On Stardate 2/0710 (2266), a V-8 was encountered by a Star Fleet cruiser patrolling the Neutral Zone, the first such contact in over 100 years and the very first visual contact with a Romulan war vessel. The incursion into Federation space obviously was intended to test UFP defenses, and the V-8 destroyed several listening posts and bases before being heavily damaged by the Federation vessel and self-destructing to avoid capture. Because of this incident, and because these ships were encountered in increasing numbers afterward, this vessel, more than any other, has been identified with Romulan military actions. For many years, these vessels were believed to be the mainstay of the Romulan fleet, but improved intelligence reveals that this was a misconception.
The vessel was designed to carry the RPL-2 plasma weapon; because of its size and bulk, the Type 1 ships–136 meters long–actually were built around the 110-foot-Iong weapon. The other major feature of the Type 1 was the use of new shielding technology. The Type 4, with upgraded disruptors, was introduced to overcome the inadequate firepower of earlier models.
Of the approximately 100 ships built, about 40 are assigned to reserve fleets. Six have been modified and sold to the civil sector, including two Type 1s, one each of Type 2 and Type 3, and two Type 4s, all of which operate in and out of the Triangle.
The class is named for the Romulan vas hatham (bird of prey), in reference to a huge, flying predator reportedly native to Romulus, but so revered that they have been transplanted to several of the conquered worlds in the empire. Living for nearly 100 years, these avians can reach nearly giant proportions, some having wingspans as wide as 50 feet and weighing as much as 400 pounds.
|Ship Source:||The Starfleet Museum FASA||Ship Datasheet:||Coming Soon|