The Nostromo is a M class starship that is registered to Weyland-Yutani Corporation out of the US state of Panama. It was refitted to be a commercial towing vehicle in 2116, after that, the Nostromo has largely been employed running automated ore and oil refineries between the Sol system and 20 Reticuli.

The ships mass, 63,000 metric tons, the Nostromo's spaceframe is based on a modified Lockmart CM-88B Bison transporter. The Nostromo is designed to a 6-10-4 layout with three pressurized decks and four main cargo holds. The spare volume is taken by the fuel tanking for the fusion reactor and the reaction mass for the thrust engines. An off-axis hooded frame mounts the docking latches for the towed cargo. The Nostromo is sturdy enough of a vehicle to withstand atmospheric re-entries and for surface landings is supported by three main landing shocks. The micrometeorite and particulate shielding is sufficient enough to withstand rough re-entries.

The in-flight systems are all controlled by the central "Mother" processor. Mother is a 2.1 Terabyte intelligent mainframe which monitors all of the ship's flight and autonomic functions. A 2.0 Terabyte backup mainframe comes on line in an event of a CPU failure, and a third tier of automatics is also capable of sustaining an autonomic functions should the backup fail as well.

The communications fit is standard, it compromises of a 10 and 4 meter hyperstate antenna for any interstellar communications and short-range UHF/VHF/HF radio/video links. The sensors are mounted on pylons which are clustered around the forward hull of the ship and have two 2 m aperture telescopes which are capable of optical, spectrographic and infrared resolution; a gas chromagraph; centimetric navigation and landing radar; a synthetic aperture ground mapping radar; and a mass counter for supralight navigation.

The Nostromo's power core is a Laretel WF-15 2.8 Terawatt fusion reactor. The fusion process is a deuterium/tritium reaction that can fuse the fuel elements in a containment chamber using conversion lasers. The He4 byproduct of the reaction is kept separately and is vented at regular intervals. The power is drawn off of the reactor by a closed-cycle liquid potassium cooling system. Running off into a induction torus which can use the intense magnetic field created by the superheated potassium to generate electric power. The ship may be destroyed by an authorized crewmember by overriding the reactor cooling system and bleed off coolant, which initiates a supercritical reaction in the containment area. After the activation of the self-destruct device, the crew has ten minutes to get far enough from the ship before it's reactor explodes.

The supralight drive is a Yutani T7A NLS tachyon shunt which is capable of unladen high cruise up to 0.42 ly per sidereal day (153 cee). When it is towing large amounts of cargo such as automated refineries, the maximum sustainable cruise speed drops radically, about 0.1-0.12 ly per sidereal day (40-45 cee). For maneuvering at sublight speeds when towing large amounts of cargo, the immensely powerful mass reaction engines are required. On the Nostromo, the original Saturn J-3000 engines have been replaced to two Rolls-Royce N66 Cyclone thrust tunnels with bipolar vectoring for midline lifting functions. Each of the powerplants develop a 65,830 metric ton of thrust, using water for reaction mass. When running wide open, both of the engines give a high impulse thrust totaling of 131,660 kN.

The lifesystems comprise of three decks, which include the bridge, crews quarters, and dining area. Others include the science station, the CPU module, medical bays, four main cargo bays, storing areas, and the engineering stations. All of these compromise 1.1 million cubic meters of pressurized volume, including all of the air ducts and the air scrubbing plant. The Nostromo has a crew of seven-Ship's Master, First Officer, Executive Officer, Navigation Officer, Science Officer, Chief Engineer, and Engineer's Mate. There are seven hypersleep capsules that have been installed for any long-duration flight. The polarized gravity generators provide the internal gravity and the internal dampening. Beneath the hull, is an external docking bay for a shuttlecraft. The shuttlecraft is capable of being a lifeboat in the case of a ship's evacuation is necessary.

Written by RAY FINCHAM. (

  • "Nostromo" (a novel by Joseph Conrad) pilots a ship hauling ore out of a turbulent South American country.

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