Technology & Combat Characteristics
The Himalaya-class resembles the Kiev-class aircraft carrier used by the Soviet Union. It is armed with a twin gun turret near the front, several missile launchers, a single gun behind the bridge, and six anti-aircraft turrets. It can carry around 30 Don Escargot, and has four landing spots for VTOL aircraft. The Himalaya-class was outdated by the time of the One Year War, but was effective against amphibious mobile suits such as the MSM-03 Gogg.
By U.C. 0096, it appears to have been modernized, with its anti-aircraft guns replaced with rotary CIWS and different equipment on its deck.
- 2-barrel Main Gun Turret
- The Himalaya-class mounts a twin-barreled main gun turret in front of the bridge as its main armament. It is unknown if it is a projectile-based weapon or a mega particle cannon.
- Single-barrel Secondary Gun Turret
- A secondary single-barreled gun turret is mounted at the rear of the bridge.
- Missile Launcher
- The Himalaya-class is armed with multiple missile launchers for anti-submarine warfare. They are mounted in the bow of the ship, in font of the 2-barrel main gun turret.
- Anti-Aircraft Turret
- The Himalaya-class is armed with multiple single-barreled gun turrets for anti-aircraft defense. There are two on each side of the rear of the ship, while another two are mounted portside of the main flight deck. Some refits like the Westmoreland mounted an additional two on the bow of the ship, in front of the missile launchers. Later designs had the single-barreled gun turrets replaced by rotary CIWS turrets.
The Himalaya-class entered service before the One Year War. After the outbreak of the war, they became the flagships of anti-submarine groups - special formations created to counter the Principality of Zeon's submarine fleets. Several dozen new ships were constructed during the middle stage of the war.
In late May, a Himalaya-class carrier, the Westmoreland, served as the flagship of a Federation fleet tasked with retaking the Port Moresby base. The ship, along with much of the rest of the fleet, was sunk by Zeon's new MSM-03 Gogg mobile suits.
The Himalaya-class would still be in service in U.C. 0096, when a ship of this class, along with a team of RAG-79 Aqua GMs, were destroyed by the AMA-X7 Shamblo off the shore of the Torrington Base in an attempt to counter an attack by Zeon Remnants.
- In Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn, the bridge layout of the Himalaya-class was based on the Hyūga-class helicopter destroyer.
- The Himalaya-class is the only water-based aircraft carrier in all of Universal Century.