In the world of Earthfleet there are a variety of disposable, single use ordinances, colloquially known as "Torpedoes", that are employed by both Earthfleet, as well as many other races in the galaxy. These are the most commonly used across the galaxy.
Weapons loadouts vary from race to race. However, some races and organizations, such as Earthfleet have a predictable weapons loading and storage design for all of their expendable ammunitions. In the case of Torpedoes, for example, Earthfleet stores them on "rails" that hold a total of 20 torpedoes (10 to a side), to make them better fit tightly into a standard weapons bay. This allows each ship to carry with them the maximum possible loudout of torpedoes, while also making the rearming of starships quicker, and easier, as rails of torpedoes can be loaded, and made ready, much faster than other manual or automatic loading systems. This also allows the use of "Reloader Ships" to speed rearmament in combat.
The plasma torpedo is the single oldest antiship to ship disposable ordinance in galactic history, predating antimatter torpedoes by several centuries. While no longer in use in the current era, its uses in ancient times was very common and significant, up until the advent of energy shields which, for the most part, rendered the weapon unusable and ineffective. The torpedo gets its destructive power from the detonation of a wide variety of materials, or the generation of copious amounts of energy, creating a pulsewave of energy that does the majority of the damage on a target vessel. These were used a lot in the early hyperdrive days before the discovery of warp drive.
The Antimatter Torpedo is one of the simplest, yet oldest, high yield anti-ship weaponry employed in common use within the galaxy. They operate by injecting a small, shielded containment core with a tiny, measured blob of anti-deuterium or some other form of antimatter, and then fired at a desired target where, upon impact, the core is breached, and the antimatter released, creating a high energy explosion that inflicts damage upon the desired target. The only drawback to this weapon, aside from its age, is that it can only be deployed on a warp powered starship as it needs the facilities, resources, and antimatter supply of the parent starship in order to be armed and used as antimatter torpedoes can't be stored long term with a live, charged antimatter core. Doing so risks premature detonation in the hold, potentially destroying the ship.
Quantum Doublestrike Torpedo
Quantum Double Strike Torpedoes, sometimes simply referred to as "Quantum Torpedoes", are a weapons technology that uses a unique property of quantum to create what would be the subspace equivalent of a cavitation explosion. This is done by first generating a quantum pulse that first strikes the target, then rebounds, much as a water cavitation would, which results in an energy rebound that is more powerful than the initial wave, which strikes the target a second time, causing further damage. Hence the weapon's name "Double Strike", as it strikes a target twice, back to back, and is considerably more effective and deadly than traditional Antimatter torpedoes.
An Isolinear Torpedo, sometimes known as a "Plasma Shock" torpedo, for the way it forcefully overloads the power systems of any ship it strikes, is a weapons system that, of itself, does not possess the ability to do much physical damage to its target. Where the torpedo excels in effectiveness and killing power is that, when detonated, it creates a powerful shock or "surge" in the enemy's power systems, which almost always leads to a power systems overload that has the potential to destroy the ship. On warp powered vessels, this can become deadly because, wholesale failure of the power system can lead to a warp core breach due to loss of power to the antimatter containment system.
In most cases, regardless of ship type, one to three torpedoes, striking anywhere on the vessel, is sufficient to knock out or destroy a ship. However, while proven to be highly effective, the torpedoes don't work on all ships or technologies. This is because some technologies have a natural immunity to the weapon's effects. This weapon was first used in The Battle of Sebius, and several subsequent battles afterwards, but was later abandoned once word of its existence spread across the galaxy, and effective countermeasures were created against it. This torpedo was meant to succeed the Quantum Double Strike torpedo, but proved unable to do so.
The Multi-Spacial Torpedo, sometimes referred to as a "Subspace Torpedo", is a torpedo weapons technology that operates on multiple levels of subspace at the same time, unlike Anti-matter, quantum, or other similar torpedo technologies. The idea behind the torpedo is that, when it detonates, it functions very much like a plasma torpedo, except that the energies it produces exist on multiple levels of both normal, and subspace, which can lead to the bypassing of shields, and the direct impingement of either hull armor, personnel, or even power systems, depending on the type of ship its fired at.
The torpedo was primarily deployed on the Raven, Wolfpack and Mythos class starships, but also saw limited use on Gayik'Von, Varnok and Yandian ships during several of the galactic conflicts that Earfleet was a part of. This limited usage outside of Earthfleet was made possible via a gift of these torpedoes to their allies from the Nine Races for a limited time during several key battles where the allied forces were heavily outnumbered, and were in desperate need of any advantage they could get to secure victory. At the end of these battles, any remaining unused torpedoes were returned to Earthfleet, and neither of the three races ever copied the design out of respect for Sol, and the sacrifices they made to help protect them.
A Protomatter Torpedo is a highly advanced, exclusively Earthfleet technology capable of destroying any star, type F or smaller, with a single shot. Type A and higher may require several hits to destroy it. The weapon was created around the time that Mike Clayton became Grand Admiral of Earthfleet. While never classified as anything but a prototype, experimental weapon, eight live, plus one prototype test weapon were created, after which it was determined that the weapon was too dangerous to mass produce, and thus all plans and research on the weapon were forever destroyed to hide its existence. The eight live rounds that were produced were then carried exclusively on the Sergenious throughout Mike's career, and then later transferred to his care in civilian life when the Sergenious was given to him as a retirement gift.
The eight weapons were then later used during The Marargon Invasion, and thus fully expended. After seeing the enormity of the power that the protomatter torpedoes generated, a treaty was struck that banned such super weapons from ever being created again. The weapon's incredible power is created by a unique state of matter and antimatter known as "protomatter". Since matter and antimatter are interchangable, with one becoming the other simply through a quantum state change, protomatter, in turn, is the neutral state that matter and antimatter take when transitioning between the two forms. As protomatter is naturally unstable, and high in energy, to force it to remain in that state for too long causes the material to decay into pure energy.
However, in doing so, it draws with it a consider amount of energy from Inter-dimensional Space, causing a multiplication of energy released by the warhead by a factor of several million. This incredible shockwave of energy is capable of vaporizing an entire type F star in a single blast, wiping out it, and its entire solar system as well.