John Eaves’ Enterprise-E Main Shuttlebay

John Eaves, who designed the “sovereign” Enterprise-E for Star Trek: First Contact, revisited a part of the ship for his contribution to the 2011 Ships of the Line calendar. Eaves gave fans a look inside its main shuttlebay; a design, he writes on his blog, that was inspired by a visit to the aircraft carrier USS Midway in San Diego.

Eaves had seen the aircraft storage area of the ship, which was “almost the entire length of the flight deck above,” he recalled, “and one incredible site to behold. I was imagining the ‘E’ bays looking like this in my head, but didn’t really think about rendering the concept until the calendar art was in the works.”

The shuttlebay was never seen on screen, although in Nemesis we got a close-up view of the outside of it when the Argo departs the Enterprise.

Enterprise-E shuttlebay
Shuttlebay in Nemesis (Trekcore)

In Eaves’ drawing, it’s returning to the ship. Conventional shuttles are stationed to the right (including one named Galileo) while a fighter group that, according to Eaves, was added to the ship’s arsenal after the Nemesis refit, can be seen on the left.

“The hanging shuttles were a fun way to fill space and add another layer of detail,” he decided. They are named after Star Trek designers, including Robert T. McCall, who drew concepts for Spock’s spacewalk in The Motion Picture, and Alex Jaeger, who designed the Akira.

Eaves told Star Trek: The Magazine in 2003 that he had derived the location of the control tower on top of the shuttlebay from the original Enterprise. “I remembered that on the original Star Trek series, they had these observation windows inside the shuttlebay,” he said, “so that you could look at the shuttles from another deck.”

I decided the deck on the ‘E’ could also serve this double purpose — that once you’re inside the shuttlebay, the roof concaves up so that you can have windows looking inside and outside the ship as well.

1 comment

In the final release of Enterprise-E, the main shuttlebay appears to be on a separate level above the impulse engines. In your renderings here, you show the impulse engines and main shuttlebay on the same level. Could you please post or send me an updated rendering with the shuttlebay and impulse engines on different levels.

James Borden (Apr 23, 2021)

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