- For other uses, see Centaur.
The Centaur-class was a type of Federation starship, a cruiser that was in use by Starfleet in the 23rd, 24th and 25th centuries. (ST novel: Articles of the Federation, ST video game: Legacy, STO - "Klingon War" mission: "Welcome to Earth Spacedock")
History and specificationsEdit
During the Dominion War in the early 2370s, the Centaur was conceived as a vessel that could be constructed by using pre-made stock components that were also utilized in building the older Excelsior- and Miranda-class starships, meaning this ship could be made without the same amount of research and development investment a newer design would entail. As such, many of these vessels were fielded in battle during the Dominion War, as the ships and their components were common enough to be easily rebuilt and replaced. (DS9 episode: "Call to Arms", DS9 reference: Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Technical Manual, ST reference: The Official Starships Collection #52)
Its attributes made the Centaur-class medium cruiser ideally suited for border patrol and incursion missions and allowed them to provide an early warning and a first line of defense against invading Dominion forces. (ST reference: The Official Starships Collection #52)
The Centaur-class light cruiser saw action in the Federation-Klingon War of 2405-2410, the Iconian War, and various localized engagements between Starfleet and hostile combatants. (STO video game: Iconian War)
In one permutation of the mirror universe where the Terran Empire was revived by Captain James O'Brien, Centaur-class frigates participated in various incursions and attempted invasions of the primary universe by Imperial Starfleet. Unlike their primary counterparts, all Imperial vessels were equipped with cloaking devices. (STO video game: Legacy of Romulus)
In the 2370s, Centaur-class medium cruiser vessels crewed 315 officers and crew. The Centaur vessels weighed 870,000 metric tons, measured 381.87 meters in length, 320.16 meters in width and 78.54 meters in height. The Centaur had a warp core power plant rated at over 1,500 cochrane units in output, feeding two warp nacelles. The warp drive was rated for a maximum output of warp factor 9.6 for 12 hours. The ships of the Centaur class were also fitted with two impulse engine reactor plants and emitters.
- The DS9TM gives a length of 382 meters, whereas the The Official Starships Collection says 210 meters. The former makes Centaur's saucer match the size of the Excelsior's, the latter renders the Centaur a smaller vessel, the size of the Miranda class.
The ship was a composite design built from the saucer and nacelles of the Excelsior-class and the rollbar of the Miranda-class. The Excelsior's shuttlebay was mounted forward-facing on top of the saucer. The Miranda's rollbar spares were inverted to serve as nacelle pylons, the weapons pod itself was turned upside down and became the secondary hull. The pod contained two forward and to rear facing torpedo launchers, and the type-9 phaser arrays provided full 360 degree covering around the hull of the ship. The ship's deflector was hidden at the bottom of the secondary hull. The bridge module was lifted from the Miranda class. Unique features included copper-colored modules behind the bridge and turrets of the same color. There were also various raised features on the underside of the saucer. (ST reference: The Official Starships Collection #52)
The Centaur weapons consisted of nine Type-IX phaser emitters and 2 photorp launchers. By the year 2380 however, the Centaur-class would have 18 phaser strips and 4 torpedo launchers (DS9 reference: Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Technical Manual; ST novel: Articles of the Federation)
In the later 24th century, the Centaur-class was slated to continue production at the ASDB Integration Facility at Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards shipyards, on Mars. (DS9 reference: Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Technical Manual)
In the 2400s and 2410s decades, the Centaur was built the size of a Miranda-class starship and crewed 200 officers. Federation Starfleet rated its Centaur-class a tier 1 light cruiser. The Klingon Defense Force and the Romulan Republican Force regarded them as frigates. (STO - "Klingon War" missions: "Welcome to Earth Spacedock", "Welcoming the Federation")
The Centaur was built to be modular. Components like saucer, nacelle pylon, and nacelles were interchangeable with those of the Miranda- and ShiKahr-class light cruisers. This allowed for a high degree of customization at the commanding officer's discretion. Components could be exchanged at Federation shipyards like Earth Spacedock and Deep Space Station K-7. The deflector was no longer hidden but visible beneath the secondary hull.
Like all ships of the Alpha Quadrant Alliance, Centaurs was able to sustain a maximum warp factor beyond 9.9 and received access to the AQA transwarp network. When an officer ranked vice admiral or higher took command of a Centaur, a quantum slipstream drive was installed.
The standard armament were two phaser beam arrays and one photon torpedo launcher. The minimum rank to command a Centaur was lieutenant. The bridge was crewed by one tactical officer, science officer and engineer each, ranked ensign. (STO - "Klingon War" mission: "Welcome to Earth Spacedock")
By 2409, a total of six basic livery designs was available to choose from, which could be modified further. These options were known as: Types 1-5, and Veteran. (STO - "Klingon War" mission: "Welcome to Earth Spacedock")
In addition, the installation of 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")
|This article or subsection has an associated category.||Centaur class starships|
| Federation Starfleet|
|Arimathea • Buckner • Boston • Carolina • Centaur • Cheiron • Madrid • Revere • Valor|
| Terran Empire Starfleet|
|Centaur • Centaur-F • Dakota • Monterey|
The USS Centaur first appeared in canon in DS9 episode: "Call to Arms", but the class itself did not receive a name until the ST novel: Articles of the Federation. The ST video game: Legacy revealed that ships of this type were in service as early as the 23rd century, while DS9 reference: Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Technical Manual listed them among ships that could be quickly built from rearranged components for the Dominion War. The DS9 TM also illustrated many technical details about the class. While the ship seen in canon was referred to as the Centaur, the model used in the episode was labeled "USS Buckner".
The ebook Ship Recognition Manual, Volume 1: The Ships of Starfleet published by Last Unicorn Games after they lost the Star Trek license mentions this class having 16 decks, and says it entered service from 2373. The Dominion War Sourcebook: The Fires of Armageddon mentions an additional ship, the USS Thessalonica (NCC-72884).
Several more ships of this class were described in unused code that can be decompiled from the software of the video game Legacy. These vessels include the USS Jann, USS Courtney, USS Daltrey, USS Neville, USS Voltair, USS Amyking, USS Beverly and USS Strangh.
- Centaur class article at Memory Alpha, the wiki for canon Star Trek.
- Light Cruiser article at The Star Trek Online Wiki.