Orion-class assault carrier
Considered state-of-the-art when it was introduced, the Orion-class assault carrier incorporated the miniaturized and reconfigurable automated factories and chemical processors that were commonly found in colony support vessels, allowing the carriers to produce fuel, spare parts, and rarely even complete combat vehicles without outside assistance. As such, each Orion-class assault carrier holds a number of cargo lighters and resource gatherers to support its troops and support ships in harsh expeditionary environments. Of moderate tonnage by carrier standards, the Orion outmasses the Poseidon-class light carrier but is outmassed by the Epoch-class heavy carrier. These carriers also carry complements of UNSC Marines and tanks.
The Orion-class assault carrier is armed with two heavy Magnetic Accelerator Cannons, which serve as the carrier's primary weapon. In addition, the assault carrier is outfitted with numerous missile batteries and point-defense guns as secondary and tertiary weaponry, respectively.
The Orion-class assault carrier was built for war against rebellious human colonies during the Insurrection. The class was conceived as a new type of carrier that could directly aid the United Nations Space Command's sustained ground operations in addition to maintaining aerospace control over contested worlds. Throughout the Insurrection, the appearance of a battle group led by an Orion-class assault carrier was seen as a symbol of the UNSC's military strength.
As the Human-Covenant War began in 2525, Orion-class assault carriers commonly served as flagships, serving in numerous battles throughout the Outer Colonies in desperate defensive actions against the Covenant. The Covenant War saw the destruction of most Orion-class carriers as many of these vessels sacrificed themselves to buy time for civilians and troops to be evacuated to the Inner Colonies. The remaining vessels of the Orion class formed the core of long-range battle groups that attempted to disrupt Covenant supply lines and staging areas, with limited success.
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Halo: Fleet Battles
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