The Hermes Class is the fastest sublight ship known to the Alliance. Also equpped with warp drive, it is generally used as a long-range scout.
About this creation
The Hermes Class Scout was purely the brainchild of one man. Tchrekor of Blacktron, formerly the Chief Engineer of the orignal L.S.S. Implacable and later of the original L.S.S. Cerberus, designed and built this ship in his own spare time. He even constructed a prototype when he had time off at his home in the Blacktron Refugee Quadrant of the Dyson Sphere.
If you ask his colleagues, Tchrekor has been known to have the odd bias about ship design. He has stated in the past that most Alliance ships do not maximize the potential for impulse thrust per kilo, and so set about designing the fastest sublight drive system ever seen on a ship of this size.
While off duty on the Cerberus, he started preliminary designs for twin engine pods with self-contained fusion reactors, massive impulse coils, each coupled with huge emitters. After running simulations, he found that adding stabilizing thrusters on the top AND bottom of each pod was the only way to deal with fluctuations inherent in coils of that size without adding more mass to the ship.
The impulse coils and the fusion generators are housed in heavily armoured cylindrical compartments, connected by the power relays and cooling system. The cooling vents on the side are also equipped with shield emitters, added well after the propulsion design was finalized.
Having the power generation system WITHIN the engine itself also saved on bulky power transmission conduits and wasting energy by inefficiently transferring power.
After solving the design problems of the impulse system, he set about the relatively simple task of designing a warp drive.
The two 'nacelle' emitters are almost directly connected to the warp core itself, an efficient design again minimizing unnecessary power transmission conduits.
The warp core only powers the warp drive itself, the impulse engines each having its own set of reactors. In the event of either impulse pod or the warp drive system going offline, the ship remains powered. All three engine systems must be essentially destroyed before power systems go offline, a redundancy that only an engineer used to power failures could have conceived.
Another design feature is the relatively large amount of interior space. The Hermes is clearly a scout for long-range missions, whether at impulse or at warp. Tchrekor needed 'space for his tools', and included a slightly longer and more open cockpit for this purpose.
Tchrekor has always had little respect for 'authority for authority's sake', but a line was crossed when his former Cerberus crew mate Lt. Chuck of Ice Planet made a disturbing and startling discovery. One day on the Cerberus about six years ago, normally distractedly-calm Chuck walked back to engineering with a tricorder and a hollow look in his eyes. Second engineer Lt. Ylana was on the upper level assisting Tchrekor run a warp systems diagnostic. Chuck emerged from the dark passageway leading from the bridge and science labs between the nacelles and paused, focused on the small display of the scanner in his hand. In the space of a heartbeat, calm Chuck, scientific and peaceful Chuck, raised his phaser towards Lt. Ylana and fired. The energy beam sizzled and crackled on a point in mid-air just to the left of the stunned engineer, who dropped her phase spanner and backed away two steps. A grey figure appeared out of fizzing electrical energy and stood looking surprised at the scientist and two engineers. He then instantly strode across the gap of the second level, around the warp core, and jumped down onto the lower decking. He was standing up to continue his sprint towards sickbay when he caught Tchrekor's fist in his face. The man was thrown back to the floor with his face bloodied and broken, and looked around emotionlessly at the figures beginning to surround him. He quickly bit onto a small capsule attached to his right shoulder and died.
That was Tchrekor's first encounter with the Alliance Secret Police, and the beginning of the end of his career in the Alliance itself. It wasn't long before Chuck had disseminated his subspace disruption scanner from the Cerberus to several other ships, and Secret Police agents were being discovered. They were cunning, however. They never left a trace, and most citizens of the Alliance remained blissfully unaware of the invisible grey men and women in their midst. The rag tag fleet of ships that had scanned for and eliminated hidden control agents and devices was referred to as a traitorous terrorist group, and an Alliance Black Fleet soon rendezvoused to destroy them. The Insurgency has been fighting to eliminate Secret Police control and influence from the Alliance ever since.
The prototype ship that Tchrekor had built was successfully smuggled out of the Dyson sphere and joined the Insurgent fleet.
Tchrekor no longer serves in the engine room of a starship, having been replaced by Lt. Ylana shortly after the Revelation. He now helps Insurgent scientists on the freed world of Krystos (or Ice Planet) to build squadrons of Hermes Class scouts, and flies important missions on his own as a pilot.
The tactical advantage of such a fast ship was not lost on Insurgent commanders, such as Capt. Lisa Bunji. Mass production of the Hermes was begun as soon as the Krystos shipyards were retrofitted with Blacktron technology.
The ship is not designed for heavy combat, though it does have four medium-range pulse disruptors, a not altogether insignificant armament.
As a scout, the Hermes class is equipped with two huge sensor arrays on its wingtips. They are able to detect cloaked ships at close range, and are therefore particularly useful as patrol craft.
In the rare event the Hermes cannot simply outrun an attacker, it is shielded by emitters on both the top and bottom of the cockpit, and port/starboard emitters by the impulse cooling vents.
In order to save mass which would jeopardize crucial speed, the Hermes class is unfortunately poorly armoured. In the event of shield and/or engine failure, the hull is vulnerable to direct weapons fire.