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Technology & Combat Characteristics
A space-use variant of MBF-M1 Astray, it is developed to protect Ame-no-Mihashira. The fixed armament of the M1A Astray is the same as the one on the standard M1 Astray, which includes two head-mounted CIWS and two beam sabers. In addition, it can be equipped with a sniper beam rifle instead of the normal beam rifle used by M1 Astray.
The main difference between M1 and M1A Astray is that the latter has a greatly simplified leg structure that can only support the MS’s own weight, however this also improves its AMBAC capability by 30%. M1A's maneuverability is further improved due to enhanced vernier thrusters, as well as the mounting of additional ones around the body. It is also equipped with additional propellant and coolant tanks to meet the higher fuel consumption. Lastly, M1A’s antenna has been enlarged for better communication capability. Due to their coloring, the M1A Astray is often mistaken for Blue Frame.
- "Igelstellung" 75mm Multi-Barrel CIWS
- The Igelstellung 75mm multi-barrel Close In Weapon System is a pair of head mounted Vulcan guns. These guns are small-caliber (for a mobile suit) shell firing weapons that are designed to shoot down missiles and lightly armored vehicles, but are ineffective against the heavier armor of a mobile suit.
- Type 70 Beam Saber
- The Type 70 beam saber is the standard close combat beam weapon of Orb mobile suits. The M1A Astray is equipped with two beam sabers.
- Type 71-44 Improved Sniper Beam Rifle
- A sniper beam rifle that is developed specifically for long distance shooting on the earth’s orbit. The rifle is equipped with high precision sensors and an aiming rectification system to compensate for deviation caused by the earth’s magnetic field, giving it very high accuracy. Under favorable conditions, the rifle is accurate up to an incredible 400 kilometers (comparable to a battleship's beam cannons). Thanks to this weapon, the suit is capable to shooting down enemy units over a long range.
In CE 71, the Orb Union created its first mass-produced mobile suit, the M1 Astray. As with other militaries, Orb also created several variants of their standard model, with one of them being the M1A Astray, which is an advanced, space-optimized version developed at Ame-no-Mihashira. Most M1A Astrays are operated by the Sakahu family, who owned its production facility, and used the suit to protect their space station Ame-no-Mihashira. Spare parts for the machine are also developed in parallel on earth and later assembled into complete units aboard the battleship Kusanagi. These units are assigned to ace pilot on board the ship, including Barry Ho, who later used it in the battle at Jachin Due. After the war, Ame-no-Mihashira is attacked by a MS force deployed by Eurasian Federation. However, this attack is repelled by the M1A Astrays piloted by the Socius clones given to the Sahakus. They managed to disable 30 Strike Daggers within 10 minutes.