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Shuttlepods are small auxiliary craft that are attached to starships and starbases. They are often smaller than shuttlecraft and originally were mainly used for short-range travel with no warp drive. By the 24th century, however, advances in warp technology permitted some warp capability in craft as small as a shuttlepod.

Starfleet began using shuttlepods in the 22nd century as interface craft. As an example, two shuttlepods were assigned to each NX-class vessel as landing craft and for ship-to-ship transport. In the days when transporter technology was still in its infancy, the shuttlepod was the preferred method of transportation. (Star Trek: Enterprise)

By the 24th century, shuttlepods were assigned to starships to supplement the larger shuttlecraft. (Star Trek: The Next Generation)

The USS Defiant was designed to carry four shuttlepods, which were also capable of use by the crew to leave the ship in the event of a disaster. (DS9 reference: Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Technical Manual, DS9 episodes: "The Search", "Destiny")

Types of Shuttlepod

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