As noted in Imperial records*, “though it lacks the durability of other races’ battleships, the Or’es El’leath class is armed to the teeth with every weapon in the Tau arsenal.”
This includes a “staggering array” of railgun batteries, ion cannons, and gravitic launches that allow large numbers of Mantas and Barracudas to be launched at enemy ships or against planetary targets.
The carrier also has three gravitic hooks for carrying Kir’la escorts.
Records are somewhat misleading about the original date of operations for the Or’es El’leath class. While it is recorded that the ship’s “first major combat action” was during the Taros Campaign (998.M41), scholars in the Corvus Cluster believe the first battle of this class was conducted by the A’rho, commanded by Kor’o Che’lei during the invasion of the ork-occupied Al’gel System in 735.M41.
There are vague reports in the archives of the Nguyen Naval Base, Belliose System, to suggest the A’rho (or some sizable Tau vessel) was involved in clashes with the Imperial navy during the Damocles Crusade (742-745.M41).
As events in the Corvus Cluster were considered peripheral to the main Imperial campaign in the Damocles Gulf, however, these reports did not receive sufficient attention–and ultimately were filed and forgotten.
Thus, the Imperial Navy was quite unprepared when, two centuries later, its failed invasion of Taros–a former Imperial world that fell to the Tau—was challenged once again by the A’rho. It was a disturbing—and quite unnecessary—surprise to the Imperial High Command, given the ship’s earlier operations.
Although the A’rho was destroyed during the Taros Campaign, the fate of a sister ship, the M’yen, is not clear. Some records suggest it was destroyed in the Corvus System circa 735-737.M41; other records suggest it still patrols Tau space.
Today, it is unclear how many Or’es El-leath carriers are operational in the Tau Navy, but their presence surely will make any future Imperial military actions against this dangerous xeno species all the more difficult.
— History of the Corvus Cluster (M41 edition)
Author: Bayan Vortico Tiberius
Information redacted: Military use only
No public access
* Source material: The finest source of Imperial records—and one much appreciated by those living in the Corvus Cluster—is found at the Warhammer 40K Wiki website: www.warhammer40kwikia.com. Information on the Tau language was provided by the Warhammer 40K Lexicanum: www.wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/Tau_Lexicon.
Categories: Tau Navy