The Babylon Project
Starfury has other uses. Please see Starfury (disambiguation) for other meanings.

The Mk2 SA-23E Mitchell-Hyundyne Starfury is the Earthforce standard non-atmospheric deep space interdiction and recon fighter.

It first entered service in the 2240s.[N 1] By 2260 Earthforce began to supplement this model with the atmospheric capable Mk3 Thunderbolt, though the Mk2s would remain in active service for at least the next four decades.[3][4]

Technical Specifications[]

A Starfury carries a standard armament of four forward-firing Copeland JC466/A Pulse Discharge Cannons and two Copeland JC44 Pulse Discharge cannons with an additional eight external hard-points on the engine pylons to allow additional payloads such as missiles or slug tanks.[5] It was powered by a fusion reactor system and had thrusters on both the forward and rear along with stabilizers.[6]

A retractable grappling claw is housed in the ventral hull for towing with a corresponding hitch-point located on the ventral aft tail.[7][8][9]

Mk2 Starfuries are highly maneuverable, unmatched among the younger races (even the Minbari acknowledging that in this one area they are outclassed), with the ability to spin 180 degrees in under a second. They are also the only fighter craft capable of flying backward at nearly the same speed they can fly forward. Because of its maneuverability, the cockpit is located in the center of the craft thereby minimizing any stress and disorientation for the pilot from high-G turns. Combined with the heavy weapon load, the Starfury is one of the most impressive of the younger race fightercraft; able to outmatch most comparable alien fighters. The Minbari Nial class fighter is a notable exception; while outclassed in raw maneuverability, the Minbari fighter is superior in all other areas, a fact driven painfully home during the Earth-Minbari War.[6]

Ingress for the pilot is though a dorsal pressure hatch, usually accessible via a gantry while the Fury is locked into its launch cradle. Once inside the pilot is strapped in an upright, bent legged position and as a rule wears a full pressure suit to safeguard against cockpit breaches.[9][10] The entire cockpit also acts as an escape pod that can be ejected during combat, potentially saving a stricken pilot from the craft's destruction and enabling them to be retrieved later by a rescue and recovery craft.[11]

See also[]

Behind the Scenes[]

The Starfury was co-designed by Ron Thornton and Steve Burg as a means to showcase how Newtonian physics could be portrayed in space combat.[12] The configuration was intended as a nod towards Ron Cobb's design for the "Gunstar" from the 1984 movie The Last Starfighter.[13]

Neither NASA nor JPL were involved in designing the Starfuries.[14]



  1. One source gives the year as 2244,[1] and states the Mk2 - a.k.a. Aurora - was developed to replace the SA-23A 'Nova' Starfury.[1][2]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Babylon Project Roleplaying game Earthforce Sourcebook p. 11
  2. Babylon Project Roleplaying game Earthforce Sourcebook pp. 127-128
  3. Sleeping in Light
  4. Babylon 5: The Lost Tales
  5. Thirdspace (movie)
  6. 6.0 6.1 All Alone in the Night
  7. Babylon 5 Security Manual
  8. Soul Hunter (episode)
  9. 9.0 9.1 No Compromises
  10. The Official Babylon 5 Magazine Volume 2, Issue #3 (September 1998) p. 26 - (The Great Machine - Fiona Avery)
  11. Severed Dreams
  12. Ron Thornton interview on B5 Scrolls
  13. Steve Burg interview on B5 Scrolls
  14. B5Scrolls
Other Sources