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Suurok class

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Suurok-class
TiMur front.jpg

Port quarter view

Port quarter view
Affiliation: Vulcan High Command
Type: Science vessel, combat cruiser
Speed: Warp 6.5 (science)
Warp 7 (combat)
Armament: Particle beam weapons, photonic weapons
Defenses: Deflector shields
ShRaan profile.jpg

Port profile

Port profile
NiVar aft.jpg

Aft view

Aft view

The Suurok-class was a type of Vulcan starship designated by the High Command as a science vessel and combat cruiser during the mid-22nd century.

In 2151, after Enterprise NX-01 was disabled by an unknown alien spacecraft, Jonathan Archer was concerned that the Vulcans would have sent a Suurok-class ship to "oh-so-politely" offer to tow them back home. (ENT: "Silent Enemy")

Technical data Edit

Design Edit

The design of the Suurok-class possessed a long, cylindrical primary hull and a unique circular, ring-shaped warp drive.

Primary systems Edit

During the 2150s, this design was among the fastest and most powerful starships operating in the Vulcan fleet.

The Suurok possessed a top speed of Warp 6.5 in the science vessel variant. The combat vessel variant could go to Warp 7. (ENT: "Breaking the Ice", "Fallen Hero") The technology behind this advancement was considered "classified" as of 2151 from Earth Starfleet. (ENT: "Breaking the Ice")

ShRaan disables the Mazarites

Firing particle beam weapon

The Suurok was armed with standard particle beam weapons. In combat, these vessels were capable of disabling, if not destroying, a force of three Mazarite warships in a confrontation. (ENT: "Fallen Hero")

T'Mir tractors shuttlepod

Tractor beam

The Suurok-class also possessed tractor beam technology which was considered "classified" from Earth Starfleet. The tractor beam emitter was located on the lower section of the primary hull, in front of the warp drive. (ENT: "Breaking the Ice")

Ships commissioned Edit

Named
Unnamed

Appendices Edit

Appearances Edit

Background Edit

Name Edit

It is commonly believed that the name of this class is "Surak" class. This name was used, for instance, by John Eaves. [1] It also appeared in an article on the design of the ship written by Doug Drexler in an issue of Star Trek: The Magazine (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 3, Issue 3, pp. 20-24), which was reprinted in Star Trek: The Official Starships Collection (issue 34), and in a different article focusing on the starship written in Star Trek Magazine (Star Trek Monthly issue 104, pp. 43-44). Conversely, Scott Bakula – in the role of Captain Jonathan Archer – clearly pronounced the name as "Suurok" class in "Breaking the Ice", which also corresponded with the spelling that appeared in the episode's closed-captioning. This spelling was later confirmed as the spelling in the final draft of the script by Mike Sussman, who noted the former spelling may have appeared in an early draft of the script.

Original design Edit

Because regular Star Trek: Enterprise ship designer John Eaves was busy working on Star Trek Nemesis, the job of designing the Suurok-class fell to Doug Drexler. The vessel was the first Vulcan starship design to appear on the series of Enterprise, and the first significant Vulcan starship design to appear in the Star Trek series. Given that there were few references that existed even though the Vulcans are one of the primary species that define Star Trek, Drexler felt daunted by the request to design a craft for the species. In designing the Suurok-class, he believed that – since it would likely make many appearances on ENT – the ship should be as memorable as possible. (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 3, Issue 3,  p. 20)

The goal of Doug Drexler's design for the Vulcan ship was simplicity, so that it would pass the "squint test," making the vessel recognizable even if the ship was tiny on the screen. Consequently, he borrowed influence from what he thought were the most memorable ship designs in Star Trek, those made by Matt Jefferies. One that caught his eye was the USS Enterprise XCV 330, as it was rather different from all other designs in Star Trek to that date. (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 3, Issue 3,  p. 21) He also remembered that the Vulcan ship from "Unification II" (the T'Pau) had a ring shape. So, he based his idea on this. (citation needededit) "'Ah,' I thought, as I mulled over the Vulcan ship design question for Enterprise. 'This is the perfect place to fit the hoop ship,'" he remembered. (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 3, Issue 3,  p. 22)

