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Excelsior class: Misc



Up to date as of February 02, 2010

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The Excelsior-class was a type of battleship and explorer that was first built in the 2280s and went on to be used by Starfleet throughout the late 23rd and the 24th centuries. (ST roleplay modules: Star Trek: The Next Generation Officer's Manual, Starfleet Operations Manual)

The prototype of this class was the USS Excelsior (NX-2000) was initially fitted with an experimental transwarp drive and was proclaimed as "the Great Experiment". (TOS movie: Star Trek III: The Search for Spock)



The "great experiment" of transwarp drive was meant to revolutionize faster-than-light transport by capturing the warp envelope in a transporter field and beaming it ahead of the ship and increasing the speed in which the it could travel. However, the Excelsior's first test of the transwarp drive to apprehend the stolen USS Enterprise in 2285, was thwarted when the drive was sabotaged by Montgomery Scott. (TOS roleplay module: Federation Starship Recognition Manual; TOS movie: Star Trek III: The Search for Spock)

Despite the ignoble start, tests continued to be ran on the Excelsior but the transwarp drive continued to prove unreliable and was declared a failure. However, the Excelsior's spaceframe proved to be very stable and reliable and it was decided to replace the transwarp engines with standard warp drive and continued with production of further starships. A further Mark I Excelsior-class starship, the USS Proxima was built and she underwent shakedown trials in 2288 (reference stardate 2/2400). Two Mark II Excelsior-class vessels, the USS Columbia and USS Galacta were also launched in the same year for shakedown trials. (TOS roleplay module: Federation Ship Recognition Manual)

Several years later, a new variant of the Excelsior-class design entered service with added modifications to the basic hull design. The first ship to be constructed to these specifications was the USS Enterprise-B which was launched in 2293. (TNG movie: Star Trek Generations) Although some Excelsior-class vessels were built to these specifications, many new vessels used the original design. (Star Trek: The Next Generation; Star Trek: Deep Space Nine; ST video game: Legacy; DS9 episode: "Paradise Lost")

The production run of the Excelsior-class ran well into the 24th century which highlighted the adaptability and soundness of the basic design. However by the early 2330s, construction on new Excelsior-class vessels was down to just two a year, as new starship classes such as the Ambassador-class came into service. Although the Excelsior's were often relegated to secondary duties by the 2360s, large numbers remained in service. (ST short story: "Hour of Fire"; TNG episode: "Tin Man"; VOY episode: "Endgame"; DS9 episode: "What You Leave Behind")

During the 2370s, the Excelsior's served in the bulk of engagements against the Borg and the Dominion, although there was a high attrition rate in combat missions. Due to this, at least one Excelsior-class, the USS Lakota, was refitted with more advanced weaponry, such as quantum torpedoes.

Technical data



The Excelsior fires photon torpedoes

The initial Mark I design of the Excelsior-class included 16 phaser banks (8 FH-11's, 8 FH-5's) and 4 photon torpedo launchers. The two varied phaser types was to make sure that all weapons arcs were covered by both long-range and short-range weapons. However, the evaluation teams decided to replace the 8 FH-5 banks and replaced them with two further FH-11 banks, which meant that the Excelsior's only had ten phaser banks, but the field of fire overlapped more effectively.

The improvement in torpedo launchers technology allowed two further launchers to be incorporated into the Mark II design and remained in place through further models. (TOS roleplay module: Federation Ship Recognition Manual)

By the 2370s, the Excelsior design had been outfitted with improved phaser emplacements, quantum torpedoes and other tactical improvements which brought it into line with later starship designs and proved necessary during the conflicts with the Borg and the Dominion. (DS9 episode: "Paradise Lost")


The deflector shields of the Excelsior-class were an improved version of the quadri-transducer shield that was in use in the late 23rd century, and was found to deliver more deflective power. (TOS roleplay module: Federation Ship Recognition Manual)

Saucer separation

By the mid-24th century, Starfleet began to allow civilians to travel aboard Federation starships and allow an officer to have their families with them as they traveled. While the newest starship designs such as the Galaxy-class and Nebula-class were built to accomodate civilians, the older Excelsior-class ships weren't designed to carry them.

