In the Star Trek universe, there is a massive star base (one that can house several ships inside of it) orbiting around Earth. Is this the only one of it's kind in the Federation, or do other planets have similar stations near it?

I understand that there are ones like K-7 and DS9 that have ships that dock, but I mean large enclosed ones that is similar to the one around earth.


6 Answers 6


That particular style of spacedock is used a few times. In each case the footage has been recycled from Star Trek III.

  • 19
    Heh, even though we already knew it was the case, the footage recyclement is painfully obvious when screencaps are stacked top to bottom like that. Or... did you cheat...? Feb 28, 2018 at 23:53
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    haha, this is hilarious. Mar 1, 2018 at 3:16
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    Note that all of those spacedocks are canonically much bigger than the Earth one, because the Enterprise-D is depicted at the same scale as the first Enterprise (but is canonically larger).
    – Kevin
    Mar 1, 2018 at 6:10
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    @LightnessRacesinOrbit - These screencaps are from each individual episode, but in each case they've used stock footage in the same way that the opening credits are identical in each episode
    – Valorum
    Mar 1, 2018 at 11:46
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    @Valorum: Okay, I think you didn't get my joke. Not to worry. Mar 1, 2018 at 11:52

Jupiter Station

Jupiter Station, even if very likely smaller than the gigantic Spacedock-type starbases, seems large enough to have some internal docking space, at least for the smaller starship classes.

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Starbase 173

Starbase 173's design was based on the much smaller Orbital Office / Regula I stations, but it was evidently larger, here you can compare it to a Galaxy-class Starship:

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Starbase 375

Starbase 375, with a design similar to the previous one, is shown here surrounded by various Starship classes. Even this one seems large enough to have some internal docking area.

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Unnamed Prison Base

The same design is used also for an unnamed prison base, that seems to be even larger than the previous ones:

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    Those always looked more saucer-sized to me, in which case you'll get in some shuttles and runabouts perhaps but not much else. No way to be sure though I suppose. Mar 1, 2018 at 11:31
  • @LightnessRacesinOrbit could you compare them to the size of the planet? Mar 1, 2018 at 20:21
  • @JoshuaDrake: Not without knowing its mass and what sort of orbit it's in Mar 1, 2018 at 20:43

Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards is a dedicated fleet yard in orbit around Mars. It's not explicitly a starbase, but otherwise appears to meet your criteria and does contain structures that would commonly be called a starbase in that it's a large installation in space. There are some different perspectives in The Next Generation and Voyager where the fleet yard appears on screen.

Here's Geordi LaForge during the TNG episode "Booby Trap" where he creates a holographic representation of Utopia Planitia and his girlfriend the Galaxy class designer Leah Brahms. You can see through the window a shot of a Galaxy class ship under construction in what appears to be an expansive and enclosed space compared to the typical spacedock we've seen in other episodes and films.

Geordi LaForge in a holographic representation in drafting room 5 of Utopia Planitia

In the Voyager episode "Relativity", we actually get a wide shot of the Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards as a whole.

Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards as depicted in Voyager episode Relativity

Here, we see our typical spacedocks in the foreground, but there are some much larger stations in the background, including the station that is presumably the basis of the holodeck program that LaForge ran in "Booby Trap".

  • Earth has this type of dock. Memory Alpha calls it the Orbital Drydock Facility. It was used for the construction of the Enterprise NX-01. It can be seen in the pilot episode of Star Trek: Enterprise. Mar 1, 2018 at 4:32
  • @KodosJohnson: I'm referring to those docks as spacedocks, which I believe I've seen them mentioned as on screen before, but I mention them only because they appear in the scene from "Relativity" and not because they have any relevance to answering this question. The only thing pertinent in the "Relativity" scene, really, are the large stations in the background.
    – Ellesedil
    Mar 1, 2018 at 4:37

Starbase 47, from the Vanguard novel series, is a large starbase that lies in the Taurus Reach, a narrow band of space between the Tholian Assembly and the Klingon Empire. It is also of the 'enclosed' kind, capable of holding up to four Constitution class starships inside.


In extended canon (as in spec books and such), there are at least all these shipyards in addition to those mentioned above. They would all have repair capacity as well as construction and living quarters at a minimum. Some repairs take a very long time or require external life support so it comes as standard.

