Nebula-class

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Nebula Class
Nebula beauty.jpg
General Information
Classification Explorer
Role Exploration / Patrol / Science
Production Dates 2356 - Present
Physical Arrangement
Hull Duranium-Tritanium Double Hull
Armor None
Length 442.3 m
Width 318.1 m
Height 130.4 m
Decks 36 (Including Pod)
Crew
Standard Crew Complement 750
Officers 170
Enlisted 580
Civilian Up to 200
Minimum Crew Complement 300
Maximum Crew Complement 2,000
Evacuation Limit 15,000
Personnel Support Systems
Medical Facilities Large-scale; EMH included
Holographic Systems Holodecks, Holosuites, full-ship holographic projectors
Entertainment Mess Halls, Gymnasia, Lounges
Transporters Personnel Transporters, Cargo Transporters, Emergency Transporters
Propulsion and Power
Main Power Shuventis Class 14/M Matter-Antimatter Reactor
Warp/Transwarp Drive 2 T5 Transwarp Nacelles
Impulse Engines 3 Scott Class 7/E Fusion-based Impulse Engines
Speed Ratings
  • Impulse: .25C
  • Cruising Speed: Warp 8 / Transwarp 4
  • Maximum Cruising Speed: Warp 9.2 / Transwarp 4.5
  • Maximum Rated Speed: Warp 9.91 / Transwarp 5
Sensors and Computers
Computer Systems 3 Class 10 Computer Cores, Bioneural Circuitry
Sensor Systems Advanced Sensor Suites (17 LY maximum range)
Probes Yes; fore and aft dedicated probe launchers
Tactical Systems
Phasers 5 Type-XII Phaser Arrays
Torpedo Launchers 1 Type-III Quantum Torpedo Turret
Ordnance 100 Quantum Torpedoes
Shields Regenerative Shields
Auxiliary Craft
Shuttlebays 2
Shuttles 36
Shuttlepods 20
Runabouts 2
Workbees 10
Captain's Yacht Sovereign-type
Modules
Available Modules See Here

The Nebula-class is a type of explorer starship employed by the Federation. It is one of the fleet's premiere multi-mission platform, and has succeeded the Excelsior-class as a workhorse for the fleet, being sent on missions ranging from scientific exploration to tactical interdiction to colony support, thanks to its interchangeable mission pod. It shares the same components of its Galaxy-class sister, in a more compact arrangement, having been designed concurrently. This class remains in production to the present day, as a successor class has not yet been constructed that rivals its flexibility.

History

Though the venerable Miranda and Excelsior classes of starships had been serving Starfleet's needs well, and the Ambassador class has provided Starfleet with an incredible long-range exploratory platform in the 2330's, fleet modernization was on the admiralty's mind by the early 2340's. Based on innovations made through the Ambassador project, the Advanced Starship Design Bureau proposed several new designs to take Starfleet into the second half of the 24th Century. Four of these designs (the Cheyenne, Springfield, Challenger, and New Orleans) were slated to begin construction in the 2340's, to serve as test-beds of the technologies that would be showcased in the Nebula and Galaxy-class explorers to be constructed in the 2350's, and they would eventually become companion vessels to their larger cousins.

The Nebula design was authorized in 2343, along with the Galaxy design, and the design process continued in tandem until both designs were completed in 2350. The Nebula-class starships were intended to be the more pragmatic sister of the Galaxy, with a more compact design, and provisions to install a mission-specific module on a large pylon. This would give the class the ability to serve in a number of roles. While it also had the mission-specific configurable spaces within the hull, the changeover period was much better than the Galaxy, while providing an external configurable space that the other class did not; tactical and sensor systems, for example, were more easily added in a pod than inside the ship's hull.

In their base configurations, the Galaxy is the superior tactical platform, as the Nebula does not contain torpedo launchers within the hull. Rather, these systems are added via mission modules. In addition, the Nebula class lacks in its aft weapons coverage, due to the position of the pod. This ordnance limitation was deemed an acceptable trade-off for mission configurability, as vessels assigned to tactical missions would be provided with torpedo launchers in their mission pod.

