A force field was a form of energy barrier. The technology had many applications including use in defensive and safety systems. There were also applications in the sciences and in holography.

Force fields were common systems aboard the starships and facilities of most advanced cultures. For instance, Federation Starfleet vessels, by the 24th century, were installed with force field generators which were placed at almost every junction along corridors. Doing so allows the quick containment of personnel and substances within a limited area, should it be required. The Borg were also known to use forcefields routinely in their vessels, which sometimes restricted the movements of intruders, though Borg drones were able to pass through them, unhindered, by adjusting the frequency of their own personnel force fields. (TNG episode: "Brothers"; VOY episode: "Dark Frontier")

Borg drones' personal force fields could similarly be adapted to block out phaser fire. After a few shots from an enemy, all drones in the vicinity would adjust their force fields to block out the weapon's fire allowing them to continue their activities unhindered. (TNG episode: "Q Who?")

The Federation have also utilized personal force fields, generated by life support belts. (TAS episode & Log One novelization: Beyond the Farthest Star)

In 2266, Captain James T. Kirk used a force field on the planet Zarta in an attempt to stop the city builders, but it only held them for a moment. (TOS comic: "Invasion of the City Builders")

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