Discovery, unlike the three NX-class vessels preceding it, was launched with a new warp plasma system giving it a top speed of Warp 5.7, at that time the fastest of the entire fleet. Due to the increased strain on the hull at these speeds, the ship was also fitted with prototype hull plating. Such plating eventually became the standard for all Starfleet vessels, up to and including the Constitution-class.
Discovery was also a guinea pig of sorts for a new type of photonic torpedo, which moved slower than the original, but had a greater payload. The ship was also fitted with a new deflector assembly which boosted sensor efficiency, in an attempt to alleviate the greatest design flaw of the original NX class.
The ship participated in many space battles of the War, and was critically damaged in 2157 after a narrow victory against two Romulan Birds-of-Prey. Although the ship survived, 23 crewmen met their deaths, including the ship's first officer, Commander Charles Clow. Clow's children, Matt and Chris, would also serve in the war as part of MACO. Chris would later follow in his father's footsteps as the Executive Officer aboard the Poseidon. (Star Trek: Poseidon - The Birth of the Federation)
|Atlantis - Challenger - Cochrane - Columbia - Daedalus - Dauntless - Endeavour - Enterprise - Liberty - San'rath - Saratoga - Zefram Cochrane|
|Star Trek: Poseidon: Atlantis - Challenger - Discovery - Poseidon|
|Starfleet: The First Era: ESS Meridian - ESS Phoenix - ESS Shenandoah - ESS Trope - ESS Yorktown|
|USS Baldwin: Atlantis - Discovery|
|Star Trek: Remington: Endeavour|
|Mirror universe: ISS Enterprise - ISS Avenger|