USS Black Hawk-A Specifications

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USS Black Hawk-A
Class Information




Cruising Speed:

Warp 8

Total Compliment:


Tactical Systems
Energy Weapons:

9x Type-XII Phaser Arrays

Torpedo Launchers:
  • 4 Forward
  • 4 Aft

Regenerative Shielding System


These are the technical specifications for the Century-Class USS Black Hawk-A.

Design Overview

The Century-Class starship is the culmination of decades of research and starship design. With the launch of the Excalibur-Class, Starfleet Command believed they had found a replacement to the highly successful Galaxy-Class. However, the Excalibur proved to be so resource intensive that Starfleet ended up devoting the resources to simply build more of the more aged Galaxy's. The Century was believed to be the much more compact, automated answer to the resource intensive Excalibur in the same fashion that the Intrepid-Class was to the Galaxy.

The Century Development Project was to be capable of virtually any mission and to become notable vessels of exploration, representing the Federation in matters of diplomacy, as well as defending it in situations of combat. With the ever present dangers facing the Federation new defensive technologies were designed to along with the ships hull. One of the key components of its design was the high level of automation employed throughout the ship, requiring half the crew complement of the Sovereign-Class starship for a ship nearly the same size. The Century-class design pushed the envelope as far as possible when it came to computer power, shields, armament, and systems capabilities.

Century Class Orthos

The Century Project began its development shortly after the development of the Intrepid-class platform was in its first year of service. With the overly ambitious and resource intensive Excalibur-class intended as a limited replacement for the Galaxy-class, it was realized that this was an unsustainable future for Starfleet's exploration. Much like the Intrepid design complemented the Galaxy design, Starfleet Command sought to find a complement to the Excalibur. Originally the Insignia-Class was thought to be a possible suitor, however it's true multi-purpose role put it nearly in a class of it's own. Moreover, it also required an intensive amount of manned resources for a ship of it's size due to the very nature of its purpose.

During the opening months of the Dominion War, a design had been proposed and submitted to Starfleet. However, with the conflict with the Dominion in full swing, Starfleet opted for the more combat oriented designs such as the Defiant, Sovereign and Akira Classes. Starfleet decided to postpone the development of the design to possibly revisit at the conclusion of the war.

Following the war, with the push towards Starfleet's roots of exploration, the Century-class design began construction in mid-2377 with the keel laid down at Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards. Included in the ships systems were the most modern of all technologies, many of which it shared with the Insignia class, including the second generation of bio-neural circuitry, holographic projectors throughout the entirety of the ship, Ablative Armor, a more powerful warp drive, highly advanced automation systems for many of the ships systems which required less crew to control them, and an equally advanced vocal command interface which would allow a single person to command the ship if necessary. Construction of the vessel was slow and steady allowing room for trial and error to install and properly configure all the automated systems. Since no Starfleet vessel beforehand was geared towards such high automation, and many of the ships vital systems were tied into this method, precision was necessary to ensure the ship functioned without a critical error after launch.

What would have been a standard production time line for a prototype of the Century’s nature was significantly extended, due to needing to test and re-test these systems before being brought fully online. In late 2378, the ship’s computer came online, and in a matter of months had become self aware. With the assistance of the automation protocols in place, the rest of the construction and outfitting continued unabated. The high level of automation cut an estimated six months off the outfitting and construction process.

In mid-2379, the class’ namesake and prototype had finished construction and outfitting. The plaque was put in the place of honor, and a crew was selected for the shakedown cruise. With such lofty goals as had been put in place for this new class, the criterion for the cruise were extensive. In addition, the Admiralty wanted to ensure beyond a shadow of a doubt that the automation systems installed wouldn’t cause a cascade system wide failure.

The Century performed admirably, and exceeded all of the Admiralty’s expectations, though the full shakedown of the prototype took the better part of two years. In 2382, the USS Century was officially commissioned, and another Century class vessel, the USS Constitution, was put into production. Eventually by 2385, Starfleet Command was satisfied with the overall performance, automation and computer systems of their two Century-class vessels and ordered a batch of six starships to begin production in 2386 with others to follow.

General Information and Layout

Crew Breakdown

For a complete description of the departments and the positions therein, please review the Departmental Breakdown.

The Black Hawk currently holds 883 crew and 20 civilian passengers.

