Defensive systems summary of the Excelsior Class

Created by Captain John Wallace on Fri Jan 23rd, 2015 @ 12:16pm

Ablative armour

Ablative armour is an additional reactive plating that imposes a counterforce to incoming weapon fire. The armour works by first dispersing incoming beam energy across the hull of the ship where, after reaching an undisclosed threshold, the energy causes part of the armour to boil away, taking with it a large fraction of that energy. The effect also creates a modest vapour cloud, which effectively disperses the incoming beam further, causing it to do less direct damage to the hull.

The ablative armour matrix was first deployed on the USS Defiant and later on the USS Prometheus. The Defiant was able to withstand several Jem'Hadar weapon blasts before the ship started taking damage.

It should be noted, however, that the armour is not a hull replacement, but a supplement, and must be replaced over time due to the boiling away process.

Cloaking Device

A cloaking device is a form of stealth technology that uses selective bending of light to render a starship or other object completely invisible to the electromagnetic spectrum and most sensors. It has been encountered in varying forms over the centuries.

Why do ships in Obsidian Fleet have cloaking devices?

With the formation of the 9th Fleet - Obsidian Fleet - soon after the Dominion and Borg conflicts, Starfleet recognized an urgent need for Federation starships to have available technology allowing for missions of a more covert nature. The most obvious answer to this technical question is the cloaking device, employed by several known governments, most notably of which are the Romulan Star Empire and the Klingon Empire.

Since 2311, the Treaty of Algeron between the United Federation of Planets and the Romulan Star Empire had forbidden the Federation from pursuing any cloaking technology. However, covertly, Starfleet did indeed develop not only a cloaking device, but a phase-cloak. This enabled any ship so equipped to pass through any ‘normal’ matter, such as a planet or asteroid.

Following first contact with the Dominion, the Romulan Star Empire entered into a joint intelligence gathering operation with Starfleet. The Romulan government loaned a cloaking device to Starfleet to be installed aboard the starship USS Defiant. In return, the Romulans were allowed full access to any intelligence gathered from the Gamma Quadrant by the Defiant. This began a period of decreased hostilities with the Romulans, culminating in a full-fledged alliance, which helped bring an end to the Dominion War.

With the Dominion War over, the UFP and RSE entered into a joint fleet venture (Obsidian Fleet) along the RNZ. In return for intelligence gathered on the Klingons and Cardassians during the war with the Dominion, the RSE finally agreed to an amendment to the Treaty of Algeron permitting the UFP to deploy cloaking devices on all Federation starships, providing no ship utilizes a phase-cloak.

Auto-modulating shields

An attempt to counter successful attacks through Starfleet shielding by the Borg and other races, auto-modulating shields are designed to immediately adapt to the characteristics of incoming fire. The system relies on advanced computational algorithms spread across the entire shield generator network. Working together, generators can monitor and analyze the smallest of variances across the entire grid and, using this information, hypothesise the correct new frequency modulation to tune the shields to. The process takes approximately 0.3 microseconds.

Metaphasic shielding

A type of shield developed in the late 2360s, the metaphasic shielding operates best when maintained as a distinct subset of normal shielding, although standard shielding can be modified to assume some related properties. It can protect vessels in the volatile and incredibly environment found within the corona of most stars, fending off intense levels of radiation and extremely high temperatures