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Commander

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Multiple realities
(covers information from several alternate timelines)
Commander insignia
US o-5 sleeve.png

United States Navy, 1980s

United States Navy, 1980s
Ent cmdr.png

Starfleet, 22nd century

Starfleet, 22nd century
Officer stripe, 2254-2265.png

Starfleet, 2250s - 2260s

Starfleet, 2250s - 2260s
Tos cmdr.png

Starfleet, Mid 2260s - Mid 2270s

Starfleet, Mid 2260s - Mid 2270s
Mov cmdr.png

Starfleet, Late 2270s - 2350s

Starfleet, Late 2270s - 2350s
Tng cmdr.png

Starfleet, 2350s -

Starfleet, 2350s -
Alternate Commander insignia
Mirror cmdr.png

Terran Starfleet, 22nd century
(mirror universe)

Terran Starfleet, 22nd century
(mirror universe)
Altcmdrrank.png

Starfleet, 2250s (alternate reality)

Starfleet, 2250s (alternate reality)
A.I. Starfleet CMDR.png

Starfleet, 2370 (alternate timeline)

Starfleet, 2370 (alternate timeline)
29th cmdr.png

Starfleet, 29th century

Starfleet, 29th century
For the position of Commanding Officer of Starfleet, please see Commander, Starfleet.

Commander is a rank used by the service organizations of many civilizations.

On Earth, this rank has a history dating back to at least the 18th century to wind-powered seagoing navies, and has equivalents used by numerous species and cultures on several planets.

History

As a traditional naval grade in Human usage, commander is the second most senior line officer rank, falling between a captain and a lieutenant commander. On Earth, the United States Navy used this rank as well as the Royal Navy. The United States Navy used the insignia of three solid sleeve stripes to denote the rank of commander and considered the rank the equivalent of a lieutenant colonel.

The ancient sea of rank commander was usually given to commanders of ships smaller than a rated warship or to the commanders of shore installations. The watch station of command duty officer was a position which could be held by a commander. (Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home)

Modern rank

The rank of Commander is a senior rank, common among executive officers and senior department heads. Naval tradition states that even if a naval vessel is commanded by an officer whose rank is commander or lieutenant commander, that officer is still referred to as a captain while on the deck of their own vessel. (DS9: "Behind the Lines")

In the Xindi-Reptilian military of the 22nd century, some commanders controlled a squadron and a regiment. (ENT: "Azati Prime")

The rank of commander in the Romulan Star Empire is considered the equivalent of a Starfleet captain. (TNG: "Future Imperfect") Also, a subcommander grade exists in the Romulan military, with this rank also used in the 22nd century by the Vulcan High Command. (TOS: "The Enterprise Incident"; ENT: "Broken Bow")

According to The Making of Star Trek (page 256) the Romulan rank of commander is the rank of someone who commands a fleet of ships. This would imply it to be equal to the Federation Starfleet rank of commodore or rear admiral.

The 23rd century Imperial Klingon Fleet used the rank of commander to denote the commanders of smaller space vessels, such as a Bird-of-Prey. (Star Trek III: The Search for Spock) A Klingon rank of captain was used for larger vessels with this title carrying over to the 24th century Klingon Defense Force. (TOS: "The Trouble with Tribbles"; TNG: "Redemption")

In Star Trek, Ayel refers to Nero as "Prod Nero." In the deleted scene in which the Narada is surround by Klingon warbirds, the subtitles created by the filmmakers for the Romulan dialogue translate Prod as "commander." However, according to the DVD commentary for the film, "Prod" was intended to mean "Praetor."

Noted commanders

Starfleet

Klingon Defense Force

Romulan Star Empire

Xindi

Suliban Cabal

Andorian Imperial Guard

Tholian Assembly

This chart shows only general equivalencies based on the ranks used by many governments on Earth, as well as the rest of the galaxy.

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