|North Frequesuan Rocket Forces|
|Active||2014 - Present|
|Country||North Frequesuan Trust|
|Part of|| Committee for the Armed Forces|
Sub-Committee of the Rocket Forces
|Headquarters||San Dorado City|
|Motto||"To The Skies!"|
|Chief of Staff||GEN Jane Masterson|
|Vice Chief of Staff||GEN Rupert Spokane|
The Rocket Forces are the arm of service of the NFTAF that concerns itself with rocketry, space-related activities and strategic deterrence. The NFRF contributes to the safety of the NFT through the strategic orbiter force, is responsible for all NFT military spacelift, and plays a vital role in tying together and supporting the NFT military with reconnaissance satellites and stratellites. The Rocket Forces also have a major say in the activities of the civilian space agency, the SDRA.
The decision to develop nuclear weapons preceeded the founding of the NFT. In 2008 the members of the recently founded Frequesuan Treaty Organization agreed to a joint nuclear program. Sidney Hank, then newly president of San Dorado, solidified the initial vision of a 'nuclear' San Dorado into the well-defined concept of a fully independent strategic Rocket Force capable of protecting San Dorado from any attack independent from the FTO, some of whose members the President suspected of having 'weak knees'.
The strategic concept behind the San Dorado Rocket Forces was the so-called 'weak-to-strong deterrence', i.e. the capability of inflicting to a more powerful enemy more damage than the complete destruction of San Dorado would represent. The enemy, having more to lose, would therefore refrain from proceeding further. This principle was summarized in a statement attributed to General Jane Masterson, chief of staff of the Rocket Forces: "We have the means to kill 80 million Messicans. I truly believe that one does not light-heartedly attack people who are able to kill 80 million Messicans, even if one can kill 800 million San Doradans, that is if there were 800 million San Doradans."
Hank's vision of the Rocket Forces featured a triad of air-based, sea-based, and space-based means of deterrence. The principal long-range striking range would be a series of military orbiters capable of delivering nuclear ordinance onto ground-based targets from space. This vision became reality with the launch of the first S-1 Silver Streak orbital bomber in 2010 and continues to this day with the development of the S-3 Silver Shrike SSTO bombers.
The mission of the rocket forces changed little after the formation of the NFT in 2014, although its arsenal of nuclear weapons has since swelled significantly. Having increasingly more territory to defend the Rocket Forces have been steadily expanded in recent years, and a second military cosmodrome was founded near the Coilerburg city of Torberg.
Space Tracking & Surveillance Edit
The first and according to some still most important task of the Rocket Forces was the tracking of potential targets in outer space. This is done principally with ground radars, but also by means of surveillance equipment in orbit and the tracking ships operated by the North Frequesuan Navy. As such NFRF Space Tracking and Surveillance acts as a natural extension of the Army's Central Aerospace Defense Control (CADC).
STS central control is located at the Paragon, with an emergency backup facility at Mount Kingdom. Radar data gathered by STS is fed into the CADC network to form a coherent picture of everything that happens within the NFT's sovereign airspace and well outside it.
Orbital Strike Edit
As part of the NFT's strategic deterrent the NFRF maintains three different types of orbital bombers: the S-1 Silver Streak, S-2 Silver Star and S-3 Silver Shrike. With the exception of the S-3, which is an SSTO aerospacecraft, these orbiters are housed in ICBM-style launch silos scattered across the NFT. At any given time a classified number of bombers are at high alert and ready to be launched with but a moment's notice.
Orbital bombers can be fitted with a number of different strike packages, including but not limited to strategic strike, orbital interdiction and anti-satellite packages. Depending on the mission the bomber will be fitted with different missiles, ranging from SIM-120 Weevil and SIM-147 Fiddler space intercept missiles to SGM-1 Ladybird and SGM-2 Wireworm space to ground missiles.
Orbital Engineering Edit
The third mission of the NFRF is to coordinate the development of satellites, orbiters and space habitation modules. It is responsible for the construction of the Concord space station, works with FASTA on a number of projects and coordinates the development of reconnaissance satellites with Ralson Aerospace. The orbital engineering branch has developed and launched the "Astrolabe" and "Key Hole" series satellites of the NFT's National Intelligence Department (NID), as well as the NFTAF's "Grapevine" military communications satellites.
