From Halopedia, the Halo wiki
Considered fast to produce and easy to maintain and optimise, the AV-49 shares several similarities with its fellow aerodynes, the AV-14 Hornet, AV-19 SkyHawk, AV-22 Sparrowhawk, and AV-30 Kestrel. The aircraft features an integrated VTOL propulsion system that combines dual lift ducted fan engines used by the AV-30 (though these engines were largely patterned off of the earlier JOV-99 Kestrel), with air-cooled vectored-thrust fusion thrusters for forward movement. The AV-49 also features twin 7.62 heavy machine guns and twin 50mm missile launchers, and cyberlink-compatible fly-by-light avionics. During its prototype testing phase, energy shielding was also implemented into the aircraft.
Designed for expeditionary usage, the Wasp can be easily prepped and deployed with minimal tools, and their hardened storage containers have identical dimensions to NAVLOGCOM-standard flat containers, simplifying interstellar transport logistics.
The Wasp was developed by Misriah Armory alongside the STINGER-class Mjolnir, which has two neural interface controllers to allow the operator to switch from flight to ground combat modes at the speed of thought. Sometime following the dissolution of the Colonial Military Authority, the UNSC was considering the widespread adoption of Vestol Corporation's JOV-99 Kestrel. However, strong lobbying by Misriah Armory saw the Wasp selected to replace the Kestrels that would find service in the UNSC Army and Colonial Militias.
Although in use by 2553, the Wasp was still undergoing field trials with the UNSC as of 2558. By this time, the Spartan Operations branch was asked to assess its tactical utility for their specific needs, with SPARTANs able to test the vehicle in War Games simulations or review prototypes manufactured aboard UNSC Infinity in Hangar A-6. Due to their ease of assembly, Spartan Commander Palmer recommended that all SPARTANs aboard Infinity become familiar with this process.
The Wasp augments existing stocks of AV-14 and AV-22 aircraft in Marine service. UNSC doctrine sees the Wasp employed as a gunship escort for troop transports or on-call close air support for special forces teams. The Office of Naval Intelligence employs their own variant of Wasp, using it for night sorties and stealth surveillance missions. While the Wasp is a capable aircraft, many UNSC Army garrisons, local defense forces, and militia groups have little reason to transition to an airframe that requires constant off-world maintenance inputs, still favoring the JOV-99 Kestrel.
By the time of the Battle for Zeta Halo in 2560, the Wasp was still in use by the UNSC. However, the models deployed on Installation 07 lacked the energy shielding present in earlier test iterations.
A vehicle called the Wasp was cut from Halo 4 early in development. Whether it had any relation to the AV-49 Wasp is unclear. The Wasp vehicle was first teased in a Canon Fodder article on Halo Waypoint, listed as the
Halo 5: Guardians REQ cards
List of appearances