The Karekh class scout/explorer is a Vulcan-designed and manufactured exploration vessel. This class was designed specifically for mapping space and performing related duties. As a result, the Karekh has an unusually powerful computer for a starship of its size. It is not a particularly well-known class, but it is very well suited for its mission. The vessel’s overall reliability is one of its greatest strengths. The interior configuration is similar to the more common Mission class, except that the Karekh has two decks instead of three.
As part of its mapping and patrol procedures, the Karekh locates new planetary systems. After detecting a new system, the explorer investigates further and determines whether the planet is suitable for colonization, or needs further evaluation by a more fully-equipped starship. Karekhs have made a great deal of celestial discoveries and first contacts, a source of satisfaction to Starfleet and the ship’s Vulcan builders.
The Mk I Karekh is totally unarmed. This makes the Mk I very popular with Vulcan crews (for whom it was originally designed) and less popular with most other races. In particular, no Andorians will serve willingly aboard a Karekh.
The Karekh marked a return to smaller cheaper scouts, and in many ways reflected the return of Starfleet to a peacetime footing.
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