Star Trek: Picard is back for its second season, and while the episodes are new, some of the faces are familiar old friends. There are also some familiar ships in the fleet that Admiral Whiteley sends to back up Jean-Luc at a key moment—and some new designs, too. Production designer Dave Blass took to Twitter to spotlight all the assembled vessels, and the resulting thread is a treasure trove of design and detail.

When Admiral Whitley sends Picard to deal with a new Anomaly in space. She makes sure she sends plenty of backup. We get a look at 34 Starfleet Vessels in "Star Gazer", so old friends and some new. @gaghyogi49 already made a chart so I am going to steal his. #StarTrekPicardBTS
— Dave Blass (@DaveBlass) March 7, 2022

Blass begins with the big picture—which involves an anomaly, naturally—and then zooms in with detailed graphics for each ship.
Our new Hero ship #1 U.S.S. Stargazer NCC-82893 drops in and is soon joined by the (New, not Refit) #2 U.S.S. Excelsior NCC-42037, The Sutherland Class, #3 U.S.S. Almagest NCC-91870, and the U.S.S. #4 Gagarin NCC-97930. See illustrations for designers/artists.
— Dave Blass (@DaveBlass) March 7, 2022

Some of the ships are original designs from the online game Star Trek Online, and their appearances here mark their official entry into Trek canon. Blass tags in Thomas Marrone, the associate art director for the game, to go into more detail on them.
Next up 2 Inquiry Class #17 U.S.S. Magellan NCC-86509, #18 USS Shackleton NCC-86517 #19 Reliant Class U.S.S. Reliant NCC-90200 @thomasthecat hopefully can chime in on the design. #20 The Luna Class U.S.S. Oberon NCC-80103
— Dave Blass (@DaveBlass) March 7, 2022

As Marrone told Gizmodo:
Throughout its history, Star Trek Online has done a lot to bring canon ships into the game, but we’ve also made our own. This is the first time it happened in reverse direction, where the ships we made for Star Trek Online appear in a canon television show. We did have the opportunity to work with IDW Publishing to bring the Odyssey class into the Picard prequel comics with the U.S.S. Verity, which was a great collaboration. It’s a whole other thing to see it on a Star Trek TV show, for it to jump from licensed work to canon work.
His thread goes into fascinating detail about not just the names and classes of the ships, but what inspired them and how they function in the fleet.
Inspired by excavated hulks of 23rd- Century Shepard-class cruisers recovered from the ruins of Yard 39, the Gagarin sports a variety of modular systems. Its most unique subsystem is its refracting energy shunt, integrated directly into the phased energy collimator network.
— Thomas Marrone (@thomasthecat) March 7, 2022

The ships’ names are fascinating. Some nod to mythology; one, the U.S.S. Uhura, is a “salute to Nichelle Nichols.” The U.S.S. ibn Al-Haytham references the mathematician and astronomer who studied optics; the U.S.S. Yi Sun-Sin is named for a Korean admiral; and the U.S.S. Nathan Hale is named for the Revolutionary War spy (who also gets a ship named after him in The Expanse). And the new shuttle in which Picard travels? The U.S.S. Jemison, named for Mae Jemison, an astronaut, physician, engineer, and the first woman of color in space (who had a cameo on The Next Generation).
How does Picard get to the U.S.S. Stargazer? In the brand new Type 14 Long Range Shuttle Craft the U.S.S. Jemison named after @maejemison Designed by John Eaves and Harald Belker #StarTrekPicard
— Dave Blass (@DaveBlass) March 7, 2022

And here’s one last nifty detail that cleverly brings credits into the show’s design:
The Starship Registration plaques have become an excellent place to give credit where credit is due. In past years the plaques have combined creatives and executives into the world of Starfleet Brass. The Admiralty Board was at my suggestion. We stand on their shoulders.
— Dave Blass (@DaveBlass) March 7, 2022

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