The NFRF principally use two families of indigenously developed rockets. The Simoleon series is the oldest and smallest of the two, and is used only to launch small satellites into LEO. The Lucrelance is a highly succesful heavy lift rocket which has been licensed to the international space agency FASTA and is used to lift orbiters and larger satellites into space.
Simoleon Series EditThe Simoleon family of solid-fueled two-stage rockets comprises a number of MRBMs, IRBMs and light lifter rockets derived from a common design. Initially designed as a medium-range ballistic missile for the army its potential value as a microsatellite delivery vehicle was quickly realized, and the rocket went on to be developed into a cost-effective commercial satellite launcher.
- Initial MRBM design, 500km range with a 150kg conventional warhead. 24 missiles built, all were later upgraded to generation C.
- Microsatellite delivery vehicle, first lifter rocket in service of the SDRA. Retired from active service.
- MRBM, 770km range with a 185kg conventional or nuclear warhead.
- IRBM, 1,170km range with a 650kg conventional or nuclear warhead. In the process of being retired from active service.
- Light lifter rocket, evolution of the generation B model, maximum payload to LEO: 550kg.
- SLBM deployed on the Vigilant-B class SSBN. 5,000km range, payload of 4x Mk II 60kt warheads. Retired from active service.
- Second-generation IRBM, 4,000km range with 750kg conventional or nuclear warhead.
Lucrelance Series EditThe Lucrelance is an indeginously developed hypergolic-fueled medium lifter rockets. They are used as commercial booster rockets as well as orbiter lifters. In a unique, one-of-a-kind deal the Lucrelance design was leased to international space agency FASTA and jointly further developed, resulting in a family of rockets with impressive lift capacity.
- Lucrelance I
- Initial lifter rocket design. Payload capacity of 4,000kg to LEO. Intended as proof-of-concept of the commercial viability of a medium-size lifter, later used for small satellite delivery. Retired from active service.
- Lucrelance II
- Evolution of the Lucrelance I with strap-on booster capability. Four SI-2 solid propellant rocket boosters increase payload capability to 15 tons. First rocket used for orbiter launch. Retired from active service.
- Lucrelance IIA
- Joint SDRA-FASTA design. Improved second-stage engines, added 11K59 derived third stage allowing the rocket to throw 5 ton payloads into interplanetary trajectories. Exclusively used by FASTA.
- Lucrelance IIB
- Joint SDRA-FASTA design. Improved first-stage engines, redesigned solid propellant boosters, restartable upper stage modified from the 11K59 missile. Updated guidance system. Payload capacity of 22 tons to LEO.
- Lucrelance IIC
- Joint SDRA-FASTA design. Restartable third stage designed from scratch, and equipped with a single F-2 engine. Payload capacity: 28 tons to LEO. Standard booster rocket for S-1 Silver Streak orbiters.
- Lucrelance III
- Joint SDRA-FASTA design. Three stage booster. First stage: two RD-170 core engines + up to two solid-propellant boosters. Second stage: two RD-170 core engines. Third stage: single restartable RD-120 engine. Payload capacity: 34 tons to LEO. Standard booster rocket for S-2 Silver Star orbiters.
- Lucrelance IV
- Joint SDRA-FASTA design. Final three-stage culmination of the Lucrelance series, enters service in 2018. First stage: two RD-171 core engines + up to four solid-propellant boosters. Second stage: two RD-171 core engines. Third stage: single RD-120 engine. Payload capacity: 52 tons to LEO.
Spy satellites Edit
Key Hole Edit
Optical reconnaissance satellites. First satellites were launched in Molniya orbits that loitered over Frequesue. Later versions have optical and radar stealth characteristics, and sit in various orbits.
Terrestrial radar imaging reconnaissance satellites.
Military communications satellites.
Officially geostationary civilian infrared weather satellites; also secretly used to detect missile or spacecraft launches as part of the early warning system.
The NFRF orbiter force is divided into squadrons of five spacecraft each. They are stationed in hardened silo bunkers scattered throughout the NFT, and there are always two stationed at the Concord space station in low earth orbit. Combined with the extensive early warning systems maintained by the NFT this means it is practically impossible for an enemy first strike to destroy the entire orbiter force before a retaliatory strike can be launched. All military orbiters are products of the indigenous 'Silver' program.
