General Dynamics VC-27 "Tunny" VSTOL Heavy Transport
(Version 1.0 - Last updated:
- Background and RPG stats by Kenneth
- Based off a design shown in Robotech Episode 15 "Homecoming"
The VC-27 "Tunny" is a strategic, heavy logistics transport with
vertical and short take off and landing capability (VSTOL) designed exclusively
for the newly formed United Earth Defense Forces to replace the C-5 and C-17.
Design work began in 2000 with the first delivery to the United Earth Forces
three years later. Although, the VC-27 was designed to operate from rough
fields, range and weight restrictions placed on VSTOL operations usually
restricted the aircraft to operate from improved airfields only. The VC-27
is capable of being refueled in mid-air which can extend its range indefinitely. Four
Pratt & Whitney F121-PW-200 turbofan engines are mounted in nacelles that extend on pylons ahead of the
leading edges of the wings. Each of the main engines have two-dimensional vectorable thrust which along with four additional dorsal mounted engines give
the "Tunny" its VSTOL capability.
The immense fuselage has a pear-shaped cross section for most of
its length with an upper flight deck which can carry an additional 75 troops and
their equipment . Although two mecha can be loaded into the aircraft, the
Tunny is normally used to carry conventional vehicles and supplies.
Typical vehicle loads include one or two main battle tanks, 3-4 armored personal
vehicles, or 18 3/4 ton trucks. The capacious main cargo deck can accept 131,250 kg of
cargo, 150,250 kg for block-20. Typical loads include pallets, fuel,
vehicles, or over 270 troops. These will be arranged in single or double
rows as needed and are under the control of a single loadmaster whose station is
located in the forward right corner of the cargo bay. Airdropping capabilities range from paratroopers to outsized
items. Up to 300 paratroopers can exit through 1.22 m x 2.03 m doorways on
either side of the aircraft which are buffered by retractable air deflectors.
Production of the VC-27 Tunny began in 2001 and the first
transport squadrons were formed a year later to replace the aging C-5 as the
UNDF premier heavy cargo transport. Although, the design was conventional
in nature, the VC-27 proved to be an extremely rugged design capable of
sustaining damage which would have destroyed older C-5 and C-17 designs.
In addition the Tunny was easily maintained with most squadrons maintaining
air-worthiness ratings well above 80%. A total of 257 VC-27 were built
over the next five years until production on the Block-10 stopped in 2007.
Analysis of a VC-27 crash in August of 2009, showed that the
Block-10 models suffered from premature fatigue in several of the key wing
structures. The RDF was left with three options: retire the planes without
replacement, retrofit the older Block-10 planes, or produce a newer design
making full use of all the advances in materials brought about through the
recent discoveries on board the SDF-1. The RDF chose to the later;
however, in a cost savings move the upgraded plane would not be a complete new
design but based of the earlier Block-10 model. The first Block-20 was
rolled of the production lines in 2009, although some 113 block-10 aircraft were
eventually upgraded to the Block-20 standard. Once a sufficient number of the
Block-20 had entered into service the remaining Block-10 models were quickly
placed into mothballs by 2011.
The use of the newer fatigue resistant structural materials
provides the Block-20 with nearly 200% the armor protection over the Block-10
while being able to carry an additional 115% the payload 120% the range.
Most of the flight systems were retained, however the conventional engines were
replaced with four General Electric TF56-GE-1D turbofans which proved 5%
additional thrust at a considerable fuel savings. A total of 122 Block-20
models were produced from 2009 until the manufacturing facilities were destroyed
in 2011 during the Zentraedi assault on the Earth. Only 43 units survived
through the bombardment and continued to act as the RDF's workhorse transporting
troops and supplies from North American to reinforce outposts and bases along
the Zentraedi control zone. The remaining units were placed under the
command of the to the Armies of the Southern Cross Tactical Airforce in 2022.
The units continued to serve in a similar function with the ASC through the 2nd
Robotech War. All of the functioning VC-27s are believed to have been
destroyed during the Invid Invasion of 2031.
