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Star Trek: Star Charts

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Real World article
(written from a Production point of view)

Star Trek: Star Charts is a guide to the Star Trek universe – the stars and planets of the United Federation of Planets and the other powers of the Milky Way Galaxy. It includes background information on the classification systems used for identifying stars and planets.


From the book jacket
"...all I ask is a tall ship, and a star to steer her by."
From the earliest days of explorations, there has always been one tried-and-true way to navigate through uncharted reaches and one to find the way home – the stars. Ancient mariners prized their star charts, knowing that they could guide them safely into a friendly port or lead them to the reaches of the mysterious East. Modes of transportation have changed but the stars are still our constant guides. When man took his first step into space armed with the very latest in computers, he took with him the same tool for reading the stars that the men who sailed under canvas carried.
When Humans launched the first ship designed for long-range missions into the deep waters of interstellar space, the Vulcan High Command provided their star charts for Enterprise NX-01. But Jonathan Archer was not content with relying on the known. Although he used the Vulcan charts, he also added to them, and greatly expanded Starfleet's knowledge of the galaxy. Every generation of starship captain that followed has built on Archer's first steps.
Follow the course set by Archer, Kirk, Picard, Sisko, and Janeway. Relive their extraordinary adventures as you find here, for the first time, the star maps that chart the routes these famous explorers took. This book will be a Star Trek cartographer's dream, without a doubt.

Excerpts of copyrighted sources are included for review purposes only, without any intention of infringement.


Spectral classificationEdit

Class Description Temperature Composition Examples
Class O Dark Blue 28,000-50,000 K Ionized atoms, especially helium Mintaka (O1-3III)
Class B Blue 10,000-28,000 K Neutral helium some hydrogen Alpha Eridani A (B3V-IV)
Class A Light Blue 7,500-10,000 K Strong hydrogen, some ionized metals Sirius A (A0-1V)
Class F White 6,000-7,500 K Hydrogen and ionized metals, calcium, and iron Procyon A (F5V-IV)
Class G (yellow dwarf) Yellow 5,000-6,000 K Ionized calcium, both neutral and ionized metals Sol (G2V)
Class K Orange 3,500-5,000 K Neutral metals Alpha Centauri B (K0-3V)
Class M (red dwarf, red giant) Red 2,500-3,500 K Ionized atoms, especially helium Wolf 359 (M5-8V)

Planetary classificationEdit

Class Description Age
(bil. yrs)
Location Atmosphere Life-forms Examples
Class A Geothermal 0 to 2 1,000 to 10,000 Exosphere/Cold Zone Hydrogen compounds None Gothos
Class B Geomorteus 0 to 10 1,000 to 10,000 Hot Zone Extremely tenuous, negligible None Mercury
Class C Geoinactive 2 to 10 1,000 to 10,000 Ecosphere/Cold Zone Frozen None Pluto, Psi 2000
Class D Asteroid/Moon 2 to 10 100 to 1,000 All Negligible None Moon (Sol IIIa), Regula
Class E Geoplastic 0 to 2 10,000 to 15,000 Ecosphere Hydrogen compounds/reactive gases Carbon-cycle (Excalbian) Excalbia
Class F Geometallic 1 to 3 10,000 to 15,000 Ecosphere Hydrogen compounds Silicon-based (Horta) Janus VI
Class G Geocrystalline 3 to 4 10,000 to 15,000 Ecosphere Carbon dioxide Primitive single-celled organisms Delta Vega
Class H Desert 4 to 10 8,000 to 15,000 All Heavy gases/metal vapors Drought- and radiation-resistant plants, animal life Rigel XII, Tau Cygna V
Class I Gas supergiant 2 to 10 140,000 to 10,000,000 Cold Zone Varying zones/Water vapor may be present Unknown Q'tahl
Class J Gas giant 2 to 10 50,000 to 140,000 Cold Zone Varying zones Hydrocarbon-based (Jovian) Jupiter, Saturn
Class K Adaptable 4 to 10 5,000 to 10,000 Ecosphere Carbon dioxide Primitive single-celled organisms Mars, Mudd
Class L Marginal 4 to 10 10,000 to 15,000 Ecosphere Oxygen, argon, carbon dioxide Limited to plant life; suitable for humanoid colonization Indri VIII
Class M Terrestrial 3 to 10 10,000 to 15,000 Ecosphere Nitrogen, oxygen, trace elements Extensive vegetation, animal life, humanoids Earth, Vulcan, Cardassia Prime
Class N Reducing 3 to 10 10,000 to 15,000 Ecosphere Carbon dioxide/sulfides Unknown Venus
Class O Pelagic 3 to 10 10,000 to 15,000 Ecosphere Nitrogen, oxygen, trace elements Aquatic vegetation, animal life, humanoids Argo
Class P Glaciated 3 to 10 10,000 to 15,000 Ecosphere Nitrogen, oxygen, trace elements Hardy vegetation, animal life, humanoids Exo III, Breen
Class Q Variable 2 to 10 4,000 to 15,000 All Ranges from tenuous to very dense Highly variable Genesis Planet, Remus
Class R Rogue 2 to 10 4,000 to 15,000 Interstellar space, cometary halos Primarily volcanic outgassing Non-photosynthetic plants, animal life Dakala
Class S Ultragiant 2 to 10 10,000,000 to 50,000,000 Cold Zone Varying zones/water vapor may be present
Class T Ultragiant 2 to 10 50,000,000 to 120,000,000 Cold zone Varying zones/water vapor may be present
Class X Environment is particularly hostile to humanoid life
Class Y "Demon" 2 to 10 10,000 to 15,000 All Thermionic radiation Mimetic Silver Blood planet
Class Z Environment is particularly hostile to humanoid life
Note: For planets that are 15,000 to 50,000 kilometers in diameter, such as Neptune, no classification was provided. It might be possible that, like with the examples of Class X and Class Z, that the planetary classification for these worlds did exist, but wasn't included in the book.

Background information Edit

Star Trek: Star Charts was written and illustrated by Geoffrey Mandel, with the help of Doug Drexler, Tim Earls, Larry Nemecek, and Christian Rühl (see below). André Bormanis, Michael Okuda, Rick Sternbach, and Timo Saloniemi gave technical advice. Mandel and Sternbach also worked on the original 1980 Star Trek Maps; Nemecek contributed items to that older work – the Federation members, and a planet/star pairing list, among others – that survived his earlier, aborted mapping project that was based on the star grid scale of the original Star Fleet Technical Manual. That project, due to be updated with Mandel for self-publication, was abandoned when the Bantam 1980 maps project surfaced.

Appendices Edit

See also Edit

External link Edit

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