Construction History Of USS Titan And More ‘Star Trek: Picard’ Behind The Scenes Details Revealed

The main ship for season three of Star Trek: Picard is the USS Titan-A, which has been described as a sort of refit of Captain Riker’s USS Titan. This complicated history is now being explained along with some more insights and fun bits from behind the scenes with the Star Trek: Picard cast and crew.

Titan’s complicated construction tied to Mars Attack

We got our first clues about the new USS Titan with the official log released ahead of the season, with some more explained in the first episode, tying the ship’s origins to Riker’s Titan, seen Star Trek books and Lower Decks. We are now learning more thanks to production designer Dave Blass who shared an image showing the new Titan and Riker’s Titan during the refit process…

In that thread, Blass also shared some detailed explanations from designer Mike Okuda…

Why reuse and not just replicate? Like Dilithium, and Latinim, there are lots of materials that can’t be replicated. Sadly Voyager found this out the hard way as Nacelle components are made of a composite of polysilicate verterium and monocrystal cortenum. Can’t be replicated.

16 Years ago the Federation lost the Utopia Planitia Fleetyards, this was not just machinery, and infrastructure but raw materials that are used to manufacture ships. A disaster of that scale, caused a massive of upheaval in the starship construction process. #StarTrekPicard

Even with industrial-sized replicators, reuse of large objects will often make sense. Mass equals a lot of energy, and converting it back and forth involves a tremendous amount of energy. And since no process can be 100% efficient, conversion comes at a cost. For relatively small objects, this cost is acceptable, especially compared to the cost of lugging around five years’ worth of food, or an entire inventory of spare parts. But for industrial-sized objects, there will likely be circumstances where it makes more sense to recycle instead of replicate. – Mike Okuda

The mention of the loss of the Utopia Planitia Fleetyards is referring to the Attack on Mars seen in flashbacks from season one of Picard (and Short Treks “Children of Mars”).

Attack on Mars

A closer look at Titan

Yesterday Blass shared a detailed chart from designer Doug Drexler explaining all the exterior components of the new Titan…

Going inside, Mike Okuda shared some insight into the panel designs for the Titan’s transporter room.

Why holodeck works when the rest of ship is out of power

In last week’s episode, there was some fan debate about how the Titan’s holodeck had its own power that could not be shared with the rest of the ship. Blass answered critics by noting this isolated power situation has precedent from Star Trek: Voyager.

More bucket

Terry Matalas returned to the subject of the Changeling’s bucket seen in episode 4 offering more explanation for it appearing just like Odo’s bucket.

Space baby

Last week’s episode featured space lifeforms and showrunner Terry Matalas shared the final concept design from Neville Page to get a closer look.

Terry followed that up with a better look at a full rendering.

Celebrate Frontier Day

Frontier Day is an important celebration that has been mentioned a few times in season three, including showing some posters for the event. Blass shared a better look at these posters revealing they were designed by Laz Marquez.

Jeri talks history with Terry

As a guest on The Talk, actress Jeri Ryan mentioned how she and Terry Matalas both got their start in the franchise at the same time way back on Voyager. Terry shared this clip on Twitter talking about how lucky he has been and what a surprise it was for her to bring it up.

Space hair

Finally, we have a couple more bits about hair, firstly Jonathan Frakes shared an image of himself, cinematographer Crescenzo Notarile, and Michael Dorn as the finalists at “Beard Festival.”

And Terry shared a nice pic of Dorn as Worf with his hair down.

The third and final season of Picard premiered on Thursday, Feb. 16, 2023, exclusively on Paramount+ in the U.S., and Latin America, and on February 17 Paramount+ in Europe and elsewhere, with new episodes of the 10-episode-long season available to stream weekly. It also debuted on Friday, Feb. 17 internationally on Amazon Prime Video in more than 200 countries and territories. In Canada, it airs on Bell Media’s CTV Sci-Fi Channel and streams on Crave.

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So they recycled the old Titan into the new one. The phrasing they used in the Logs post on Instagram wasn’t very clear on that. Still doesn’t fix the scaling issue though.

I honestly would’ve rather that they used one of the STO Luna-class variants.

The Luna class titan is 454 meters long and the constitution lll class titan-a is 560 meters long
the original shangri la titan savvik commanded was 295 meters long according to official size chart released by bill Krause

Those are some deep cuts into Holodeck power systems, surprised the canonistas missed that (particularly the scene with Kim, which explains how the sources are incompatible), but it seems Picard’s use of them is fairly consistent with what we’ve seen in the past after all.

I remembered them since the old AOL boards were seething with people up in arms about holodecks being on in a low power emergency.

But they’ve still never explained to me why the lights went out for Captain Proton in “Night.” ;)

I love how they have a backstory (aka: explanation) for every “inconsistancy” people have pointed out. Although I’m not looking for a discussion, all I wanna say is: they’re trying really hard to sell it, and I apreciate the effort. But that doesn’t mean I have to buy it. Some things (like the holodeck power situation) are very obvious behind the scenes reasons and not from-the-get-go thought up Trek things (even back then). Not there’s anything wrong with that, but jus admit to it. That would be less farfetched than any explanation currently served up.

Same thing with the Titans. First it was a new ship, then it was a refit (or whatever came first). Now they spun a story that kinda works for both. Okay, fine.

I’m not sure why this is a problem for anyone. This is Star Trek as it’s always been: they do things for dramatic and/or real-world reasons, and come up with justifications for it later for canon. That’s always been part of the fun of Trek, or at least, among me and my friends back in the day.

