Medals, Ribbons and Decorations

The Engineering Pin

This award is given to someone who has show a lasting dedication and continued effort in any field or aspect directly relating to Engineering.

Commendation Ribbon
This ribbon is awarded as an acknowledgement for work and behaviour during a period of hardship that went beyond the normal demands of duty and responsibilities.
Commendation Pin

This ribbon is awarded as an acknowledgement for exceptional work and behaviour which went well beyond the normal demands of duty and responsibilities at a time of extreme hardship affecting an entire crew. 

Faithful Service Ribbon
This ribbon is awarded as an acknowledgement for someone having served Starfleet beyond the call of duty for a period not inferior to 10 years. 
Science Achievement Ribbon
This ribbon is awarded as an acknowledgement for exceptional work or a breakthrough in the field of science.

The Medal of Valor
The highest medal awarded by the United Federation of Planets. The Medal of Valor is awarded by the President in the name of Federation Council to a person who distinguishes himself or herself conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life or her life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United Federation of Planets; while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force; or while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United Federation of Planets is not a belligerent party. The deed performed must have been one of personal bravery or self-sacrifice so conspicuous as to clearly distinguish the individual above his comrades and must have involved risk of life. Incontestable proof of the performance of the service will be exacted and each recommendation for the award of this decoration will be considered on the standard of extraordinary merit.

The Starfleet Cross is awarded to officers and enlisted personnel of Starfleet and the Marine Corps who distinguish themselves by extraordinary heroism, not justifying the award of the Medal of Valor, in military operations against and armed enemy.


Ablative Armour
Hull armour employed for the most recent Starfleet vessels. Ablative armour is an additional reactive plating imposing a counterforce to incoming weapon fire, thereby dissipating its energy.

Acronym for Annular Confinement Beam, a spatial matrix generated by the primary energizing coils of a transporter system. The ACB determines the geometry for the subsequent scanning and dematerialization process.

Bioneural Circuit
Computer processor based on biological components, also referred to as gel packs. Bioneural circuits are employed in the most recent Federation starships. Starfleet uses the original human brain structures in the form of bioneural circuits instead of just imitating them with microelectronic or isolinear technology. The gel packs containing biological components, however, they may be infected by viruses or bacteria. Real world neural networks are (still) silicon-based and have limited capabilities. Despite their fair performance in recognition and association tasks, they are still far from competing with the human brain.

Bussard Collector
Device usually attached to the forward end of the warp nacelles that serves to collect interstellar hydrogen atoms for fuel replenishment, also referred to as Bussard ramscoop. The Bussard collector consists of a set of coils which generate a magnetic field. The Bussard collector is named for the 20th century physicist and mathematician Robert W. Bussard.

Chroniton Torpedo
Krenim weapon that employs a temporal invariance of typically 1.47┬Ás to penetrate shields.

Cloaking Device
Technology of Romulan origin used to render a starship invisible to the eye and to sensors, also used by the Klingons. The cloaking device generates a space distortion which causes light and sensor rays to travel around the ship, so nothing is reflected from its surface. Cloaking the ship consumes large amounts of power, therefore the simultaneous use of the warp drive was not possible with the early cloaking devices in the 23rd century. Furthermore, the use of weapons is usually not possible while the cloaking device is activated. The space distortion necessary to bend light rays is equivalent to an enormous mass concentration and would certainly crush the ship and crew, so additional measures must be taken to compensate the effect inside the distortion.

Coaxial Warp Drive
A 'Faster Than Light' propulsion technology which is described as bending space, not subspace, as opposed to conventional warp drive.

Personnel subspace communication device, originally hand-held, later in the 24th century integrated in the Starfleet badge; the latter is also referred to as comm badge. The communicator serves to establish a voice contact to another person or computer and provides lock-on contact for the transporter. The comm badge is usually programmed with a crew member's individual bioelectric data, which is verified through a dermal sensor. The communicator will fail if used by an unauthorized person.