Assuming that we are talking about prior to the arrival of the Borg which would destroy a number of these. 40 Eridani A Starfleet Construction Yards, Acamar Prime Shipyard, Aldea Prime Shipyard, Altair Prime Shipyard, Andoria Prime Shipyard, Antares Ship Yards, Barcon Prime Shipyard , Barisa Prime Shipyard, Beta Antares Ship Yards, Bolarus Prime Shipyard, Calder Prime Shipyard, Centauri Spadeworks, Cestus Prime Shipyard, Copernicus Ship Yard, Deneva Shipyards, Denocet Prime Shipyard, Dytallix Prime Shipyard, Earth Station McKinley, Erabus Prime Shipyard, Finnea Prime Shipyard, Galor Prime Shipyard, Gavor Shipyards, Gibraltar Shipyards, Idran Prime Shipyard, Invernia Prime Shipyard, Iyaar Prime Shipyard, Janus Prime Shipyard, Ledonia Prime Shipyard, Meldrar Prime Shipyard, Merak Fleet Yards, Minos Prime Shipyard, Morena Fleet Yards, Moriya Prime Shipyard, Nausicaa Prime Shipyard, Oyarsa Prime Shipyard, Proxima Maintenance Yards, Qualor Prime Shipyard, Riverside Shipyard, Salazar Shipyard, San Francisco Fleet Yards, Tau Ceti Prime Shipyard, Taurus Prime Shipyard, Tellar Prime Shipyard, Tessen Prime Shipyard, Tranquility Base, Tri-Rho Nautical shipyards, Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards.

Now the manufacturing is out of the way, lets look at internal ship accommodation.

If we move to starbases with internal docking like Earth's one, you'll find that it's a 'cookie cutter' external design that is scaled up or down to fit needs (according to the Tech Manual) called the Spacedock-class. Designated classes will tell you what does what. Starbase 2 for example is a K-class with a general design that looks like this:

Note 3 arms coming from the centre. This is Starbase 343, but like all it bears K7 markings as DSS K7 was the first of it's design. DSS K7

K-class still can dock cargo ships internally, but hasn't got the space for a ship like the Enterprise or even Akira class. It will happily take quite a few Sabres inside though, or 2 trade vessels. Part of the reason that trade ships were long and thin were to fit into K-Class and other smaller starbases.

Back to the Spacedock-class, there are only 5 built. Every other one is a military installation that flat-out OP's anything but a direct armada assault. 40 phaser banks huge result capacity and ability to hide a large fleet etc etc. Earth one doesn't have guns because politics but you already know that.

Finally, it was said earlier that the space dock at earth was grown in size for video after new bigger ships arrived... well officially, the doors are resized on all Spacedock-class bases whenever a larger warship is made. For a long time these were the only non-shipyard facilities that could internally dock warships.

Anyway, the full list is as follows: Lya Station Alpha Spacedock, Earth Starbase 74 Starbase 84 Starbase 133 As for other classes a few come to mind:

R1/Sigma class The Sigma/R1 class starbase would have docking facilities for cargo ships internally. You don't actually see any of these until the 24th century and are refitted to Sigma class, but the R1 class of the 23rd was visually the same allegedly.

Note that the Nor class has 3 'stalks' and the Frontier has 4. DS9 is a Nor-Class Starbase which had many clones too, as it was originally called the Terok Nor under Cardassian possession. There is also the Elvok Nor and Empok Nor which are almost visually identical. It's replacement was a Fed Frontier-Class staircase which again is one of the only other large military installations the Fed have possessed.

  • Empok Nor was a different station. Terok Nor was the Cardassian name for DS9
    – CBredlow
    Mar 1, 2018 at 17:26
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    Baikonur is a place on Earth - it's on the ground, not starbase! Tried to sneak that one by us... tsk tsk tsk.
    – einpoklum
    Mar 1, 2018 at 17:39
  • It's also probably not accurate to assume every single ship yard is to the same scale as Utopia Planitia. It's entirely possible that some of these are just some non-enclosed spacedocks in orbit around a ground-based station (fun fact, Utopia Planitia also has a ground-based station that the fleet yards orbit over geosynchronously). I'd assume that the list of ship yards that actually meet the question's requirements are smaller than what's presented here, although it's nearly impossible to know which ones for certain.
    – Ellesedil
    Mar 1, 2018 at 18:30
  • @CBredlow, corrected, I also spelled it Tarok haha. Mar 1, 2018 at 22:48
  • @Ellesedil No shipyards were 'assumed to be Planitia scale'. Planitia isn't a shipyard, it has a large array of shipyards among other things (research base, ground base etc). Understand that shipyard's individual buildings in Star Trek are self-contained facilities. You could tow any one of Planitia's space based shipyards anywhere and provided there was supply lines it would work at 100% efficiency without external support. They do not beam to another facility to sleep. Mar 1, 2018 at 22:55

There appears to be at least 2 in orbit around Earth. However, this image is from the non-canon game: Star Trek Timelines.

Star Trek Timelines, 2 stations in Earth's orbit

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