«Last Updated on November 8, 2023 »
from Starfleet Prototype – The Journal of Innovative Design and Ideas, by David Schmidt & Mastercom Data Center
An attempt to create a more stealthy design, the Phantom Class scout was considered both an oddity and an oxymoron when it was first proposed. Star Fleet command had continued to search for designs that were stealthy, without compromising power or performance. Although single engine designs were much harder to detect, even the Andorian mono-lock design could only make a vessels so stealthy.
In mid 2288, engineers at Star Fleet Dynamics began toying with new engine configurations. Although most proved useless, the Ticonderoga Class did create an unusual warp signature that was more difficult to detect on long range. Borrowing the design, engineers used two shuttle engines to begin tests. By early 2289, the Phantom was nearing production.
The Mk I was built around a standard FWE-2 drive system, mounting one nacelle on top of the other. The design created significant warp field variations, requiring months of calibration, to extend the warp field along the X axis, but the resulting warp signature was over 20% harder to detect than other designs. The Mk I also allowed the placement of the Sensor Industrial’s LRSS-3 sensor package into a single, replaceable undercarriage mounted below the main body of the ship. The LRSS-3, which was touted as the newest wave in sensor equipment, extended the range of both the primary and long range sensors, giving the scout tremendous observation ability. Coupled with its unusual warp signature, the Phantom was a dangerous package.
But the Mk I was not without its flaws. By 2298, the under-powered nature of the scout was relegating it to less and less forward areas, and by 2300, the Mk I was nearly out of service. In 2301, the Phantom was being re-examined as a forward observation platform. It was felt with extensive automation the scout could be made cost effective. But in early 2302, with the arrival of the LRSS-6 sensor package, a new version of the Phantom was envisioned. In late 2302 the Phantom Mk II was launched, and by 2304, all of the nearly 30 mothballed Phantoms were re-activated and upgraded. The Mk II was better armed and better shielded, but retained the low warp signature that was so coveted.
The Mk III was launched four years later after a weapon and power upgrade. Using the powerful FH-11s and the time-tested FIF-2, the Mk III was considered a military success. The Mk IV saw an increase in the main weapons yet again, giving the scout more combat ability. The Mk IV also saw the introduction of the Chokis Long Sight VII sensor package as well as the ‘B’ version of the successful M-4 computer system. Coupled with the ships normal sensors, the Long Sign gave the Phantoms a more passive long range sensor capability.
The Mk IV had several upgrades, including the primary computer, beam weapons and shield system. When initially proposed as an upgrade, the Mk IV was nearly equipped with a forward torpedo launcher. However, both the scientific and intelligence community pushed to not have the torpedo system installed as engineers would be forced to reduce some internal sensor systems. The decision was eventually made to keep the scout as a purely beam-weapon armed vessel.
With increasing tensions with the Tholians and an ongoing conflict with the Cardassians, the decision to field the MK V was eventually made 2350. The ultra-accurate Long Sight IX was chosen to replace the now aged Long Sight VII system. The LS IX required a more powerful independent short-range system to be installed, with the Galen 53 sensor system chosen. The FNH-30 phaser was also chosen to increase the overall firepower of the Phantoms still in service. Several vessels had their primary emitters replaced with linear-array emitters. Others retained their traditional style of emitters. While some feared that the difference in parts would prove problematic, the availability of repair components at most front-line starbases and repair yards did not bear this out.
The Phantom scouts could continue to serve in both their military and scientific roles through the 2370’s, eventually being retired in 2378. The Phantom was constructed at the Mursa B’jea Starship Construction Drydocks and Mursa Twin Orbital Drydock at a combined rate of 2 per year. Of the 49 constructed, 1 Mk I is listed as missing. 1 Mk III and 3 Mk V’s were lost in combat.
|Model –||Mk I||Mk II||Mk III||Mk IV||Mk V|
|Ship Class –||IX||IX||IX||IX||IX|
|Date Entering Service –||2290||2302||2306||2330||2351|
|Number Constructed –||39||10||Refit||Refit||Refit|
|Superstructure Points –||30||30||30||30||38|
|Damage Chart –||C||C||C||C||C|
|Length –||268 m||268 m||268 m||268 m||268 m|
|Width –||141 m||141 m||141 m||141 m||141 m|
|Height –||86 m||86 m||86 m||86 m||86 m|
|Weight –||135,483 mt||135,403 mt||135,403 mt||136,448 mt||129,840 mt|
|Total SCU –||240 SCU||240 SCU||240 SCU||230 SCU||230 SCU|
|Cargo Capacity –||12,000 mt||12,000 mt||12,000 mt||11,500 mt||11,500 mt|
|Landing Capacity –||None||None||None||None||None|
|Control Computer Type –||M-4||M-4||M-4||M-4b||I-4a|
|Standard 6-person –||2||2||2||2||2|
|Emergency 22-person –||2||2||2||2||2|
|Engines And Power Data:|
|Total Power Units Available –||38||38||42||42||60|
|Movement Point Ratio –||3/1||3/1||3/1||3/1||3/1|
|Warp Engine Type –||FWE-2||FWE-2||FWE-2||FWE-2||FNWD-1a|
|Power Units Available –||13 ea.||13 ea.||13 ea.||13 ea.||18 ea.|
|Stress Chart –||G/K||G/K||G/K||G/K||D/E|
|Max Safe Cruising Speed –||Warp 7||Warp 7||Warp 7||Warp 7||Warp 7|
|Emergency Speed –||Warp 9||Warp 9||Warp 9||Warp 9||Warp 9|
|Impulse Engine Type –||FIF-1||FIF-1||FIF-2||FIF-2||FII-7|
|Power Units Available –||12||12||16||16||24|
|Weapons And Firing Data:|
|Beam Weapon Type –||FH-13||FH-17||FH-11||FH-20||FNH-30|
|Firing Arcs –||2 f/p, 2 f, 2 f/s||2 f/p, 2 f, 2 f/s||2 f/p, 2 f, 2 f/s||2 f/p, 2 f, 2 f/s||2 f/p, 2 f, 2 f/s|
|Firing Chart –||T||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Maximum Power –||8||6||10||14||22|
|Deflector Shield Type –||FSL||FSO||FSO||FSS||FSQ|
|Shield Point Ratio –||1/3||1/3||1/3||1/4||1/4|
|Maximum Shield Power –||15||16||16||20||30|