Galaxy-class

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The largest class of starship ever built by the Federation

The Galaxy-class is a multi-role starship used by Starfleet in the 24th century.

Contents

Technical Data

Three Galaxy-class ships in 2374
Galaxy-class starships in VOY "Endgame"

A Galaxy-class starship is equipped with twelve phaser arrays,[1] 250 photon torpedoes fired from forward and aft tubes, and a high capacity shield grid[2]. It can maintain speeds of Warp 9.3 with minimal risk, but the engines will sustain damage if forced to maintain higher speeds for an extended time. Attempting to maintain Warp 9.8 involved a high risk of damaging or destroying the ship,[3] although subsequent engine modifications may have improved the design's top speed. The USS Venture was later refitted with two extra phaser arrays sometime before mid-2372.[4]

The class shows an astonishing number of glaring design flaws for a vessel that would be expected to act as a front-line warship in the event of a military confrontation.

  • While it is the largest design ever produced by Starfleet, it makes extremely poor use of space. Quarters for the ship's personnel are luxurious suites instead of compact staterooms, and much of the primary hull is devoted to scientific laboratories, cargo bays, recreational facilities, and other equipment with little military value. The primary hull includes entire decks with no specific purpose,[5] and a large lounge area occupies the bow of the ship.
  • The class was designed to carry a large number of civilians, resulting in large numbers of non-combatant personnel on the ship. The primary hull (saucer) was designed to detach and carry the civilians to safety should the ship be called into battle, but the impulse engines in the primary hull contain so much of the ship's power reserves that it needs to be in place to maximize the ship's combat effectiveness.[6]
  • Ships of the class are especially noted for the poor performance of critical safety systems.
    • In several instances, "fail-safe" systems designed to shut down or eject the ship's warp core in the event of an imminent containment breach failed to operate, sometimes resulting in the destruction of the ship.[7]
    • Virtually all of the ship's safety systems are controlled by the central computer, resulting in severe risk if the computer suffers damage or a major malfunction.[8]
    • The biofilter built into the transporter system to keep infectious diseases from being transported onto the ship consistently fails to detect and isolate new pathogens.[9]
    • The safety features of its holodecks are notoriously unreliable.

Despite these problems (which may have been addressed over time), the Galaxy-class proved itself a powerful warship during the Dominion War. In the First Battle of Chin'toka, the USS Galaxy took several hull breaches from Cardassian orbital defense platforms. [10]. In the Battle of Cardassia, several Galaxy-class ships participated in the battle. 2 years later, seven Galaxy-class ships were near Earth when Voyager returned home.[11]

History

The Galaxy-class is the premier vessel deployed by Starfleet and serves as the backbone of all its major space-faring activities. The ships were designed and built in the Utopia-Plantia Shipyards at Mars in the Sol system. The class was beset early on by multiple technical issues possibly from its rushed design and deployment. It served as the backbone of the Federation fleet until the design and deployment of the Sovereign-class vessels took their place as Starfleet's premier starship. The design of the more combat oriented Sovereign-class ships may have been in reaction to the battle at Wolf 359.

The class continued to function in its primary mission of exploration and discovery. With major refits and technology updates the Galaxy-class is still a well rounded vessel that can take a large amount of punishment in combat. During they Dominion War they fared extremely well in all major engagements.

Notable ships

Notes

  1. did a dedicated count on the model
  2. TNG "Conundrum"
  3. TNG "Encounter at Farpoint"
  4. DS9 "Way of the Warrior"
  5. TNG "Liaisons"
  6. TNG "Best of Both Worlds"
  7. TNG "Cause and Effect"
  8. TNG "Contagion"
  9. TNG "Angel One", "Shades of Gray"
  10. DS9 "Tears of the Prophets"
  11. VOY "Endgame"
  12. DS9 "Tears of the Prophets", Star Trek: Nemesis
  13. DS9 "Way of the Warrior", "Sacrifice of Angels", "Tears of the Prophets", "What You Leave Behind"
  14. VOY "Timeless", "Endgame"
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