n the fictional Macross Japanese anime series and its English adaptation Robotech, the first mass-produced variable fighter (Macross) or veritech fighter (Robotech) is called the VF-1 Valkyrie.
The VF-1’s Fighter mode is its basic mode and is the typical mode employed when the craft is parked at a military base and is the primary mode used in high altitude aerial combat planetside and in space combat.
In this mode, it features a basic fuselage similar to the real-world F-14 Tomcat jet fighter, including underslung intakes and variable-sweep wing, but with outward-canted vertical stabilizers similar to the F/A-18 Hornet’s, swiveling under-wing hardpoints (last seen on the F-111 Aardvark, Su-24 Fencer, and Panavia Tornado), and a total lack of tailplanes. It is armed with 1, 2, or 4 (depending on model) Mauler RÖV-20 laser cannons mounted on a ventral turret, a GU-11 55 mm three-barrelled gun pod holding 200 rounds, four underwing hardpoints holding up to twelve medium-range AMM-1 missiles, twelve MK-82 LDGB bombs, six RMS-1 large anti-ship reaction missiles or four UUM-7 micro-missile pods containing up to 15 Bifors HMM-01 “micro-missiles”. Like most of the VF-1’s nomenclature, the “GU” and “AMM” designations of its weapons are references to current US military designations (GPU for Gun Pod Unit and AIM for Air Intercept Missile).
In fighter mode the VF-1’s thermonuclear engines and the several vernier rockets on its fuselage make it capable of operating as an aerospace fighter. It can reach a maximum speed of Mach 3.87 at high altitude (above 30,000 metres), and Mach 2.71 at medium altitude (10,000 metres). Its wings, similar to those of the F-14 Tomcat, sweep between 20 degrees back and 72 degrees back. Unlike the F-14, the wings can sweep 90 degrees back for storage, with the tail module folding up over the fighter’s back. Although the VF-1 technically has an unlimited service ceiling and atmospheric range (since it can operate in space), the VF-1’s internal tanks cannot carry enough propellant to achieve a stable orbit and needs the help of a booster pack to reach Low Earth Orbit.
While in fighter mode, the VF-1 can also be equipped with a FAST Pack space booster and weaponry system. This system vastly improves the speed and survivability of the fighter as well as giving it access to extra ammunition.
Fighter mode has two sub-modes:
– In atmospheric mode the engine air intakes are open; wings geometry is flexible.
– In space mode the engine air intakes are closed. Wings remain extended but fixed due to
the presence of vernier thrusters on the wing tips, and wing-carried ordinance.
The shield that covers the cockpit in Battroid mode is usually absent, except on pilot’s request for use as a heat shield, for example in case of atmospheric re-entry.
Equipment Type: all-environment variable fighter and tactical combat battroid
Government: U.N. Spacy, U.N. Navy, U.N. Space Air Force
Cost: not publicly disclosed, but reported as approx 20 times that of a standard Destroid.
Introduction: November 2007
Operational Deployment: 2009 February 7
Accommodation: pilot only in Marty & Beck Mk-7 zero/zero ejection seat
-Battroid Mode: height 12.68 meters; width 7.3 meters; length 4.0 meters
-Fighter Mode: wingspan 14.78 (fully extended); height 3.84 meters; length 14.23 meters
-GERWALK Mode: wingspan 14.78 (fully extended); height 8.7 meters; length 11.3 meters
Mass: empty 13.25 metric tons; standard T-O 18.5 metric tons
Structure: space metal frame, SWAG energy converting armor
Power Plant: two Shinnakasu Heavy Industry/P&W/Roice FF-2001D thermonuclear reaction turbine engines, output 650 MW each
Propulsion: estimated 12,500 kg [x g] x 2; or estimated 25,000 kg [x g] x 2 in overboost (245.25 kN x 2 overboost); 4 x Shinnakasu Heavy Industry NBS-1 high-thrust vernier thrusters; 18 x P&W LHP04 low-thrust vernier thrusters beneath multipurpose hook/handles.
Thrust-to-weight ratio: empty 3.47; standard T-O 2.49; maximum T-O 1.24
-Battroid Mode: maximum walking speed 160 km/h
-Fighter Mode: at 10,000 m Mach 2.71; at 30,000+ m Mach 3.87
-GERWALK Mode: maximum walking speed 100 km/h; flying 500 km/h
g limit: in space +7
Design Features: 3-mode variable transformation; variable geometry wing; vertical take-off and landing; control-configurable vehicle; single-axis thrust vectoring; three “magic hand” manipulators for maintenance use; retractable canopy shield for Battroid mode and atmospheric reentry; VF-1S enhanced avionics suite; option of GBP-1S system, atmospheric-escape booster, or FAST Pack system.
-Min time from Fighter to GERWALK (automated): approx. 1.5 sec.
-Min time from GERWALK to Battroid (automated): under 2 sec.
Standard time from Fighter to Battroid (automated): under 5 sec.
-Min time from Fighter to Battroid (manual): 0.9 sec.
– Armament –
-4 x Fixed Mauler RÖV-20 anti-aircraft laser cannons, firing 6,000 pulses per minute each
-1 x Howard GU-11 55 mm three-barrel Gatling gun pod with 200 rds fired at 1,200 rds/min
Bombs & Missiles:
-4 x underwing hard points for 12 x AMM-1 hybrid guided multipurpose missiles (3/point)
-or 12 x MK-82 LDGB conventional bombs (3/point)
-or 6 x RMS-1 large anti-ship reaction missiles (2/outboard point, 1/inboard point)
-or 4 x UUM-7 micro-missile pods (1/point) each carrying 15 x Bifors HMM-01 micro-missiles
-or a combination of above load-outs
Shinnakasu Heavy Industry GBP-1S ground-combat protector weapon system
or Shinnakasu Heavy Industry FAST Pack augmentative space weapon system
Description and History
The final of the four minor VF-1 variants, the VF-1S carries the heaviest weapon load of the standard variable fighter. Manufactured only in limited numbers, Northrom also enlisted Kyuusei Industry to design a new head unit for their own variant. The VF-1S mounts four of the Mauler series RÖV-20 anti-aircraft laser cannons and enjoys several upgrades in addition to firepower. The engines are improved Shinnakasu Heavy Industry/P&W/Roice FF-2001D models resulting in measurably improved thrust and an enhanced avionics package is featured in each VF-1S. While usually reserved for CAGs (Commander of Air Group), the VF-1S also sometimes finds itself serving as the variable fighter for a squadron leader much like the VF-1J. Captain Roy Focker piloted a VF-1S during his command of the infamous Skull Squadron.
Debut: Super Dimension Fortress Macross, Episode 1
Pilot(s): Roy Focker, Hikaru Ichijo
Other Appearances: Macross: Do You Remember Love?
Original mechanical designer: Shoji Kawamori