Ship Mission Code

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Naval Commercial
Fleet (B) Siege (C) Defense (D) Assault (E) Trader (A) Resources (J) Liner (M) Freighter (R) Explorer (S)
Technical Data.jpg

A Ship Mission Code (also known as a Ship type code or Ship design code) is a classification of a ship's design purpose. Given the cost in materials, labor, and time to build and maintain a Starship, ships are designed and built with a specific purpose in mind. The ship mission code categorizes these specific purposes into one of twelve primary categories with an optional one or two modifiers to more exactly define ship mission. The purpose being to define and categorize ships designed and built for similar purposes.

There are a great many different mission encoding systems in existence. Almost every space-faring empire has constructed one based upon their specific needs and cultural assumptions. The mission code system used by the Imperial Encyclopedia is a compromise, combining several different systems in an attempt to provide the broadest possible categorization.

Individual governments also assign their own mission code to ships, both their own and those of near by governments. They purpose ranges from simple curiosity about fleets, to tracking economic activity and potential threats, to enforcing policy and treaties.

It is a universal truth that a ship never spends its entire lifespan performing the mission for which it was designed or built. The mission code assigned in the Encyclopedia are based on the original design specifications. The policy of re-assigning mission codes to specific ships or classes of ships based upon changing circumstances is determined by the governments assigning their own codes.

Mission description[edit]

The Mission Description consists of a short phrase based upon the role and mission modifiers. These role and mission modifiers terms have a precise meaning. As part of the mission description there is a type code, a set of letter codes for the role and any modifiers. In more precise terminology the Mission Description refers to the short phrase while the type code refers to the letter codes. There is enough overlap the terms are sometimes used interchangeably.

The Quick Ship Profile and the Universal Ship Profile use the type code encoding to quickly describe the mission of the ship.

Role[edit]

The Naval Architect defines the role of a ship based on the elements of the design. The process divides the components of the ship into two groups: Engineering and Component Payload. Engineering contains the drives (Jump Drive, Maneuver Drive, Power Plant), the fuel required to operate the drives, control systems, and the crew to safely operate the drives. At minimum there will be three crew for any Starship (Pilot, Navigator, and Engineer), and one for any small craft (Pilot). The Component Payload is all remaining modules and equipment installed in the ship. Each role has a list of component, and if more than half of the component payload space is occupied by one or more of the components on the role list that defines the ship's designated role.

There are two very broad role definitions of Naval and Commercial. Each of these has several sub-categories.

The Naval role are the warships. The major components for these roles are weapons, screens, armor, gunners (to operate the weapons and screens), additional power plants or enlarged power plant for weapons, increased computer systems and sensors, quick launch facilities for carried ships, or carried vessels which also fall under the Naval roles.

The important determination for the naval ships is the ratio of attack weapons to defensive systems. In simulated combat a ship with a balanced ratio, also referred to as equipoise, will be defeated by itself about half the time. Ships with their weapons and defenses in equipoise given the role of Fleet. Ships with more armor (or defenses) than their weapons are capable of penetrating are Defender. Ships with more powerful weapons than their armor (or other defenses) can stop are Assault. If the ratio of attack to defenses has not been determined ships are assigned the Fleet role by default.

Most warships are designed around ship to ship combat, fighting in space. But some ships are designed for attacking worlds. This presents a tactical and design challenge as most worlds, especially inhabited ones, possess an atmosphere. Ships mounting a majority of weapons designed for attacking world are Siege. The major weapons systems for this include rail guns, Ortillery, dead-fall ordinance. It may also include Plasma, Fusion, and Meson weapons, and some missile launchers.

Commercial ships have five roles. The primary roles are the ones devoted to carrying passengers or cargo. Any ship designed around either cargo, passengers, or both are Transport role. The transport role is divided into three roles: Ships with the major components for transporting passengers, including staterooms, life support, and passenger spaces like recreation spaces are Liners. Ships with their entire component payload as cargo space are Freighters. Ships with a of majority of cargo space but also include some passenger space or low berths are termed Trader.

Explorer or Science role has major components of exploration equipment including enhanced sensors, with spaces dedicated to laboratory equipment, sample gathering and analysis, and extended endurance.

The final role, the Resources role has the major components of various resource processing elements including ore processors, fuel refineries, workshops, factory spaces for manufacturing goods, agricultural areas, and hangers for repairing ships and vehicles.

