipment and inclination to revive them.
Also, while neither the shield projector nor the upgraded engine are particularly large, the guidance, coolant, and charge generators take up the majority of the shuttle’s carrying space. Furthermore the craft shape is inefficient for the forward shield projector (the shield projector charges the area in front of the craft so that the interstellar dust is rolled safely around the beams rather than hit at high speed). Consequently, the Lysander’s maximum safe velocity is 20% of lightspeed.