usually by means of sophisticated electronic eavesdropping using an extensive array of sensors and scanners and could search much farther into non-Federation held territories than other ships could. These ships carried a crew of Starfleet personnel, whose specialty was intercepting, decoding and interpretation of signals intelligence (SIGINT) and communications intelligence (COMINT).The mission of the ships was publicly given as conducting research into spacial and communications phenomena. However, the true mission was more or less an open secret and the ships were commonly referred to as "spy ships" and while remaining under control of Starfleet, missions were often directed by secret services. These missions were covert and discussion of the true mission was prohibited as "classified information". The ships usually operated close to hostile boarders and neutral zones and as such were equipped with torpedo armament and a full phaser suite. This was accomplished by moving the specialized sensor equipment to a large dome attached to a support pylon above the primary hull, allowing the retention of space allocated for armament and laboratories. In order to transmit intelligence information that had been gathered back to Starfleet for further processing and analysis, these ships could deploy sub-space communications relays in route and would then recover them upon return.This ship is balanced for the TOS EraARMAMENT6 Phaser Banks in twin mount ball turret emitters. (2 Ventral, 4 Dorsal)2 Photon Torpedo Tubes, 2-shot (2 Forward)
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