Deflector Shield
Forcefield around a starship, space station, planet or other facility that serves for protection against natural hazards and enemy attacks. This shielding system is often simply referred to as shields. Phaser and disruptor fire cannot directly penetrate the shields, unless the shield frequency is known and exactly matched. Without matching, weapons may weaken the shields by draining energy from them and their respective energy sources. Transporters cannot be used when the shields are in place. In contrast to the shields, the navigational deflector usually provides a forcefield which focuses on single obstacle such as a comet.

Discharge weapon, used by Klingons and Romulans. Disruptors are available as shipboard and hand-held weapons. This type of weapon causes a disruption in the cellular bounding of the target, hense its name, and is far more painful and deadly than lasers and phasers.

Doppler Compensator
Part of the transporter system that compensates for relative motion of the origin and the destination of the transport. Without this device, the Doppler effect would lead to a wavelength shift, thereby distorting the transport pattern.

Acronym for ElectroPlasma System, the power distribution network used aboard Federation starships. Plasma is diverted throughout the ship to supply the warp drive and other systems such as S-I-F, life support, computers, shields or weapons.

Small robot designed for multi-purpose tasks in hazardous environments. Exo-Comps are equipped with microreplicators for generating whatever tool is currently needed and an extensive neural system to allow independent decisions. Although similar to the exocomps created in 2369, these were specifically constructed *not* to be able to reach sentience, thus allowing them to be on ships as tools and not entities.

Gravity Generator
Device based on the emission of graviton particles that provides artificial gravity in normally zero-g environments. Artificial gravity is an essential life support system on a starship, since it allows natural walking and working and enables an "upwards" and "downwards" orientation. Usually a network of gravity generators is employed, in order to provide a homogeneous gravity field. In case of an EPS failure, the gravity generators on Federation starships remain in service for up to 240min.

Heisenberg Compensator
Part of the transporter system that is connected to the molecular imaging scanners and balances out the Heisenberg effect. This effect is a quantum uncertainty that would otherwise not allow to exactly recreate the state of a complex electronic device or an organism, in particular a neural system.

Acronym for Inertial Damping Field, a forcefield that is especially designed to compensate for acceleration forces within a starship. Several IDF generators are distributed throughout a Federation starship.
Although the purpose and principle is similar, the IDF works independently of the SIF, although slower in its responce time. Without the IDF, the crew would virtually be crushed when the ship accelerates.


Interphase Generator
A cloaking device that manipulates the molecular structure of matter in a way that it is transferred to a parallel space. Matter cloaked with an interphase generator is not only invisible to conventional natural and artificial sensors, it is also able to penetrate normal matter.

Isolinear Chip
Nanotechnical device that serves for data and software storage in 24th Federation computer systems. Optical signal processing is employed in isolinear chips, and faster than light signal transfer is enabled when installed in a starship's computer core. Isolinear chips also serve as portable storage devices.

Isolinear Rod
Cardasssian equivalent to Federation isolinear chips.

Kreiger Waves
Energy phenomenon, a pontentially valuable new power socte. Dr Nel Apgar of the planet Tanuga IV was attempting to devop a Krieger-Wave converter for use by the Federation.

Acronym for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation. In a laser, the oscillator (a gaseous, fluid or solid matter) is embedded in a resonator, usually consisting of two mirrors. Continuous energy supply leads to an occupation inversion of energy levels within the oscillator, meaning that more electrons are in an excited (higher energy) state than in the normal state. A large amount of narrow-band light is produced, corresponding to electrons falling back to their normal states. A small part of the generated photons generates new excited electrons, while the major part is emitted through one of the mirrors which is semi-transparent. Laser weapons have been replaced by the more powerful phasers in the 23rd century, however, lasers are still in use as cutting and welding tools.

Acronym for Library Computer Access and Retrieval System, the common user interface of 24th century computer systems, based on verbal and graphically enhanced keyboard/display input and output. The graphical interface adapts to the task which is supposed to be performed, allowing for maximum ease-of-use.

