|Line Combatants (Primary - Capital)||Escort Combatants (Secondary)||Military Auxiliary (Tertiary)|
E-class Escorts are vessels intended to protect and assist larger and smaller vessels.
- The majority of Escorts are considered ACS craft between 100.0 to 2,499 tons in displacement.
- A few larger Escorts are included in the BCS category from 2,500 to 249,999 tons in displacement.
- They are capable of independent action, but are usually assigned to support Battleships, Cruisers, convoys, battle squadrons, and the like.
- Many call them escorts or secondary combatants.
- The Supraclass designation is also known as Ship Mission, Ship Mission Code, Mission, or Ship Hull Designation.
- It is a starship supraclass.
- 1 Library Data Referral Tree
- 2 Description (Specifications)
- 3 History & Background (Dossier)
- 4 References & Contributors (Sources)
Library Data Referral Tree
- Starship User Types
- Advanced Ship Classifications
- Basic Ship Classifications
- Ships by Function
- Speed of Travel
Small starships of up to 20,000 tons intended to be light support craft for larger ships, primarily cruisers. Escorts are also widely used for convoy protection and commerce raiding roles.
Escort Combatants (Secondary) - The Lightcraft Hierarchy
- Smallcraft (F or U) (0 to 99 tons)
- Bigcraft (W or Other) (100 to 2,499 tons)
- Escort (E) (100 to 2,499 tons)
- Destroyer (D) (2,500 or larger tons)
Escort vs. Frigate vs. Cruiser?
CONFUSING TERMINOLOGY: Escorts are small vessels; they aren't meant to duke it out in line combat situations like cruisers and battleships. They are meant to flexible vessels with strategic mobility, a sort of skirmisher combatant, not meant for the main line.
The term frigate can be used with different meanings. Most use it as a subset of the escort class of secondary combatants meant to be smaller than a cruiser or destroyer. Others have used it as a near-cruiser class that can weigh tens of thousands of tons. In most applications, it means an ACS or smaller BCS-sized vessel.
Then there are Cruisers who lack size and hitting power, but typically possess speed and endurance. They cruise or move speedily compared to larger capital ships. These are often small, speedy vessels that hit over weight for their size class, but would stand next to no chance against a naval fleet sized slugger of a combatant. Vessels such as the Lightning class Frontier Cruiser or Broadsword class Mercenary Cruiser are this smaller, latter type, not the larger vessels of the line. In the same vein, man-powered surface vehicles called bicycles are also called cruisers. They are cruisers in name only.
Strategy & Doctrine (Operations)
The mainstay of the escort fleet is the ED series. These escort destroyers are typical of Imperial needs. The ED-13, derived from the ED-12, was relatively unsuccessful, and the naval architects returned to the ED-12 for inspiration for the later ED-14. The EF-12 served as the design basis for two divergent ship types: the escort fleet (...and later escort strike designs) and the escort missile EM-13/-15.
They often serve on orbital patrols, police operations, garrison duties, and even limited strike missions.
Escorts typically serve the following roles:
- Assault Gunship (EG)
- Attack Torpedo Boat (EEM)
- Brig (EB)
- Brigantine (EB)
- Close Escort (ECE)
- Corvette (EC) or (EG)
- Destroyer Escort (DE)
- Escort (E) (Namesake)
- Escort Corvette (ECE)
- Escort Destroyer (DE)
- Fast Escort (EF)
- Fast Attack Craft (EFAC)
- Fleet Escort (EFE)
- Frigate (EF)
- Gunned Escort (EG)
- Gunship (EG)
- Ketch (EL)
- Line Escort (EE)
- Military Corvette (EG)
- Missile Corvette (EEM)
- Missile Escort (EEM)
- Missile Sloop (EEM)
- Patrol Cruiser (HT)
- Patrol Ship (HT)
- Pursuit Ship (HT)
- Rider Escort (BRE)
- Sampan (ES)
- Schooner (ES)
- Sloop (ES)
- Strike Escort (ESE)
- Torpedo Ship (EEM)
Size-Class Roles for Lighter Vessels
- Utility Craft (U) (1 to 99 tons)
- Light Escort (EL) (100 to 999 tons)
- Medium Escort (EM) (1,000 to 1,499 tons)
- Heavy Escort (EH) (1,500 to 2,499 tons)
- Superheavy Escort (ES) (2,500 or larger tons)
- Destroyer (D) (2,500 to 99,999 tons)
- Capital Ship (Various) (100,000 or larger tons)
- Battle Rider (BR)
- Combat Barge (WBG)
- Combat Transport Smallcraft (UI)
- Fighters (F)
- Militarized Utility Craft (UQ)
Supraclass Archetypal Roles
These vessels typically serve the following archetypal roles:
|E-class Escort Supraclass Archetypes|
|Escort||E (Namesake)||Gazelle class Close Escort|| Escort is an often used term for any ships whose primary focus is on providing escort duty to either military or civilian vessels. These ship range in the 200 - 5,000 ton category. The classification of "Escort" is usually reserved for larger vessels of this class and is often commingled with that of "Fleet Escort", but they lack the ability to support longer term deployments of the later type.
