ROBOTECH Technical Files
by Pieter Thomassen, with Peter Walker and Rob Morgenstern


Taul Detrel class Tirolian Destroyer

Robotech Masters
System Destroyer
Naval Separator

Names and disposition:

Ship's Complement:

System Destroyers with Assault  Carriers


Propulsion Systems:

Endurance and mobility limits:

System Destroyer

Weapon Systems:

Air Group and Mecha Complement:

Design Notes:

Fleet of Destroyers near Mothership

Though not through deliberate intent, the Taul Detrel is a ship that seems to radiate toughness and strength. Ton for ton, this impression is correct, for the Taul Detrel is among the most heavily armed small combatants yet designed.

The Taul Detrel hull has three distinct sections: the narrow forward section with the four antenna-like bombardment cannons, the main section which thickens out the center of the ship, and the aft section contains the main propulsion systems, including the fold drive.

The forward hull is narrow compared with the main section of the ship. It sprouts the command cupola, three forward thrusters, and the four antenna-like barrels for the two main weapon systems forward, and the two main docking ports more to the rear. The central hull is a flattened cylinder, with the curved section in the horizontal plane. The four ventral engines are housed in the lower part of this section. The tapering aft section houses the main engines.

The hull itself is a still classified honeycomb of alloys, plastics and ceramics, which out-performs every armour developed by Invid or Allied technicians at the time of this writing. It is remarkably robust in the face of incoming energy weapon fire or missile impacts.

System Destroyers

Internally, there are ten deck levels running throughout the bow and central sections. The aft section is mostly filled with the engines and several fuel tanks, and does not have a deck structure as such; rather, it has several access tunnels for engine maintenance and repair. The forward upper decks house the command facilities; below this, behind the forward sensor array, are the storage chambers for the bombardment gun ammunition supply. The lower part of the forward hull houses several major stores holds. The central section has three of its upper deck levels combined into one large mecha deck. This deck is partitioned into four sections, each section of course three deck levels high. Below and above the hangar deck are the crew quarters; below the lower crew quarters are the dorsal engines and their fuel tanks. A small shuttle hangar is located behind these engines, forward of the rear engine.


The Taul Detrel class of destroyers is a direct descendent of the frigate classes built in the first days of the Robotech Empire as merchant escorts and general duty protection vessels. Those craft were designed to be maneuverable and small, yet to pack a respectable punch as their main task was the protection of Tirol's merchant fleets.

When in the late 18th century the outside threats against the Empire reached their apparent zenith and the Masters and Elders had taken up residence in the orbiting Motherships, the need for a powerful defense vessel capable of limited offensive action was keenly felt. The Taul Detrel was then designed from the Dendrasz Torkal type frigate. Compared with the older vessel (of which no examples remain), the Taul Detrel was larger and packed nearly twice the armament. In fact, for a given unit of mass, the Taul Detrel boasts one of the highest cannon output ratios ever achieved in non-reflex cannon armed vessels.

In addition to the particle armament needed for their anti-shipping roles, the Taul Detrel class mounted four anti-matter bombardment cannons. It had been hoped that these weapons could serve as a light-weight, low priming power, yet hard hitting main weapon system; however, the system fired too slowly to be of much use in a space battle unless utilized against very large targets. As a consequence it was a given that targets of the 'correct' size would be capable of destroying the smaller Taul Detrel before it had had a chance to lock on and fire its main armament. However, as a bombardment weapon against stationary targets, the system had its uses. Unfortunately for the Tirolians, though, the fuel for the weapon could only be created through an energy-wasteful particle transmutation process, as well as requiring extremely strict storage conditions. Consequently, when needed most, over Earth, the anti-matter was hardly ever available in any quantity, rendering the main weapons powerless.

Through a production run that spanned 217 years, nearly 12,850 Taul class destroyers were commissioned into the Tirolian defense fleets. Their heavy firepower, hull armor and maneuverability, coupled with the Tirolian's extremely effective command and control, ECM and sensor systems, gave the Tirolians the destroyer whose performance has become a yardstick with which to measure other designs. Although so far the various navies have been unable to copy the Taul Detrel class, all major navies have research projects ongoing on captured examples or left over debris.

See additional design notes.

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Content by Pieter Thomassen, with Peter Walker and Rob Morgenstern
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Copyright © 2001, 2000, 1999, 1997 Robert Morgenstern, Pieter Thomassen, Peter Walker