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Dropship 77-Troop Carrier: Misc



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Dropship 77-Troop Carrier
Production information

Misriah Armories[1]

Product line



Dropship 77-Troop Carrier

  • Variants:
    • Halo: CE & 2: D77-TC
    • Halo 3: D77H-TCI[2]

Troop Carrier Dropship/Transport/Gunship

Technical specifications

30.5 meters (100 ft)
Troop Bay: 6.19 meters (20.3 ft)[3]


Wingspan: 23.3 meters (76 ft)
Troop Bay: 4.65 meters (15.3 ft)


10 meters (33 ft)
10.5 meters (34 ft) with landing gear
Troop Bay: 3.23 meters (10.6 ft)

Engine unit(s)

Two main engines housed in middle section of ship, ten maneuvering thrusters housed in four vector pylons.


Heat and radiation shielding to protect occupants.

Navigation system
  • Motion trackers[4]
  • One chin-mounted auto-cannon in either 40 or 70mm caliber[5]
  • Two ANVIL-II ASM Pods (eight missiles each) (optional)
  • 1 AIE-486H HMG or M247 GPMG (optional)
  • One Pilot
  • One Co-pilot
  • One crew chief
Minimum crew

One pilot with a "Smart" A.I.


Ten seats in internal bay amidships fifteen people standing and sitting (these numbers are doubled in case the ship carries a troop deployment pod).

Cargo capacity

70 tons on hoist(anything over 35 tons slows speed considerably).

Year introduced

2525 as a military supply and troop carrier.




26th century




The Dropship 77-Troop Carrier (abbreviated D77-TC), more commonly known as the Pelican, is an extremely versatile craft used by the United Nations Space Command, mainly for the pickup and transportation of personnel, vehicles and equipment, although it can also be used as a powerful support gunship.



The Pelican as it appears in Halo: CE.

The D77-TC Pelican is mainly responsible for the rapid infiltration and extraction of troops. They also deliver vehicles and equipment to the battlefield, when required. The D77-TC has been in service for over fifty years, and is the primary tactical support aircraft of the UNSC. The Pelican serves a multi-role purpose, it is fully capable of atmospheric flight and can land almost anywhere without difficulty, the Pelican is also capable of limited spaceflight, which the UNSC uses as a primary way of delivering troops to the surface from orbit. Standard armament consists of one Class III externally powered projectile weapon at the fore of the vehicle, and one Class I gas-operated projectile weapon mounted at the rear, in the extended crew area. More heavily armed variants exist, with multiple and more powerful weaponry.[6]


Payload Capacity

The Pelican is capable of carrying passengers and cargo using a combination of internal and external methods. Specifically, the main compartment of the Pelican sometimes called the "Blood Tray"[7]. The "Blood Tray" has enough compartment space for ten people, but can hold five additional standing people. Other variants have displayed the ability to hold considerably more as demonstrated by specific scenarios throughout the Halo books. For example, the SPARTAN-II's were assigned a specialized Pelican, which was able to hold the entire team of twenty five as well as fitting cutting gear to board a Covenant warship. Three Pelicans used for the SPARTAN-III Program carried 300 children though this may have been the effort of numerous trips back and forth from the surface.

The large aft overhang gives an attachment point for additional, cargo and ordnance. Possible payloads include a troop deployment pod, a Scorpion tank, a Warthog, or eight Resupply Canister Type-B Capsules. The maximum payload of a Pelican is seventy tons.


Standard armament consists of a chin-mounted 40mm rotary-cannon which was common prior to 2525, but was later superseded by a 70mm weapon. These chain-guns are usually controlled by the pilot's helmet so that it would aim in the direction of the pilots view, similar to the modern TADS/PNVS found on Apache Gunships or the HUD system in a SPARTAN's armor. Some dropships boasted twin chain guns firing depleted uranium slugs.[8].

Missile pods, each holding eight ANVIL-II ASMs, can be mounted under each wing to engage more maneuverable or better protected targets. Fire control is typically delegated to the copilot, who was assisted by helmet-mounted display. A M247 GPMG, or a 25mm grenade launcher can also be mounted facing out of the rear cargo hatch and the latter two can be folded flat against the roof of the internal bay when not in use by the crew chief or passenger.


The main engines are mounted in pairs in four nacelles, one on each wing and two at the rear. The nacelles can articulate independently, thus altering (i.e, Vectoring) the direction of thrust and improving the dropship's low altitude maneuverability. Six ventral thrusters, two on each wing nacelle and one on each aft nacelle, allow the Pelican to land and take off vertically. These engines are capable of both space and atmospheric operation. The D77, although fully capable of orbital insertion, is too small to be equipped with a Shaw-Fujikawa Translight Engine, and thus is incapable of slipspace travel.

The wings mounted on a Pelican seem extremely small, too small to support the weight of dropship and payload alone. It is speculated that it incorporates at least some lifting body principles, its own hull providing most of the lift necessary.



Main article: D77H-TCI Pelican Dropship

Halo 3 introduces the new variant of the Pelican, the D77H-TCI Pelican (The "H" stands for "Heavy", the "I" probably stands for "Infantry"). Externally, it appears nearly identical to the Pelicans used in Halo: Combat Evolved and Halo 2, except for being more angular. Internally, though, the craft has been renovated and it can store equipment in overhead netting. It also mounts an AIE-486H Heavy Machine Gun at the opening of the troop-bay for suppression fire during insertion/extraction missions. The cockpit has been altered, and instead of the side-by-side positioning of the pilot and copilot, the pilot now sits at the fore of the dropship, with the co-pilot behind him/her, and at a higher position, in tandem.

