CS Iason
Type Explorer (fleet support transport during the Pilgrim War)[1]
Class Odysseus-class (modified)[1]
Launched 2613[1]
Decommissioned 2638 (destroyed)[1]
Status Destroyed
Mass 17,000 tons[1]
Weapons Twin long-range pulse cannon (2), torpedo tube, N44 torpedoes with conventional explosive warheads (12)[1]
Shield 4.7 terajoule xenon-charged phase shield generator. [1]
Propulsion Jump drive, hopper drive, long-range fusion impulse drive. [1]
Crew 19 officers (3 research), 71 crew (19 research), 5 civilians[1]
Complement Long-range Pelican-class shuttle (refitted for research), Standard Tern-class shuttle, lifeboats (19)[1]
Fighters Towed Ferret-class scout fighters with enhanced sensor arrays (2) [1]
Equipment Enhanced sensor array, ultra-long range communications system (voice and data), self-sustaining (1.2 year) life-support systems.
Astronomy, xenology, planetology and gravitics laboratory facility,[1], flight deck, flight sim.[2]
Cargo 8000 cubic meters capacity (provisions, research equipment, research samples)[1]
Events Pilgrim War, first contact with the Kilrathi[1]

The TCS/CS Iason was a Terran Confederation exploration vessel, notable as establishing the fateful first contact with unknown aliens, later known as the Kilrathi. It was destroyed on 2638.244.[1]

Other sources (primarily several game manuals) give 2629.105 or .75 (March 16)


Iason in its later days was an exploratory/research vessel. It was retrofitted with proper scientific equipment such as enhanced sensors and scientific facilities where the research crew and scientists could perform their experiments.[1]

The flight deck contained several shuttles, used by the 4 pilots to ferry the scientists around. There were 2 Ferrets with stripped-down armament and hyped-up sensors.[2]


Iason was commissioned in 2613.078 as long-range exploratory vessel. During the Pilgrim War in 2633 it was refitted as fleet support transport. After the War, it was refitted in 2637 as exploratory/research vessel.[1]

It was based on Hellespont until it departed n 2638.009 for a nine-month mapping/research mission into outer Vega Sector. 64 days later it visited Tartarus for minor repairs.[1]

The first station of Iason was V343 system, a 11-planet system, in order to investigate composition of gas giants in the outer system. Iason arrived on .221. The outer atmosphere of planet 9 showed evidence of complex radioactives and Captain Jedora Andropolos ordered a 10-day layover for analysis, before hopping back to Tyr jump point.[1]

First contactEdit

On 2638.229 and at 04:50, automatic scanners recorded three unknown objects, which were Kilrathi B'ru'k-class merchantmen armed with heavy mass drivers and anti-ship missiles, which where unidentifiable since it was the first contact with the Kilrathi. They were moving at speed on a non-orbital trajectory, at a range of 97,000 km, and it was confirmed they were craft of unknown origin. At 05:12 hours they altered course to approach Iason. Captain Jedora Andropolos ordered full shields and readiness standby level 2.[1] Every 15 minutes the Captain sent an info-byte to inform the pilots who were on stand-by in the flight deck.[3]

At 05:27 the Kilrathi craft entered visual range, and Andropolos ordered continuous wide-band scanning with simultaneous real-time telemetry data-stream to Confederation Navy HQ. The Iason monitored alien radio traffic and begun hailing procedures according to "first contact" protocols. At 06:10 Andropolos transmitted a formal notice to HQ and Confed of first contact with sentient space travel aliens.[1]

At 07:15 Iason deployed both its Ferrets, piloted by Captain Farrah Izmuti aka Aria and Commander James Taggart. Izmuti begun a pattern of concentric fly-bys of the Kilrathi ships, while Taggart, commenced long- and medium-range scans of the area. At 07:43 hours, within 2 kilometers away, one of the Kilrathi opened fire on Izmuti, damaging her right wing array, including cameras and stabilizers and she had to return to the Iason. At 08:00 Andropolos sent a second message to HQ, indicating she would take no further action but wait for response from the aliens, while continuing automatic hails on all frequencies.[1]