Doug Drexler modified the basic ringed shape to make the craft look more Vulcan. He did so by giving the vessel curves and peaks which were inspired by the Vulcan temple and clothing from Star Trek III: The Search for Spock and the T'Plana-Hath from Star Trek: First Contact. (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 3, Issue 3,  p. 24) Drexler further adapted the reddish colors and the trio of engine pods of the T'Plana-Hath, in an attempt to create as much of a design lineage as possible, using what little reference there actually was. (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 3, Issue 3, pp. 21 & 20)

The first design for the Suurok-class which Doug Drexler demonstrated, as a concept model, to Production Designer Herman Zimmerman and Executive Producers Rick Berman and Brannon Braga appeared much as the ship ended up looking. However, Matt Jefferies' engine support spar had become a lot larger and was clearly inhabited. (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 3, Issue 3,  p. 23) Despite loving the hoop design, Drexler was expected to present some alternatives to Zimmerman, Berman and Braga. He therefore devised two other designs to give them, one of which resembled the T'Plana-Hath much more than the final version. (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 3, Issue 3, pp. 24 & 22) The other potential candidate had conical engine pods and a spherical primary hull, similar to the Olympic-class, another design that was based on an early Jefferies design (the Daedalus-class). (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 3, Issue 3, pp. 22 & 24) "Needless to say, I was delighted that Rick and Brannon went for the exotic hoop and arrow," enthused Drexler. (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 3, Issue 3,  p. 24)

Refining the shape of the hoop ship constituted the next step in the design process. Doug Drexler firstly came up with some variations which showed it with slightly different body shapes and engine pods. A version he experimented with included engines matching those of the T'Plana-Hath as well as another of the early concepts for the Suurok-class. One of the final decisions was to flip the craft upside down. "I just realized that it looked better defying gravity," Drexler related, "rather than hanging from the hoop and Herman, Rick, and Brannon heartily agreed." Afterwards, the engine pods were eliminated as was any physical connection between the main body of the vessel and the surrounding ring section, disconnecting the two separate elements. "We liked the defiance of conventional structural support," Drexler stated. "It makes the Vulcans look like they control powers beyond human ken." In this way, Drexler believes the Suurok-class was made to be like the Constitution-class, with the structure of both seemingly defying human understanding. (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 3, Issue 3,  p. 24)

Finally, the design for the Suurok-class was approved. Doug Drexler himself was also happy with it. "I feel that the Surak-class ship will enjoy a longevity if only for that certain Jefferies 'je ne sais quoi,'" he remarked. (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 3, Issue 3,  p. 24) John Eaves regarded the ship as highly influential and a "beautiful design." [2] Following its approval, the design was moved to Eden FX, who added it into "Breaking the Ice". (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 3, Issue 3,  p. 24)

Revised design Edit

ShRaan aft, closeup

Close-up of some of the more notable design variations

Following the initial appearance of the Suurok-class in "Breaking the Ice", the Suurok was redesigned for its later appearances in "Fallen Hero" and "United".

According to Robert Bonchune, "the design fell out of favor for a while," but was eventually revised by model builder Pierre Drolet, to include "better detail and texturing as well as modified dimensions." Bonchune further added that the reason for this was because, "the original model was just not up to snuff for what we needed. So it was superseded. They are theoretically the same ship, not two different classes or types."

Doug Drexler on the issue: "It was my first pass concept model. Like all the concept models, it's low to medium resolution. Usually I only take 2 days to build something like that, because Herman [Zimmerman] needs it pronto for approval. A high rez version was built later by Pierre [Drolet] so that they could get close to it." This version was seen as the Sh'Raan combat cruiser. Later, Drexler added: "I like to think that they are two different classes." (citation needededit)

Among the modifications made to the design included a longer primary hull with a flat underside, and a redesigned aft vertical nacelle strut, which changed from a blue glow to a red glow.

Apocrypha Edit

T'Uerell's ship in the Star Trek: Legacy videogame was a Suurok-class vessel. Throughout the game, the vessel adopts several green and gray accents to depict its gradual assimilation. It is the game's final boss.

External links Edit

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