Epsilon Eridani Fleet
|Epsilon Eridani Fleet|
The Epsilon Eridani Fleet was a United Nations Space Command fleet in charge of protecting the colony world of Reach, as well as the rest of the Epsilon Eridani System. It was one of the largest known fleets in the UNSC Navy, but saw near-total destruction at the hands of the Covenant Fleet of Particular Justice during the Fall of Reach and Tribute, respectively.
The fleet was first established sometime after the colonization of Reach and the surrounding worlds. It was continuously built up and constructed for the century that followed. By 2552 fleet numbers had risen drastically, with over 100 to 150 warships in-system at any given time.
Following the aftermath of the Battle of Sigma Octanus IV, the Covenant had discovered the location of Reach and proceeded to attack the planet, sparking the Fall of Reach. At the time of the arrival of the Fleet of Valiant Prudence, an advance force of Covenant ships consisting of a few Covenant corvettes including Ardent Prayer and the Covenant supercarrier Long Night of Solace, much of the fleet was apparently out-system as there was nothing to take on the supercarrier for at least two days eventually leading Noble Team and the UNSC Savannah to attack the supercarrier in Operation: UPPER CUT which destroyed the Ardent Prayer and Long Night of Solace. The Covenant were first detected by Fermion Remote Scanning Outpost, which continued to warn all UNSC forces in-system of the new threat. There were only about 100 ships at Reach at the time, which moved into defensive positions to defend the planet, with 52 more ships on the way. A large nuclear mine field had been set up to detonate the Covenant fleet, which destroyed roughly one hundred enemy ships. The opening salvo of Covenant plasma rounds were mostly blocked by three refit stations, letting the fleet fire their first MAC salvo unharmed. When the Covenant fired again however, a crushing 80 UNSC ships were destroyed.
The remaining UNSC ships regrouped with the reinforcements to defend the orbital platforms, but the Covenant began sending hundreds of dropships to the surface of Reach, accompanied by several cruisers to destroy the Orbital Defense Generators. They also used a Covenant supercruiser to snipe the ships of the fleet which were unable to destroy it. It was able to also avoid rounds from the Super MACS. Finally, the Pillar of Autumn destroyed the supercruiser in an intense battle, but the Autumn was severely damaged and too much of the fleet was destroyed as well as the generators on the ground being destroyed for it to make much of a difference. Despite strong defense from UNSC ground forces, the Covenant managed to push through and destroy the generators, letting the remnants of the Covenant fleet move in and glass Reach, destroying the UNSC stragglers.
Only a handful of ships escaped Reach, most of which were badly damaged. The known survivors were the severely damaged Pillar of Autumn which was later destroyed in the Battle of Installation 04, an ONI prowler which witnessed the battle and its aftermath and fled and the UNSC Gettysburg which was later salvaged to help the survivors of this battle and the Battle of Installation 04 return home. After the Covenant glassed Reach, they moved in on the other in-system colonies, including Tribute. The Battle of Tribute was a short one, with only a fraction of the original fleet there to defend it. The fleet suffered 90% losses and Tribute was presumably glassed.
 Known assets
The fleet in orbit around Reach in 2517.
 List of appearances
- Halo: The Fall of Reach (First appearance)
- Halo: First Strike
- Halo: Evolutions - Essential Tales of the Halo Universe
- Halo Legends
- Halo: Reach
- ^ Bungie.net: Noble Map Pack Quick Looks
- ^ Halo: The Essential Visual Guide, page 162
- ^ a b Halo: The Fall of Reach
- ^ Halo 3: ODST
- ^ Halo: The Fall of Reach, "chapter 31", page ??
- ^ a b c Halo: The Fall of Reach, pages 295-297
- ^ Bungie.net: Dutch character profile
- ^ Halo: Reach, radio conversations