The Ra Cailum was a battleship and the lead ship of the namesake of its class.
Technology & Combat Characteristics
The class was constructed to make use of mobile suits, so it incorporates a hanger that can hold ten machines and two launch catapults into its design. The class has four two-barrel main beam turrets, twenty-two secondary anti-aircraft guns, and six missile tubes. The class also has eight engines and a pair of cooling fins to help improve fuel consumption and increase speed. Finally one new feature the Ra Cailum class possesses is the ability to deploy multiple decoy ships, balloon like objects that expand to the same size and shape as the ship with a similar color scheme. A close visual inspection would reveal which is real and which are fakes, however they were useful for fooling long-range inspection and sensors thanks to Minovsky particle interference.
- 2-barrel Main Beam Gun
- The main weapons of the Ra Cailum-class are four 2-barrel mega-particle cannons situated on the dorsal and ventral hulls with three situated forward of the bridge and one to the bridge's aft. These guns provide full covering fire from all directions, ensuring the ship remains protected from threats on all approaches.
- 2-barrel Defensive Gun
- For anti-air/anti-mobile suit defense the Ra Cailum-class is equipped with twenty two two-barrel defensive guns. The guns are placed on hardpoints in various locations on the hull to ensure the ship is defended from mobile suits and aircraft no matter which direction attacks may come from.
- Missile Launcher
- The Ra Cailum-class is equipped with six missile launchers which, depending on the ordnance loaded, can be used for anti-ship or anti-mobile suit combat.
Special Equipment and Features
- Minovsky Craft Emitters
- When scattered in open space or in the air, the repulsive forces between charged Minovsky particles cause them to spontaneously align into a regular cubic lattice structure called an I-field. An I-field lattice will slowly expand and scatter into space; however, if used correctly, the Ra Cailum can obtain low altitude flight under gravity without refueling.
Mobile Suit Gundam: Char's Counterattack
The conclusion of the Federation's civil war and the defeat of the Titans had brought the colonial space separatist movement to a virtual fever pitch, and when the First Neo Zeon War ended, it was decided that a new organization should be created to inspect the colonies for left-over dissents and revolutionaries. The force created for this job was called Londo Bell, and they did inspect the colonies, but unlike the Titans, they were much more humane in their inspections. This task force was first to receive the new Clop-class cruisers and they also received the first battleship of the Ra Cailum-class, the Ra Cailum.
The Ra Cailum was the largest battleship built to date, and it was adopted for use as a flagship by Captain Bright Noa, Londo Bell's commanding officer. The Ra Cailum also served as Amuro Ray's base of operation when he became a part of Londo Bell, which brought the MS contingent aboard the Ra Cailum to seven Mobile Suits and one Gundam. The Ra Cailum was also the first Federation ship to make use of the Base Jabber, a mobile suit sled that increased the operational range of Mobile Suits by providing them with an external fuel source to travel from one point to another. The Base Jabbers on the Ra Cailum were used to move Mobile Suits into battle so they would not use up their internal fuel on the flight to engage enemy forces.
The Ra Cailum saw its first action on 3 March U.C. 0093, when the ship responded to a new Neo Zeon movement under the command of Char Aznable. In company with three of the Federation's Clop-class cruisers, the Ra Cailum raced to the scene and the Second Neo Zeon War began in earnest with the battle for Fifth Luna. Although the ship and its Mobile Suits fought valiantly, they failed in stopping the drop of Fifth Luna, which made land-fall on Lhasa, Tibet, then-location of Federation headquarters. Although damaged by the battle, Bright Noa ordered Ra Cailum to super-impose herself between the Neo Zeon forces and a disabled passenger shuttle that had wandered into the combat zone. When the battle died down, the shuttle captain and his passengers abandoned the disabled shuttle and were taken aboard the Ra Cailum as refugees; among those on the shuttle were Bright Noa's son Hathaway, Vice-Foreign Minister of the Earth Federation Adenaur Paraya, and his daughter Quess. Once aboard, Adenauer Paraya ordered Captain Noa to take the Ra Cailum to the space colony Londenion, located at Side 1, for the purpose of seeking contact with Neo Zeon leadership with the eventual intention of seeking a settlement to the war.
The Ra Cailum arrived at Side 1 shortly thereafter and docked at the colony's spaceport. Here the civilians from the shuttle disembarked, and the ship's officers and crew enjoyed a brief shore leave while dockworkers hustled to get the battleship repaired, refueled, and restocked with supplies for its next operation. In particular, Ra Cailum 's bow had been blown off during the battle and had to be reconstructed from scratch. Meanwhile, the negotiations between the Federation and the Neo Zeon reach a conclusion: The Neo Zeon would surrender all of their warships in exchange for the asteroid Axis, which they purchased from the Federation with gold bullion. This seemed suspicious to one of the Federation's accountants, and he informed Bright Noa of Char's purchase and—fearing the worst—arranged for the Ra Cailum to receive 15 nuclear warheads. Armed with the warheads and the information of the purchase Ra Cailum and her task force set sail from Londonion on 12 March U.C. 0093 to pursue the Neo Zeon forces and ensure that they disarmed. Unfortunately, Londo Bell mistook ship-like balloons for the Neo Zeon fleet, which enabled the Neo Zeon fleet to capture Luna II and Axis with relative ease. Amuro Ray eventually saw through the balloon deception, and explained to the officers aboard the battleship that they had been tricked, and that the Neo Zeon already had control of Axis. Bright Noa ordered Ra Cailum to speed for Axis, but the Londo Bell forces arrived to late to stop the reactivation of the engines.