Mission[edit]

Missions are assigned by the ship designer or group ordering the design. Usually missions can not be determined from the components and ship layout the way roles are.

Naval missions[edit]

The default naval mission is the Fleet mission. The ship operates as part of a group or fleet of ships providing support for all of the others.

  • Independent
  • System

Commercial missions[edit]

The Transport roles have several specific missions. The default assumed mission is Scheduled, where the ship travels a schedule route. The route covers two to six medium to high population worlds, usually within a subsector or smaller sized area. These ships are operated by a company having a presence on all of the scheduled worlds to ensure there is sufficient freight and passengers for the next visit.

Subsidized Transports have an assigned route they travel. The route is usually not a profitable one, hence subsidized by one or more of the world governments along the route to provide minimal scheduled services. Ships will carry a combination of passengers, freight including mail, and speculative cargo.

Free Transports are ships that do not have a fixed route. The ship travels as the captain decides, carrying mostly speculative cargo and passengers on commission. Free Liners are Packet ships, providing unscheduled and charter passenger services as needed.

Clipper Transports connect two distant worlds, transporting freight and passengers across the several jumps distance without needed to find the intermediate transports.

Station Transports, which may seem like a contradiction, serve as orbital ports and Far Ports for transfer of cargo, freight, and passengers from ship to ship or planet-side.

Military or Naval Transports fall under the usual heading of Auxiliary, used by the military or naval force to move soldiers and equipment to places where they are needed.

The Freighter role also have specific missions depending on the configuration of their cargo holds. The default mission is Transport freighters, carrying containerized cargo with the ability to on-load and off-load the standardized containers. Bulk freighters carry solid, usually granular, material. Gas freighters carry either liquid or compressed gas in internal tanks. Carrier freighters carry other, smaller, vessels or vehicles.

The Explorer role also has several specific missions. Survey Explorers are the first into a new, unexplored area to map out the potential dangers and gather information. The Survey explorers are also tasked with re-survey of existing systems to ensure no new potential dangers have arisen. Courier is a data transport ship, for carrying the information gathered to a centralized data collection point. An Express Courier carries data on a longer fixed route. The Third Imperium constructed an extensive network of these X-Boat routes.

Medical Explorers cover the missions of both discovering new medical treatments and

Safari Explorer is used to gather flora and fauna on worlds for cataloging and research.

Military Explorer, also in the Auxiliary, is a spy ship for monitoring enemy forces and their movements.

The Resources role have missions assigned around the specific equipment installed. Refinery has Fuel refinery and storage. A Prospector has ore processing and storage.

Type code[edit]

The type code or type designation is a one to three character encoding of the role and mission of the craft. Mission description refers to the short phrase while the type code refers to the letter codes. There is enough overlap the terms are sometimes used interchangeably.

The Ship Mission code has the following format

type type code mission description

For example, a ship may be given the mission of type AF Free Trader. The AF designates a role code of A (Trader) with a mission of F (Free).

Usually there is only one mission letter assigned to a give ship with the assumption it is sufficient to distinguish the mission. On rare occasions there are two missions, indicating the ship serves a dual purpose or to provide more clarity around the specific role for the ship. For example a mission code of Type RNV Naval carrier is a design to carry rider fleet ships into combat areas. It is probably well armed but still devotes a majority of internal component space to carrying the additional ships.

Trader (Type A)[edit]

Commercial trade ships are designed as general purpose mixed mode cargo and passenger carriers. Their primary goal is the opening of new markets, so designs emphasize independent operation and without specific logistical support.

Type A Ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
A Commercial Trader Merchant Vessel
AC Clipper Trader Clipper
AF Free Traders Far Trader, Free Trader
AK Subsidized Trader Subsidized Trader
AN Naval Trader Combat Support Ship
AQ Commercial Mother Ship Colony Ship, Sleeper Ship, Generation Ship
AW Commercial Station Space Station, Trade Station, X-Boat Station, Far port

Resources (Type J)[edit]

Resource extraction and managements ships are designed for the specific purpose of finding, extracting, and processing raw materials and resources.

Type J ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
JG Gas Prospecting Skimmer, Fueling Craft
JJ Prospector Prospector Vessel, Type J class Seeker
JU Salvage Salvage

Liner (Type M)[edit]

Liners are designed to transport people as comfortably as possible. They may carry some cargo or freight, but this is secondary to the needs and space devoted to the passengers.

