"A behemoth of a ship, the Canterbury is a retooled colony transport. Once it had been packed with the people, supplies, and dreams of a civilization, shipping our ancestors beyond the moons of Saturn.
Now, the Canterbury flies in a shadow of its former grandeur, hauling glaciers to supply mankind with the essential water it needs to survive."
The Canterbury is a large commercial spacecraft that had carried out a number of roles in its time.
When first seen, a short period before the Eros Incident, she has been rigged as an ice hauler. The forward end of the ship is a massive cargo bay with an open front. She would match trajectories with large chuncks of ice then slowly accelerate so the ice would enter the gaping maw that was the front of the ship. The chunks would then be captured or grabbed by large mechanical arms. Large pieces of ice would be cut up, and smaller pieces of ice would then be stored on racks around the periphery of the open cargo bay. Despite the presence of remote manipulator arms, a human crew was in vac suits was required to assist with the operation and make sure the ice was secured properly in the racks. As the ice was not always able the and storage of small ice asteroids.
At this time, the Canterbury was carrying out regular round-trip missions from her homeport on Ceres to Saturn where she collected ice from the rings and returned the ice to Ceres for melting into liquid water for life support and industrial purposes. At this time, Ceres was suffering from a considerable water shortage and the Canterbury was part of the station's life-line.
At the time of the ship's destruction, the crew had been raising concerns about the ship's state of repair.
The Canterbury was powered by four dual small Epstein Drive boosters for axial acceleration and also had a number of reaction control system thrusters to enable relatively quick rotational manoeuvres when required. The spacecraft was capable of a sustained 30g acceleration during emergency manoeuvres.
The Canterbury is 1,000m (3281 feet) long and has a draft of about 250m (820 feet). The majority of the ship's volume is taken up by its hollow cargo bay, which is open at one end to space.
The ship carries number of small auxiliary vessels including its only shuttle, the Knight.
The ship had a number of Remote Manipulator Arms in the cargo area to assist in the movement of multi-tonne ice boulders from free space into the cargo bays.
As with all spacecraft, the Canterbury is arranged so that 'down' in the pressurized crew areas points aft along the direction of the main thruster so that, when under thrust, inertia creates the illusion of gravity for the crew.
As a merchantman, the Canterbury was unarmed and thus completely defenseless when attacked by the mysterious stealth corvette the Anubis.
The Canterbury had a crew of fifty five people. Among them were:
- Captain McDowell
- Executive Officer Jim Holden
- Pilot Alex Kamal
- Chief Engineer Naomi Nagata
- Navigator Ade Nygaard
- Med-Tech Shed Garvey
- Mechanic Amos Burton
- Communications Officer Rebecca Byers
- Cameron Paj
- Mechanic Fen
- Mechanic Jaden