Aerospace Technologies -- Hammerheads . Aerospace Technologies was the first company on Earth to design and manufacture space going vessels in their entirety. And, for one hundred years, Aerospace Technologies was the forefront leader for starships, both civilian and military. The first aerospace fighter built by Aerospace Tech was the Hammerhead Mark 1. It was not the best starfighter of its time, but it was simple, tough, and above all, cheap. For these reasons, it's lack of cutting edge was overlooked and the Hammerhead Mark 1 was purchased in mass numbers by several Earth governments. For three decades the Mark 1 was upgraded to keep pace with developing technology. It always remained a fighter one step behind the best aerospace fighters of the day, but it was easy to upgrade. In fact, the best aerospace fighters came and went while the Hammerhead only required occassional upgrades to stay current.
The Mark 1 paved the way for the Mark 2, and twenty years later, the Mark 3. By this time, every Earth government with territory claimed in the solar system, and later in other star systems, had a number of the Hammerhead aerospace fighters protecting that territory. Again, each generation remained rugged, easy to upgrade, and cheap. The fighter was versatile as an interceptor and as a fighter/bomber and performed in space as well as it did in atmosphere. Even when faster-than-light technology was developed, the Mark 4 Hammerhead remained the eminent fighter of its day.
The Mark 5 Hammerhead saw the end of the reign of the series after 150 years of success for Aerospace Technologies. By this time, there were many different human governments spread out over a vast region of local space, and those governments were not interested in buying their war materials and supplies from Earth. They were building their own designs. And, the governments of Earth were putting out fewer and fewer military contracts. The Mark 5 was a victim of the changing times, and sold the fewest of all marks of the Hammerhead series of starfighters.
But, Aerospace Technologies was not about to let their 150 years of success end. They went back to the drawing board, and launched a new design: the Hammerhead J-Type. This aerospace star fighter was like the big brother of the Hammerhead series. It was larger, more powerful in space and atmospheric flight, a good deal more rugged, and still retaining simplicity of design. It was a success!
However, Aerospace Technologies was still a victim of the changing times. The Hammerhead J-Type was a success, but only sold to private concerns or public service entities. The original Hammerhead series remains to this day the greatest selling and longest lived class of starfighter in human history, selling millions over all five marks. The J-Type did a quarter of that in sales: enough to be noteworthy, but not enough to go down in history. The J-Type is common enough to be seen on many human colonized worlds across Known Space, and can hold its own in a dog-fight, or in various other missions, against almost any starfighter made by humans. .
The map of Known Space
The Hammerhead J-Type; a somewhat successful attempt at keeping the fame of the Hammerhead series aerospace starfighter alive, and the fortunes of Aerospace Technologies alive as well.
Seen here are an example of the old Hammerhead with one of the new J-Type Hammerheads. Both were very successful starfighters across Human colonized space and both can still be seen to this day being flown on numerous worlds keeping the peace.
The old Hammerhead series did not change physically much at all from Mark 1 through to Mark 5. For each Mark of the Hammerhead series, only the technology really changed. The rugged, simple and successful body stayed mostly the same.