Type M Ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
M Liner Liner
MC Clipper Liner Clipper
MF Free Liner Packet Ship
MK Subsidized Liner Subsidized Liner, Diplomatic Transport
MW Passenger station Space Station, Trade Station
MY Passenger Yacht Private Vessel, Type Y class Yacht

Freighter (Type R)[edit]

Commercial freighters are designed for carrying cargo or freight like goods or raw materials. They have little or no support for carrying passengers.

Type R ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
R Freighter Freighter, Mega-Freighter, Transport
RB Bulk Cargo Freighter Bulk Cargo
RG Gas Freighter Gas giant interface or fuel handler, Tanker
RN Naval Freighter Fleet Transport
RT Commercial Transport Transport
RV Carrier Freighter Carries vehicles, small craft, or utility craft. LASH Freighter

Explorer (Type S)[edit]

Explorer ships are designed for long duration independent missions to explore new territory and contact new civilizations. Their secondary missions are to explore and understand all aspects of the universe.

Type S ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
S Explorer Exploration Vessel, Scout Vessel
SC Communications Courier Vessel
SK Subsidized Explorer Type K class Safari Ship
SL Long Range Explorer Exploration Vessel
SN Naval Explorer Military Scout Vessel
SW Sensor Platform System Surveillance

Mission codes[edit]

The mission code here shows the principle active mission codes and scope of use. These are currently used within the encyclopedia ship mission and type modifiers.

Code Meaning Grouping Description
B Bulk Transport Raw materials transport
C Clipper Operations Scheduled long distance cargo/freight and passenger carrier
F Free Operations Unscheduled cargo/freight and passenger carrier
G Gas Transport Gas giant interface or fuel handler
J Prospector Operation Resource search and extraction
K Subsidized Operation Scheduled cargo/freight and passenger carrier
L Long Range Performance Extended jump and maneuver drive operation
N Naval Operation General naval operational support
Q Mother Operation Mobile base of operations for craft and persons.
V Carrier Transport Carries vehicles, small craft, or utility craft
W Unpowered Performance Lacks both jump and maneuver drives, an orbital station.
X Express Transport Optimized and scheduled data and small package carrier
Y Yacht Transport Privately owned or charter vessel for non-commercial purposes.


Mission description[edit]

The mission encoding has two parts: A name or short phrase to define the specific primary mission and any modifiers, and a set of letter codes which capture the same primary mission and modifiers. In more precise terminology the Mission Code refers to the short phrase while the type code refers to the letter codes. There is enough overlap the terms are sometimes used interchangeably

The Ship Mission code has the following format

type type code mission description

The type code is the one to three character encoding of the mission. The expected format is the primary mission code followed by any modifier codes.

The mission description is a short phrase to describe the mission. This generally is not the precise language used by mission code descriptions, but rather a description given by the designer.

For example, a ship may be given the mission code of type CA armored cruiser. The CA gives a mission code of C (Naval independent operations) with a modifier of A (Armored).

Giving specific names to the mission, like cruiser, leads to comparison of the ships with the same mission name, especially with military ships. This in turn causes analysis issues when trying to describe two designs separated by spans of time or availability of resources. Trying to compare a Lightning class Frontier Cruiser to an early Terran Confederation cruiser leads to substantial argument about what qualifies as a "Cruiser".

Primary missions[edit]

For each primary mission there is a title and a code given for the mission encoding and the type codes. Each mission has a longer description and list of examples to provide guidance for assigning a primary code.

