The Aegis-class heavy cruiser Sparks was in service with the Terran Hegemony as the THS Sparks in 2431 when it became the first WarShip to engage in a dangerous tactic that would come to be known as the Crazy Jane maneuver. The maneuver itself was named for the Captain of the Sparks, Captain Jane Hargreaves, and was a deliberate attempt to accomplish the capture of Federated Suns JumpShips to disrupt Federated Peacekeeping Forces supply lines without violating the terms of the recently-agreed Ares Conventions.
Captain Hargreaves had been ordered to harass the Federated Suns logistics channels as a part of the various battles for control of the Kentares system between the Federated Suns and the Terran Hegemony. To avoid firing on the JumpShips and other potential civilian targets, Captain Hargreaves took advantage of the well-known characteristic of the K-F Drive - that a ship attempting to perform a jump while within the field generated by the K-F Drive would almost certainly result in a disaster, although rumors would persist that a jump in such a situation would be possible if both vessels attempted to jump simultaneously, a tactic that was attempted at least once.
The Crazy Jane maneuver began with the use of the advanced navigational array mounted on the Spark, with which the crew could calculate an intra-system jump that covered a fraction of a light year and that would bring the Sparks into a point just a few kilometers away from a target. Captain Hargreaves would then use the brief window of time available while the crews of nearby vessels attempted to react to the sudden appearace of the Sparks to close to within just a few hundred meters of the target, gambling that the knowledge that attempting to jump would be almost certain suicide would prevent the civilian crew from attempting to jump out of the system and instead force them to capitulate. The maneuver was inherently risky; if the crew of a target vessel panicked and attempted to jump anyway, the Sparks would most likely have been damaged or destroyed.
- AeroTech 2 Revised Edition, p. 119, "The Crazy Jane Maneuver"
- Explorer Corps, p. 41
- Historical: Operation Klondike, p. 46, "Dagda"