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Erickson's probe

A 22nd century probe

Probe launch meridian

A probe launched by the USS Defiant in 2371

Mister Tricorder

The Mark V torpedo casing of a solar probe in 2371 behind Data

For the Pocket Books novel, please see Probe (novel).

A probe was an automated spacecraft used to gather information. Probes were often used for tasks that starships were not suited to handle.

Such tasks included:

  • Collecting information in environments that were too small for starships to examine
  • Collecting information in environments that were too dangerous for starships to examine
  • Extreme long-term deep space exploration
  • Recording and transmitting remote sensor telemetry to a starship or base that was occupied with other mission objectives

The United Earth Space Probe Agency (or UESPA) was an Earth organization responsible for the exploration of space during the early 22nd century, and was later combined with Starfleet. (ENT: "Demons")

Some probes used by Starfleet were modified photon torpedo casings with extended sensor equipment and no warhead. (TNG: "The Emissary"; Star Trek Generations) Deep space probes had casings that contained radioactive material that could potentially contaminate the biosphere of planets if they crash landed on the surface. (TNG: "Thine Own Self")

Two probes were deployed by the USS Enterprise-D to scan the region of space close to a cosmic string, which led to the discovery of a species of two-dimensional lifeforms. (TNG: "The Loss")

A probe was launched by the Enterprise-D to follow a radioactive trail left behind by the Kataan probe, in order to trace its origins. (TNG: "The Inner Light")

It was speculated that a small glowing ball of energy that left a spatial rupture created by solanogen-based lifeforms shortly before it was closed was a probe of some kind. (TNG: "Schisms")

A probe was launched by the USS Defiant into the corona of the Trialan sun in order to scan the sun's core. (DS9: "Meridian")

Probe was also the designation of some manned spacecraft, such as the Borg probe, a starship class used by the Borg Collective, (VOY: "Dark Frontier") and the Earth-Saturn probe, the first manned flight to Saturn. (TOS: "Tomorrow is Yesterday")

Starfleet probe classes Edit

Class 1 probe

The class-1, class-3 and scanner probes shared a similar structure

Class 2 probe

A class-2 probe

Kelemane's planet with class 5 probe in low orbit

A class-5 probe

Class 8 probe

A class-8 probe

Atmospheric probe

An atmospheric probe

Multispatial probe, Extreme Risk

The advanced multispatial probe

Other Federation probes Edit

Ancient Earth probes Edit

Alien probes Edit

Iconian probe

An Iconian probe

Kataan probe

The Kataan probe

See also Edit

Appendices Edit

Background information Edit

Detailed information on the types of Federation probes are given in the Star Trek: The Next Generation Technical Manual.

Several early Earth probes are visible on computer screens during TOS: "The Cage".

The "class V planetary probe" in "Blink of an Eye" is the same graphic as the "multiphasic probe" in "Extreme Risk".

While Enterprise was preparing to head into the Arachnid Nebula (containing gravimetric shear) in the first draft script of ENT: "Fusion" (which had the working title "Equilibrium"), the captain of the Vulcan civilian transport Vahklas commented to Enterprise captain Jonathan Archer that, if Enterprise was a Vulcan ship, he would probably want to send a series of automated probes into the nebula while his craft remained outside it, in relative safety.

External linkEdit