Navy
These are warships designed for combat operations. Their design includes weapons, armor, shields, and the crew to support these operations.
Fleet - Code B
Naval fleet ships are designed for primary front-line combat duty to engage and destroy enemy forces. These ship serve as the direct offense and the first line of defense. Frequently designed around a Spinal Weapons Mount or other heavy weapons. Navy fleet ships work in concert with each fleet elements to defeat enemy forces in detail.
Independent - Code C
Naval independent ships are designed for combat operations independent of the larger fleet elements, emphasizing mobility. These ships operate alone or in small groups, frequently on extended operations away from support elements. Operations might include quick reaction forces for defending against unexpected feints or operations behind enemy lines to disrupt supply lines and logistics.
Defenders - Code D
Naval defender ships are designed for defending important assets like worlds, naval bases, and supply lines. Designs emphasize fire-power and defensive capabilities over strategic mobility. While independently operating like code C, they are also primarily defensive like code E, falling roughly between the two codes.
Fleet Escort/Fleet Defenders - Code E
Naval escort ships are designed to protect other ships, often ones of code B. Electronic warfare and counter-missile laser batteries are common for escorts. Unlike code D, naval escort ships are not intended to operate independent of a fleet.
Smallcraft - Code F
Fighters and other combat-oriented boats of less than 100 tons, intended to launch from a carrier or base and (usually) operate in squadrons.
Security/Police - Code H
Generally non-jump-capable, permanently assigned to individual systems to ensure their security. This includes law enforcement vessels. Unarmed and/or immobile (e.g. space stations) system craft are code W.
Combat Transport - Code I
These ships brave enemy fire to bring troops to and from planetary surfaces and other invasion targets (including hostile ships and stations), along with related missions like providing fire support once there and transporting combat material (especially combat vehicles).
Ortillery/Siege - Code O
The space version of siege weapons, these ships are all about destroying planetary, station, and other relatively immobile obstacles. They are not intended for combat, and often must flee or avoid contested space.
Auxiliary - Code Q
Naval auxiliary ships are designed for combat operations other than strategic naval fleet operations. A broad category of designs for specific military operations usually captured by the mission modifiers.
Carrier - Code V
Naval carriers are primarily focused on transporting lots of combat smallcraft (code F) to and from combat, rather than directly entering combat themselves.
Commercial
These ships support profit making enterprises like resource extractions, manufacturing, and trade. Commercial ships may or may not be lightly armed and are not designed for combat.
Trader - Code A
Commercial trader ships are designed as general purpose mixed mode cargo and passenger carriers. Their primary goal is the opening of new markets, so designs emphasize independent operation and without specific logistical support.
Industrial - Code G
Mobile factories, repair facilities, resource processing, foodstuff manufacture, and other such industrial activities that are not primarily resource extraction. While classified as commercial, this does include certain military support ships intended to ease logistical burdens.
Resource Extraction - Code J
Commercial resource extraction ships are designed for the specific purpose of finding, extracting, and processing raw materials and resources.
Liners - Code M
Commercial liners are designed to transport people as comfortably as possible. Commercial liners travel well known scheduled routes and can expect to have specific logistical support at all stops along the way.
Corsair/Pirate - Code P
Corsair ships are designed to profit by extracting cargo and other things of value from other ships in a hostile manner. Using ships of other missions for piracy is one thing, but ship classes explicitly designed for this role are generally recognized as hostile in most systems. Few shipyards will manufacture this type of ship, but there are always some willing to do the job.
Freighter - Code R
Commercial freighters are designed for carrying cargo or freight like goods or raw materials. Like Liners these travel well known schedule routes and can expect to have specific logical support at stops along the way.
General - Code T
General commercial ships are designed for commercial operations not covered by other mission definitions. A broad category with specific designs for different missions.
Non-commercial
Ships for performing missions not directly related to war or profit making like science experiments, experimental ship designs, and private vessels. Like the commercial ships, these may or may not be lightly armed and are not designed for combat.
Expedition - Code K
Private ships supporting extended trips for recreation, exploration, diplomacy, or other such purposes. Unlike e.g. code S, these are intended to operate without some base to eventually report back to.
Science - Code L
Science ships are designed for performing scientific research and survey operations. Designs emphasize sensors and on site operations, with a passenger comforts also being important. Many are built for a specific mission rather than general purpose designs.
Medical - Code N
All manner of life saving ships.
Scout - Code S
Scout ships are designed for long duration independent missions to explore new territory and contact new civilizations.
Utility - Code U
Generally smallcraft, performing various tasks either on behalf of larger ships (such as skimming fuel) or for which larger ships are unnecessary (such as transporting people between a planet and its moons). Armed smallcraft are code F, though mining lasers generally do not count for this purpose.
System Craft - Code W
NAFAL boats (that are not smallcraft), satellites, and space stations. A catch-all for non-jump-capable spacecraft not covered under code U. Armed mobile system craft are code H.
Communications/Relay - Code X
Communications ships are primarily about relaying mail and messages from system to system.
Private - Code Y
Private ships are designed for private operations not covered by other categories. A broad category of designs with specific examples called out by the modifier codes.
Uncategorized/Experimental - Code Z
Anything that does not fit under any other code. Sometimes used as a temporary designation, the first time an alien ship class is encountered. Also includes prototypes, artifact ships (alien and otherwise), ships designed for extremely specialized missions, and Unique Ships.

