Since the return of the USS Voyager from the Delta Quadrant, Starfleet has been studying the unique technologies they brought back with them. One of the most promising for full-scale Starfleet use was the Quantum Slipstream Drive, which had the capability of exceeding a starship’s maximum warp factor by an unprecedented degree.
After extensive development and refinement, Starfleet is now prepared to begin rolling out the slipstream drives to many ships in the fleet, including those who are assigned to StarBase 118. This will give many ships in the fleet the opportunity to explore further, while helping expand the boundaries of Federation space.
While some ships will not be installed with the slipstream technology, due to limitations in their designs, most others will soon be refit at the earliest convenience of Starfleet Engineering and the ship’s mission. Starfleet is collaborating with all of its captains to assemble a workable schedule of installation.
There are still a number of technological hurdles to overcome as the technology is continually developed. As of now, Starfleet slipstream drives require a warm-up time of 40 minutes, a cool-down time of 36 hours, and most ships will need to return to a starbase approximately every two years for a minor refit and hull inspection. In addition, these drives can only operate for up to 12 hours in each cycle before auto-shutdown is initiated.
Current StarBase 118 fleet ships that will have slipstream drive installed include the following:
- USS Apollo
- USS Discovery-C
- USS Excalibur-A
- USS Thunder-A (Duronis II Embassy)
- USS Tiger
- USS Vigilant