Aravaipa Class XI Heavy Cruiser

«Last Updated on January 2, 2024 »

design by Guidomc

Originally intended as a survey cruiser, the Aravaipa class was soon seen as a major combat platform from the oncoming storm that would become the Four-Years War. Begun in late 2248, the Aravaipa class was based, like so many other vessels of the era, on the proven and well-established Constitution class layout. Although the Constitution was only a few years old when tooling was begun on the Aravaipa class, the basic warp nacelle layout, power distribution grid and support systems were well established even by then. The Aravaipa still incorporated some unique features that would serve it well during it’s operational lifetime.

The primary hull was built with only a single main deck making the vessel considerably shorter and less expensive. Unlike other cruisers at the time, the main deck supported almost exclusively the crew billets and other non-essential support facilities. As relations with the Klingons continued to deteriorate, designers realized that the Aravaipa would most likely be operating in the front lines. Combat systems were placed farther within the hull, while scientific systems were place in more vulnerable locations. The main deflector was greatly enlarged while numerous sensor systems were moved to an external pod placed above the primary hull. The pod would allow for these sensors to be swapped out and weapons installed quickly, should war break out. Only the Aravaipa and Navajo were launched with these extra weapons already being installed.

The most surprising design aspect was the decision to use the PB-30 reinforced warp nacelle, rather than the traditional PB-31. Designed to allow plasma to be shunted to specific sets of warp coils, even after significant damage, the PB-30 suffered from a lack of quick acceleration, with warp onset times double and even triple of the more standard warp nacelle design. While Cochrane Warp Dynamics and Leeding Engine, Ltd. both tried several concepts to increase the acceleration and fuel consumption of the PB-30, in the end, little extra could be achieved and construction was finished in 2250.

The Mk I was very well armed with four heavy lasers mounted together on the primary hull. Like other cruisers, the FL-6’s were fitted in pairs on the upper hull, allowing the weapons to share coolant and targeting components in the event of damage. While a major hit of the weapons would knock out both, it required fewer crew to service and maintain. In January of 2252, the Aravaipa and Navajo were both refit with the additional laser systems bringing the total beam weapons to eight and making the Aravaipa one of the most powerful warships in the Federation fleet. But the launch was not without its controversy. Like other vessels oriented toward combat, the Aravaipa was seen as an unnecessary war-mongering gunboat that was contrary to what the Federation stood for. The extensive and state of the art components required more experience crew member, forcing Star Fleet to pull experienced crew from other vessels to adequately crew the Aravaipa. But vindication would be swift after the formal opening of hostilities with the Klingons in 2252.

The Aravaipa class shone during the early conflicts, spurring the updates to the Constitution class and her sister ships. Like most Federation vessels, the Aravaipa was more than a match for any two Klingon vessels it encountered. The Aravaipa in fact would not see extensive combat until the Battle of Lasur Funop in 2253. Unfortunately, the battle would see the first real challenge to the Aravaipa class. The Aravaipa herself was so badly mauled that after limping to the nearest starbase, the vessel was scrapped and cannibalized for parts. The Kiowa was destroyed in a covering action during the Battle of Sult II in May of 2254. Despite tremendous damage to the warp drive, the Kiowa was able to hold of advancing Klingon forces and still warp from the field of battle, allowing nearly all of the surviving crew to abandon ship before a warp core breach destroyed the ship. The crew of the Navajo would not fare so when she was lost at the Battle of Oco in 2255. The Mescalero was the last Aravaipa to see combat in the war, and was scrapped after suffering extensive damage at the Battle of Kolm-an, which eventually lead to secession of hostilities.

The end of the war almost saw the end of the Aravaipa class as a whole. Star Fleet placed a hold on ship construction for several months after the official end of the war. The new Phaser weapons had proven so effective that many felt Laser equipped ships should be redesigned and rearmed. Unfortunately for the Aravaipa, refitting would prove so cost prohibitive that the vessel was nearly cancelled in 2257. But with one vessel completed and another partially constructed, the decision was made to field the two remaining Aravaipa Mk I’s and begin internal design changes for the remaining 6 contracts. The Mk II, equipped with the more efficient Phasers was approved in 2258 and immediately ran into trouble. The Aravaipa had already been outclassed by the older Constitution design even before construction was completed on the first Mk II. Designers hoped to install the more powerful FWF-1, similar to the Constitution power systems, but the shorter nacelle pylons proved incapable of supporting the heavier warp coils. In the end, the Aravaipa continued to use the PB-30 versions of the FWC-1 drive. It would be the lack of flexibility that would eventually cancel the Aravaipa project in 2262. Orders for 4 more Aravaipa were cancelled before year’s end. The remaining Mk I’s would continue as heavy convoy escorts until 2264. The Ramaha was scrapped while the Coyotero was placed in Reserve Status. The remaining two Mk II’s would serve as heavy patrol vessels along the Klingon and Gorn boarders until 2271 when the Tonto was placed on reserve status. Plans are currently in the works to disarm those vessels in reserve fleet status and sell the hulls to Federation corporations. The Aravaipa were all built and upgraded at the Morena shipyards.

Construction Data:
Model – Mk I Mk II
Ship Class – XI XI
Date Entering Service – 2250 2262
Number Constructed – 6 2
Hull Data:
Superstructure Points – 28 29
Damage Chart – C C
Length – 276 m 276 m
Width – 127 m 127 m
Height – 66 m 66 m
Weight – 175,620 mt 175,380 mt
Total SCU – 350 SCU 350 SCU
Cargo Capacity – 17,500 mt 17,500 mt
Landing Capacity – None None
Equipment Date:
Control Computer Type – M-3 M-4
Standard 6-person – 3 3
Emergency 22-person – 2 2
Cargo – 3 3
Other Data:
Crew – 327 325
Passengers – 60 60
Shuttlecraft – 18 18
Engines And Power Data:
Total Power Units Available – 38 40
Movement Point Ratio – 4/1 4/1
Warp Engine Type – FWC-1 FWC-1
Number – 2 2
Power Units Available – 16 ea. 16 ea.
Stress Chart – O/M O/M
Max Safe Cruising Speed – Warp 6 Warp 6
Emergency Speed – Warp 8 Warp 8
Impulse Engine Type – FIC-3 FIE-2
Power Units Available – 6 8
Weapons And Firing Data:
Beam Weapon Type – FL-6 FH-3
Number – 8 8
Firing Arcs – 2 f/p, 2 f, 2 f/s, 2 a 2 f/p, 2 f, 2 f/s, 2 a
Firing Chart – H W
Maximum Power – 3 5
Damage Modifiers:
+3 (-) (1-10)
+2 (1-4) (11-17)
+1 (5-7) (18-20)
Torpedo Weapon Type – FAC-1 FP-1
Number – 2 2
Firing Arcs – 2 f 2 f
Firing Chart – F L
Power to Arm – 3 1
Damage – 8 10
Shield Data:
Deflector Shield Type – FSG FSK
Shield Point Ratio – 1/1 1/2
Maximum Shield Power – 9 14
Combat Efficiency:
D – 66.5 90.5
WDF – 15.2 55.2