Mission Modifiers[edit]

There are two mission modifier code tables here. The first shows the principle modifier codes with their definitions and scope of use. These are currently used within the encyclopedia ship mission and type modifiers.

Code Meaning Grouping Description
A Armored Combat Substantial addition of armor
B Battle Combat Substantial addition of firepower
B Boat Performance Lacking a jump drive
C Carrier Transport Naval fleet combat ship carrier
C Close Operations Close range naval fleet operations
C Communications Transport Small package and data carrier
D Defender Operations Anti-intruder operations
E Escort Operations Ship defense operations
F Far Performance Increased jump range
F Fighter Combat Frontal assault craft
F Frontier Operation Independent operations
G Gas Transport Gas giant interface or fuel handler
G Government Operation General operations
G Gunned Combat Increased Firepower
H Heavy Size Larger, more capable
J Interface Operation Planetary to space operations
J Intruder Operation Probes enemy territory
J Prospector Operation Resource search and extraction
K Courier Operation Unscheduled data and passenger carrier
L Lifeboat Operation Emergency rescue operation vehicle
L Light Size Smaller, less capable
L Long Range Performance Extended jump and maneuver drive operation
M Industrial Operation General commercial operations
M Mercenary Operation Light independent military operations
M Motivator Performance Provides maneuver or Jump for other ships
N Naval Operation General naval operational support
P Packet Operation Unscheduled passenger carrier
P Passenger Transport Optimized for long term passengers or residents
P Pursuit Operation Chases enemy ships
Q Mother Operation Mobile base of operations for craft and persons.
Q Decoy Operation Misleads enemy forces, hides true capabilities
R Raider Operation Anti-commerce/ship operations
R Rescue Operation Emergency rescue of people from damaged or destroyed ships.
S Small Size Smaller than Light, Smallcraft
S Strike Combat Optimized for first strike capability
S Survey Operation Detailed survey analysis operations
S System Operation Operates within a single system
T Transport Transport Moves people and equipment
U Unarmed Combat No armaments
U Utility Operation General purpose operation
U Inoperable Operation Either is junk or manages junk ships
V Carrier Transport Carries vehicles, small craft, or utility craft
W Unpowered Performance Lacks both jump and maneuver drives
X Express Transport Optimized and scheduled data and small package carrier
Y Rider Operation Non-jump capable ship carried by a carrier.

This is the second modifier code listing giving a broader definition for each of the codes, but lacking precise definitions as given above.

Code Modifier name(s)
A Alternate, Improved, Armored, Attack
B Boat. Bulk. Battle. Big.
C Close. Carrier. Communications. Construction. Cutter.
D Defense. Defending. Interceptor. Transport
E Escort. Essential. Electronic Warfare
F Fast. Fat. Frontier. Far. Flag. Free. Fleet. Fighter
G Gunned. Upgunned. Gas, Governmental. Gig
H Fuel. Tanker. Hydrogen. Heavy
J Survey. Prospector. Interface. Intruder
K Subsidized. Fast, Diplomatic, Courier
L Lifeboat. Exploratory. Light. Leader. Launch.
M Military. Militia. Mercenary. Motivator. Tug. Mining, Missile
N Naval. Nuclear. Fleet. Non-standard. Pinnace.
P Patrol. Plus. Passenger, Mercenary, Pursuit. Provincial
Q Disguised. Decoy. Quarantine, Mother
R Recon. Rescue. Rider. Resident. Raider
S Slow. System. Special. Luxury. Small. Strike. Survey. Shuttle
T Tramp. Tender. Transport. Tanker.
U Unarmed, Hulk. De-activated. Inoperative
V Vehicle Carrier, Drone. Remote. Replenishment. Agricultural
W Unpowered. Non-Jump. Barge
X Experimental. Special. Express.
Y Hull. Subhull. Pod. Rider. Modular. Private. Shuttle. Cutter
Z Unassigned, Experimental.

