Second airship commission by
, highly recommended to me by *Shimmering-Sword
. All credit goes to Ostavia in regards for this beautiful design and concept of the airships in my world.
Nation: Imperial Central Authority (ICA)
Role: Ship of the Line
Unique Features: Barbette Secondary batteries, ship-long armored skirt
Illustrated above is an example of the mainstay of the Imperial Central Authority airfleets. Designed for long-term attrition combat and belonging to the wealthy Authority of Man, the ICA has spared no expense in fielding the tougher, strongest airships in the world. ICA aerial doctrine dictate that battleships form the main core of any and all their fleets and are usually stationed at strategic and vital trading posts. Designed to demonstrate their 'awesome power', these ships patrol alone in pirate infested areas and are usually of sufficient strength to deter pirate and raider activity (though to actually chasing and hunting pirates, the ship is too slow to perform those duties).
Design-wise, since the ship relies on bringing her broadsides to bare for full effect, the exhaust pipes are located in the narrow rear of the ship (when comparing the length of the rear from port/starboard as opposed to bow/stern). Heavy quad-mounted 20mm cannon mounts are located in small, armored turret housings located directly behind the bridge and in double sets below and to the stern (covering the non-armored skirt areas of the ship).
The ship is equipped with 11 x 14 inch naval guns (3x3, 2x1), with the primary mounts located on the upper portion of the ship for angled-long range firing, while the lower 'assault' turret is used against closer range ground targets. The battleship also has 36 x 5 inch guns (18 x per side) protected in armored barbettes along the side of the ship.
How the ICA Battleship performs is that when it enters an engagement, it can bring its forward batteries to bare until it can turn to present the enemy a boardside (thus bringing all her barbette guns and her rear heavy turret into range). Due to the 'tucked-in' nature of the ship, very few portions of the ship are vulnerable outside the area of the armored skirt. Her secondary guns are able to fire (though at a fixed, restricted arc) through the armor skirt due to specially carved out firing slits and are primarily used for anti-capital operations. As the battle drags on and the armored skirt becomes damaged and the slits destroyed, the ship can set of demolition charges on the frames to seperate the skirt from the main ship. Free of the restricted viewports, the barbette guns gain greater firing arcs as well as the entire ships becomes faster with the dead weight gone. Again any other nation in Keros, any battleship would find it difficult to defeat an ICA battleship due to the 'free' damage absortion provided by the thick armored skirt (also note that the skirt itself has it's own engines powered from the main ship to account for the extra weight, while the ship's primary propellers are located behind the armored skirt near the top of the ship's frame).
After combat, the ship is still fully combat capable (though losing its disposable armored skirt shielding) and eventually returns to port to have another skirt mounted onto the ship to replace the one lost (and for the Authority, it's cheaper to build and replace a giant armored shield than it is to replace or build an entirely new ship with cannons, equipment, wiring, and engines).
Of note also, the ship has a small docking bay located near the rear of the ship, but the ship's primary focus is anti-capital ship operations, and thus does not have the inner flight decks of her Arcadian counterpart.