It was temporarily known as the Honor Harrington class, but the name was changed back when it was revealed that Honor Harrington's execution by Haven had been faked.
Origins and Design Notes
Jointly developed between Manticore's BuShips and Grayson's Office of Shipbuilding, the Medusa-class (known and operated by the Grayson Space Navy as the Honor Harrington class) was the first warship designed from the keel up to deploy missile pods from an inboard hold. It was temporarily known as the Harrington class on Manticore as well, but reverted to Medusa class when Honor Harrington, whom the People's Republic of Haven had claimed to have executed, turned out to be still alive. (HH8)
The design included a hollow core which ran for thirty percent of the ship's total length, capable of carrying up to five hundred missile pods. During combat, the pods would be flushed out of the ship through a stern-mounted bay door. While massively enhancing the ships' first strike capabilities, the hollow-core design reduced the ships hull strength compared to pre-pod superdreadnoughts, and the need to mount doors through which to flush the pods forced the designers to sacrifice the aft chase mounts. By 1921 PD the ships of the Medusa Class were capable of carrying up to 800 Mk 17 flat-pack pods. (House of Steel)
Whereas the first Grayson ships were in service at the time of Operation Icarus, the Manticoran vessels would not see action until Eighth Fleet launched Operation Buttercup in late 1914 PD. The combined power of the new pod-laying warships, coupled with the new-style light attack craft helped to demolish the People's Navy squadrons which stood in Eighth Fleet's way. (HH9)
Once the truce between the Manticoran government led by Baron High Ridge and the Havenite dictator Oscar Saint-Just was in place, Manticore suspended construction on all but the nearest to completion ships, a situation that would last until construction was resumed in 1919 PD in the face of growing tensions with the Anderman Empire and the collapse of negotiations with Haven. (HH10)
When war with Haven broke again, a surprise attack on Grendelsbane Station forced the local Manticoran commander to order the destruction of the shipyards, and all the ships currently under construction there, to prevent their capture by the Havenites. This resulted in the destruction of twenty-seven unfinished Medusa-class vessels. (HH10)
- HMS Medusa – Lead ship of the class
- HMS Barnett
- HMS Belisarius
- HMS Bellona
- HMS Elizabeth I
- HMS Ellen D'Orville
- HMS Hancock
- HMS King Roger III
- HMS Marduk
- HMS Regulus
- HMS Revenge
- HMS Thunderer
- HMS Trevor's Star
- HMS Triumph
- HMS Troubadour
- HMS Victorious
- HMS Warrior
- HMS Yeltsin's Star
Origins and Design Notes
Originally developed at BuShips as a theoretical evolution of the Medusa-class pod-laying superdreadnoughts, the design that would become the Medusa-B-class underwent a radical evolution that set it apart from its intended predecessor, up to a point that it became a modified variant of the Invictus class which was barely beginning production at the end of the First Haven-Manticore War.
Edward Janacek's return to the office of First Lord of Admiralty effectively froze all new superdreadnought construction, but BuShips proceeded with the Medusa-B design as a purely theoretical project. While Janacek's First Space Lord, Sir Simon Chakrabarti, authorized the design as a paper study, the head of BuShips, Vice Admiral Toscarelli, continued with the design until it was brought to the blueprint stage. (HH11)
Unlike the Invictuses, the Medusa-B's mounted broadside missile tubes, capable of off-bore firing as those of the Saganami-C-class heavy cruisers. Coupled with an increased magazine space, the ships of the class would have a two-hour endurance at maximum missile fire rate. Also, the total energy battery was reduced to 50 grasers.
However, the main advantage of the Medusa-Bs over their predecessors was due to its much larger internal storage capability for missile pods, thanks to advances which resulted in reduced sizes for its internal systems and allow the class designers to increase the hollow core until it extended almost to the forward impeller ring. In effect, this allowed the Medusa-B-class vessels to carry up to two thousand missile pods.
Advances in automation would reduce the ships' total complement to a mere 1,025, including a contingent of 125 Marines.
At the outbreak of the Second Haven-Manticore War, the RMN Admiralty estimated that it would take six to ten months before construction of any Medusa-B-class superdreadnought could commence. (HH11)
- Ammunition capacity: 2000 missile pods
- Because of this, it is likely that few, if any ships of this class were brought into service prior to Operation Oyster Bay, which destroyed the Manticoran and Grayson military shipyards.
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