The USS Equinox NCC-72381, Nova-class science vessel
About this creation
This is the USS Equinox, a Nova-class science vessel from the two-part Star Trek: Voyager episode Equinox. It is a rather small ship, with only 8 decks, a length of about 180m and a crew of 80.
It was originally designed as a possible design for the Defiant-class, but was rejected due to its conventional configuration (ie saucer, engineering hull, two nacelles on pylons) which probably made it too big a target for a warship.
Some unofficial literature states that the Nova class came out of the Pathfinder project, a project to design a torpedo frigate to supplement the Akira-class. It would be used for "hit-and-run" missions to enemy bases and the like, but was reclassified to the Defiant-class development programme after the Borg incident in 2366. During this, a new science-surveyor class starship, the Nova-class, was also in development. One of the chief designers from the Defiant-class came over to the Nova-class, and brought the design with him. The Nova-class design team decided that this design would prove excellent as a science vessel to replace the 100+ year old Oberth-class.
Four of the six torpedo launchers were removed, and the weapons storage areas were replaced with crew quarters and science facilities. Still, the design retains its orginal 11 phaser strips. In all fairness, however, as eight are on the saucer, and most are very small, it isn't really a lot of firepower.
The first two ships were the USS Nova NCC-72380 and the USS Equinox NCC-72381, both launched in 2369. The Equinox was lost with all hands and without a trace in late 2369 in the Badlands, abducted by the Caretaker in the Delta Quadrant, unbeknown to Starfleet. The class then underwent an extensive review to make sure there were no design flaws, but none were found, so it was presumed that the Maquis or plasma storms had destroyed it. Of course, it was found in the Delta Quadrant by Voyager, heavily damaged.
A variant of this class exists, and one ship, the USS Rhode Island NCC-72701 was seen in the Voyager finale Endgame. The differences are a filled in saucer notch, with a smaller auxiliary deflector, a raised (rather than recessed) bridge dome, slightly redesigned warp nacelles, no exterior dorsal cargo bay access and new escape pods.
I think I've done a pretty good job on the model. The saucer's shape isn't 100% accurate, but it's a pretty funny shape anyway. also the warp nacelles aren't round enough, or the Bussard collectors the right shape, but it was the best I could do on this kind of scale. I only put some of the phaser strips on, kind of because I finished and rendered the virtual model, then realised there were more. Oh well.
A very nice bottom view. The centre cark grey panel is the "waverider shuttle", something like the captains yacht I'm assuming. The dark grey panels on the sides are the ventral sensor pallets. Note the green sensor dome. I'm not sure if it's meant to be green, but thats what the schematic I have shows.