Type encoding[edit]

As a way of providing better application of the mission encoding, listed here are several examples of combined primary and modifier ship codes. These cover most of the ship types present and cataloged in the encyclopedia, but may not cover every ship ever designed.

Type A Commercial Trader[edit]

Commercial trade ships are designed as general purpose mixed mode cargo and passenger carriers. Their primary goal is the opening of new markets, so designs emphasize independent operation and without specific logistical support.

Type A Ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
A Commercial Merchant Merchant Vessel, Tramp Vessel
AA Armored Merchant Armored Merchant
AC Commercial Communications Communications Vessel
AF Commercial Far Traders Far Trader, Free Trader
AK Commercial Courier Courier Vessel
AP Commercial passenger Packet Ship
AQ Commercial Mother Ship Colony Ship, Sleeper Ship, Generation Ship
AW Commercial Station Space Station, Trade Station, X-Boat Station, Far port

Type B Naval Fleet[edit]

Naval fleet ships are designed for primary front-line combat duty to engage and destroy enemy forces.

Type B ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
BB Naval Fleet Battleship
BC Close Fleet Brigantine
BL Light Fleet Corvette, Patrol Corvette
BN Naval Fleet Destroyer
BS Small Fleet Sloop, War Sloop
BY Naval Battle Rider Battle Rider

Type C Naval Independent[edit]

Naval independent ships are designed for combat operations independent of the larger fleet elements, emphasizing mobility. These ships operate alone or in small groups, frequently on extended operations away from support elements. Operations might include quick reaction forces for defending against unexpected feints or operations behind enemy lines to disrupt supply lines and logistics.

Type C ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
CB Naval Independent Cruiser
CJ Naval Intruder Intruder
CL Light Independent Frigate
CP Naval Pursuit Marauder
CR Naval Raider Raider Vessel
CS Naval Strike Privateer Vessel, Corsair Vessel

Type D Naval Defender[edit]

Naval defender ships are designed for defending important assets like worlds, naval bases, and supply lines. Designs emphasize fire-power and defensive capabilities over strategic mobility.

Type D ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
DB Naval Battle Defender Monitor
DD Naval defense interceptor Picket
DE Naval Escort Escort, Type E class Escort
DH Naval heavy defender Sentinel
DSB Naval Defender System Defense Boat
DW Naval Defender Station orbital fortress

Type E Naval Auxiliary[edit]

Naval auxiliary ships are designed for combat operations other than strategic naval fleet operations. A broad category of designs for specific military operations usually captured by the mission modifiers.

Type E ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
E Naval Auxiliary Combat Support Ship, Military Specialty Craft, Auxiliary Vessel
EB Naval Otillery Ortillery Ship, Bomber
EC Naval Fleet Carrier Carrier
ED Naval Patrol Interceptor Customs Enforcement
EE Naval Auxiliary Security Security Vessel
EF Naval Fighter Fighter
EG Naval Gunboat Gunboat
EJ Naval planetary assault Planetary Assault
EK Naval Courier Fleet Courier
EP Naval Auxiliary Patrol Patrol Vessel
EQ Naval Decoy Q-Ship
ET Naval Combat Transport Combat Transport, Fleet Tanker
EU Naval Utility Utility Craft, Type U class Auxiliary
EV Naval Carrier Subcraft Carrier, Escort Tender

Type J Commercial Resource[edit]

Commercial resource extraction ships are designed for the specific purpose of finding, extracting, and processing raw materials and resources.

Type J ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
JG Commercial Gas Skimmer
JJ Commercial Prospector Prospector Vessel, Type J class Seeker
JH Commercial Fuel Fueling Craft
JU Commercial Salvage Salvage

Type L Science[edit]

Science ships are designed for performing scientific research and survey operations. Designs emphasize sensors and on site operations, with a passenger comforts also being important. Many are built for a specific mission rather than general purpose designs.

Type L ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
L Science Science Vessel, Biomedical Vessel
LF Science Frontier Beagle Vessel
LL Science Expedition Expedition Ship
LS Science Survey Survey ships
LW Science Platform Sensor Platforms

Type M Commercial Liner[edit]

Commercial liners are designed to transport people as comfortably as possible. Commercial liners travel well known scheduled routes and can expect to have specific logistical support at all stops along the way.