For most of the next hour the aliens remained silent. At 08:57 they transmitted a video signal to the Iason, largely within the infrared spectrum. Andropolos ordered a two-way channel, only to receive the image of an unadorned bulkhead, but making themselves visible to the Kilrathi.[1]


At 09:42 the Kilrathi transmitted the radio order to open fire and all three ships opened fire simultaneously. Iason returned fire and retreat at top speed but the Kilrathi begun pursuit. At 09:47 the continuous transmission from the Iason broke up during the battle, as the ships destroyed its offensive, defensive, drive and life-support capabilities. The Iason's shields failed followed by the hull, and an explosion from the drives; normally, the radiation and oxygen deprivation killing most of the crew. At 01:30 sector HQ certified the Iason as a lost or missing ship. Kilrathi boardind parties then arrived and gutted the ship. The fate of the crew is unknown; any survivors who made it to the lifeboats or into full-environment suits, were probably all killed or captured.[1]

One of the merchantmen (perhaps one of those 3 who destroyed the ship), towed the gutted hull of the Iason in order to show it to a Terran-occupied world. On 2638.234 (19:00) the merchantman jumped into Hyperion system and was detected by long range scanners; it approached Hyperion 4 and left the ship cut adrift near at 23:07. It then made way to the jump point, leaving at 2:00. This was understood by the Humans a sign of challenge or warning.[1]

Ships were dispatched from Hyperion 2 to investigate. On .236 and at 05:12 it was formally identified as the Iason. At 15:00 the TCS Kurosawa arrived from Hellespont Naval Station, carrying Port Admiral Miru. Over the next 16 hours the hull was extensively scanned by Navy sensor teams, keeping a quarantine distance of 10 km. Extensive scanning indicated that the ship was stripped down to the walls, and there weren't any humans inside. On .237 at 07:00, Miru ordered the termination of scanning. Fearing for contamination or boopy traps, he ordered to be destroyed. It was tractored to a descending spiral orbit into Hyperion and once such orbit was achieved, the hulk destroyed by torpedo fire. Based on ballistic projections, the debris from the Iason fell into the star and were destroyed on or about 2638.244.[1]


The Iason marked the first contact with the Kilrathi. Although the nature and identity of the aliens remained unknown to the crew for as long as they held contact, much more about them was later known. Hostilities with the Kilrathi continued, and the Iason incident was only the first of them, until the declaration of the Terran-Kilrathi War.[1]

The data transmitted from the Iason were studied and evaluated, partial translation of the Kilrathi radio transmission was made possible, including chatter about the Iason's configuation, and later the order to open fire. The only survivor was James Taggart who escaped the disaster in his Ferret, and whose fate remained officially unknown.[1]


Behind the scenesEdit

The Handbook places the event fo TCS/CS Iason at a different point in time than in the game manuals, and novels.

The Wing Commander: The Movie novel mentions Taggart's involvement in the Iason event, but avoids the dating issue altogether.

First contact, and the destruction of the Iason and beginning of the Kilrathi War are shown in the flashbacks during the intro of the movie.


  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 1.19 1.20 1.21 1.22 1.23 1.24 1.25 1.26 1.27 Chris McCubbin, Official Authorized Wing Commander Confederation Handbook, Inquiry Into the Loss of the Odysseus-Class Naval Exploratory Vessel CS Iason Reg E-1456
  2. 2.0 2.1 Chris McCubbin, Official Authorized Wing Commander Confederation Handbook, Inquiry Into the Capture and Subsequent Escape and Return of Commander Taggart
  3. Chris McCubbin, Official Authorized Wing Commander Confederation Handbook, Inquiry Into the Capture and Subsequent Escape and Return of Commander Taggart
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