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Prior to 2151, Vanik participated in one first contact situation with an alien race.
In 2151, Vanik and the Ti'Mur intercepted an unmanned drone that had been sent by the Dokaalan. The drone was transmitting a distress call for help as the Dokaalan's planet was breaking up due to seismic activity. Vanik decided not to attempt to find the Dokaalan as he assumed that the planet had already been destroyed and he was also under orders to observe the latest activities of Enterprise. (TNG novel: A Time to Sow)
In 2155, Vanik was in command of the T'Jal near Alpha Centauri. The Romulans attempted to use their arrenhe'hwiua telecapture system to commandeer the T'Jal. The Romulan-crewed Klingon D5-class battlecruiser IKS Mup'chIch used its telecapture device on the T'Jal and the Toth. Captain L'Vor engaged the self destruct and destroyed the Toth before it could be hijacked. Captain Vanik attempted the same but the T'Jal was captured. (ENT novel: Beneath the Raptor's Wing)
|Serel • Taren • T'Lih • Vanik|
According to "Breaking the Ice", Vanik had been in the space program since 2075. According to A Time to Sow, Vanik had "worn the uniform of the space service" for 26 years (making it 2125 when he joined).