MSZ-006 Zeta Gundam
Model number: MSZ-006
Code name: Zeta Gundam
Unit type: prototype attack use transformable mobile suit
Manufacturer: Anaheim Electronics
Operator: AEUG (Anti-Earth Union Group)
First deployment: August UC 0087
Accommodation: pilot only, in panoramic monitor/linear seat cockpit in torso
Dimensions: mobile suit mode: overall height 19.85 meters, head height 18.7 meters; waverider mode: overall length 24.32 meters, wingspan 18.61 meters
Weight: empty 28.7 metric tons; max gross 62.3 metric tons; mass ratio 1.70
Armor materials: gundarium alloy
Powerplant: Minovsky type ultracompact fusion reactor, output rated at 2020 kW
Propulsion: rocket thrusters: 5 x 12200 kg, 2 x 10600 kg, 4 x 7600 kg; vernier thrusters/apogee motors: 8
Performance: maximum thruster acceleration 1.81 G
Equipment and design features: sensors, range 14000 meters; bio-sensor system; birdlime launchers in hands
Fixed armaments: 2 x 60mm vulcan gun, fire-linked, 600 rounds per gun, mounted in head; 2 x 2-tube grenade launcher, 2 rounds per tube, mounted in forearms; 2 x beam saber, power rated at 0.65 MW, stored in recharge racks in hip armor, hand-carried in use, sabers double as fire-linked beam guns in waverider mode with power rated at 1.3 MW total for both
Optional fixed armaments: grenade launcher cartridge, 18+1 rounds, serves as extended ammunition magazine for grenade launcher; shield, mounted on left forearm
Optional hand armaments: (BOWA) XBR-M87A2 beam rifle, power rated at 5.7 MW, powered by replaceable e-pac, doubles as large beam saber, can be mounted on storage rack on back to use in waverider mode, 2 spare e-pacs stored in shield; hyper mega launcher, power rated at 8.3 MW, powered by replaceable e-pac, doubles as large beam saber
The Gryps Conflict sees the introduction of many new experimental mobile suit technologies. Anti-Earth Union Group pilot Kamille Bidan, being a mobile suit design hobbyist, begins designing a next-generation mobile suit for himself. With the aid of AEUG chief mechanic Astonaige Medoz, Kamille's design so impresses the engineers at Anaheim Electronics that they volunteer to build the suit for him under the flag of the AEUG's "Project Zeta." Initial tests occur on a non-transformable version, the MSZ-006-X1 Prototype Zeta Gundam X1. Called the MSZ-006 Zeta Gundam ("Z" being read as the Greek "zeta"), this unit represents many of the changes in mobile suit design philosophies occurring at the time.
Inspired by the RX-178 Gundam Mark II's "movable frame" design, the Zeta Gundam is also built around a movable frame capable of transforming the mobile suit into a fighter-like form called a "waverider." This VMSAWRS (Variable Mobile Suit and WaveRider System) unit not only gives the Zeta Gundam added speed and mobility in waverider mode, but also allows it to make an atmospheric re-entry from space on its own without the aid of ballute packs or other external re-entry systems. Part of the waverider mode's form is composed of "wing binders" - which have already seen experimental use in another Project Zeta design, the MSN-00100 Hyaku Shiki - and a "tail binder," all of which not only serve as control surfaces for the waverider in atmospheric flight, but also contain extra thrusters and work as additional "balancing limbs" in mobile suit mode.
The Zeta Gundam's armament is fairly standard, composed of head vulcan guns, a beam rifle and a pair of beam sabers which double as forward-firing beam guns in waverider mode. However, the Zeta Gundam has an additional edge with its bio-sensor - a device developed by Anaheim in an attempt to build a smaller-scale, more economical psycommu system. Though the exact nature of the bio-sensor is unknown, its primary purpose is to allow a Newtype pilot to more easily interface with his mobile suit. The bio-sensor can also have a rather surprising side effect when the pilot is mentally and emotionally focused enough (usually when angry or upset) to cause the bio-sensor to amplify the power, speed and strength of the mobile suit for a short period of time. Kamille's strong emotions create this effect on more than one occasion - turning the Zeta Gundam into a truly unstoppable force when the Newtype pilot is mad enough.
The Zeta Gundam is delivered to the AEUG flagship carrier Argama in mid-UC 0087, where it serves as a frontline assault unit in the AEUG's war against the corrupt Titans. At the same time, Anaheim begins producing the simplified Zeta Plus series for AEUG's Earth-based support organization, Karaba. Following the end of the Gryps Conflict, the Zeta Gundam remains in service for another year, as the AEUG immediately finds itself plunged into the First Neo Zeon War and fighting for its very survival. Though Kamille is mentally incapacitated at the end of the Gryps Conflict, the Zeta Gundam finds itself in other hands, operated by the AEUG's various new pilots, including the equally powerful Newtype youth Judau Ashta. When inexperienced Judau uses the Zeta Gundam in a space battle with Mashymre Cello's AMX-103 Hamma-Hamma, the result is that the Zeta Gundam gets its head blown off. With no replacement head available, Judau's friend Iino Abbav decides to use the head of an old MS-06F Zaku II salvaged in space by Judau. This strange field modification earns it the nickname "Zeta Zaku." This field repair is used only once in battle until a replacement head can be built. The Zeta Gundam remains in service until the end of that war when it is critically damaged during a battle inside the Neo Zeon asteroid base Axis. The Zeta Gundam's design serves as the inspiration for several later Federation Forces units, including the RGZ-91 Re-GZ (from UC 0093's Second Neo Zeon War) and the RGZ-95 ReZEL (from UC 0096's Laplace Incident).
Pilot(s): Kamille Bidan, Reccoa Londe, Apolly Bay, Judau Ashta, Roux Louka, Fa Yuiry, Astonaige Medoz, Iino Abbav, Beecha Oleg, Elle Vianno, Mondo Agake
Appearances: Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam; Mobile Suit Gundam ZZ; Gundam: The Battle Master/Gundam Battle Assault; Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam: AEUG VS Titans; Mobile Suit Gundam: Gundam Vs. Gundam; Mobile Suit Gundam: Gundam Vs. Gundam Next; Dynasty Warriors: Gundam; Mobile Suit Gundam: Climax U.C.; Mobile Suit Gundam ZZ Side Story: Mirage of Zeon; Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam 1/2 UC 0087: Another Story; Mobile Suit Gundam: Extreme Vs.; Mobile Suit Gundam AGE: Cosmic Drive/Universe Accel
Original mechanical designer(s): Kazumi Fujita (principal design), Kunio Okawara (transformation planning)
Hyper mega launcher