Dude. It’s just a tv show. Not real. Not real.

Not sure what your reply has anything to do with my comment, which is obviously about writing.

Can Worf’s hair get its own spinoff?

is this the first time we’ve ever seen Worf’s ears?

I think this season is the first time, yes. I’d mentioned it before, around the time they released the first promo images, and nobody refuted the observation so far.

It’s fine enough, but I would’ve preferred that they kept them hidden. It changes his looks in that it makes his his hair appear quite a bit thinner when compared to this lush AGT locks.

Glory to you…and your haircare products!

That thin-ass wig? LOL

Yeah not buying the retrofit thing. Seems like the script was never adjusted to align better with the ship design that was ultimately chosen.

Yes, that’s because they did what works best for the show, rather than what works for canon nerds, and then found the justification later. That’s the right choice!

Well it seems fairly obvious if you dig deeply enough. One, Matalas has said he is a big fan of the TOS era ships and the Titan A looks like as close of a Ship to the 1701 A as we have gotten in years. Second, and this is just IMHO, “Titan” serves 2 purposes. Obv the first is the call back to Riker’s command. But the second is that it was a named used in 12 Monkeys.

Am I the only one who finds the eyeballs on the space squids makes ’em look creepy?

Also, glad that VOY acknowledged that the Holodeck power sources are incompatible with the rest of the ship. While watching the Picard episode I remembered from VOY that the Holodecks had their own power sources (otherwise TPTB couldn’t use the Holodeck all the time), but I did not know their power sources were incompatible. I’m not a fan of VOY (find it to be written like poor fan fiction than actual good television) but that’s impressive.

I think the space babies were inspired by a Keane painting…


While I appreciate the “refit” angle and trying to make it so that the Titan is still “Rikers ship”…I think calling it a refit is a bit overly generous just like how the jump from the TOS Enterprise to the TMP “refit” is likely a little much, but at least in that case you can use your minds eye to see how the core of the ship is likely still the same spaceframe, etc.

The jump from the Titan to the Titan-A is beyond that ability given that not only is the saucer different (basically a jumbo Connie) but the bridge is completely different from what we’ve seen on Lower Decks for the Luna class also, so its clearly not the same bridge.

I can buy the warp core, engine components, computer core, etc being reused..but that doesn’t really warrant calling the Titan-A a more than saying the Enterprise CVN-65 is the same as the Enterprise CV-6 just because some components were ceremoniously reused. Plenty of ships have had components of others used to refit them (IE USS Nevada used some of the guns from the wrecked USS Arizona) but that doesn’t then replace the identity of the original ship.

Calling it the Titan-A is fine, trying to call it a refit is not, IMO.

The designation of starships with an extra letter has always been arbitrary. It’s never been consistent, and doesn’t matter.

Thats not the point I was making, but yes I know

I feel for the writers and producers. On one hand having the Titan is good for the story. On the other hand TOS movie era tech and starships are just so much cooler than their TNG counterparts. I appreciate the attempt at a compromise; I think saying it’s a new ship honouring the Titan, not a refit is the answer. All they had to do was change the jazz joke to something like “No jazz filling this ships computer banks” or “When you took her out on her maiden mission Riker, you didn’t have to upload all the jazz on this ship too. Took me a while to delete” or something.
Whatever, the Titan A is cool, just wish we got to see the adventures of Saavik’s Titan

my head canon had always held that the saucer itself was salvaged from a much older ship, given the old-style phaser cannons that coexist alongside the TNG phaser strips

That Titan refit makes zero sense but yup, it’s Star Trek. They shouldn’t have made another Constitution, we already have one in SNW. Titan’s still a great model though!

This is the only thing about it that might bug me a little, particularly if we’re getting more of it, as a Titan spin-off. You’d think that, just for marketing purposes, they’d want two drastically different ships leading their shows, but there are a lot of very similar elements that, to casual non-Trekkies, might cause visual confusion at first glance.

Wow lots of awesome stuff here to dig into!!!

Honestly, I wasn’t very accepting of the notion that the Titan-A is a “refit” of Riker’s Luna-class Titan at first given how different the shape and size are between the two… However, I’m now totally convinced by Mike Okuda’s explanation!

It is now much easier to imagine that the Luna-class Titan probably suffered massive damage after its last mission (much like how the Enterprise-E ended up in Nemesis), and Starfleet probably judged that it had reached the end of its operational lifetime (which was also helped by Riker and Troi’s departure to settle on Nepenthe to take care of their dying son). However, with the destruction with the Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards (which was an event I admit to having totally blocked from of my memory), shipbuilding resources are low, so it was easier to salvage pieces from the Luna-class Titan (like computer core, warp coils, and so on) and use them to complete the construction of an entirely new ship, hence the Titan-A. This would therefore explain why Shaw had to purge the computer of Riker’s jazz music and why the nacelles are “20 years old.”

The only problem is that the shipbuilding situation with Starfleet in the PIC period is still somewhat sketchy… If the destruction of Utopia Planitia hampered Starfleet’s production capacity, then how did they build so many Zheng He-type starships as seen in PIC’s season 1 finale? And if the destruction of the shipyards happened in 2385 and the Enterprise-F was launched in 2386, how did they still manage to complete the massive building of the Odyssey-class a mere year after the incident? Was the Sagan-class Stargazer therefore also built using salvaged parts from the Constellation-class Stargazer (which would explain Picard’s line but wouldn’t make much sense given how old the old NCC-2893 was)?