1/100 Bandai Gundam Seed Destiny -- 曉 The ORB-01 Akatsuki is a high-performance one-of-a-kind mobile suit built by the Orb Union under the order of Uzumi Nara Athha before he died in the defense of Orb against the Earth Alliance in CE 71. It was built and stored in secret to serve as Uzumi's "will" for Cagalli Yula Athha to use when Orb would be, yet again, under siege by its enemies. It appears to be derived from the GAT-X105 Strike (which Orb engineers had copious opportunity to study) due to its structural similarity and compatibility with the Striker Pack system. The mobile suit itself is armed with a "Hyakurai" beam rifle, a double-bladed beam naginata, that is capable of splitting into two standard beam sabers which can then be mounted as a bayonet on the beam rifle, a pair of head-mounted CIWS and a shield. The Akatsuki’s bright gold coloration is not for show as the unit is covered with a specialized mirror coating called "Yata no Kagami". This coating is capable of reflecting, and perhaps absorbing, beam shots through an unknown process. This feature renders the Akatsuki virtually immune to beam gun/cannon blasts (but not beam swords/blades) which, in a combat environment where most potential threat mobile suits sport beam weaponry, appears to be a more sensible choice than Phase Shift Armor which is primarily useful against physical melee and projectile weapons. It is unclear if the coating functions simply as an application to the armor which automatically effects beams or if it works in conjunction with an on-board system that requires power and can be manually activated. It is also unknown whether this system is vulnerable to physical attacks or not.
In addition, two unique Striker packs are created for the Akatsuki - the "Oowashi" Sky Pack and the "Shiranui" Space Pack. The Oowashi Sky Pack is akin to the Strike's Aile Striker, improving flight and mobility. The pack is armed with two high energy beam cannons which swing forward under the Akatsuki’s arms at hip level when in use. It is rumored that the pack can detach and fly on its own like the ZGMF-X09A Justice Gundam's Fatum-00 backpack.
The Shiranui Space Pack contains a guided mobile beam turret system similar to ZAFT's DRAGOON system. Since Cagalli, the intended pilot of the suit, never exhibits enhanced spatial awareness it could be assumed that normal pilots can use this system. If this is true, ORB was two years ahead of the times since the improved DRAGOON system ZAFT uses when the Akatsuki is finally fielded, one which allows normal pilot use, is non-existent when the suit is built. It could also be that the system is intended to be used by one with the proper spatial abilities at Cagalli’s discretion. Another possibility is that the Shuranui was developed more recently, when such technology was possible. It is never made clear however and these are just three possibilities. Regardless of the lack of clarity on how it functions, the Shiranui Space Pack has seven remote units attached to it and each is equipped with one beam cannon, two beam guns and a beam shield emitter. This final feature allows several or all of the units to be used together to form a complete beam shield which has been shown to be able to surround something as large as a battleship. It is unclear if the two Striker packs are equipped with the same "Yata no Kagami" mirror coating as Akatsuki, but it is highly probable. The Akatsuki utilizes a customized version of the General Unilateral Neuro-link Dispersive Automatic Maneuver operating system.
Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow.
Akatsuki is initially piloted by Cagalli Yula Athha. She pilots the suit (with the Oowashi Sky Pack) to defend Orb against a ZAFT attack in CE 74, after being informed of its existence by Ledonir Kisaka. Cagalli assumes command of the Orb military and uses the Akatsuki to try and defend Orb against ZAFT's forces. She pilots it well against the standard ZAFT forces but was soon confronted by ZAFT's top ace, Shinn Asuka (in the ZGMF-X42S Destiny), and is easily outperformed and subsequently damaged. Before Shinn is able to strike down the Akatsuki, his attack is stopped by the arrival of Kira Yamato in the ZGMF-X20A Strike Freedom.
After the battle the Akatsuki is repaired and lent to Neo Roanoke, while Cagalli remains in Orb to take charge of her country. In combat Neo/Mu exclusively uses the Shiranui Space Pack but, when he is first seen piloting the unit, in the lunar city of Copernicus, it was outfitted with the Oowashi Sky Pack. It plays a major role in ending the Second Bloody Valentine War where it defends the Archangel and the Eternal. During its defense of the two ships it uses its “Yata no Kagami” coating to disperse (or absorb, it’s not clear) a shot meant for the Archangel from the Minerva’s "Tannhauser" positron blaster cannon, destroys said weapon and then encases both ships (at separate times) in a shield using most of its remote turrets. Finally it aids in the destruction of the Requiem superweapon by using its remote turrets in conjunction with the Infinite Justice’s Fatum-01 backpack.