Canon Facts Backstage Info  Speculation
Science vessel. Some units have been refitted as technology test beds.
Unit Run
NCC 602 USS Oberth
NCC 50331 USS Biko 
(NCC 31600 USS Bonestell)
NCC 59318 USS Cochrane
NCC 623 USS Copernicus
(NCC 638 USS Grissom)
(USS Olympia)
(NCC 53847 USS Pegasus)
(NCC 59983 USS Raman)
(NCC 53911 USS Tsiolkovsky)
(NAR 18834 SS Vico)
NCC 19002 USS Yosemite 
plus 2,174 vessels built. 1,049 were lost during Wolf 359 and the Dominion war, 1,137 remain in service.
2269 - 2338
Length : 150.81 m
Beam : 87 m
Height : 41 m
Decks : 12 including engineering, 5 habitable
25,000 tons
Widely varies between types. Typically 20 - 60
2 x Type IV Phaser banks, total output 3,500 TeraWatts 
Probe magazine can hold up to 25 photon torpedoes, making it equal to a 2nd class photon torpedo tube, but these are rarely carried
Defence Systems
Shield system, total capacity 243,000 TeraJoules
Standard Duranium single hull
Standard level Structural Integrity Field
Warp Speeds
(TNG Scale)
Normal Cruise : Warp Factor 4
Maximum Cruise : Warp Factor 5
Maximum Rated : Warp Factor 5.8 for twelve hours
Strength Indices
(Galaxy class = 1,000)
Beam Firepower : 70
Torpedo Firepower : 62.5
Weapon Range and Accuracy : 85
Shield Strength : 90
Hull Armour : 10
Speed : 350
Combat Manoeuvrability : 12,000
Overall Strength Index
Grade 1/2
Expected Hull Life
100 years
Refit Cycle
Minor : 1 year 
Standard : 4 years 
Major : 20 years

Notes : The Oberth class has a distinguished Starfleet career dating back for over a century. They are no record breakers - even when the first ship was commissioned in 2269 there were far more capable platforms from which to conduct scientific research and exploration. But the Oberth's had some crucial advantages - they were easy to build and easy to run. The design was highly modular - the whole vessel was made up of sections of 50, 150, or 300 tons which were simply bolted together and sealed. This allowed construction to take place in the smallest of facilities, even those intended to handle craft such as shuttles and small transports. The warp drive system, one of the most difficult parts of any starship to fabricate, sacrificed a large degree of speed and acceleration in return for simplicity and reliability. These factors enabled no less than eight Oberth class vessels to be built for the same resources as a single Constitution class starship. In service the Oberth's were just as easy to run as they were to build; the engineering plant was almost wholly automated, with the engineering hull unmanned in normal operation; the entire engineering crew consisted of one officer and four enlisted personnel, less than a tenth of the number normal for a vessel of this size.

The exploratory nature of the Oberth class mission meant that they would frequently discover new alien species, but their small size and limited crew numbers meant that they had a very limited diplomatic capability. Although they did occasionally engage in first contact procedures, it was more usual that an Oberth would make an initial assessment without revealing itself before reporting back to Starfleet and allowing larger vessels to make the actual contact.

Over the decades of their service the Oberth's have been produced in and upgraded to over twenty different variations. Early changes are limited to the sensor and laboratory resources, but the later models introduced improved crew facilities such as larger quarters and replicator systems, made possible by reduced crew numbers due to further automation. In the 2340's all units received new phaser banks - although the peaceful nature of the Oberth class is emphasized by the irony that this change was necessitated by new safety standards introduced for phaser equipment, and that the resultant changes actually lowered the ships phaser power by nearly 10%!

The Galaxy class was initially planned to replace the Oberth class in service, but Starfleets recent move toward smaller starship designs has led to a stay of execution for the class. They are now expected to remain in service at least until the beginning of the next century.

Last updated : 24th October 1999.
This page is Copyright Graham Kennedy 1998.

Star Trek et al is Copyright Paramount Pictures 1996/97.
No Copyright  infringement is intended and this page is for personal use only.
All  of the above classes of star ships and all of the
named ships are copyright Paramount 1996/97.