Inscription on Commissioning Plaque:
"Never shift a paradigm without a spotter"
-- Cyrano Jones
Max Warp: 9.1
Max. Impulse: 0.9945 lightspeed (unladen)
Crew: 50 officers, 135 enlisted
Armaments: One type X phaser; Four heavy tractor beam emitters; all in turret.
Type: Heavy Tug
Status: One undergoing shakedown. No others are slated for construction at this time.
About Ship: Long before the first Borg incursion, Starfleet decided that there was a need for larger, more capable starbases along its frontiers. The design brief for the Mallard called for a powerful vessel capable of towing starbase-sized objects, allowing the bases to be quickly constructed at shipyards with adequate capacity for such a resource-intensive project.
Construction of the Mallard began in 2358. Construction was halted in 2360 when the engineering team encountered insurmountable problems creating a warp nacelle capable of expanding its warp field around towed objects the size of a starbase. The partially completed hull was mothballed at the Starfleet "boneyard" at Earth's L5 point.
Slightly more than a year ago, the Advanced Starship Design Bureau devised the Foundry class, a large fleet support vessel with toroidal warp nacelles. This new design of nacelle causes unacceptably high stresses on the spaceframe at high warp (>8), but the warp field may be easily extended to envelop large, towed objects.
The Mallard was withdrawn from the boneyard and fitted with toroidal
warp nacelles. The design worked quite well, and by happy coincidence,
the Mallard's configuration partially negated the toroidal nacelle's unfavorable
characteristics. The Mallard's cruise velocity is at an acceptably high
warp 8, and unacceptable levels of stress are offset to warp 9.1. The Mallard
is not a warship, and is equipped with one phaser to discourage raiders
only. If the Mallard is expected to operate near a potential battle area,
a suitable escort is provided.
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