Construction on the USS Nebula began in mid-2350 at the Beta Antares Fleet Yards. A further 15 units were authorized, for an initial production run of 16. Construction completed in 2356 on Nebula, with Honshu following closely behind her. Shakedown operations ran successfully through 2358, with the class fully commissioned and in regular service starting in the spring of 2359. By 2363, all 16 units had been completed, with a further 20 ordered, at a rate of five per year. They were popular with their crews, and served with distinction in many capacities. Despite this, the Battle of Wolf 359 gave the fleet a devastating blow, and Starfleet scrambled to find ways to improve the fleet's tactical readiness.

In 2367, all of the Nebula-class ships on active duty were recalled to starbase for refit. In studies of the class' performance over the years, it was discovered that the bifurcated pylon structure that held the mission modules was lacking in stability. All units were modified, instead to use a larger, more robust pylon that was better-designed to withstand warp and combat stresses. This new pylon blocked direct access to the main shuttlebay from the stern, so new approach and departure protocols were developed. The impulse systems were redesigned, with covers installed over the exhaust systems to mask their ion trails, and a third impulse engine was added to the new pylon. This refit was completed in record time, thanks to the ferver in the fleet after the Borg invasion, by 2369.

In addition, further modules were developed, with the most heavily-deployed version being the new Tactical Pod. It combined some of the sensor ability of the old sensor pod, with eight forward-firing torpedo launchers, and two rear torpedo launchers, that made the Nebula-class capable of being outfitted as a gunship, while retaining the ability to explore. A module was developed that would take the place of the Captain's Yacht module and provide forward ventral torpedo coverage. This module was installed on 90% of all Nebula-class ships by 2373, eliminating the torpedo deficiency in the class, even when they were not operating with a tactical pod.

At the start of the Dominion War, there were 52 Nebula-class ships in the fleet, with Melbourne, Bellerophon, Hera, and Farragut having been destroyed or lost by that point. The class served primarily in combat roles, though some units were equipped with medical or troop pods to support the war effort. Prometheus and Honshu were destroyed, and T'Kumbra was heavily damaged, but the vessels served with remarkable combat performance, especially compared to their Excelsior-class cousins. Following the war, they remained in service, with the majority of the Nebula fleet transitioned back to exploratory roles.

In 2386, upgrades were designed for the now 80 Nebula-class ships in service, which included upgrades to bioneural computer systems, full-ship holographic projectors, enhanced tactical systems (including Type-XII phaser arrays and a quantum torpedo turret borrowed from the Sovereign design), and the new tetryon-based transwarp drive. Upgrades were scheduled to be completed for the class by the end of 2390, with twenty more units ordered to bring the fleet up to a round 100 units by 2395, making the Nebula class a Starfleet mainstay well into the 25th Century, with every sign of being just as venerable as the Excelsior-class ships that she replaced.

Ships of this class

Name Registry Status
USS Nebula NCC-60200 Active
USS Honshu NCC-60205 Destroyed (2374)
USS Monitor NCC-61826 Active
USS Merrimac NCC-61827 Active
USS Lexington NCC-61832 Active
USS Hera NCC-62006 Missing (2370)
USS Bellerophon NCC-62048 Destroyed (2367)
USS Phoenix NCC-65420 Active
USS Farragut NCC-60591 Destroyed (2373)
USS Gettysburg NCC-7989-C Destroyed (2387)
USS Bonshure NCC-70915 Active
USS Leeds NCC-70352 Active
USS Prometheus NCC-71201 Destroyed (2372)
USS Endeavor NCC-71805 Active
USS Sutherland NCC-72015 Active
USS Lancelot NCC-74410 Active
USS Cambrian NCC-74986-A Destroyed (2388)


References

  • TNG: "The Wounded"
  • TNG: "Best of Both Worlds II"
  • TNG: "Redemption II"
  • Star Trek: Generations
  • DS9: "Emissary"
  • DS9: "Second Sight"
  • DS9: "Explorers"
  • DS9: "The Visitor"
  • DS9: "Doctor Bashir, I Presume"
  • DS9: "Sacrifice of Angels"
  • DS9: "Waltz"
  • DS9: "The Reckoning"
  • DS9: "Profit and Lace"
  • DS9: "Take Me Out to the Holosuite"
  • DS9: "The Changing Face of Evil"
  • DS9: "What You Leave Behind"
  • Star Trek: First Contact
  • VOY: "Non Sequitur"
  • VOY: "Message in a Bottle"
  • VOY: "Relativity"
  • VOY: "Endgame"
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation Technical Manual
  • Star Trek: Starship Spotter