|This article, C709/B Gladius-class Stealthfighter, was written by Spartan 501. Please do not edit this fiction without the writer's permission.|
The C709/B Gladius Stealthfighter is a ship used almost completely by ONI pilots. Using cutting edge technology and new combat philosophies, it is a good addition to the UNSC arsenal of strategies.
The combat philosophy of the Gladius is to drop in a squadron or so of single ships out of slipspace, have them complete high risk and highly important missions, then have them redevous with their old carrier and return to their bases. To do this, it needed a slipspace capacitor. The final result was a slipspace drive that could be activated inside the single ship, and had a capacity of approximately 3 hours in slipspace. The Mk. 2 bumped this up to four. They were usually placed aboard prowlers in slipspace, and were dropped out in a similar fashion to Slipspace Capable Orbital Drop Pods. The prowler would continue on for about two hours before stopping at a marked rendezvous point. After the single ship's completed their mission, they would jump to their prowler and escape.
The First iteration of the Gladius was extremely advanced for it's time. Its biggest advancement was the placement of a shortrange, single jump, capable slipspace drive that could propel the ship into slipspace for approximately 3 hours. It also featured three new and never before used weapons, superheated 110 mm rotary cannons, which were basically normal Longsword gun turrets with their shots superheated to extreme tempatures (these featured rounds of a very uncommon metal that was extremely resistant to heat, which meant that ammunition was scarce and expensive), High Powered Incinerator Missiles, which were guided missiles similar to ASGM-10 missile but with superior fire power; they incinerated almost everything within their preset blast radius, which can extend to 75 meters, and High Powered Incinerator Saturation Bombs, which were weapons along the same lines of the Missiles, except on a larger scale; they had a range of half of a mile, and incineratored everything within their blast radius. However, most of these weapons were highly expensive, which lead to them never being used in major fleet actions.
To fulfill it's role as a Stealth Fighter, it was equipped with all the equipment Prolwers use, as well as devices to block engine energy signatures, weapons signatures, and engine glare. It is highly manuverable in combat, and it's weapons and armor are good enough to make this ship one of the UNSC's best in combat.
Due to cost concerns, very few models were ever produced, and most went straight to the office of naval intelligence for intelligence purposes. However, a few sqaudron's worth remained with the major fleets for use by select squadrons.
The single biggest change from the Mk. 1 to the Mk. 2 is the addition of shield generators. Copied from Separatist generators, the Mk. 2's shields give them vastly increased defensive abilities. In addition several new weapons were implmented and the old ones were tossed. The main cannons changed from the 110mm superheated cannons to Rapid firing crystalline pulse beams, copied off of forerunner records that the AI Alvia sent to the UNSC. The incinerator missiles were replaced with Plasma Incinerator missiles, which were even more powerful than the original iteration and used plasma instead of raw heat. The Incinerator Saturation Bombs were replaced with Plasma Saturation Bombs, which had a range of a mile and a half. In addition, the slipspace capacitors were advanced as well, and could now work for 4 hours instead of just three.
These models were even more sparse than the original. Less than 50 were made, and the whereabouts of all but 12 all unknown.
The appearance of the Gladius is pretty much the same as the Longsword, with only a few minor differenances. It is matte black, for instance.