|Brigantine||EB||Analex class Brig|| None
|Corvette||EC||Ueghzgi class Corvette|| Corvettes are the smallest class of escort usually massing about 200 tons. Although they do possess jump capability they are more often used as an in system defense asset. Their jump capability gives them a little more flexibility then SDBs and some systems use them as armed couriers. 200 tons on average.
|Escort Corvette||ECE||Fiery class Gunned Escort|| Escort Corvettes are at the other end of the spectrum from "Fleet Escorts" and only range about 200 - 500 tons. They do not have much in the way of weapons, armor, or crew, but they are usually enough of a deterrent to most pirates, especially smaller ones, that they do fill a valued role in convoy duty. 200 to 5,000 tons.
|Close Escort||ECE||Gazelle class Close Escort|| Close escorts tend to be one of the smallest class of escort vessel and are primarily found in the 200 - 500 ton range. They are considered to have low endurance and are tend to be cramped, uncomfortable vessels with small crews. Although they are jump capable, they can conserve their resources by clamping to unoccupied hardpoints on other vessels when not in jump space. This feature is source of their designation. 200 to 5,000 tons
|Line Escort||EE||Type A7 class Cruiser|| None
|Missile Escort||EEM||Ramrod class Missile Boat|| Escorts of any size whose primary weapon load is missiles. These are not common vessels and they are usually pair up with other types of escort vessels. When that is the situation, they can add an unsuspecting punch to an unwary opponent.
|Frigate||EF||Rr'xighik'ker class Frigate|| None
|Fleet Escort||EFE||P. F. Sloan class Fleet Escort|| Fleet escorts are small, maneuverable, lightly armed warship, usually in the 1,000 - 5,000 tonnage range. The main difference between fleet escorts and others of the type of vessel is that they tend to be larger and be equipped with fuel scoops and purification plants. They have the jump and maneuver performance to keep pace with the capital ships with which they are assigned. The goal for these vessels is to be able to support fleet deployments and pose the least burdens on fleet supply capabilities. Typical missions include protecting fleet refueling, assault or carrier operations from enemy strike elements. They are noted as necessary but not necessarily glamorous fleet assignments for officers. 200 to 5,000 tons.
Fleet Escorts (EFE) are the largest of the escorts. They are primarily designed to accompany Imperial fleets. However, some classes have often been sent on independent missions - gunboat diplomacy, showing the flag, orbital support of ground operations, transport of diplomats or refugees, fleet courier operations, and even flagship duty for some smaller squadrons. An example is the P. F. Sloan class Fleet Escort.
These are relatively low displacement vessels (1-10,000tons) designed to support larger squadrons of ships. They are typically deployed for support and play a defensive role for the formation. The usually have the jump and maneuver performance to keep pace with the capital ships with which they are assigned. They might be tasked with protecting fleet refueling, assault, or carrier operations from enemy strike elements. They are noted as necessary but not necessarily glamorous fleet assignments for officers. 
|Military Corvette||EG||Fiery class Gunned Escort|| None
|Heavy Escort||EH||Blade class Frigate|| None
|Light Escort||EL||Ekawsiykua class Escort|| None
|Medium Escort||EM||Chrysanthemum class Destroyer Escort|| None
|Sloop||ES||River class Sloop|| Strike escorts share similar characteristics of other ships of the "Strike" designation. They tend to be larger vessels to support an enhanced jump and maneuver capability, but nevertheless still sacrifice weapon loads and armor to achieve those capabilities. They are not a common ship type and are usually deployed with strike fleets. These are one of the smallest vessels carrying a "Strike" designation. 200 to 5,000 tons.
|Patrol Cruiser||HT||Shivva class Patrol Frigate|| None
|NOTES: There is semantic overlap between many of the classes and codes. Some codes organize by mission or capability, others by size and tonnage, and yet others by other characteristics.|
Escorts are the smallest, capable warships that are still capable of viable interstellar force projection.
Selected Variant Types & Classes
- Type T class Patrol Ship AKA Type HT class Patrol Corvette
- Paramilitary Vessel - Type T class Patrol Cruiser AKA Type HTP class Patrol Cruiser
Ship Summary List
Some of the most commonly used vessels in this role or these roles include:
|This article is missing content for one or more detailed sections. Additional details are required to complete the article. You can help the Traveller Wiki by expanding it.|
- This article is an amalgamation of many different materials published since 1977.
- Timothy B. Brown. Fighting Ships (Game Designers Workshop, 1981), TBD.
- Loren Wiseman. Challenge 25 (Game Designers Workshop, 1986), TBD.
- Marc Miller. Fighting Ships of the Shattered Imperium (Game Designers Workshop, 1990), TBD.
- Bryan Steele. Traders and Gunboats (Mongoose Publishing, 2008), TBD.
- Marc Miller. T5 Core Rules (Far Future Enterprises, 2013), TBD.
- Traveller Wiki Editorial Team
- Author & Contributor: Lord (Marquis) and Master of Sophontology Maksim-Smelchak of the Ministry of Science
- An unpublished factoid written by Ronald Kline, Jr.