Scouts, like Cruisers, are one of the oldest designation in Federation
nomenclature. Scouts are designed to conduct a number or information gathering
missions, including exploration, first contact, research, and intelligence
gathering. Scouts are usually smaller and lighter than other front line
exploration vessels. Most are also less heavily armed, using the space for labs
and research equipment. Scouts have extremely comfortable, although somewhat
cramped, crew spaces, due to their extended patrols. Most scouts are used along
the expanding boarder to explore and catalogue planets, stars and other space
No other single category of vessel can claim as many discoveries as
Scouts are also designed to be easily repaired, and many have extensive
self-repair capabilities, needing only time and raw materials to repair nearly
any onboard system. Scouts have both passive and active sensor systems, often
rivalling those of Heavy Cruisers. Scouts have a number of computer
redundancies, used to store and transmit newly acquired information. But the
focused nature of Scouts does put them at a disadvantage when compared to
Most scouts have only moderate medical facilities, reducing their
effectiveness in medical situations. Scouts also lack the large crew associated
with other exploration classes. None the less, their speed and excellent
detection equipment make them the ideal choice for expanding the boarders of the
Light Scouts are the smallest scout vessels in use by the Federation.
Unlike standard Scouts, which have an extensive multi-target research base,
Light Scouts, like Research Cruisers, are designed to concentrate several
different science system on the study of a single phenomenon. Light scouts are
often no larger than a cutter or large gunboat, but have extensive recreation
and meeting spaces available.
Light Scouts also have a larger than average passenger compliment, with many
on board crew actually civilians. Light Scouts often have only rudimentary
defences, and are never sent beyond the boundaries of Federation Space.
Fast Scouts are usually known for their inability to conduct research
missions, rather than their high speed. Considered some of the fastest vessels
within most navies, Fast Scouts use much of their internal space to accommodate
oversized engines and impulse drives, sacrificing much of their science base
Most Fast Scouts do retain extremely sensitive scanning equipment, and can
gather data nearly as detailed as a Survey vessel. None the less, most have half
the number of labs associated with a typical scout vessel.
This give most Fast Scouts a more military mission profile. Due to their
small size and usually light weapons, Fast Scouts are not know for their battle
Battle Scouts, a Klingon term, describe vessels more commonly known as
Raiders and occasionally confused with Blockade Runners. Battle Scouts, the most
famous of which is the Bird of Prey design, has only a limited science
capability, usually having only one or two actual labs aboard.
Many Battle Scouts are equipped with extensive ECM devices which allow them
to operate closer to most enemy facilities. Battle Scouts are known for their
light beam weapons and usually are equipped with a single, heavy firepower
Although unable to successfully engage large capital ships, Battle Scouts are
able to use their stealth and attack Destroyers, Escorts, and on rare occasions,
Cruisers. Battle part of most combat plans.
The most sought after scout assignment, the Science Scout is
perhaps the most common image of scouting vessels among most navies. Science
Scouts trade weapons for labs, often having more actual on-board laboratories
than vessels twice their size. Science Scouts have extremely precise sensors to
make extensive studies of both space-born and ground phenomenon. Science Scouts
bring to bear all the science and research capabilities of a Heavy Cruiser in a
platform often one quarter of the size. Science Scouts can conduct experiments
and research on up to 10 or more projects simultaneously, and are credited with
more discoveries than any other single class of vessel.
Science Scouts are none the less vulnerable. Because of their reduced
internal volume, many are only lightly armed and moderately shielded. Most
Science Scouts are assigned to relatively "safe" areas of study,
having a military escort when operating near dangerous areas. Science Scouts are
usually quite easy to detect, despite their small size. Their active sensor
systems make them easy to spot great distances away. Truly non-military vessels,
Science Scouts have large Passenger Facilities and recreation capability.
Although armed, most Science Scouts would quickly run when faced with an
adversary. Although not deigned for it, most Science Scouts can conduct first
contact missions when necessary. Many in Star Fleet seek at least a single tour
aboard a Science Scout, as do many Romulans.