- For other uses, see Lafayette.
The Lafayette-class was a Federation starship class, a tier 6 recon destroyer in Starfleet service from the 25th century. The class prototype was the USS Lafayette. (STO - "Victory is Life" mission: "Welcome to Earth Spacedock")
Following the resolution of the Hur'q crisis in 2411, Federation Starfleet and the Klingon Defense Force cooperated to launch a new tier-6 recon destroyer for themselves. In the shipyards' starship selection screen, the Lafayette class was represented by its new prototype, the USS Lafayette. (STO - "Klingon War" mission: "Welcome to Earth Spacedock")
As part of joint Alpha Quadrant Alliance starship development efforts, the Federation and Klingon Empire launched the tier 6-rated recon destroyer classes, with the Klingon Defense Force building the Ketha-class raptor escort, and Starfleet redeveloping the New Orleans-class and launching the Lafayette class.
The design of the Lafayette class combined the design aesthetics of the Andromeda-class exploration cruiser with the New Orleans spaceframe, the same way the Sutherland-class was developed from the Nebula-class spaceframe. ARC website: Recon Destroyer Bundle Stats!)
Just like it's predecessor, the Lafayette-class sports three external mission pod modules, two on the saucer and one dorsally, mounted on top of the engineering section. These pods supposedly house long-range sensor arrays, able to deploy hyper-focussing Trinary beams which converge on a target and dissect sensitive quantum data, irreparably damaging it in the process. While the destructive nature of this deep-scanning device was considered undesirable for scientific studies, the now weaponized trinary beam emitters found a new home in the Recon Destroyer starship defence project. ARC website: Recon Destroyer Bundle Stats!)
In the 25th century, the design of the Lafayette-class recon destroyer allowed its commanding officer to choose from different designs of livery, which could be modified further at starbases. These included the options Type 1-7, Upgrade and Veteran. (STO - "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")