SA-43 Hammerhead: Fictional USMC Spaceship That Freaked Out Russian Intelligence

SA-43 Hammerhead: Fictional USMC Spaceship That Freaked Out Russian Intelligence

The SA-43 Hammerhead is the US Marine Corps (USMC) space ship
featured in Space: Above and Beyond, a 90s American science fiction television show.

Full-scale models of the “Hammerhead” fighters used in the series were created in Australia at RAAF Base Williamtown.

An unverified report stated that, while they were being stored onboard the freighter before shipping, crewmen from a Russian freighter were caught taking pictures of them after mistakenly thinking they were a new kind of advanced U.S. tactical fighter.

Russian Intelligence also got a satellite picture of one on the dock somewhere in California and had a temporary freak.

Here are details about SA-43 ‘Hammerhead’

According to FANDOM, The SA-43 Endo/Exo-Atmospheric Attack Jet (“Hammerhead”) is the main-stay of the Marine Corps. Their SCRAM engines enable them to fly in an atmosphere and in the almost complete vacuum of space. Following in the modular design of aircraft of the late 20th century, Hammerheads can be adapted for normal combat, search and rescue, and possibly other missions. The canopies of the craft are also detachable allowing docking with space platforms. Systems that are known to exist in the Hammerheads include LIDAR (Laser Infrared Detection And Ranging), HUD (Heads-Up Display) and ODP (Optical Disk Playback).

Primary Function of SA-43 ‘Hammerhead’

Deployment in combat missions (Combat Space Patrol), interception, Close Air Support (CAS) and Colonial Defense, but can also be adapted for SAR (Search and Rescue).

Features Of SA-43 ‘Hammerhead’

The SA-43 has various modular components, easily replaced in case of malfunction. The canopies are detachable, enabling the craft not only to dock on board carriers, but also on various types of space stations. The cockpit usually is lifted up to the flightdeck (hence smaller decks are possible). It also doubles as an escape pod in case of midair emergency.

Internal Equipment Of SA-43 ‘Hammerhead’

  • LIDAR : Laser Infrared Detection And Ranging. Long Range, configurable. Can track and engage up to 100 independent targets.
  • HUD : Heads-Up Display. Mainly used for displaying flight parameters, navigational information and overall combat intelligence.
  • ODP : Optical Disk Playback. Used for mission data recordings. Can be used lateron for mission evaluation.

Mission Of Of SA-43 ‘Hammerhead’

Specific SA-43 tasks include:

  • Intercept and destroy enemy craft in conjunction with ground or airborne fighter control under all-endo/exo conditions.
  • Conduct day and night close air support.
  • Conduct day and night deep air support. Deep air support consists of LIDAR search and attack, interdiction, and strikes against enemy installations using all types of weapons compatible with assigned craft.
  • Conduct armed escort of friendly craft.
  • Be able to operate from spacecraft carriers, advanced bases, and expeditionary airfields.
  • Be able to deploy or conduct extended range operations employing aerial refueling.

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