However, minor refits allowed for some accomodation of families. The presence of civilians also made their safety a top priority, as the larger Galaxy-class vessels were equipped with a facility to separate the saucer section and allow civilians to escape from a field of battle. With this procedure in mind, several Excelsior-class vessels, such as the USS Yorktown and USS Hood were equipped with the same ability to separate the saucer. (TNG novelization: Encounter at Farpoint; TNG novel: Ghost Ship)

Known vessels




Starship classes of the United Federation of Planets
By name AakennAchernarAchillesAdvanceAegianAeolusAerieAkiraAkula (destroyer)Akula (frigate)AlaskaAmbassadorAndesAndromedaAndorAntaresAntonApacheApolloArcherArielAscendantAshantiAvengerBabcockBaderBakerBaton RougeBodeBolarusBonaventureBonhomme RichardBradburyBrentonCanadaCanopusCapellaCentaurCentaurusChallengerChandleyChargerChariotChesapeakeCheyenneChimeraChristopherCle DanCochiseCochraneConstellationConstitutionContinentCopernicusCygnusDaedalusDanubeDecaturDeckerDefenderDefiantDenevaDerfDollondDopplerDreadnoughtDrexlerDurrettEagleEdwardEl DoradoEnterprise (23rd century)Enterprise (alternate future)EpochEpsilonErewonExcaliburExcelsiorFederationFenlonFermiFijiFreedomFrontierGagarinGalaxyGenevaGenserGracefulGraysonGriffonHaleHardinHermes (scout)Hermes (fast cruiser)HestonHoganHokule'aHorizonHuronIcarusIncursionIndomitableIntrepidIowaIstanbulIwo JimaKarekhKeithKepplerKethkinKievKitty HawkK'KmarakKolm-AnKorolevLarsonLauroLaweyaLegacyLenthalLexingtonLibertyLokiLoknarLondon (troop transport)LunaMackenzieMakinMannMarklinMarshallM'BengaMediterraneanMercedMidwayMirandaMissionMissouriMockingbirdMoKalMonocerosMoscowNebulaNelsonNew OrleansNewportNiagaraNobleNomadNorthamptonNorwayNovaOberonOberthOdinOdysseusOkinawaOlympicOppenheimerOrionOsakaOverfieldPaladin (destroyer)Paladin (24th century)PhiladelphiaPinnaclePiperPolarityPolluxPortsmithPremonitionPrometheusProximaPtolemyPyreneesRakotaRanger (cruiser)Ranger (scout)ReliantRemoraRenaissanceRickenbackerRigelRoyal SovereignSaberSaganSaladinSamsonSanta FeSawyerScorpioScyllaSequoiaShermanShi'KahrSierraSivaSolarSovereignSoyuzSpringfieldSteamrunnerSurakSydneyVentureTangentThomas PaineThucydidesThufirTiconderogaTikopaiTritiumTyphonUkoraUlyssesUralUtahVestaVigilant (scout)Vigilant (tactical escort)VoyagerWambunduWilkersonWei-FaWellingtonWellsYeagerYorkshireZodiacunnamed Emblem of the United Federation of Planets

Seal of the Federation Starfleet.
By type Federation cargo shipFederation colony shipFederation construction shipFederation galaxy shipFederation mining freighterFederation repair ship


  • The RPG The Dominion War Sourcebook: The Fires of Armageddon, published by Last Unicorn Games after they had lost their Star Trek licence listed several other Excelsior-class starships: USS Caldos (NCC-32628), USS Kolno (NCC-41069), USS Carpathia (NCC-43118), USS Blackeagle (NCC-46200), USS Vasidrun (NCC-47936), USS Apache (NCC-57924), USS Tyr (NCC-58314), USS Sunchaser (NCC-63185) and the USS Bolsetu (NCC-63744).
  • The RPG Ship Recognition Manual, Volume 2: Starships of The Original Series Era, published by Last Unicorn Games after they had lost their Star Trek licence listed two other Excelsior-class starships: USS Valorous (NCC-2053) and USS Retribution (NCC-2017).

