Starship Modeler's 1998 Starfury Contest

Black Raven

By David Smith

Mitchell-Hyundyne SA-23Y Electronic Counter-Measures Starfury - Black Raven Squadron

The ECM version of the SA-23 Starfury was created to support battle group movement with both long-range deep-space scans, as well as communications jamming. The JTW-40 unit completely blankets a wide cone of space with electronic noise, rendering standard military communications gear useless. SA-23Y's were used extensively just outside Mars orbit in the Civil War of 2261 when the Black Raven, Shadow Hawk and Islamabad squadrons were positioned in a 130% overlap coverage area around Mars.

The Y-version of the venerable Starfury sports the following changes to the standard SA-23 model:

  • Extended life-support stores, backup batteries and oxygen recycler capabilites
  • A pair of wide-angle SLD (side-looking-detector) sensor arrays
  • An underwing-mounted Dowd Array for long-range scanning in infrared, radio, millimeter-wave and visible light ranges
  • An inside-wing-mounted General Products JTW-40 jamming package, providing communications jamming in a 1.5 steradian cone
  • A laser comm link (mounted aft on the JTW-40, for communications during jamming)

Black Raven EW shup by David Smith

Squadron Insignia Jamming Pod

For deep-space scanning missions, SA-23Ys can be dropped from a jump-point capable ship, and left in its low-emission low-power mode, scanning in a slow-roll manuever. Scanning periods of up to 16 hours can be achieved with extended life-support. Enhanced batteries and life-support stores make full-shutdown of the main reactor possible, and when combined with low-reflectivity coating, makes the Y-type nearly invisible.

The Black Raven squadron has served with distinction over the years, including their current stay aboard the EAS Invincible. Their history extends back continuously to the mid-20th century on Earth. Their raven insignia has changed little since the days of the first 'ravens', EA-6 Intruders launched from aircraft carriers. The addition of lightning-bolts, from other ECM squadrons, completes the current insignia.

I built the Y-type with the F-111 Raven and Intruders in mind. Since the fury is not aerodynamic, their packages need not be covered with cowls or radomes. I used the standard Revell kit, and bashed with pieces from several airplane and car kits, as well as some stock sheet and rod styrene.

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