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Around eighty percent of the entire structure of the ship was contained in the sixteen massive Consolidated Supernova VII engines, four each contained in the each of the four fuel tanks. This huge capacity allowed the ship to each destinations as far away as Pluto and Eris, establishing the first manned bases there in 2026.
The rest of the superstructure contained the command deck at the front of the ship, then a four-way docking connector for service vehicles and finally the spherical rotating (for the creation of artificial gravity) living quarters module. The docking connector usually carried two CA23 Platypus shuttles and two other service vehicles of various types. The shuttles allowed the crew to explore the local environment before return back to the Explorer.
Some of the custom versions that were produced included using two of the fuel tanks (upper and lower) as storage vessels which were dropped off at stategic points around the solar system. This helped create some of the first long-range space stations and storage dumps which craft could refuel and replenish their supplies. A special long-range variant was built in 2029 which had fitted one of the first commercially produced versions of the DeVass warp generator, which had a short one light year range. The fuel tanks were extended by an additional forty percent and the ship, named 'Vasco da Gama' made the flight to the Oort cloud, establishing the human races furthest outpost in 2030.
The scene depicts an Explorer without its service craft operating near one of Saturns moons in 2030.