The AFC-01Z Alpha Fighter was a mass produced transformable veritech scout primarily used by the Robotech Expeditionary Force (REF), and was featured in Robotech: The New Generation. One of the Alpha's most unique aspects was the ability to combine with the AB-01 Beta Fighter for additional speed and firepower. It shared many similarties with its predecessors, the AF-01 Thunderbolt.
The AFC series of veritech fighter planes were perhaps the most effective air-superiority aircraft in known space. This has resulted from the commitment of the Robotech Expeditionary Force (REF) to hold quality in as high or higher regard as quantity. The plane was originally conceived some time after the Second Robotech War, in large part inspired by the AFQ-01 Vandal Drone, which was originally developed by Maxwell Dynamics. With its large store of internal missiles, it served the REF as the main front-line general-purpose combat aircraft in its forces.
The Alpha was, above all, an air superiority fighter, but was also an excellent general-purpose ground-attack plane. It was acquired for these roles by the Expeditionary Mission Planetary Forces and avy. The Alpha's place in fleet defense came later, in the mid 2030's, as the Alpha/Beta combination began to replace the previous generations of veritech fighters. The Alpha was considered trans-atmospheric, but functioned particularly well in space. With its impressive array of short range missiles and cannon, the Alpha contained the equivalent firepower as a squadron of older veritechs. The Battloid mode was responsive and tough, and could easily best any other mecha, even when outnumbered.
The AFC-01Z's, with its suite of advanced sensor head, lighter frame and powerful propulsion system, was often assigned as a scout unit for the military divisions of the Robotech Expeditionary Forces.
The Alpha Fighter was composed of an advanced titanium-steel alloy, except that on the wings, which was made from a low-mass Chobham armor like that on the AGACS. The armor stopped all small arms fire, provides good protection against heavier infantry weapons, such as a 12.7mm machinegun round, and fair resistance to light mecha-mounted weaponry, such as the Zentraedi 22.3mm HE autocannon round. The armor on the wings was considerably stronger, allowing them to be used as parrying shields in close quarters while in Battloid mode.
The Alpha provided full protection from nuclear, biological, and chemical hazards, using an overpressure cockpit environment activated by radiation and hazardous chemical sensors, or manually when biological warfare conditions are anticipated. The internal consumables supplies could provide atmosphere upwards to at least a week maximum.