General Dynamics VC-27 "Tunny" VSTOL Heavy Transport

(Version 1.0 - Last updated: 07/04/02)
Background and RPG stats by Kenneth Olson
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


Location VC-27 / Block 10 VC-27 / Block 20
* Pilot's Cockpit 100 200
Forward Canards (2) 20 each 40 each
* Wings (2) 100 each 200 each
* Tail 50 120
Engines (4) 30 each 80 each
Cargo Ramp 30 each 75 each
** Main Body 150 300


  1. * Destruction of any of these components will cripple the aircraft sending it into a death spin.
  2. ** Depleting the MDC of the main body will destroy the unit.


Block-10:  950 kph (590 mph)
Block-20:  1040 kph (646 mph)
Block-10:  710 kph (441 mph)
Block-20:  850 kph (528 mph)
Block-10:  220 kph (137 mph) at 5 degree approach angle
Block-20:  210 kph (130 mph) at 5 degree approach angle
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)
Block-10:  975 / 2,320 m (short/nominal)
Block-20:  950 / 2,100 m (short/nominal)
Block-10:  810-920 m
Block-20:  750-823 m
+4.0/-2.5 (Computer overrides at 2.5g)
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
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
Block-10:  60,470 kg
Block-20:  70,850 kg 
Block-10:  101,470 kg
Block-20:  113,890 kg
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)
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
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. 



Random Hit Locations

When there is an equal chance of hitting both sides from 1D6

When there is a preferred side, roll 1D10







Pilot's Compartment (Main Body) 01-40 - 01-20 01-20 01-10
Forward Canards (Main Body) 41-47 01-05 21-25 21-25 11-15
Wings (Main Body) 48-55 06-15 26-35 26-55 16-45
Tail (Main Body) 56-65 16-35 36-50 56-70 46-50
Engines (Main Body) 66-75 36-50 51-60 71-75 51-60
Cargo Ramp (Main Body) - 51-75 61-65 - 61-75
Main Body 76-00 76-00 66-00 76-00 76-00


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