Von Der Tann
Operators: TOG Navy
Mass: 472,674 tons
Cost: 3,082,839,023 talents
Right Engine Rating (25,000)
Left Engine Rating (25,000)
Spinal A Mount (F)
50 15/10 (R)
50 15/10 (L)
10 30/10 (F)
10 30/10 (A)
Type C Missile System (1 Shot at 100 Points)
Fighters: 12 at 300 tons (Two Squadrons)
Small Craft: None
Extras: Streamlining, Extra Thrust
The first Von Der Tanns were delivered to the TOG Navy in 6730 from the Ault Shipyard Facility in the Potsdam Grand Dukedom. As a missile-launch platform, the Von Der Tann is one of the most deadly in space combat, but it lacks strong standard laser weaponry and carries only twelve fighters for defense.
The ship's original design concept was simple: the maneuverability of a destroyer combined with the punch of a powerful missile system. The Von Der Tann is a smashing success at meeting these criteria. Its heavily modified Westing Yor Industries Stardrives make the ship quick enough for evasive actions in large scale-combat. The Type C missile delivery system, the Xanus Model 5000 (commonly known as the Hunchback), is the deadliest launch assembly on any TOG destroyer today. On the down-side, the Von Der Tann Class lacks close-support laser weapons of any significance, but the ship is fearsome enough when combined with a proper mix of other ships.
Capabilities The Von Der Tann is a fast-moving vessel able to deliver a massive punch in combat. To provide the speed that makes the ship stand out, two massive Westing Yor Industries Stardrives have been extensively modified to provide the vessel with optimum power. By keeping to a minimum laser-based weapons that would bleed away precious power, the designers created a fast destroyer able to get into and out of combat situations quickly.
Given its weaponry base, the ship's acceleration is important. Equipped with the Xanus Model 5000 Hunchback missile launcher, the Von Der Tann poses a threat to even the largest vessels in service. This missile system is more reliable and practical than the Hermanski systems used on other TOG vessels. The Xanus launches a deadly flight of high-thrust HELL missiles capable, in the right situations, of destroying ships of the same class or smaller. The missile magazine is just forward of the engines and is heavily shielded because of its proximity to the port and starboard shield generators. This small destroyer can wreak so much havoc on larger ships that it is a prime target when spotted before it can release its knock-out punch.
A favorite tactic of squadrons using Von Der Tanns is to use them in a "final-blow" capacity. After the squadron has engaged the enemy enough to cause some damage, the commander orders the Von Der Tanns to move in quickly and to swarm the enemy ships with salvos of HELL missiles, then to pull back just as quickly. These missile swarms can cripple many ships, so that vessels with more extensive laser-based weapons can do the mop-up.
Once the Von Der Tann has fired its missiles, however, its effectiveness is diminished. Aside from its limited fighter support, the ship carries only small batteries of 50-gun 15/10 Diamond Star lasers, mounted primarily on the broadsides. These weapons have limited range and effectiveness. Even against ships of the same weight/power class, they are not much. Two bays of 10-gun 30/10 lasers are also mounted on the fore and aft of the ship. Though their range is good, their firepower is woefully low.
Von Der Tanns do mount the remarkable Jankowski Type A spinal mount. Though the smallest spinal mount manufactured, it is deadly at close range. At present, the Von Der Tanns in service carry two squadrons of fighters for support and ground bombardment. The launch-and-recovery center is in the upper aft quadrant of the ship to avoid interfering with the missile-delivery system. One squadron is usually heavy, with fighters such as the Spatha or Sercuris classes. The other squadron is medium to light, with such fighters as the Cuspis or Lancea classes.
The ship cannot use standard destroyer docking bays in repair facilities because of the size of its engines. Rather than clogging up the frigate bays, most repair facilities service the destroyers in free orbit, increasing the time for any repair job.
Despite the increased repair times associated with these craft, the Von Der Tann Class serves virtually everywhere in TOG-controlled space. At present, the highest concentrations are found in the Rift and Pembroke Counties of the Alaric Grand Dukedom. Several ships of the class are being rotated into Shannedam County as replacements for losses there.