As soon as Londo Bell was within range of Axis, the task force opened fire on the asteroid, and a massive battle for control of Axis erupted between the Londo Bell fleet and the Neo Zeon fleet, leading to the loss of several mobile suits. Bright Noa opted for the use of the nuclear missiles, but Ra Cailum's attempt to destroy the asteroid with the nuclear weapons failed. With time running out the battle subsided as Londo Bell's senior officers and Mobile Suit pilots reconvened aboard Ra Caium to prepare for one last ditch effort. Their plan called for the destruction of Axis' tail thrusters, which would cause the asteroid to miss earth entirely, but if that failed then Ra Cailum would have to close in and launch mini-Mobile Suits (MMS) to infiltrate Axis and plant powerful explosives. The resulting explosion would split the Asteroid in two, causing it to miss earth entirely. Wasting no time Ra Cailum's Mobile Suit squad re-launched.
The attempt to destroy the tail thrusters on Axis ended up failing, so Ra Cailum closed in on the Asteroid to allow a number of MMS to land on the Axis and plant high nuclear explosives, as per the plan. Despite murderous losses incurred by the Londo Bell forces the MMS unit succeeded in placing the explosives, and the resulting blast split Axis into two pieces, the latter of which was still headed for earth. Amuro Ray, through the use of his Nu Gundam, prevented the last piece from colliding with earth, thus bringing the battle for Axis to a close.
Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn
Despite being damaged heavily(half the hull is gone) during the Second Neo Zeon War, Federation spent a huge amount of money repairing and refitting the ship, claiming it as a symbol of victory (even though it was strategic draw, with both sides losing equal amount) along with the extremely famous captain Bright Noa. By the time of the outset of the Third Neo Zeon War in U.C. 0096, the Ra Cailum had been transferred to Earth for testing of a newly installed Minovsky Craft System. During the time of the refit, the ship was equipped with a new team of mobile suits which included three RGM-96X Jestas and a new RGZ-91 Re-GZ (probably serving as a reminiscence of the legendary pilot Amuro Ray rather than actually for battle, since Re-GZ is considered as a failed prototype by both Londo Bell and AE). The Ra Cailum's Jesta team would be involved in the defense of the Earth Federation at Dakar while the ship was undergoing trials off the coast. After the attack on Dakar, the Ra Cailum was reassigned to the South Pacific area at the request of Federation Council member Ronan Marcenas. During this transfer, Ensign Riddhe Marcenas, along with his assigned MSN-001A1 Delta Plus, was transferred aboard the Ra Cailum to support the ship's mobile suit complement.
Shortly after departing the Marcenas Manor, Captain Bright was notified of the attack on the Torrington Base in Australia. Heading there to observe and assist, Captain Bright orders the Ra Cailum into the area and launches the Jesta team and Delta Plus in support of the Federation Forces stationed in the area, which are all badly outmatched. All of the crew later bear witness to the RX-0 Unicorn Gundam transform into Destroy Mode. As soon as the AMA-X7 Shamblo is destroyed, Bright ordered Riddhe to secure the Unicorn. But before he could take action, the Vist Foundation deployed the RX-0 Unicorn Gundam 02 Banshee, which captured the Unicorn and all three suits were brought to the Ra Cailum.
The crew became antsy with the Foundation occupying their ship. Soon, the Foundation arranged for the Unicorn to be brought to the Garuda, with the Banshee, Tri-Stars and Riddhe/Delta Plus to escort it. In transit, the Garencieres appeared and launched a sneak attack against the Garuda. The Ra Cailum attempted to go on alert but second-in command Meran stopped them, reminding that their mission is to escort the Unicorn to the Garuda.
The Ra Cailum later went into space in pursuit of the Neo Zeons.
Mobile Suit Gundam: Hathaway's Flash
The Ra Cailum is seen again in U.C. 0105 as part of the 13 Independent Fleet.
Notes and Trivia
|Char's Counterattack Mechanics|
|Londo Bell/Earth Federation Forces|
RGM-86R GM III | RGM-88X Jeddah | RGM-89 Jegan | RGZ-91 Re-GZ | RX-93 ν Gundam | RX-93-ν2 Hi-ν Gundam
|Aircraft / Spacecraft|
Base Jabber | Booster Bed
|Cruiser / Mother Ship|
Clop-class | Ra Cailum | Salamis Kai-class
| Mobile Suit|
AMS-119 Geara Doga | MSN-03 Jagd Doga | MSN-03-2 Psyco Geara Doga | MSN-04 Sazabi | MSN-04II Nightingale | MSN-04X Sazabi Test Prototype | NZ-222 Psyco Doga | RMS-116H Hobby Hizack
| Mobile Armour|
NZ-333 α Azieru
|Aircraft / Spacecraft|
Camouflaged Launch | Shackles
|Cruiser / Mother Ship|
Musaka-class | Rewloola-class
|Aircraft / Spacecraft|
Tien Lu | Tug Boat
|Transporter / Supply Ship|