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Borg Cube

Specs

Universe : Prime Timeline
Affiliation : Borg
Class Name : Borg Cube
Type : General purpose assimilation and combat platform
Unit Run : Unknown; numbers estimated to be in the millions.1 20,000 built in total. 1,580 have been lost in all.
Commissioned : Unknown; in service since at least 23652
Dimensions : Length : 3,036 m3
Beam : 3,036 m4
Height : 3,036 m4
Mass : 90,000,000 metric tons
Crew : 5,0004, basic crew but some examples have carried 179,000 drones4
Armament : Observed weapons include high energy tractor beams, plasma beams, warp field destabilising weapons, laser cutting beams5 Various weapons can be built as needed, total output 7,500,000 TeraWatts
Defence Systems : Adaptive shield system, total capacity 5,850,900 TeraJoules
Standard Automatic regeneration matrix6 Single hull.
High level Structural Integrity Field
Warp Speeds
(TNG scale / Transwarp) :
Normal Cruise : 9.67 (TNG Scale)
Maximum : 9.987 (TNG Scale)
Max Transwarp Speed : 9.999468 (TNG Scale equivalent factor)
Transwarp speeds uncertain, but believed to be at least 20 times faster than maximum speed of Galaxy class starship.8
Strength Indices :
(Galaxy class = 1,000)
Beam Firepower : 150,000
Torpedo Firepower : -
Weapon Range and Accuracy : -
Shield Strength : 2,167
Hull Armour : 272,000
Speed : 20,882
Combat Manoeuvrability : -
Overall Strength Index : 61,412
Diplomatic Capability : Generally none - specialized facilities can be constructed if required
Expected Hull Life : Unknown

Notes

Since their very first journey into the alpha quadrant in 2364, the Borg have been an implacable threat to every species that they have encountered.5 That first contact resulted in the destruction of two Federation Starbases and an unknown number of Romulan installations on the edge of the Neutral Zone.9 A further contact in 2365, initiated by the Q entity, led to an unprovoked attack on the Enterprise-D by the Borg which resulted in the death of eighteen crew members and near destruction of the ship.2

The next Borg attack on the Federation destroyed the New Providence colony and the Starship Lalo. Subsequently the battle of Wolf 359 resulted in thirty nine Starfleet vessels being destroyed with eleven thousand people killed or assimilated. 10Subsequent encounters have been even more destructive.11

Borg vessels generally fall into one of several types. Most are cubical,5 with all onboard systems distributed evenly throughout the ship.7 The entire vessel is protected by an adaptive shield system that is highly flexible and powerful; once the shields have adapted to a weapon no known force is capable of overcoming them.7 Starfleet has attempted to shortcut this problem by designing weapons which re-tune after each discharge and these have met with some success, but even so the distribution of systems makes the vessels extremely damage resistant.10 A Borg cube can function even if 80% of it is destroyed completely7; in the Typhon sector battle an entire fleet plus heavy reinforcements succeeded in inflicting damage only to the outer hull of the Borg cube despite continuous heavy attacks over a prolonged period.11

Even if the vessels main functions fail due to extensive damage, the nanotechnology-based repair systems can continue to rebuild from a severely damaged hulk.2 Should members of the crew escape, a single Borg is capable of establishing a collective and spreading outwards from there.12

Borg offensive weaponry is as potent as their defensive capacity. Their standard tactic is to use a high energy tractor beam or specialist warp capable energy weapon to drain the shields and disrupt the warp field of a target vessel, then to cut it up into sections with a laser cutting beam. These sections are then taken inside the Borg vessel, where the technology is analysed and then broken down and used in the Borg ship.2 If the vessel is thought to present a direct threat to the collective then the cutting beam or plasma weapons are used to destroy it once the shields are down.13

Starfleet continues to field new technologies and more powerful Starships in order to overcome threats such as the Borg.14 But given their nature it is unlikely that they can be defeated by the Federation in any military sense. Establishing some form of Diplomatic settlement also seems unlikely, but in the final analysis this may be the only realistic option. Recent progress has been made in disrupting the operation of the collective by Captain Janeway on the USS Voyager, who managed to spark off a rebellion amongst the Borg.15


Yellow text = Canon source Green text = Backstage source Cyan text = Novel White text = DITL speculation

References

# Series Season Source Comment
1 VOY 3 Scorpion, Part 1
2 TNG 2 Q Who
3 VOY 5 Dark Frontier, Part 1 Described as having a volume of 28 cubic kilometres in the episode
4 VOY 5 Dark Frontier, Part 1
5 Generic canonical information
6 Various Next Generation episodes
7 TNG 3 The Best of Both Worlds, Part 1
8 TNG 6 Descent, Part 1
9 TNG 1 The Neutral Zone
10 TNG 4 The Best of Both Worlds, Part 2
11 Star Trek : First Contact
12 ENT 2 Regeneration
13 DS9 1 Emissary
14 DS9 3 The Search, Part 1
15 VOY 7 Unimatrix Zero, Part 2
Series : VOY Season 3 (Disc 7)
Episode : Scorpion, Part 1
Series : TNG Season 2 (Disc 4)
Episode : Q Who
Series : VOY Season 5 (Disc 4)
Episode : Dark Frontier, Part 1
Comment : Described as having a volume of 28 cubic kilometres in the episode
Series : VOY Season 5 (Disc 4)
Episode : Dark Frontier, Part 1
Source : Generic canonical information
Series : TNG Season (Disc )
Episode : Various Next Generation episodes
Series : TNG Season 3 (Disc 6)
Episode : The Best of Both Worlds, Part 1
Series : TNG Season 6 (Disc 6)
Episode : Descent, Part 1
Series : TNG Season 1 (Disc 6)
Episode : The Neutral Zone
Series : TNG Season 4 (Disc 1)
Episode : The Best of Both Worlds, Part 2
Film: Star Trek : First Contact
Series : ENT Season 2 (Disc 5)
Episode : Regeneration
Series : DS9 Season 1 (Disc 1)
Episode : Emissary
Series : DS9 Season 3 (Disc 1)
Episode : The Search, Part 1
Series : VOY Season 7 (Disc 1)
Episode : Unimatrix Zero, Part 2

Comments

We know a surprising amount about Borg cubes, given how infrequently we've seen them. The sizes come from the Voyager episode "Dark Frontier", in which the Hansens declare the cube they find to be 28 cubic kilometres in size, i.e. 3,036 metres on a side. Figures for the number of drones on board a cube also come direct from episodes; in "Collective" Seven of Nine says that a cube is normally run by 5,000 drones, while in "Dark Frontier" the cube the Hansens find has 129,000 lifeforms on board and later picks up another 50,000.

The warp cruise speed comes from Best of Both Worlds, where a cube proved to be at least equal to the Enterprise-D. The speed for transwarp conduits comes from "Descent" and "Endgame". The defence systems and armament have all been seen in different episodes. The rest is speculation, with the strength indicies based on what we've seen Borg cubes do to Federation fleets when they've met them.


Copyright Graham Kennedy Page views : 39,260 Last updated : 2 Jan 2009