The first known combat between the U-7 and Earth forces came in July 2150; when two U-7As ambushed a convoy of a dozen Vanguard class Transports and an escort of five destroyers and corvettes. The first cruiser (U-07-101) destroyed two destroyers from the escort force with a combination of cluster missiles and drill beams; the second cruiser (U-07-133) destroyed a corvette and five transports. The remaining escorts managed to damage 133, and the two U-7s withdrew.
The U-7 class cruiser was involved in one of the most notorious incidents of the pre-war era. On 21 November 2151, a mixed squadron of five U-7 and two U-9 class cruisers attacked an Allied base. The base in question was Outer System Defence Outpost 4; the crews of the 155th Combat Squadron were enjoying rest and recreation at the incomplete base, knowing that the long-range sensors of the base would give sufficient warning of any raid to allow them to return to their vessels. Unfortunately, for the Allied crews, and fortunately for the Romulans, a circuit overload caused a failure of lights and other non-essential systems. Although repaired quickly, it was not realised that the overload had damaged the sensors and rendered them inoperative. The Romulan squadron struck, destroying four Taholsin class cruisers, three Thofsin class destroyers, two Cavalry class destroyers, an Assist class warp tender and a G’buqoff class armed transport. The Romulan fleet did not attack the base, mistaking storage bins outside the incomplete base for anti ship missile emplacements. The crews survived the initial attack, but almost all were dead when reinforcements arrived two weeks later, as the base’s life support system was unable to support that many people for a prolonged period.
The mission was a complete success, with the destruction of the allied ships for no losses and the subsequent loss of life at the base. However, the Tal’shiar checked the sensor logs as normal after the raid, and noticed the cocky exchanges between the ships after the raid, which breached strict communications protocols. They also noticed something the commander had not noticed. At extreme sensor range, the UES Carronade, a Cavalry class destroyer from the 155th, had monitored the transmissions between the ships after the raid. This intelligence provided the allies with valuable information, including the name of their enemy, the Rom’lnz. The execution of the squadron’s Commander followed immediately.
The same squadron (albeit with a new commander) continued to operate, and scored another notable triumph on 02 November 2154, when it attacked and destroyed Outer Sector Defence Outpost One without loss on its part. After this, the newer Allied ships started to outclass the U-7, but it remained in service until the end of the war, although often in peripheral areas. Physically the U-7 was an enlarged U-4 hull mated to a new wing structure, which gave far better warp dynamics and fuel efficiency; this wing mounted the improved RFTL-2 warp nacelle system. Production of the U-7 totalled 140 ships, composed of 105 U-7As with Cluster Missiles, and 35 of the U-7Bs, the first Romulan ship to mount a plasma weapon. In 2158, because of lessons learnt in the conflict the 30 ships were refitted to U-7C standards, with upgraded shields, and t mixed armament of RPC-3 Plasma cannon and cluster missiles, it was intended to refit more vessels, but the shortage of frontline ships prevented this. Only 32 ships, of all marks survived the war in a serviceable condition, and all were soon retired.
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