|Expected Duration:||85 Years|
|Resupply Interval:||5 Years|
|Refit Interval:||10 Years|
|Cruising Speed:||Warp 6|
|Maximum Speed:||Warp 8|
|Emergency Speed:||Warp 9 for 8 hours|
|Civilians:||20 - 100|
Double-layer monotonium hull
|[ Source ]|
The Constitution-class was a Federation heavy cruiser starship in Starfleet service in the mid-to-late 23rd century. The design underwent several refits in its many decades of service. The original configuration and refit variants of this class influenced starship design significantly, and accelerated the standardization of the fleet.
Celebrated members of the class included the USS Enterprise and the USS Enterprise-A two of the most venerated starships in Federation history, having risen to prominence under the captaincy of James T. Kirk.
Development of the Constitution-class began in the 2230s when key Fleet personnel, including Admiral William Jefferies and Captain Robert April, came to see the necessity of an all-purpose vessel that could explore space while protecting Federation interests and expanding its reach. When a design team led by Doctor Lawrence Marvick finished plans late in that decade for just such a ship, a new class was swiftly approved by Starfleet Command.
Starfleet authorized its Fleet Yards in San Francisco to build two vessels, with Admiral Jefferies overseeing NX 1700 -- christened Constitution -- and Captain April supervising its sister ship 1701, as yet unnamed.
The USS Constitution NCC-1700's hull was completed in 2244, with enhanced sensor and deflector shield systems installed. When hostilities broke out late in the year, Jefferies pulled her from drydock to take decisive part in the Battle of Donatu V. Blunting the Klingon invasion force -- without weaponry -- she rescued USS Yorkshire but was badly damaged and required extensive repairs.
Construction on NX 1701 continued apace, employing new Duotronic computer systems designed by Doctor Richard Daystrom, which afforded 1701 better control of her systems. After a secret mission into the Romulan Neutral Zone, April christened her the Enterprise.
Beyond minor modifications, the successful design saw no major changes until the 2270s, when a significant refit had been more than earned. Upgrade proposals all shared a more efficient power plant, with some versions streamlining the hull for better warpfield geometry, and others emphasizing enhanced weaponry or science capability; the final design merged many of the proposals.
The first major refit was Enterprise, and its success ensured the refit of the rest, bringing the fleet in line with newer technologies and extending its life.
A Constitution-class ship served into the late 24th century and was destroyed in battle at Wolf 359; others, reactivated or still in service, fought in the Dominion War, and took part in the task force to retake Deep Space 9.
At least one decommissioned Constitution-class ship was sold to a private entity; later known as Glory, it was acquired by Romulans and given to privateer Deigo DeBlazio to harass Federation shipping.