In order to defend the colony from a Kauld attack in 2282, the UFPF Challenger, a vessel of this so called "class" of composite frigate, was hastily built from the wreckage of many colony vessels, with most of the ship's hull (saucer section and the bottom half of the engineering hull) being contributed from the Chesapeake-class USS Peleliu, which was heavily damaged in a previous Kauld attack.
Commander Nick Keller, the Peleliu's former first officer, oversaw the ship's construction and he was later placed in command of the Challenger by Admiral James T. Kirk when the ship was assigned picket duty at Belle Terre following the USS Enterprise's departure from the area. (TOS - New Earth novel: Challenger)
Shortly after, the Challenger was Belle Terre's sole defense when descendants from an alien race who had entered a gateway near Belle Terre over twenty years earlier, had returned to threaten the colony with advanced weaponry and abilities. (CHA novel: Chainmail)