  • Officers: 241
  • Enlisted: 642
  • Civilians: 20
  • Emergency Capacity: 1,600 souls

Departmental Breakdown

COMMAND 16 40 56
OPERATIONS 27 90 117
ENGINEERING 35 116 151
MEDICAL 32 48 80
SCIENCE 36 115 151


  • Length: 715 meters
  • Beam: 282 meters
  • Height: 90 meters
  • Mass: 9,500,000 metric tons
  • Number of Decks: 24

Propulsion Systems

  • Sublight Speed: 0.25c
  • Maximum Sublight Speed: 0.4c
  • Cruise: Warp 8
  • Maximum: Warp 9
  • Emergency: Warp 9.975 for 24 hours

Warp Drive

Designed specifically for the Century-class starship, the General Electric Class 8B M/ARA drive and power system was an upgrade to the systems first developed first for Starfleet in use by the Sovereign Class. Compared to other starships of similar size and mass, the Class 8B would at first appear to be quite over-powered for the Century, but this is not so.

Class 8B Warp Core

A breakthrough design came about with the advent of the Class 7 warp reactor during the Defiant Class Project, which makes use of four-lobed magnetic constriction segment columns that allow for additional reactant streams to surround the primary stream that travels down the center of the magnetic constrictor columns. Advances in pressure vessel construction and compact reactor injector nozzles made the Class 8 reactor, and subsequently Class 8B, a reality, with a six-lobed design that allowed for a total of seven reactant streams of both matter and antimatter to collide in the dilithium articulation chamber, resulting in the most powerful starship-grade reactor output to date. The matter/antimatter reactor assembly spans 12 decks with the dilithium chamber and plasma transfer conduits located on the second level of Main Engineering, well above the main floor.

Another large advancement utilized in the development of the warp propulsion system was the utilization of a rotatable dilithium articulation chamber within the warp core, where the matter and antimatter reactants are combined to create the high-energy warp plasma needed to power the engine nacelles, as well as shipboard systems through the use of EPS power taps. Computer-controlled rotation of the frame allows for manipulation of the manner in which the reactants meet, allowing for further control of the warp plasma into a "cleaner" power source. Redesigned verterium cortenide components within each pair of warp field coils is then able to use the warp plasma to generate a more energy-efficient subspace field with less particle waste products and stresses that were found in older propulsion systems to damage subspace. After the fleet-wide installation of this new variable warp geometry system, Starfleet was able to remove the so-called "Warp Speed Limit" of Warp 5, established in 2370 after the discovery of pollution by Dr. Serova in the Hekaras Corridor. Pursuant to Starfleet Command Directive 12856.A, all starships traveling within Federation space are required to receive engine upgrades that prevent the further pollution of subspace by 2380.

Impulse Drive

Impulse Engines

When the Black Hawk is not at warp speed, it relies upon impulse engines for secondary propulsion. Impulse is a sub-warp speed used primarily within star systems or other areas where warp speed is not necessary. Century-class starships are equipped with three (3) standard impulse engines developed by HighMPact Propulsion. A single, large engine is located on the ship's spine above the saucer, and two smaller units are inserted inside the warp pylons. Each impulse engine is powered by a series of fusion reactors, with 7 in all. Each reactor is fueled by deuterium slush.

The Black Hawk's impulse engines are comparable, but slightly more advanced, to the Sovereign-class. The size and power of the engines allows the Black Hawk to be extremely maneuverable at impulse speeds, allowing it greater combat efficiency.

RCS Thrusters


These small thrusters are positioned around the external hull of the Black Hawk such as the rim of the saucer section and the end of the warp engines. There are 16 thrusters in all. The Reaction Control System (RCS) is used for maneuvering at speeds below impulse. They are used in conjunction to propel the ship by venting pressurized gasses. RCS thrusters are usually employed for docking procedures and maneuvering within starbase facilities and the like. Each thruster additionally is fitting with mooring beam emitters that allow for greater efficiency when docking with other ships or stations and can help hold the ship in place.

Tactical Systems

Defensive Systems

See Also Regenerative Shielding

The Regenerative Shielding System is an ingenious use of current shielding technology in a fashion that was not really deemed necessary during the peaceful years before the Borg were contacted and the Dominion War broke out. Simply stated, the shielding system uses extra shield generators to act as "backups" for the primary shield generators on the ship.

Under red alert conditions the primary shield generators are brought online from standby mode and the secondary generators are brought to full standby mode. When the active shield generators reach a weakness threshold of forty-five percent the back up generators are automatically brought to full operator mode and take over the shield generation duties while the primary generators are powered back to standby mode for recharge or fully offline for any necessary repairs. This constant swapping of duties before too much damage has been sustained to a single generator means that survival rates were increased by more than seventy percent for those ships that deployed the Regenerative Shielding System during the Dominion War.

