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Imperial Escort Carrier

Craft: Kuat Drive Yards Invader-Class Escort Carrier
Type: Heavy Starfighter/Shuttle Carrier
Length: 500 Meters
10 Dual Laser Cannons
1 Warhead Launch System
Crew: 3,505
Top Speed: 12 MGLT
Troop Capacity: 150
Cargo Capacity: 2,000 Metric Tons
72 Starfighters
Passengers: 150

Imperial Escort Carriers were designed to complement a fleet's starfighter capacity and provide a hyperspace capable platform for TIE class fighters to use during hyperspace transport. Escort carriers are very lightly armed and shielded, but are capable of carrying entire wings of fighters and shuttles.

Traditional TIEs, lacking hyperdrive, sometimes need to be transported quickly from system to system, and when there is no Frigate or Star Destroyer available, the Escort Carrier becomes the primary means of transporting TIE squadrons. The Escort Carrier is a box-like, 500-meter transport ship used to transport an entire wing of TIE fighters (72 fighters in all) and a limited number of support craft. They have minimal armaments, but are equipped with a hyperdrive system for easy entrance to, and exit from, a battle site. Escort Carriers were designed and built at the Kuat Drive Yards. Each carrier has a crew complement of 3,505, and has been rated at a maximum speed of 12 MGLT. They are also equipped with a limited repair facility, as well as the following shipboard components: 10 Taim & Bak H8 dual laser cannons, 1 Krupx VL-6 Warhead Launching System, Front/Rear Projecting Shields, and a Titanium Alloy Hull. In addition to an entire TIE Fighter wing, the Escort Carrier has room for transport craft.

The Escort Carrier's primary purpose being transport, not offense, it serves in battles from a distance. Too small and lightly armed to enter battle themselves, these ships can however make a good accounting of themselves when forced to, and are well armed in comparison to the freighters they often accompany. The cavernous docking bay at the front of the vessel acts as the starfighter launch bays as well as the main docking area for shuttles and transport ships, and resembles the standard Imperial docking hangars on board Star Destroyers and Battle Stations. For a fairly small ship, the escort carrier is well equipped, with holding areas, repair facilities, etc to match those aboard larger Imperial Capital ships, except of course on a smaller scale. Although the Rebel Alliance and then the New Republic are glad of any capital ships they can acquire, Escort Carriers were one of the least popular, because their landing facilities were custom designed for TIE Fighters, so even after extreme modification, they still could only carry half as many Republic Fighters as they could TIEs, making them useful, but far less so than they are to the Empire who requires them for hyperspace transport of their fighters.

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