The USS Voyager (NCC-74656) was a Federation Intrepid-class starship in service with Starfleet in the 24th century. The vessel was famous for completing a non-scheduled seven-year journey across the Delta Quadrant between 2371 and 2378, which was the first successful exploration of that quadrant by the Federation.
Shortly before Voyager's launch, Captain Janeway's chief of security and second officer, Lieutenant Tuvok, had successfully infiltrated the Maquis ship Val Jean, commanded by the disgruntled former Starfleet officer Chakotay. The Maquis ship, including Tuvok, went missing in the Badlands and Voyager was subsequently assigned to locate and capture the missing vessel.
At the Federation Penal Colony in New Zealand, Janeway recruited Tom Paris—former Starfleet officer, short-term member of the Maquis, and son of Admiral Owen Paris—whose piloting skills and knowledge of the Badlands were considered essential for the mission. Reluctantly, Paris agreed to be brought on board as an "observer." After leaving space station Deep Space 9 and entering the Badlands, Voyager was swept 70,000 light years into the Delta Quadrant where it also discovered Chakotay's missing Maquis vessel—the Val Jean—which had experienced a similar fate.
Several crew members were killed during Voyager's violent hurdle into the Delta Quadrant, including the first officer, Lieutenant Commander Cavit; the helmsman, Lieutenant Stadi; the chief engineer; the transporter chief; and the entire medical staff, including the chief medical officer. Furthermore, crew members of both vessels were abducted upon their arrival and subjected to painful three-day medical examinations conducted by an entity known as the "Caretaker". The Caretaker, a sporocystian lifeform who belonged to a race called the Nacene, was dying and in search of a suitable mate so his offspring could continue to provide for a species called the Ocampa after his death. He felt an obligation to the Ocampa as many years ago his race of explorers from a distant galaxy was responsible for the destruction of their planet's atmosphere, which in turn forced the Ocampa to move below ground. The Caretaker created underground hospitable areas for the Ocampa and completely provided for them.
Unable to find a compatible mate in any of Voyager's or the Val Jean's crew, however, he returned them to their respective ships. Two of the crew members – B'Elanna Torres and Harry Kim – became ill after the experiments, and were sent by the Caretaker to the Ocampa homeworld for care and medical treatment. Realizing the perilous state of their situation, Janeway and Chakotay decided to put aside their differences in order to locate their missing crew and then find a way to return home.
En route to Ocampa, the two ships encountered a Talaxian freighter manned by Neelix who, in exchange for water, agreed to help retrieve the missing crew. Both were eventually rescued and treated by Voyager's EMH. The Caretaker's condition continued to deteriorate, however, rendering him unable to send the two ships back to the Alpha Quadrant. He died a short time later. Although Lieutenant Tuvok believed he could activate the system that could send Voyager back, that would have meant potentially leaving the technology in the hands of a hostile native species, the Kazon-Ogla, whose malevolent use of the system would have threatened the existence of the Ocampa.
Instead of allowing the Kazon to seize the Caretaker's advanced technology and harm the peaceful Ocampa, Captain Janeway made the decision to destroy the Caretaker's array. She ordered two tricobalt devices, armed with a yield of 20,000 tera-cochranes, fired at the array, which destroyed it. This decision left Voyager stranded in the Delta Quadrant. After the destruction of the Val Jean during a battle with the Kazon, the Starfleet and Maquis crew were forced to merge for their projected 75-year journey home.
- Main article: USS Voyager personnel
Command crew (2380)
- Captain Chakotay – commanding officer
- Lieutenant Commander Tom Paris – executive officer
- Lieutenant Harry Kim – tactical officer, security chief
- Lieutenant Junior Grade B'Elanna Torres – chief engineer
- The Doctor – chief medical officer
Notes and references
- USS Voyager at Memory Alpha, the Star Trek wiki
- USS Voyager at Memory Beta, the non-canon Star Trek wiki
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