Offensive Systems


Century-Class in combat

A single dorsal phaser array is installed on the primary hull, extending around the entire saucer section. Another single ventral phaser array can be found on the primary hull, circling the entire saucer. Four phaser arrays are located on the warp pylon (two dorsal, two ventral) covering the rear firing arc. To augment the ventral areas are three additional arrays, one perpendicular to the deflector and two more near the rear portion of the secondary hull.

The Century-class utilizes the Type XII array system. The nine arrays are all type XII, the new standard emitter. Each array fires a steady beam of phaser energy, and the forced-focus emitters discharge the phasers at speeds approaching .986c (which works out to about 182,520 miles per second - nearly warp one). The phaser array automatically rotates phaser frequency and attempts to lock onto the frequency and phase of a threat vehicle's shields for shield penetration.

Each phaser array takes its energy directly from the impulse drive and auxiliary fusion generators. Individually, each Type XII emitter can only discharge approximately 6.0 MW (megawatts). However, several emitters (usually three) fire at once in the array during standard firing procedures, resulting in a discharge approximately 18.0 MW.


Eight fixed-focus torpedo launchers are installed on the Black Hawk. Two of the forward set are located where the tip of the secondary hull comes flush with the saucer, while the other pair are mounted below the deflector. Two aft launchers are installed on the ship's spine, just at the rear edge of the primary hull, and the other two are recessed below the rear Shuttlebay.

These launchers are the second generation of automated, high-speed launchers originally developed and found on the Photon torpedo casing (typical) New Orleans- and Saber-class (and later seen aboard Excelsior-class Starships as part of their refit schedule) starships and each launcher is armed with 5 tubes per launcher, giving the Century-class the ability to launch up to fifteen torpedoes in a single salvo. The third generation of this launcher has also seen deployment aboard the Sovereign-class and Norway-class.

Sensor Systems

Navigational Sensors

Long range and navigation sensors are located behind the main deflector dish, to avoid sensor "ghosts" and other detrimental effects consistent with main deflector dish millicochrane static field output. Lateral sensor pallets are located around the rim of the entire starship, providing full coverage in all standard scientific fields, but with emphasis in the following areas:

  • Astronomical phenomena
  • Planetary analysis
  • Remote life-form analysis
  • EM scanning
  • Passive neutrino scanning
  • Parametric subspace field stress (a scan to search for cloaked ships)
  • Thermal variances
  • Quasi-stellar material
Black Hawk's Deflector

Each sensor pallet (ninety-six in all) can be interchanged and re-calibrated with any other pallet on the ship. Warp Current sensor: This is an independent subspace graviton field-current scanner, allowing the Century-class to track ships at high warp by locking onto the eddy currents from the threat ship's warp field, then follow the currents by using multi-model image mapping.

A standard Century-class main deflector dish is located along the forward portion of the Century-class's secondary hull, and is located just forward of the primary engineering spaces. Composed of molybdenum/duranium mesh panels over a tritanium framework (beneath the Duranium-Tritanium hull), the dish can be manually moved twelve degrees in any direction off the ship's Z-axis. The main deflector dish's shield and sensor power comes from two graviton polarity generators, each capable of generating 141 MW, which can be fed into two 575 millicochrane subspace field distortion generators.

Long- and Short-Range Sensors

The Black Hawk's sensor range is 18.75 lightyears.

There are fifty-six independent tactical sensors on the Century-class. Each sensor automatically tracks and locks onto incoming hostile vessels and reports bearing, aspect, distance, and vulnerability percentage to the tactical station on the main bridge. Each tactical sensor is approximately 89% efficient against ECM, and can operate fairly well in particle flux nebulae (which has been hitherto impossible). Additional sensor palettes have been equipped with visual scanning, able to utilize high resolution cameras in addition to regular sensor data in order to extrapolate accurate information for those reviewing the readouts.


For a complete list of probes available on the USS Black Hawk, click HERE.
Class 1 Probe

A probe is a device that contains a number of general purpose or mission specific sensors and can be launched from a starship for closer examination of objects in space.

