The Herans are the product of genetic engineering conducted by a group known as the Originators. The effects of this work made it impossible for the Herans to withstand intense emotions and, thus, they must control it. Being genetically engineered 'supermen' their abilities were far greater compared to ordinary humans whom they referred to as 'Primals'. Their intelligence is noted at being seventy percent higher then human-normal and their strengths as well as endurances were better than a Klingon's. In addition to this, their senses and reflexes were equally superior. They were also immune to any form of disease.
The Heran society was shaped by the Originators belief that they were the superior form of life and, thus, had a right to dominate the galaxy. This is the reason why they named themselves, and their homeworld, after a mythological goddess of heaven. Originally, they abandoned this view but during Stardate 47359.1 they attempted to continue the Originators purpose for them. This however was thwarted by Captain Jean-Luc Picard and the USS Enterprise, with help from Heran expatriate and civilian crew member Doctor Astrid Kemal.