- Vehicle Type: VC-27 "Tunny"
- Class: Long range, heavy-lift cargo/transport VSTOL aircraft
Manufacturer: General Dynamics
Crew: Five (pilot, co-pilot, flight engineer, and 2 load masters) up
to 73 troops on the upper flight deck and 275 in the main cargo bay
- Service History:
VC-27/Block 10: Served with the RDF from 2002 until 2011
- VC-27/Block 20: Served with the RDF from 2009 until 2022 and
later with the Armies of the Southern Cross Tactical Air Force from 2022 until 2031
MDC BY LOCATION:
||VC-27 / Block 10
||VC-27 / Block
|* Pilot's Cockpit
|Forward Canards (2)
|* Wings (2)
|** Main Body
- * Destruction of any of these components will cripple the aircraft
sending it into a death spin.
- ** Depleting the MDC of the main body will destroy the unit.
- MAXIMUM SPEED:
- Block-10: 950 kph (590 mph)
- Block-20: 1040 kph (646 mph)
- CRUISE SPEED:
- Block-10: 710 kph (441 mph)
- Block-20: 850 kph (528 mph)
- STALL SPEED:
- Block-10: 220 kph (137 mph) at 5 degree approach angle
- Block-20: 210 kph (130 mph) at 5 degree approach angle
- CLIMB RATE:
- Block-10: 525 m/min (1,722 ft/min) with 52,000 kg of cargo
- Block-20: 600 m/min (1,969 ft/min) with 52,000 kg of cargo
- Block-10: 11,250 m (36,909 ft)
- Block-20: 13,540 m (44,423 ft)
- TAKE-OFF RUN:
- Block-10: 975 / 2,320 m (short/nominal)
- Block-20: 950 / 2,100 m (short/nominal)
- LANDING RUN:
- Block-10: 810-920 m
- Block-20: 750-823 m
- DESIGNED G LIMITS:
- +4.0/-2.5 (Computer overrides at 2.5g)
- RANGE (BLOCK-10):
- Airfield length 0 m (VTOL), 68,000 kg payload: 1,025 km
- Airfield length 915 m (STOL), 72,575 kg payload: 4,345 km
- Airfield length 1,830 m, 54,431 kg payload: 5,190 km
- RANGE (BLOCK-20):
- Airfield length 0 m (VTOL), 68,000 kg payload: 1,240 km
- Airfield length 915m (STOL), 72,575 kg payload: 4,545 km
- Airfield length 1,830 m, 54,431 kg payload: 5,590 km
- Block-10: 75.5 m
- Block-20: 77.4 m
- Block-10: 70.8 m
- Block-20: 70.8 m
- Block-10: 20.1 m at tail
- Block-20: 21.3 m at tail
- Block-10: Upper Deck 93.5 m3, lower deck 1106.4 m3
- Block-20: Upper deck 93.5 m3, lower deck 1201.6 m3
- Block-10: 169,250 kg empty
- Block-20: 165,250 kg empty
- MAXIMUM CARGO (VTOL):
- Block-10: 60,470 kg
- Block-20: 70,850 kg
- MAXIMUM CARGO (STOL):
- Block-10: 101,470 kg
- Block-20: 113,890 kg
- MAXIMUM CARGO:
- Block-10: 131,250 kg (1 main battle tanks, 3 armored personnel
carriers, 16 3/4 ton truck, or 270+ troops)
- Block-20: 150,250 kg (1-2 main battle tanks, 4 armored
personnel carriers, 18 3/4 ton truck, or 270+ troops)
- ENGINE THRUST
Block-10: 4 x Pratt & Whitney
F121-PW-200 turbofan engines mounted in two pairs on either side of the wing.
Each engine provides 51,000 lbf (227 kN) of thrust each. Four secondary
P&W F200 turbojet engines with vectored thrust capable of providing 45 kN of
thrust each. P&W F200 engines are only used in VTOL and STOL operations
Block-20: 4 x General Electric
TF56-GE-1D turbofan engines mounted in two pairs on either side of the wing.