S-1 Silver Streak Edit
The S-1 Silver Streak military orbiter is the first aerospacecraft of its kind to enter service with the Rocket Forces, and only the second orbiter to enter service world-wide (after the X-20). With a crew of two and the capability to carry a maximum of four SGM-1 Ladybird space-to-ground missiles the S-1 is a crucial part of the NFT's nuclear deterrent strategy. As of 2018 a total of 15 S-1 orbiters are in service.
S-2 Silver Star Edit
The next incarnation of the 'Silver' program, the S-2 Silver Star is based on the frame of the S-1 but has greater fuel and load capacity and is more aerodynamically maneuverable, allowing it to dive deeper into the upper atmosphere before firing its missile payload, decreasing the chance of a proper enemy response before the nuclear warheads reach their targets. Silver Star can carry a maximum of six SGM-1 Ladybird space-to-ground missiles. Like S-1, S-2 has a two-man crew. As of 2018 a total of 25 S-2 orbiters are in service.
S-3 Silver Shrike Edit
The S-3 Silver Shrike is the ultimate goal of the 'Silver' program, a single-stage-to-orbit (SSTO) aerospacecraft capable of taking off under its own power without the help of a rocket booster. Powered by four aerospike engines, Silver Shrike represents the next step in strategic deterrence, a craft that can take off from any airfield to rain down nuclear death upon the enemies of the NFT. A first prototype of the S-3, based on a modified S-2 frame fitted with experimental RA/UM-100 aerospikes, entered service in 2017. Second and third prototypes of the 'proper' S-3 are set to enter service in 2018. Production of the Silver Shrike itself is slated to begin in early 2020.
Nuclear Warheads Edit
Mark I - Twenty kiloton tactical device, first warhead type developed by the now-defunct FTO Joint Nuclear Program. No longer in production.
Mark II - Sixty kiloton tactical device, developed by the now-defunct FTO Joint Nuclear Program. No longer in production.
Mark III - One hundred and seventy kiloton tactical/strategic device, developed by the now-defunct FTO Joint Nuclear Program. Limited numbers produced for potential 'second wave' strikes.
Mark IV - Three hundred kiloton strategic device, developed by the now-defunct FTO Joint Nuclear Program.
Mark V - Four hundred and seventy five kiloton strategic 'city buster' device, developed by the now-defunct FTO Joint Nuclear Program.
Mark VI – Forty kiloton fission-fusion device, produced by the NFT-Indhopali Joint Nuclear Deterrent Program. Replaces the Mark I and Mark II warheads.
Mark VII - One megaton fission-fusion device, produced by the NFT-Indhopali Joint Nuclear Deterrent Program. First Frequesuan nuclear device to exceed the .5 megaton yield. Replaces the Mark V as the primary citybuster in the NFT nuclear arsenal.
Mark VIII - CLASSIFIED
Mark IX - CLASSIFIED
Misc. Equipment Edit
UMA Pluto mobile tactical nuclear missile launcher.
A small land-based component of the Rocket Forces was commissioned in 2010 with the formation of the 1st Missile Brigade. The deployment of the Pluto launch vehicle, based on the chassis of the UMA 30 Ridgeback light tank, augmented the Rocket Forces with fully mobile Simoleon-C MRBMs and Simoleon-D and later Simoleon-G IRBMs. Pluto was designed to launch its nuclear-tipped missiles from the front lines at approaching enemy armies. Since it was deemed that a full-scale invasion of San Dorado (and later the NFT) was unlikely to be stopped by conventional forces, these weapons were meant as a "final warning" whose use would tell the enemy that further advance would trigger a full-scale nuclear attack on its main cities.
As of 2016 the majority of all MRBM and IRBM launchers are being replaced with 3M-25 Meteorit-M, Kh-90, Kh-101 and Kh-201 missile launchers.
San Dorado Rocket Authority Edit
The San Dorado Rocket Authority is the civilian arm of the space program. Headquartered at Camp Kittyhawk Rocketfields, the SDRA is a for-profit agency that provides commercial spacelift to anyone willing to pay. The SDRA can lift payloads from a few kilograms up to 30 tons into a low earth orbit. The agency also subcontracts and hires out facilities to interested third parties, such as space tourism companies, but also to the international space agency FASTA and allied nations.