how big is starfleet?

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by Gabriel, Feb 4, 2019.

  1. Gabriel

    Gabriel Captain Captain

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    How many ships are in starfleet’s fleet ? We never got good numbers so it’s just about speculation. So how big is the mighty starfleet during the dominion war(DS9). Some have said it could be as little as 3,000 and as big as 40,000. What do you think How about during TNG? Post dominion? During TOS ? During DSC and of course how big was the earth starfleet before the (ENT) federation and during the Romulan war.
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2019
  2. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    It's always "bigger than we can afford to show you", but beyond that, DS9 gives us the most accurate numbers for any era.

    In the Dominion War, Starfleet operates in Fleets, of which the 10th is the highest-numbered. Statistically, it would be odd indeed for there to be more than a dozen fleets when we never hear of the higher numbers.

    An individual Fleet features hundreds of ships, the lowest we hear of being the 7th at Tyra with 112 ships in "A Time to Stand". "Elements" of the 2nd and 5th Fleets amount to 600 ships in "Favor the Bold", though, suggesting normal strength is more than 300 ships.

    We're talking about a big and muddy ballpark of four or five thousand ships taking part in active frontline fighting in the Dominion War, then. Which jibes well with the Klingons being able to mobilize some 1,500 ships for a specific major offensive later on.

    Earlier Starfleets probably had fewer ships. Using the German Tank Problem coarse statistical approach, an organization that has ships with registries around NCC-1800 in the 2260s would have built somewhere around 2,000 ships with NCC series registries overall, which is probably as good a guesstimate as any; some of those would be long retired by the time of TOS, while some would have been added to fleet strength from Romulan War surplus and refitted so many times that they'd be departing in a serious bout of block obsolescence around the time of TOS at the very latest, allowing for a construction surge even if nothing else changes. But perhaps the end of the conflict with Klingons around the TOS movies allows the UFP to expand like never before, adding to the surge?

    Around 2,000 ships for the first century of UFP Starfleet ops sounds fine in terms of what we see on screen, and in lieu of actual hard numbers anywhere. If there are more, we have to come up with explanations as for why they aren't given NCC registries. Such as, NCC was for human ships only originally, and a quarter of the strength came from Andorian ships that had FHH registries instead. Or there are plenty of ships that aren't part of the fighting strength, and in the early days those didn't get NCC numbers while in the DS9 days they do, or whatever.

    What Starfleet would do if it had, say, four Fleets of 500 fighting ships available as DSC or TOS starts... Well, some of those would be out there on exploration errands. But having a thousand ships operate a thousand lightyears from home would still leave most of the volume of that 1,000 ly radius sphere unexplored, if a ship can only scan to the sides of her flightpath by a couple of lightyears. Plenty of stuff left for later heroes to discover.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
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  3. Gabriel

    Gabriel Captain Captain

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    I’m just wondering does Starfleet use fleets during peacetime. Knowing how they operate they probably don’t. Because fleets is mostly military thing and remember they believe they are purely explorers
     
  4. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

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    I said out, dammit!
    Yet they could only muster 39 ships at Wolf 359, and the Enterprise is always the only ship in whatever area needs help, especially if it's earth.
    :lol:
     
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  5. The Wormhole

    The Wormhole Admiral Admiral

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    And that was "half the fleet."
     
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  6. Bry_Sinclair

    Bry_Sinclair Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    As big as the plot requires it to be.
     
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  7. Gabriel

    Gabriel Captain Captain

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    Yeah they definitely do that a lot. how about a in universe answer
     
  8. Takeru

    Takeru Space Police Premium Member

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    Realistically starfleet should have several hundred thousand ships. A tiny fleet of just a few thousand makes no sense with 150 member worlds, if we assume 2000 ships per member (which isn't a lot) we're already at 300.000

    And space is really big, a fleet of a few hundred thousand would still be spread very thin especially.
     
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  9. Gabriel

    Gabriel Captain Captain

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    I thought he meant half the fleet near earth because wolf 359 isn’t that far away. Shelby said they will have the fleet back up in a year. That would be 39 ships in a year. That’s pretty good. I don’t think any navy today could do that. But ethier way starfleet was pretty big by the dominion war. Fun fact. When ever TNG was getting started I heard that GR said starfleet had like 500 excelsiors and 6 galaxys
     
  10. Gabriel

    Gabriel Captain Captain

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    And not all starfleet ships are as fast as the galaxy class so they need a lot because they can’t just come running to the rescue on a moments notice and be there in no time.
    I don’t know if starfleet has 150,000 ships because they aren’t that crazy when it comes to keeping up fleet strength. But year by DS9 they have to have at least 20,000-30,000 to really cover UFP space
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2019
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  11. Takeru

    Takeru Space Police Premium Member

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    A big part of starfleet would also consist of Oberth and Nova type science vessels, then there are cargo ships, medical ships etc., a chunk of the fleet could be completely useless at the frontlines of a war explaining the smaller numbers of the DS9 battle fleets.
     
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  12. General_Phoenix

    General_Phoenix Commander Red Shirt

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    Yup. Which in Star Trek Online there are tons of ships outside of spacedock...
     
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  13. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk Kang, now with ridges Premium Member

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    There's not enough data to give an in-universe answer.
     
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  14. at Quark's

    at Quark's Commodore Commodore

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    Perhaps that's just shorthand for : 'the only ship in the area that stands a good chance of succeeding'. After all, we've seen several ships and crews meet a tragic end, but never the Enterprise crew … ;)
     
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  15. Gabriel

    Gabriel Captain Captain

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    Really you came here just to heckle
    @Timo was able to answer the question pretty good with the info. And of course I’m not looking for an exact answer it’s just guesses. See what other people think how big starfleet is in universe
     
  16. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk Kang, now with ridges Premium Member

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    No, I came in to give an honest answer. Nothing in it was "heckling".
     
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  17. Gabriel

    Gabriel Captain Captain

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    Kind it is since you’re complaining about there not being enough information when I said in the opening post to speculate
     
  18. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk Kang, now with ridges Premium Member

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    Nope.
     
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  19. dodge

    dodge Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I think it's bigger than a breadbox.
     
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  20. Gabriel

    Gabriel Captain Captain

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    Well fine don’t answer question though I did try to put in more info just now
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2019