Each engine provides 59,000 lbf (262 kN) of thrust each. Four secondary P&W
F300 turbojet engines with vectored thrust capable of providing 55 kN of
thrust each. P&W F200 engines are only used in VTOL and STOL operations
- FUEL CAPACITY:
- Block-10: 51,150 US gal (193,624 liters)
Block-20: 55,350 US gal (209,522 liters)
None the VC-27 "Tunny" has no
onboard weapon systems and is wholly dependant on fighters for protection.
Thus, the VC-27 is rarely sent into harms way and is normally operating several
hundred kilometers away from the battle space.
STANDARD EQUIPMENT FOR THE VC-27:
ACTIVE SENSOR JAMMER
WESTINGHOUSE ALQ-250(V): internal ECM providing broadband protection.
Estimated system effective radiative power 60 dBW.
AUTO-PILOT: The VC-27 is equipped with a computerized auto-pilot, allowing the
pilot to relax or even sleep during long voyages. The auto- pilot can be programmed with a
single destination or a complex flight plan involving multiple speeds, directions, and
destinations. The onboard computer will alert the pilot when the fighter is near its
destination, and can also be set to automatically signal when sensors detect objects near
- CHAFF AND FLARE DISPENSERS
TRACOR AN/ALE-57: 120 chaff and 120 flares are stored in
rear of the VC-27
- INFRA-RED WARNING RECEIVER HERCULES AN/AAR-47 (IRWR):
Providing rear aspect protection from IR guided missiles
- HOMING SIGNAL: In case of a crash of the vehicle, the VC-27 is
equipped with a homing
device that enables rescue teams to locate a disabled craft or ejected life pod. The range
of the signal is 400 miles (640 km). Most RDF ships and veritechs can locate and track a
homing signal, and the onboard computers will automatically notify their pilots if such a
signal is detected.
- OPTICS (NIGHTVISION): 50 km range. A passive light image
intensifier that emits no light of its own, but relies on ambient light which
is electronically amplified to produce a visible picture.
- OPTICS (THERMAL IMAGER): 50 km range. A passive optical heat sensor
that detects infrared radiation projected by warm objects and converts that
data into a false-color visible image. The system enables the pilot to see in
the dark, in shadows, and through smoke.
- RADAR-WEATHER/MAPPING BENDIX/KING AN/APS-133:
Multi-mode X-band pulse Doppler radar mounted in the nose of the VC-27.
The radar can provide foward-looking weather and terrain mapping for the Tunny.
- RADAR WARNING RECEIVER
AN/ALR-80 (RWR): Providing all
aspect broadband protection from RF guided missiles.
- RADIO/VIDEO COMMUNICATION: Long range, directional communications system with
satellite relay capabilities. Range: 600 miles (960 km) or can be boosted indefinitely via
- TACTICAL LIFE SUPPORT SYSTEM: The VC-27 fuselage is pressurized
and provides full nuclear and chemical protection.
COMBAT BONUSES FOR VC-27 "TUNNY" TRAINING:
- 0 actions per melee (plus those of the pilot and copilot).
- Add one additional action at levels six and eleven.
- +0 to dodge
- Notes: Design of the VC-27 "Tunny" provides an additional
+5% on all piloting skill checks.
Random Hit Locations
When there is an equal chance of hitting both sides from 1D6
- 1-3 hits the right side
- 4-6 hits the left
When there is a preferred side, roll 1D10
- 1-8 hits the preferred side
- 9-10 hits the opposite side
|Pilot's Compartment (Main Body)
|Forward Canards (Main
|Wings (Main Body)
|Tail (Main Body)
|Engines (Main Body)
|Cargo Ramp (Main Body)
REFERENCES USED IN THIS DESIGN
- Federation of American Scientists (FAS.org): C-5 and C-17 entries
- Macross: Perfect Memory:
- Robotech Technical Files: VC-27 "Tunny" entry
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