RRG/FN SAL-9 Laser Pistol
by Pieter Thomassen, with Peter Walker, Chris Meadows and Robert Morgenstern
edited by Tim Wing
- Type: Laser Pistol
- Place of origin: United Earth Expeditionary Force, Tiresia
- Used by: United Earth Expeditionary Force (UEEF) 2025-2045
- Designer: Robotech Research Group – Tirisia
- Manufacturer: Fabrique Nationale d’Herstal (Space Station Fraternity)
- Produced: 2025-2032
- Weight: 1,8kg
- Length: 21 cm
- Energetic Transfer: 2kJ
- Capacity: 25 2kJ shots per energy magazine
- Rate of fire: semi-automatic
- Effective firing range: 4,000 m
- Maximum firing range: 4,000 m (past 4,000 m, energetic transfer falls off to less than .5kJ.)
- Feed system: Polymer lithium ion energy magazine
- Sights: Iron sights plus rail for mounting optics
Though the United Earth Expeditionary Force (UEEF) was happy with the Owens pistol and the Wolverine assault rifle as its primary small arms, a need was seen early in the Sentinels campaign for a wider variety of energy weapons for infantry use. Research had showed that the particle beam emission of the Owens could be partly or completely blocked by certain types of charged-particle force field. However, this type of field could easily be penetrated by a laser beam. Thus, the Robotech Research Group (RRG) began designing a series of laser weapons, aided by their access to the Robotech Masters’ advanced technology while garrisoning on Tirol.
The SAL-9 was the first of the REF laser weapons to enter service, based upon a then-rare Tirolian design. Larger and bulkier than the Owens, it was able to match the Owens’s 2kJ anti-personnel shot but had a larger capacity than the Owens’s pistol magazine. Furthermore, the SAL-9 was capable of much greater accuracy than a particle beam weapon, due to the more coherent nature of the beam; it was not unusual to see a SAL-9 equipped with optical sights for making longer range shots. The SAL-9’s magazines had the same capacity for field-expedient quick recharge as the Owens’s.
Nevertheless, the SAL-9 never saw the same sort of widespread use that the Owens and Gallant H-90 did; the lack of a heavier anti-armor mode was considered a strike against it, as were its greater bulk, weight, and poor ergonomic shape. Even with these drawbacks, it is still possible that the SAL-9 could have been more widely produced and issued if it had been needed; however, the UEEF never encountered any adversaries who used the type of force fields that would have made an alternative to the Owens necessary, and the subsequent FAL-2 laser submachine gun incorporated all the SAL-9’s advantages and fewer of its disadvantages. Thus, the SAL-9’s use was predominantly confined to special forces units with a need for an extremely accurate energy pistol. A few SAL-9s remain in service in that capacity to this day; however, the Owens and Gallant are considered more all-around capable weapons.
Although it was never manufactured on Earth, a number of SAL-9 pistols found their way into the hands of the anti-Invid Resistance from soldiers who returned with the Pioneer mission to fight the Robotech Masters, and from salvage from wrecked troop carriers of the 10th and 21st Mars Division deployments. The ruggedness, accuracy, and rechargeability of this gun, combined with its non-reliance on protoculture, made it a valued weapon to the freedom fighter who found it. It is possible that the SAL-9 saw more use by Resistance guerillas than it did in the UEEF military proper. Many of these weapons are still in civilian hands.
Robotech (R) is the property of Harmony Gold. Genesis Climber MOSPEADA (R) is the property of Fuji Television, Artmic Studio and Tatsunoko Production. This document is in no way intended to infringe upon their rights.
Original artwork by: Yoshitaka Amano, Shinji Aramaki and Hideki Kakinuma. (Genesis Climber MOSPEADA)
Acknowledgement is extended to Peter Walker, Pieter Thomassen and Robert Morgenstern of the unofficial Robotech Reference Guide. Peter Walker, Pieter Thomassen and Robert Morgenstern are given credit for all quotes and paraphrasing of the unofficial Robotech Reference Guide that has been utilized on Robotech Illustrated.
Content by Tim Wing, Peter Walker, Pieter Thomassen and Rob Morgenstern
Copyright © 2013 Tim Wing