During Kirk’s mission briefing in Admiral Marcus’ office, we see a whole bunch of models displayed which showed the history of starflight, similar to the image display of ships named Enterprise in The Motion Picture and the gold models in Picard’s display case in First Contact.
QMx, the Artisan model making company, built all the models seen and has a nice section on thier website, reblogged below.
When you build starships for a living, there really is no greater honor than to be asked to build one for a major motion picture. Much less for a Star Trek movie. Much less 14 of them.
For Star Trek Into Darkness, Quantum Mechanix’s Artisan prop and model shop, QMx FX Cinema Arts, was asked to illustrate the history of starflight in the new Star Trek timeline with models. The 14 filming miniatures we created can be seen stretching across the credenza in Admiral Marcus’ office starting with the Wright Flyer and ending with the U.S.S. Vengeance.
While they get lots of screen time in that scene, we thought some of you might like a slightly closer look at some of those models. It’s with that in mind that we offer the gallery below.
Only the Vengeance isn’t pictured here. For that we suggest you take a look at our collector’s scale replica elsewhere in this newsletter or wait for the official unveiling of our Artisan replica of that same model (more on that soon). It was fun helping stitch together old Trek and new with this set of models. We were very happy to see some venerable (if obscure) ships from Trek make it into the new timeline:
It was Dec. 17, 1903 when humans first shook off the shackles of Earth. The flight may have only lasted 12 seconds and traversed just about 37 meters, but it still stands as one of humanity’s greatest leaps forward.
Spirit of St. Louis
It’s hard to say who is more famous – Charles Lindbergh or the single-seat monoplane, the Spirit of St. Louis. Together, these two icons of flight made the first successful nonstop transatlantic flight in 1927.
Proof that war often spurs the greatest scientific leaps forward, the German V-2 rocket (1944) was both the first long-range ballistic missile and the first human-made artifact to enter outer space.
North American X-15 Rocket Plane
The North American X-15 rocket plane boasts several firsts, chief among them being the first reusable space vehicle. It exceeded an altitude of 50 miles, qualifying it as a suborbital spacecraft and its pilots astronauts. It also holds the world’s record to this day for the fastest-recorded manned flight.
The Russian Vostok holds the distinction of being the first vehicle to put a human into space (that flight on April 12, 1961 predates the X-15’s first suborbital flight by months). Our replica of the Vostok took a beating on reentry from the movie set, and several of its signature antennae are now missing from the model.
The Gemini capsule was the first spacecraft to carry two passengers into orbit. It was also first to allow for space walks and to be able to practice orbital maneuvers necessary to achieve docking, thus paving the way for the Apollo space program and landing humans on the moon.
It’s all well and good to send people up in rockets for brief periods, but to make human habitation of space a reality, we needed a way to ferry crew and supplies to permanent orbital stations. The U.S. Space Shuttle supplied the solution to that challenge for more than two decades. It also has the distinction of having the first spaceship named “Enterprise,” which ironically never actually flew in space.
Ares V Rocket
The Ares V rocket is the first model in the History of Spaceflight collection that dips its toe into fiction. A real NASA project that was scrapped in favor of the SLS (Space Launch System) program, the Ares V would have been the largest of several modular Ares launch vehicles designed to make the transport of people and materials to space commonplace and cost-effective.
XCV-330 Ring Ship
Matt Jefferies, he of Jefferies tube fame, originally designed the XCV-330 with its distinctive ring-shaped engines for Gene Roddenberry’s planned follow-up to Star Trek: The Original Series. Sadly, that show was never greenlit, but we still have this amazing retro ship design to enjoy. In the History of Starflight collection, the XCV-330 (also named “Enterprise”) fills the role of Earth’s first sub-light, interplanetary and interstellar space vehicle.
The Phoenix – the brainchild of warp-drive inventor Dr. Zefram Cochrane whose exploits are well-documented in Star Trek: First Contact – takes her place in our lineup as humanity’s first warp-capable ship.
The NX Alpha was one of three test ships that sported Earth’s first Warp 5 engines. If successful, the Warp 5 engine would open up the possibility of exploring deep space to humanity. After a failed first test that destroyed the Alpha, Jonathan Archer took her sister ship, the NX Beta, for an unauthorized flight test and broke the Warp 2 barrier, thus proving Earth’s warp tech was up to the task.
The NX-01 was Earth’s first Warp 5-capable, long-range exploration vessel. Commanded by Jonathan Archer, the same brash pilot who proved the viability of Earth’s Warp 5 tech, it was the first ship to adopt the saucer-and-nacelle configuration common to all Starfleet ships that followed.
The U.S.S. Kelvin (NCC-0514) was based on a single-nacelle Federation starship design that was the workhorse of Starfleet in 2233. The Kelvin herself was destroyed fighting off the Nerada, a 24th century Romulan vessel that came from the future intent on destroying the Federation. The sacrifice of acting Captain George Kirk not only saved most of the crew, but did enough damage to the Nerada to forstall its attack and allow the Federation to develop far more powerful vessels.
Why this model of a secret ship that Starfleet knows nothing about sits with the other models is beyond me, but there it sits, in full view of Captain Kirk.