Freedom (22nd century)
The Freedom-class has a single saucer-shaped hull. The ship’s bridge was located in the center of the dorsal surface of the hull and the bulk of the sensors were housed in twin sensor domes. One dome was located just above the ship’s bridge and the second was located in the center of the ventral surface of the hull.
These ships were equipped with several science labs that were tied directly into the ship’s sensor systems. Bulk cargo could be quickly loaded and unloaded via a cargo transporter. The Freedom-class was equipped with a drop bay and a single shuttle pod that could be used to move crew members between the ship and a planets surface or other such location the ship was unable to dock with. There was a notched section along the aft edge of the hull where the ships impulse engines. The Freedom-class was equipped with twin warp nacelles that were held above the height of the bridge so that there was one nacelle on each side of the bridge.
The Freedom-class was lightly armed with only four phase cannons. Two of the cannons were mounted in storage bays built into the dorsal surface of the hull with the other two mounted into storage bays built into the ventral surface of the hull. The Freedom-class was equipped with only a single forward-facing torpedo launcher and could only carry a total of 10 torpedoes.
In 2128 Star Fleet operating under Earth’s U.E.S.P.A began a search for a warp three capable ship to push the borders of explored space further from the Sol System. A total of ten different ship designs were explored and in 2140 these ten designs had been reduced two four and after further review and the final design was picked in 2142. This design was named the Freedom and underwent a final round of design alterations. After a final six-month review construction of the Freedom was started in May of 2143 in the San Francisco Shipyards in April of 2145 the Freedom departed dry dock for a shakedown cruise prior to the ships commissioning. While on that Shakedown cruise the Warp five protect made several advancements and when the Freedom returned to dry dock the warp engine was upgraded turning it into the first warp four capable engines. In December of 2145, the Freedom was taken on a second shakedown cruise where the ship managed to achieve and maintain the speed of warp 4.1 for three hours. Eventually, the ship would be able to maintain an emergency speed of warp 4.5 for four hours before needing to reduce speed to prevent engine damage. After the completion of the second shakedown cruise, the ship once more returned to dry dock in January of 2146 and was commissioned in February of the same year.
Ships of the Freedom-class were dispatched on missions of exploration. As contact was made with more alien species the Freedom-class proved to be well suited to diplomatic missions allowing larger ships in the fleet such as the Daedalus class free for exploration and scientific discovery. With the start of the Earth/Romulan War in 2156, the remaining Freedom-class ships were tasked as system defense ships protecting Earth and its colonies. During the course of the war more of these ships were built to replace wartime losses. During combat operations, the ships of the Freedom-class proved to be more maneuverable than the larger ships such as the Daedalus or even the NX class ships making up for the fact these ships were only moderately armed.
After the end of the war, the remaining ships were returned to their primary duties of exploration and with the creation of Federation Earth transferred the reaming Freedom-class ships to the Federation’s Starfleet. Under the U.F.P. banner, these ships acted as patrol craft monitoring the shipping lanes throughout the newly formed Federation. In 2165 this new Starfleet started phasing out older ships in favor of ships specifically designed for use by the Federation’s Star Fleet. This led to the final Freedom ship being retired from service in 2170.