|HAVOK tactical nuclear weapon|
30 Megaton Yield
The HAVOK tactical nuclear warhead is one of the most powerful ground-based nuclear ordnances in the UNSC arsenal, and has a thermonuclear yield of 30 megatons. The HAVOK mine is described as looking like a small black half sphere, and does not contain any external indicators; the device only contains a thin slot on the unit’s face to allow the detonation key to be inserted. The bottom of the unit contains bonding strips that allow the bomb to be attached to any type of solid surface. The HAVOK is typically detonated by a remote signal, but in dire circumstances can be activated manually by twisting the front end open and slamming it back down like a large button. The user is obviously killed in doing this (with one exception).
The HAVOK is used in situations where the UNSC must eliminate Covenant forces in an area already claimed by them, or to prevent an important area from falling into their hands. However, there are situations where the UNSC will use a HAVOK to eliminate Covenant ships deploying infantry and equipment. Nuclear Weapons like the HAVOK are employed often but not always, and are only used when all civilian and military populations have been either evacuated or compromised in a target area.
Several variants of the HAVOK nuclear device have been developed for use in different tactical situations, apart from the mine version of the nuke there also exists the Variant V HAVOK. The Variant V HAVOK is designed to maximize the thermonuclear yield in the vacuum of space. The Variant V HAVOK is a warhead that is attached to a missile and can be launched from either the ground or from a ship.
On February 12, 2535, UNSC NavSpecWar deployed three teams of SPARTAN-II commandos on Jericho VII to combat Covenant forces invading the colony. At one point during the engagement Red Team was successfully able to plant a HAVOK Nuke near a Covenant rally point where a Cruiser was to deploy ground forces.
In October–December 2552 multiple HAVOK Nuclear Weapons were used during the Battle of Earth, a notable use was around October 21, 2552, when Blue Team was deployed to Mount Erebus in the Antarctic to destroy a Covenant excavation force using a HAVOK.
In 2557, when The Didact attacked Ivanoff Research Station near Installation 03 in order to retrieve the Composer, John-117 searches for a way to destroy it and ultimately decides to use the station's seven excavation-grade HAVOK mines to destroy the Composer and deny the Didact his weapon. But before the nukes are ready, the Didact succeeds in acquiring the Composer; digitizing everyone in the station before departing for Earth. Sierra-117 follows in a Broadsword armed with one of the HAVOKs in a missile and ultimately boards the Didact's ship and detonates the nuclear weapon manually, destroying both the ship and the Composer. The only survivor is the Master Chief himself, shielded by Cortana at the last moment with a hard light bubble at the cost of her own "life."
During the Second Battle of Requiem, Covenant Remnant forces placed stolen HAVOK nukes in the server and engine rooms of the UNSC Infinity. These nukes had been adapted with active camouflage. They were disarmed by Fireteam Crimson before they could be detonated.
- The HAVOK nuclear warhead shares its name with the HAVOK physics engine used in the Halo games. However, Halo: The Fall of Reach, which introduced the warhead, was published in 2001, whereas the HAVOK physics engine was not implemented into the series until Halo 2, which was released three years later, so it is unlikely that the warhead was named after the physics engine.