Type M ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
M Commercial Liner Liner, Type M class Subsidized Liner
MC Commercial cutter Cutter
MF Commercial Fast Liner Clipper
MP Commercial Resident Prison

Type R Commercial Freighter[edit]

Type S Scout[edit]

Scout ships are designed for long duration independent missions to explore new territory and contact new civilizations.

Type S ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
S Scout Scout Vessel
SC Scout Communications First Contact
SL Scout Explorer Exploration Vessel
SN Scout Naval Military Scout Vessel
SW Scout Sensor Platform System Surveillance

Type T Commercial Transport[edit]

General commercial ships are designed for commercial operations not covered by other mission definitions. A broad category with specific designs for different missions.

Type T ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
T Commercial Transport Industrial Vessel, Commercial
TL Commercial Life Boat Life Boat
TM Commercial Motivator Tug, Jump Shuttle
TN Commercial Fleet Repair mobile repair facility
TP Medical support Medical Vessel, Type N class Medical Vessel
TR Commercial Rescue Rescue ship
TS Commercial Small craft Smallcraft
TT Commercial Transport Transport, Tender
TU Commercial Utility Utility Craft
TV Commercial Agricultural Drone, Agricultural ship
TW Commercial Barge Barge, Type W class Orbital Facility

Type Y Yacht[edit]

Private ships are designed for private operations not covered by other categories. A broad category of designs with specific examples called out by the modifier codes.

Type Y ship mission classification
Code Master Ship Mission Example
Y Yacht Private Vessel, Non-Commercial Vessel, Type Y class Yacht
YG Private Governmental Diplomatic Transport
YK Private Safari Type K class Safari Ship
YL Private Expedition Expedition Ship
YM Private Mercenary Bounty Hunter Vessel
YP Private Passenger Charter Vessels
YW Private Station Private habitat

See Also[edit]

Please refer to the following AAB Library Data for more information:
Starship:

Imperial Ship Classification Synopsis[edit]

The basic system of ship classification and organization for ships within Charted Space and particularly within Imperial Space works on a simple hierarchy of mission (generalized use), type (specific use), class (very specific use), model (technological level), and lot or bloc (production run):

Imperial Ship Classification
# Level Designation Synopsis Example/s
1. Ship Mission Codes SUPRACLASS MISSION Free Trader AKA Merchant
2. Ship Type Codes SUPERCLASS TYPE Type A class Free Trader
3. Ship Class Codes CLASS CLASS Beowulf class Free Trader
4. Ship Model Codes MODEL TL & Model TL-14 Beowulf Build
  • Models aren’t always mentioned, but if they are, they are usually referred to by a TL designation.
5. Ship Bloc Codes LOT or BLOC Named Ship “The Lonesome Wolf” of ‘Bloc 312-1115d’
  • Ship Lots or Bloc Codes are rarely used except by naval shipyards, patrol craft, and the like. They are recorded in the ship’s computer as well as a number of places on the hull.

Overview of Imperial Ship Classification[edit]

Imperial Ship Classification
# Level Example Remarks
1. Supraclass (Function) Dreadnought It’s the largest organizational grouping by a generalized function or mission. For instance, battleships and cruisers have different generalized missions although they can perform many of the same jobs.
2. Type (Superclass) Type BB class Battleship It’s a larger type grouping by a specific function or mission. Different kinds of battleships or types may perform different yet broadly similar missions.
3. Class (Ship) Tigress class Dreadnought The ship itself is synonymous with a class. The first produced version becomes the class namesake under most practices. It has an even more specific mission that the craft type code (type) or superclass.
4. Model (Version) TL-15 Tigress Model 1105-Q3-9PR This classification may include incremental improvements often as a result of TL advances. Some classes of ships can be built at several different TL’s. For instance, the ubiquitous Beowulf Free Trader has builds from TL-10 to TL-15.
5. Lot (Block) Block 365-1105 Reg-A-4702-4826-9931 This classification is also known as a Production Bloc. Blocs may have differences from lot to lot. Sometimes aftermarket or post-production modification (customization) may yield very different ships from the originally manufactured ship class.

References & Contributors (Sources)[edit]

This list of sources was used by the Traveller Wiki Editorial Team and individual contributors to compose this article. Copyrighted material is used under license from Far Future Enterprises or by permission of the author. The page history lists all of the contributions.