Acronym for Matter/Anti-matter Reaction Assembly, or more commonly referred to as a 'Warp-Core' is the main source of power for most Starfleet ships. This power system utilizes a controlled collision of Matter and Anti-matter using dilithium crystals to keep the immense amount of energy resealed by this reaction under control. See Warp Core for more details.

Metaphasic Shield
Shield capable of protecting a vessel from the intense radiation and high temperature inside the corona of a star. The metaphasic shield was developed by the Ferengi scientist Dr. Regar.

Nanotechnical devices developed by the Federation to work in microscopic environments, for instance on a cellular level in a human body. In 2366, nanites were discovered to have developed a consciousness.

Microscopic devices that are programmed to convert (assimilate) a living organism to a Borg drone. Once injected to the blood stream, the nanoprobes take control of the organism and form the first Borg implants.

Navigational Deflector
Device that deflects potential obstacles in a starship's flight path. The deflector dish usually produces a low-power static field for deflecting submicron particles and a concentrated main beam that pushes aside larger objects thousands of kilometres ahead of the ship.

Deflector beams are indispensable at warp speed, for already a submicron particle could penetrate and damage the hull.


Acronym for Optical Data Network, the system of fibre-optics used in 24th century computer systems. Optical data transfer offers the advantage of a higher bandwidth than electrical connections and is therefore increasingly employed for long-range transmission as well as for local networks.

Acronym for Personal Access Display Device, a hand-held access terminal to a computer system. PADDS are equipped with a display and touch sensitive areas and have limited built-in memory and computing capability. They are employed to establish uplinks and downlinks to computer systems and may serve as transporter locks-ons. Apart from Starfleet, PADDs are used by most other advanced civilizations.

Pattern Buffer
Part of the transporter system, usually located on the deck below the transporter platform. The pattern buffer is used for short-term storage of the matter stream, thereby providing a delay necessary to compensate for relative velocity (Doppler compensator), filter out hazardous organic materials (biofilter) or transfer the pattern to another pattern buffer in case of a transporter malfunction.

Pattern Enhancer
Device that improves transporter pattern recognition in case of electromagnetic disturbances. The pattern enhancer is a cylinder with a length of approx. 1m and was introduced in Starfleet around 2369. Usually three pattern enhancers are employed in a triangular formation around the object that is supposed to be beamed.

Acronym for PHASed Energy Rectification, energy discharge weapon used by the Federation. Energy stored in the Phaser is released within a short time and directed towards the target, unlike the usually constant energy output of lasers. The phaser's function is based on the rapid nadion effect, where nadions are subatomic particles that allow to liberate strong nuclear forces. Shipboard phaser banks are attached to the outer hull of a starship in form of small apertures or domes in the 23rd century that are extended to segmented strips and finally rings in the 24th century. Phaser beams travel at light speed, and the maximum efficient operation range is 300,000km. Hand-held phasers are available in different sizes, ranging from small pocket phasers (type 1) and pistols (type 2) to phaser rifles.

Photon Torpedo
Matter/antimatter annihilation weapon used by Starfleet and by the Klingon Defense Force. A Starfleet photon torpedo contains deuterium and magnetically constrained antideuterium tanks, target guidance and a warp sustainer engine. In contrast to phasers, photon torpedoes can be used at warp speed. Since photons are involved as late as the device explodes, the term "photon" torpedo is very inaccurate and could apply to a nuclear weapon as well. Of course, faster than light photon torpedoes cannot be tracked with the eyes.

Pulse Phaser Cannon
Phaser weapon also referred to as Pulse Cannon which uses a compression system to increase the destructive power to energy ratio while at the same time permitting them to be fired at multiple target at much faster speeds.

Quantum Torpedo
Further development of a photon torpedo that employs a quantum uncertainty to generate additional particles and enhance the detonation.

