Technology & Combat Characteristics
The FF-X7BstPLAN004 Core Booster Plan004 is one of the testbeds for the Core Booster. It was deployed by the Earth Federation Forces as a high-speed space assault aircraft. However, there were only a low-cost short production using the latest technology. The plane has both atmospheric and space-flight capability. An unit was basically a Core Fighter combined with a heavy-duty booster module, also greatly improving its speed, firepower, armor, operational stamina. Armed with 2 powerful mega-particle cannons, 4 25mm Machine Guns, four-round missile launchers and vulcan guns, the Core Booster could serve both as a high-altitude air superiority fighter and a tactical bomber. In space combat, the Core Booster served as a serious support unit of the mobile assault squadrons for Federation warships.
- Vulcan Gun
- These 4 guns are primarily used to ward off advancing enemies, shoot down missiles, or hitting other fast moving targets. They also made good use as an anti-aircraft and anti-personnel weapons. The Vulcan guns however had a hard time piercing heavy armor (though they had shown the ability to do severe damage to Mobile Suit's if fired at point-blank range) and thus were not often used against larger, more heavily armored foes.
- 25mm Machine Gun
- The Core Booster Plan004's main weapon, while the 25mm machine gun is much less powerful than beam gun, it's cheaper and easier to produce, requires less energy, and is overall easier to maintain because it relies on older, less complex, well known technology. In addition, machine guns have the advantage of holding considerably vastly greater amounts of ammunition. However, they also have much greater difficulty penetrating the armor of a mobile suit, and must typically be fired from at least mid-range with multiple shots hitting the target before it can take down the target.
- AIM-79 Micro Missile
- The Core Booster Plan004's wings have pylons that could mount four missiles each. These rocket-propelled explosives would be used against heavy armored targets in close to mid-range. The missiles however are quite slow and therefore unsuitable for combat against nimble targets that can easily avoid them. However, due to their ballistic nature, they could still inflict a good deal of damage on enemies that are resistance to beam weapons.
- Mega Particle Cannon
- Mounted on the back of the Core Booster are a pair of mega particle cannons, which usually are found on warships. The high output of the mega particle cannons makes them capable of penetrating thick mobile suit armor, a feat that the Vulcan guns are incapable of.
The FF-X7 Core Fighter was originally created to increase the survival rating of mobile suit pilots by functioning as an escape system. However, the Earth Federation did not use the Core Block System in their mass-produced RGM-79 GM, and halted mass production of the Core Fighter. However the Earth Federation had already invested considerable sums of money to build production facilities for the Core Fighter. Additionally squadrons and mobile suit teams were using mobile suits equipped with the Core Block System, requiring at least some limited production be maintained in order to supply spare parts.
However it was simply not economically feasible to have invested in large scale production facilities only to produce a relatively small number of spare parts. So a plan was devised that the Earth Federation mass-produce the Core Fighter as a full-fledged combat weapon, but also include new equipment that would improve the Core Fighter's overall performance. The plan was approved but only on three conditions. First, in order shorten the needed production time, not a lot of time could be spent on research and development so the new equipment had to use existing technology. Second, to counter the high cost of the Core Fighter, which had such expensive technology as the learning computer, the cost of the new equipment must be relatively low. And finally the unit had to capable of operation on Earth and in space. The FF-X7BstPLAN004 Core Booster Plan004 was one of the proposed production plans.