The Emissary and the Ambassador
classes share intertwined origins. As the Excelsior
class fleet aged, Starfleet sought a replacement capable of exceeding its proven performance, range and reliability, and in 2305, specifications were first outlined for a heavy cruiser, larger and more powerful than any prior commissioned vessel. Two new class concepts were submitted three years later (by the space architecture bureau behind the Excelsior
and that of the Constitution
, respectively), remarkably similar in scale, but strikingly different in detail.
It was an even contest. The Emissary
concept was a cutting edge, elegant design, built around the latest advances in warp architecture and propulsion, far advanci