There are nine different classes of Probes, which vary in sensor types, power, and performance ratings. The spacecraft frame of a probe consists of molded duranium-tritanium and pressure-bonded lufium boronate, with sensor windows of triple layered transparent aluminum. With a warhead attached, a probe becomes a photon torpedo. The standard equipment of all nine types of probes are instruments to detect and analyze all normal EM and subspace bands, organic and inorganic chemical compounds, atmospheric constituents, and mechanical force properties. All nine types are capable of surviving a powered atmospheric entry, but only three are specially designed for aerial maneuvering and soft landing. These ones can also be used for spatial burying. Many probes can be real-time controlled and piloted from a starship to investigate an environment dangerous hostile or otherwise inaccessible for an away-team.

Primary Systems

Computer Systems

The primary computer core occupies space on Decks 12-15 far astern. The secondary, emergency core is smaller than the first and is located on Decks 18-20 in the Secondary Hull.

The Black Hawk's Computer Core

The AC-16 Bio-Neural Super-series computer core is built under contract for the Century-class vessel by Krayne Systems, an independent contractor based on Bynar. The structure of the computer is similar to that of most other supercomputing systems in use by Federation vessels with stack segments extending through the ship forming trillions of trillions of connections through the processing and storage abilities of modern isolinear chips. The core essentially consists of two independent processing systems that work in concert for maximum performance. Bio-neural-based processors throughout the core are utilized for complex calculations while an isolinear-based system is used for the storage and cataloging of core information. Cooling of the isolinear system is accomplished by a regenerative liquid helium loop, which has been refit to allow the usage of a delayed-venting heat storage unit for "Silent Running” operations that require the highest level of starship stealth. For most missions, requirements on the computer core rarely exceed 45-50% of a single core's processing and storage capacity. The rest of the core is utilized for various scientific, tactical, or intelligence gathering missions - or to backup data in the event of a damaged core.

Computer access throughout the ship is accomplished via a complex network. The primary method of data transfer is through the Optical Data Network (ODN). The ODN connects subprocessor systems to the computer core through a hierarchical structure. ODN lines are capable of an amazing rate of transfer speed, at 6200 kiloquads/second.

Library Computer Access and Retrieval System (LCARS) is the common user interface of 24th century computer systems, based on verbal and graphically enhanced keyboard/display input and output. The graphical interface adapts to the task which is supposed to be performed, allowing for maximum ease-of-use. The Century-class operates on LCARS build version 5.2 to account for increases in processor speed and power, and limitations discovered in the field in earlier versions, and increased security. This system is run on all stations, consoles, displays, and support tools. Support tools can include a variety of different equipment, such as desktop terminals, which are placed in every office and crew quarter aboard the ship. Another popular method of portable computer access is the Personal Access Display Device (PADD). These handheld devices have direct access to the computer systems and can provide the user with portable access. PADDs have their own power and storage matrix as well, allowing them to be transported easily between different ships or facilities.

All Starfleet vessels make use of a computer program called a Universal Translator that is employed for communication among persons who speak different languages. It performs a pattern analysis of an unknown language based on a variety of criteria to create a translation matrix. The translator is built in the Starfleet badge and small receivers are implanted in the ear canal.

The Universal Translator matrix aboard an Century-class starships typically consists of well over 100,000 languages and increases with every new encounter.

Environmental Systems

One of the most important systems on the Black Hawk, or any starship for that matter, is the extensive network of environmental systems. Making sure that these systems operate and perform as designed is one of the top priorities. The main environmental system is comprised of many separate systems. These systems include replication, air, gravity, recycling, water, and waste extraction. All environmental systems have multiple redundant back-ups throughout the ship, including emergency back-up power supplies.

One of the most important systems is the air supply system. This system constantly monitors the air supply aboard the ship, filtering out any unnecessary or unwanted particles. The air is constantly recycled to provide a clean Class-M environment. In certain areas of the ship, such as crew and guest quarters, the air supply can be adjusted to provide atmosphere to species other than Class M such as Class K, L, and N. Key areas of the ship such as the bridge and main engineering have back-up emergency life support systems adjacent to them in the event of systems failure. In addition, there are several designated life support shelters throughout the ship.

Gravity is provided throughout the ship by a series of gravity generators. There are a total of 315 generators in all. Gravity is accomplished by graviton particles that are emitted from each generator. This effect is similar to that of a tractor beam. Each gravity generator has a limited range; thus, each field overlaps to ensure stable gravity.

