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A transporter was a device that could "beam in" or "beam out" cargo or people to and from starships. The chief transporter operator on a Starfleet facility was called a transporter chief. They were often stacked together in so-called "transporter rooms".

Development historyEdit

In the 2040s and 50s, Colin Blakeney performed early experiments with transporter technology and had succeeded in transporting a live chicken and a chimpanzee. These experiments met with public outcry based on ignorance of the physics (and speculations of the metaphysics) of the process. (The outcry was fostered by Earth's Global Transportation Consortium, which had controlled all air, sea and ground travel technology since 2012.)

Initially, the process required both sending and receiving stations. One of Blakeney's last developments was developing transporter tech that did not require a receiving station. He mysteriously disappeared in 2052 and no substantive developments were made in the field for at least fifty years. (TNG comic: Forgiveness)

Transporter theory and technology were not totally lost with Blakeney's disappearance, however. Descendants of the Terra 10 generation-ship expedition of 2070, when rediscovered in the 23rd century, possessed the technology. (TAS: "The Terratin Incident")

Emory Erickson is often credited with being the "Father of the Transporter". Prior to the rediscovery of the Terra 10 expedition, and the knowledge of Blakeney's final fate, he was thought to be not only the inventor of the device, but the first human being to put himself through it. A popular biography of Erickson was published, c. 2130. (ENT: "Daedalus")

The first Earth starship to use a transporter rated for living matter was the NX-class Enterprise in 2151. (ENT: "Broken Bow")

Early in the 23rd century, Janet Hester and a team of scientists at the Deneva did further research on transporter technology. Improvements were tested using the Baton Rouge-class starships Moscow and Tehran. (Star Trek Spaceflight Chronology)

It is not known if the Klingons developed the technology independently or stole it from other civilizations. What is known that they were less concerned with safety features, such as superheterodyning the transporter signal. This additional characteristic of the wave alleviated potential interference but had audio noise as a side effect. From a tactical standpoint, such noise was unacceptable to the Klingons. (TOS novel: The Final Reflection)

Transporters and the general publicEdit

Earth had a Public Transporter System as early as the 2250s and 60s. (Expanding the Oecumene, TOS novel: Inception)

The existence of such a system didn't seem to preclude the use of other forms of transportation, such as hovercars, air trams and maglev transportation. Aside from brief scenes in TOS: "The Cage" and Star Trek: The Motion Picture, nothing of 23rd-century Earth was shown in aired Trek, so one can only speculate as to the transporter's use by everyday citizenry.

Sometime prior to the mid-2260s, Starfleet had established a transporter facility in Battery Park, at the southern tip of Manhattan. James T. Kirk used this when he traveled from San Francisco to New York City to give the eulogy at Gary Mitchell's funeral. (TOS novel: My Brother's Keeper trilogy: Enterprise)

In 2287, after an assault on Montgomery Scott in London, Admiral Cartwright ordered all transporter activity to and from London cut off, stranding thousands of commuters. ("Roads Not Taken")

In this particular continuity, transporter use by the public was ubiquitous enough that it had apparently supplanted nearly all other forms of transportation. Alternately, despite the existence of telecommuting and distance education, a prevailing mindset may have been that it was equally as convenient to "commute" farther distances.

Types of transporterEdit

Folded-space transporterEdit

Based on the Elway Theorem, the folded-space transporter was capable of much longer range than regular transporters, due to the dimensional shifts involved. (RIS Bouteina: "Fundraiser")

Subspace-aperture transportersEdit

By the 2420s, a new type of transporter technology was extant in the Federation Starfleet, one that used wormholes. (Star Trek: Phoenix)


Transporters normally included a pattern buffer. (Star Trek: The Stoneship Files: "At the Soapbox Races")


Normal transporters could only be operated within a 40,000-km range. In addition, transporters were inoperable in areas under ion storms and deflector shields. (Star Fleet Battles).

Alternate continuitiesEdit

TOS novel: Final FrontierEdit

While transporters had been used on Baton Rouge-class starships, it was not until the development of duotronics by Richard Daystrom in the mid-2240s that more than one person could be beamed at a time. The first starship to use this improved technology was the Constitution-class starship that would one day be named Enterprise.

The Starfleet MuseumEdit

The first successful ship-to-surface transport of human took place in 2206, using the USS Moskva (NCC-374), first ship of its class. (The Starfleet Museum: Museum Timeline)

Derived technologiesEdit

External linksEdit

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