External links

This article uses material from the "Excelsior class" article on the Memory-beta wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

ST Expanded

Up to date as of February 07, 2010

The Star Trek Expanded Universe Database is for fanon and related content. See for the canon Star Trek wiki.

The Excelsior-class was a type of starship the entered service with the Federation Starfleet in the 2280s. The class would continue to serve with Starfleet well into the 2370s, nearly a century after the prototype was launched.

The prototype vessel, the USS Excelsior (NX-2000) was designed to test Starfleet's new transwarp drive. (Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home) The drive would prove to be a failure and the class was equipped with standard warp drive. (Ship Recognition Manual, Volume 4: Starships of the Original Series Era)

The maximum evacuation capacity of Excelsior-class ships were 9,800 people. (Star Trek: The Next Generation Technical Manual )



Late 23rd century refit

In 2293, the first refitted Excelsior was launched, the USS Enterprise-B. (Star Trek Generations)

The refitted Excelsior had several design changes over the original such as the inclusion of a a second impulse engine at the rear of the saucer section and redesigned warp nacelles to improve the ship's performance at warp speeds. (Star Trek Generations; Ship Recognition Manual, Volume 4: Starships of the Original Series Era)

Bismarck refit

In 2300, Starfleet Command commissionned an Excelsior-class ship that served as its testbed for the plasma torpedo technology, using tubes that were either made available from the Gorns or stolen from the Romulans. (TOS video game: Starfleet Command)

The USS Bismarck was the Federation testbed of the plasma torpedo technology. (RIS Bouteina)

2370s refit

In 2372, the Excelsior-class underwent another refit. The USS Lakota was refitted with heavier firepower with more powerful phaser arrays and quantum torpedoes. It also had ablative armor added making it more resistant to damage. These refits resulted in a larger vessel then the earlier Excelsior designs. (Ship Recognition Manual, Volume 1: The Ships of Starfleet)

Background information

  • Specifications for the original Excelsior from the Ship Recognition Manual, Volume 4: Starships of the Original Series Era.
  • Specifications for the Lakota refit from the Ship Recognition Manual, Volume 1: The Ships of Starfleet.
  • Specifications for the Bismarck refit from the Starfleet Command I & II video games.

Ships commissioned

Excelsior class exploratory cruiser
Canon: Al-Batani - Berlin - Cairo - Charleston - Crazy Horse - Crockett - Enterprise-B - Excelsior - Farragut - Fearless - Fredrickson - Gorkon - Grissom - Hood - Intrepid - Lakota - Lexington - Livingston - Malinche - Melbourne - Okinawa - Potemkin - Repulse - Roosevelt - Tecumseh - Valley Forge
Other notable ships: Aldrin - Apache - Arlington - Athena - Barrington - Beachmont - Bill of Rights - Blackeagle - Bolsetu - Brisbane - Caldos - Cantabrian - Carpathia - Chesapeake - Constant - Crockett - Cunningham - Des Plaines - Dallas - Delaware - Denpasar - Excalibur - Forester - Heading - Jamestown-A - José Mendez - Kolno - Lovell - Mabo - Manila - Milano - Milburn - Minnesota - Normandy - Omaha - Palatine - Park Ridge - Pentok - Polyneices - Prospect - Regal - Resolution - Russell - Saladin - San Pablo - Sherman - Skyfox - Sunchaser - Tyr - Vasidrun - Yorktown
Variant: Bismarck - Canada - Daedalus - Eire - Enterprise-B - Franklin - Immanuel Kant - Lakota - London - Midway - Miyazaki - Pacific - Scott - Shangri-La - Swiftfire - Tai Kamiya
Mirror universe: ISS Repulse
See also: Clemenceau - Curnow - Excelsior - Ingram - Joshua Paul - Leavenworth - Rothwell

External links

This article uses material from the "Excelsior class" article on the ST Expanded wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.


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