|This article or subsection has an associated category.||Constellation class starships|
- For other uses, see Constellation.
The Constellation-class was a type of Federation cruiser in service to Starfleet in the 23rd and 24th centuries. This class was designed for operating independently of Starfleet Command in the remote reaches of the Federation. The class' successor design were the Ambassador-class heavy cruisers. (ST reference: The Star Trek Encyclopedia; Decipher RPG module: Starships)
The Constellation-class starship was named in memory of the original USS Constellation, which was commanded by Commodore Matthew Decker and lost in battle against a Preserver created doomsday machine in 2267.
The first ship of this class, the USS Constellation NX-1974, was commissioned under experimental status in the year 2275. The Constellation was soon followed by the USS Sempach and the USS Speedwell, with construction beginning soon thereafter on the USS Stargazer and the USS Hathaway. (TOS novel: Honor Blade)
These ships were among the mainstay of Starfleet's exploratory and defense efforts through the early part of the 24th century, some commanded by the same captain for up to twenty years or more. (TNG episode: "The Battle")
These "old-style" vessels were on the verge of being phased out of front-line service in the 2360s, regarded as being "overworked and underpowered". Many had already been entirely decommissioned and rendered "warp inactive", which included removing all antimatter but did not include removing the warp core. Those that were still in service in the 2360s and 2370s were engaged in support roles within the Fleet, such as transport duties and search and rescue missions. (TNG episodes: "Elementary, Dear Data", "Peak Performance"; DS9 episodes: "The Abandoned", "Waltz")
- The USS Nelson seen in "The Fallen" was described on a letters page of a later Early Voyages comic in response to inquiries about it being a TOS era Constellation class as a "prototype of a top secret class". The Constitution class variant model seen in TNG "Booby Trap" is another example of the "sideways" Constellation class nacelle arrangement, however there is no other evidence beside the fact have similar configurations that the two have any connection.
This class also mounted two impulse engine units in a vertical orientation between the nacelles in line with the saucer. Not altering the top sublight speed of the class, these redundant units—when used in concert with each other—gave the ship a huge advantage in acceleration and maneuverability.
The Constellations also mounted twin Constitution-style photon decks at the T-joints of each nacelle assembly, above and below the level of the saucer. This gave the Constellation class four forward photon tubes, each capable of firing a two torpedo spread for a very respectable total salvo of eight torpedoes.
- The number of tubes is based on the "Star Trek: The Magazine" cross section, and the salvos are based on seeing the Enterprise fire two torpedoes from one tube in the final stage of her battle with the Reliant in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.
The underside of the Constellation class saucer featured many fairings that marred her otherwise clean lines. These pallets contained special sensor equipment that befitted her role as a deep-space explorer, most of which could be exchanged for mission specific equipment at a starbase, and could be accessed from the deck above.
History and specifications
In the 25th century, the Constellation-class would continue in Starfleet service as a modernized heavy cruiser, generally commanded by an officer with the rank of commander. By this time the Constellation, had been the basis for several other starships, including the Cheyenne-class and the Stargazer-class. (STO - Klingon War mission: "Welcome to Earth Spacedock")
In the early 25th century, the design of the Constellation-class heavy escort allowed its commanding officer to choose from different hull liveries, which could be modified further. Due to the ship's modular design, hull components were easily exchangeable with those of other four-nacelled heavy cruisers. (STO - The Klingon War mission: "Welcome to Earth Spacedock")
Furthermore, the installation of deflector shields from specific factions modified the hull appearance, including shields from the Reman Resistance, the Breen Confederacy and the Dominion. (STO missions: "Coliseum", "Cold Storage", "Boldly They Rode")
In the Kelvin timeline, Section 31 operated a Constellation-class starship in the year 2261. During the Khitomer Conflict engineered by the organization, this vessel was equipped with a cloaking device impenetrable by Romulan Star Empire sensors and did not participate in combat. The ship was characteristically black for Section 31 ships, and the saucer section included sections of negative space reminiscent of the Dreadnought-class. (TOS - The Khitomer Conflict comic: "Part 3")
In one permutation of the mirror universe where the Terran Empire retained control of the Sol system, Captain Jean-Luc Picard was in command of the ISS Stargazer in the 2360s, a rundown but powerful Constellation-class combat vessel. Additional turrets flanked the bridge module, and the ship was painted in the colors of Imperial Starfleet. (TNG - Mirror Broken comic: "Issue 1")
In another version of the mirror universe, the ISS Starbreaker only differed from primary universe Constellations by wearing the logo of the Terran Empire atop the saucer section. (TNG - Mirror Images comic: "Issue 3")
|Constellation-class class XII heavy cruiser/exploratory cruiser starships|
|standard heavy cruiser configuration||Andromeda • Antares • Antietam • Aquarius • Betelgeuse • Callisto • Canopus • Ceres • Cochise • Constellation (I) • Constellation (II) • Constellation-D • Diadem • Effros • Eridani • Fading Sun • Ferrel • Gibraltar • Gihlan • Indiri • Leonid • Libra • Minora • Nebula • Nova • Orion • Pisces • Polaris • Pulsar • Sagittarius • Sempach • Sirius Major • Speedwell • Stargazer • Taurus • Tubman • Valkyrie • Vespucci • Victory|
|variant heavy destroyer configuration||Alaska • Anatevke • Asakaze • Baccarat • Cassiopeia • Constance • Daring • Diamond • Dragon • Fabrizi • Gettysburg • Hamner • Hathaway • Hollister • Keppler • Leningrad • Magellan • Malign • Marceau • Meredith • Mitisio • Norris • Rupertus • Tai Kang • Taussig • Volkov • Whirlwind • Zodiac|
|Terran Imperial Starfleet
|Starbreaker • Stargazer|
- USS Tubman (NCC-1757-B)
- USS Constellation (NCC-1974)
- USS Constellation (NCC-2500)
- USS Nova (NCC-2501)
- USS Nebula (NCC-2502)
- USS Polaris (NCC-2503)
- USS Andromeda (NCC-2505)
- USS Libra (NCC-2506)
- USS Sagittarius (NCC-2507)
- USS Pulsar (NCC-2508)
- USS Callisto (NCC-2509)
- USS Orion (NCC-2510)
- USS Eridani (NCC-2511)
- USS Taurus (NCC-2512)
- USS Ceres (NCC-2513)
- USS Antares (NCC-2514)
- USS Pisces (NCC-2515)
- USS Leonid (NCC-2516)
- USS Aquarius (NCC-2517)
- USS Indiri (NCC-2518)
- USS Effros (NCC-2519)
- USS Betelgeuse (NCC-2520)
- USS Diadem (NCC-2521)
- USS Canopus (NCC-2523)
- USS Sirius Major (NCC-2524)
- USS Minora (NCC-2525)
- USS Valkyrie (NCC-2590)
- USS Hathaway (NCC-2593)
- USS Stargazer (NCC-2893/NCC-2522)
- USS Magellan (NCC-3069/NCC-2504)
- USS Gettysburg (NCC-3890)
- USS Victory (NCC-9754)
- USS Gihlan (NCC-9761)
The ebook The Dominion War Sourcebook: The Fires of Armageddon, published by Last Unicorn Games after they had lost their Star Trek license listed the USS Windhoek (NCC-37925) as a Constellation-class starship.