Another primary system aboard starships is replication systems. Based off of the basic principle of transporter technology, replicators are the primary source of food distribution throughout the ship. Crew lounges, personal quarters, and offices are all equipped with replicator units. A replicator?s primary source of matter is a form of raw stock material, which can be reorganized at the molecular level into any desired form. In addition to conduits that carry replicator material, there are also a series of conduits that transport water throughout the ship. All crew quarters are equipped with sinks and water closets for personal hygiene. Much like air systems, water is also recycled. Waste is extracted and can either be ejected into space, or re-replicated and broken down into raw material.

Transportation Systems


The most common method of quick and easy transportation among Federation starships is accomplished via the transporters. The Black Hawk is equipped with standard transporter systems, as relatively few advancements have been made in the past few years. The Black Hawk has 4 primary transporter rooms located throughout the ship. Supplementing the primary ones are 6 emergency transporters capable of "beam-out" only. There are also 2 industrial cargo transporters used for transporting cargo and other large objects. The maximum range of the transporter systems is 41,000 kilometers.

The Black Hawk is capable of matching transporter beam frequency in conjunction with its shield frequency, allowing it to beam through shields that are currently active, an achievement that was once unable to be accomplished. In addition, the targeting scanners have been upgraded to allow for greater accuracy.

Communications Systems

  • Intraship Transmissions: Voice and Data
  • Personal Communicator Range: 800 km
  • Ship to Ground Range: 20,000 - 60,000 km
  • Communications Speed: 20.5 kiloquads/second
  • Subspace Speed: 9.9997 warp

Communications systems aboard the USS Black Hawk are typical divided into three key areas; intraship communications, ship-to-ship, and ship-to-ground. Communications is an important system that allows not only the crew of the Black Hawk to stay in contact with one another, but also allowing for contact with Starfleet Command.

A combadge in use

Intraship Communications can be accomplished either by voice or data. Both methods are directed and managed by the main computer. A large co-processor located in the secondary and primary cores receives, analyzes, and redistributes information at rapid speed, allowing for almost near-instant communication. The communications processors are connected to a series of 3,200 terminal node devices located throughout the ship.

Ship-to-ship communications involves the transmission of data between to or more starships or starbase-like facilities. Transmissions are sent via several long-range subspace transceivers located along the hull. Typical data transmissions of this type include general communication, messages, sensor logs, and tactical information. The subspace transceivers are also capable of receiving communications by utilizing their subspace antennas.

Ship-to-ground communications are accomplished much like the Ship-to-ship communications are. However, they make use of the short-range subspace transceivers. Short-range transceiver's range is generally between 20,000 and 60,000 kilometers. Ships generally don't orbit below 20,000 km. Thanks to recent advances in transceiver technology, the limits of transmissions have been extended. Should a ship need to contact a planet from over a distance of 60,000 km, the long-range transceivers would be used much like how ship-to-ship communications are carried out. Ship-to-ground communications are typical used for contacting planets in which the ship is in orbit of. It is also frequently used to monitor and stay in contact with any away teams that may be down on the planet.

Communications between two or more crewmembers, whether they are both on the ship, or both on the planet are handled by devices called communicators (or sometimes comm badges). These small devices shaped as the Starfleet logo are worn by Starfleet personnel at all times. Each communicator contains a small power supply and transceiver/receiver technology. The device is activated by simply tapping it and then communicating with another individual by voice. Communicators are the most often used way for personnel to stay in contact with each other. They are also useful during away missions because transporters can get an easy lock on them, should they need to beamed back aboard the ship.

Security personnel can monitor any communication sent to and from the Black Hawk. The exception to this is any transmission that has been encoded using advanced sets of Starfleet encryption protocols. Typically, messages of important nature from Starfleet Command are for the captain?s eyes only.

Support Craft



Fighter Craft



The above information was adapted from the A Call To Duty Website on the Akira-Class and Sovereign-Class starship. Some information, such as the Regenerative Shielding was adapted from the Bravo Fleet Infobase.

SHIPS TO BEAR THE NAME USS Black HawkUSS Black Hawk-AUSS Black Hawk-BSim History
IMPORTANT ERRATA About the Black HawkShip SpecificationsDeck ListingDuty RosterDepartmentsCabin Assignments
ATTACHED SUPPORT CRAFT Fighters: 21x Gryphon
Runabouts: USS ZambeziUSS Citarum
Type-11 Shuttle: SpinerDoohan
Type-8 Shuttle: NimoyFrakesVisitor
Type-6 Shuttle: ShatnerStewartBrooks
Type-15 Shuttlepod: EdisonTelsaGraham BellFranklinAdamsFarnsworthCurieTuring
Other: 6x Workbee