Law Enforcement

Main article: D77C-NMPD Pelican Dropship

Halo 3: ODST introduces a civilian-variant of the Pelican, operated by the New Mombasa Police Department and differentiated from its military counterpart by a black and white color scheme, "POLICE" replacing the traditional "MARINES" on the external hull, and a noted lack of armament. Under the craft's chin, where a machine gun turret or autocannon would normally be installed, are various interchangeable sensors used by the police for aerial surveillance and crowd control.

Identified Pelicans

Pelicans receive serial numbers to be identified by during radio transmissions, particularly in combat situations. Each serial number consists of a letter from the Phonetic Alphabet followed by a number. Though a few Pelicans have this number inscribed on their cargo bays, most have no distinguishing mark on their exteriors. It is unclear how the numbers are chosen, but with their spread across the alphabet and numerals, it can be inferred that a very large number of Pelicans are in service, perhaps as many as 26,000.

Known United Nations Space Command Pelicans
D77-TC Pelican Dropship Bravo 1 · Bravo 22 · Bravo 29 · Echo 136 · Echo 206 · Echo 419 · Gamma 54 · Victor 933 · Victor 397
D77H-TCI Pelican Dropship Echo 51 · Kilo 23 · Oscar 5 · Oscar 6 · Oscar 8 · Oscar 9 · Victor 398


  • Pelicans in Halo Wars show a Legendary symbol under the cockpit with "Death To Covenant" written under it.
  • All Pelican dropships in Halo: Combat Evolved bear either the numbers E419 (Echo 419) or V933 (Victor 933). The Pelican in "The Silent Cartographer" is incorrectly labeled as V933. All others are labeled E419. It is likely that because of the extreme time constants of the development cycle of Halo: CE Bungie was unable to properly label each pelican correctly.
  • Pelicans in Halo: Combat Evolved and Halo 2 are never seen carrying more than six Marine troops at a time, despite being capable of carrying up to fifteen. However, it is likely that this is merely because UNSC troops usually work in small teams during engagements, comprising of five to six men, known as Fire Teams.
  • The UD4L Cheyenne dropship from the movie Aliens served as conceptual inspiration of the Pelican for Halo. It is also possible that modern day aircraft could have influenced the design and physics behind the Pelican. The Pelican also seems to have a similar role to the modern-day Apache (as a gunship) and the Chinook helicopter (as a transport).
  • In Halo: Combat Evolved on the level "343 Guilty Spark", you can stay on the Pelican by throwing a grenade before it takes off again. You will not die but the Pelican will crash on the top of the map on the hills where you can find the unarmed Marine.
  • The Pelican's troop bay has been stated by Bungie employee Robert McLees as large enough to fit a modern M1A1 Abrams main battle tank.
  • The Pelican in Halo: Combat Evolved has a darker cockpit that the one in Halo 2 and the D77H-TCI in Halo 3; both of the Pelicans in the later two games appear to have a more transparent cockpit.[9] This was because there was no pilot, and what can be seen under the glass is actually a bitmap of what appears to be internal wiring and the Pelican's systems.
  • The maximum atmospheric speed of the Pelican is 75 km/h (46 mph), but in Halo: The Flood, just before the battle of Alpha Base, Wellsley claims six major thermal signatures are advancing towards the base at about 350 km/h (217 mph). These two provided speeds conflict with each other, thus making it harder to determine the "real" speed of the Pelican. It is also possible that the speed given by Wellsley was calculated relative to the ground rather than true airspeed.
  • The Pelican is known to be drivable in Halo: Combat Evolved (especially in Custom Edition) and Halo 2 by means of modding. The player can also fly the Pelican in Halo 3 in the level The Covenant, by modding the game. A video of this mod can be found here.
  • There is a glitch in the Halo 2 level Metropolis where the player can operate the Pelican. It will take the player out of the map, flip, and eject the player. If the player attempts to right the flipped Pelican, the script will read "Hold X to flip Banshee", because Bungie never intended for the Pelican to be operable by the player, and therefore did not make a unique message. The Pelican's in-game physics will make it impossible to correctly and permanently flip the Pelican, as it will always reposition itself in an upside-down position.



  1. Halo: Arms Race
  3. Image Comparison
  4. "343 Guilty Spark"
  5. Halo: The Flood, page 39
  7. Halo: Ghosts of Onyx, page 203
  8. Halo: Ghosts of Onyx, page 40
  9. The Art of Halo 3, page 38

Related Pages

UNSC Starship Classifications
Starfighters C709 Longsword-class Interceptor
Dropships/Cargo Transports D77-TC Pelican - D77H-TCI Pelican Dropship - Albatross - Pod - Bumblebee - Human Cargo Ship
Support Starships Calypso-class Exfiltration Craft - Black Cat-class Subprowler - Chiroptera-class Stealth Vessel - Prowler - Laden-class Freighter - Parabola-class Freighter
Light Capital Warships Mako-class Corvette - Stealth Cruiser - UNSC Light Frigate - UNSC Frigate - UNSC Destroyer
Cruisers Halcyon-class - Marathon-class
Carriers UNSC Carrier - Phoenix-class Colony Ship - UNSC Supercarrier
See Also: List of Starships
Aircraft of the UNSCDF
Bombers Shortsword-class Bomber
Dropships/Cargo Transports D77-TC Pelican - D77H-TCI Pelican Dropship - Albatross - UH-144 Falcon - Pod
Ground-attack aircraft AV-14 Attack VTOL - AC-220 Vulture Gunship - Skyhawk Fighter - Sparrowhawk
Reconnaisance F-99 Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicle
Starfighters C709 Longsword-class Interceptor - Open Frame 92/Extra-Vehicular Activity

This article uses material from the "Dropship 77-Troop Carrier" article on the Halo wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.


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