Acronym for Reaction Control System, also referred to as manoeuvring thrusters. The RCS is a low-power propulsion system for low-velocity attitude and translational control. Depending on the starship type, the system consists of a number of thrusters mostly located at the edge of the saucer hull.

Device which is capable of creating matter from raw matter. The working principle of this device is related to the transporter. The replicator disassembles and assembles matter in a similar way, the main difference is that its resolution is limited to the molecular level.

Acronym for Structural Integrity Field, a system of forcefields built up around and within a starship in order to counterbalance acceleration forces and gravitational forces. The SIF actually keeps the spaceframe in one piece. Many Federation starships cannot even sustain the gravity of a planet, and a starship capable of atmospheric flight would virtually fall asunder, if standing on the surface without SIF.

A domain outside the normal three-dimensional space, rather than another dimension. Effects of mass/energy transition to subspace allow apparent faster than light velocities and are used by the warp drive, computer system and subspace radio.

Subspace Transporter
Transporter type which transfers patterns through the subspace domain. Although their operation range may cover many lightyears and they are able to penetrate shields, subspace transporters are not reliable and therefore not employed by the Federation or other major species.

Subspace Weapon
Weapon whose destructive force is based on the disruption of subspace. Subspace weapons are outlawed by the Federation because of their irreparable damage to subspace, however, the Son'a used such a weapon reinforcing the need for strict controls on such weapons.

Tractor Beam
Device used by Federation starships to hold and tow other vessels. Apart from the main emitter and optional auxiliary emitters located around the hull, a small tractor beam emitter is located in each shuttle bay to control the landing procedure. Tractor beams are based on a subspace field assisted emission of gravitons, their direction can be reversed to push away an object.

Fundamentally a generic term for faster than light technologies that overcame the limitations of conventional warp drives.

Tricobalt Device
Explosive device used on the planet Eminiar VII and later adopted for Federation starships.

Universal Translator
Computer program employed for communication among persons who speak different languages. The universal translator performs a pattern analysis of an unknown language based on a variety of criteria in order to generate a translation matrix.

Warp Coil
Toroid or split toroid element that generates a subspace field, when energized by a plasma stream. A set of several warp coils is combined in a warp nacelle. Plasma injectors serve to adjust the activation sequences of the single warp coils in a way that a propulsive, asymmetric warp field is formed.

Warp Core
Part of the warp drive in which power is generated through a controlled annihilation of matter and antimatter, also referred to as matter/antimatter reaction chamber (M/ARC). The complete warp power generation system including the warp core, matter and antimatter injectors and constriction elements, is called matter/antimatter reaction assembly (M/ARA). Matter and antimatter stream are combined in the dilithium crystal inside the warp core, resulting in a (warp) plasma stream. A failure of antimatter containment is commonly referred to as warp core breach. In this case antimatter can get in contact with matter, leading to a disastrous explosion that most probably destroys the ship. In case of a containment failure, the warp core offers the option of an emergency shutdown. If the shutdown does not work, it is possible to eject the whole M/ARA.

Warp Field
Subspace field with a subspace distortion of at least 1 cochrane. A starship enveloped by a warp field is able to travel faster than light, without relativistic limits being violated. The asymmetrical warp field used by Federation starships is propulsive itself without an additional exhaustion necessary. This is accomplished by sequentially activating the warp coils. A symmetrical, non-propulsive warp field is used for 24th century starship computer cores, where it allows faster than light travel of electrons or photons within the field limits.

Space-time anomaly that connects two points that may be far away from each other within normal space. Wormholes are either natural phenomena, or they have been constructed by superior lifeforms or accidentally generated because of warp drive malfunctions. Only one stable wormhole is known, leading from the Bajoran system to the Gamma Quadrant, allowing starships to cross the distance of 90,000 LY in an instant. This wormhole has been artificially constructed by supernatural beings whom the Bajorans refer to as Prophets.

Federation Probes

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