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The Federation class dreadnoughts were a class of starship extant beginning in the 2260s. (Star Fleet Technical Manual)

The USS Star Empire was a prototype of the class. (TOS novel: Dreadnought!)

The original concept of a Federation-class dreadnought was to include more capabilities, but only a minimal increase in firepower over the Constitution-class fielded by the Federation at this time. This was found to be inadequate after other races began fielding DNs that reflected an approximate 50% increase in firepower over their respective heavy cruisers. During wartime, each fleet is commanded by an admiral in a dreadnought, but during peacetime, it was usually docked at a starbase because it was too expensive to operate. (TOS video game: Starfleet Command (game))

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