Battle of Sector 001
|Battle of Sector 001|
|United Federation of Planets||Borg Collective|
|Around 60 ships||One Borg cube|
|Casualties and losses|
|Around 30 ships destroyed||Borg cube destroyed|
The Battle of Sector 001 was a confrontation between the United Federation of Planets and the Borg Collective in 2373, when a Borg cube attempted to assimilate Earth. Although the battle resulted in significant casualties for the Starfleet forces, the fleet was able to destroy the Cube. Unlike the infamous Battle of Wolf 359 six years before, Starfleet proved to be more prepared to fight the Borg. The fleet, though outgunned, ultimately managed to successfully destroy the Cube, partially due to Captain Jean-Luc Picard's tactical knowledge of the Borg.
The second major Borg incursion into Federation space began shortly before stardate 50893.5, when the colony on Ivor Prime was destroyed. Nearby Deep Space 5 detected the attack, and long-range sensors detected a single Borg vessel. Vice Admiral Hayes was immediately informed when it was determined the cube was on a direct course for Earth.
Hayes contacted Captain Jean-Luc Picard aboard the Enterprise-E, who was already aware of the Borg presence in Federation space and felt he should be part of the response force. However, Hayes believed that Picard's previous experience with the Borg, in particular his assimilation into the Collective as Locutus of Borg, would add an "unstable element to a critical situation". Despite Picard's protests to Starfleet Command, the Enterprise was ordered to patrol the Romulan Neutral Zone, while a Federation fleet mobilized in the Typhon sector to intercept the Borg cube before it reached Earth.
The cube engaged the fleet soon after. The conflict was broadcast on Starfleet frequency 1486, and was monitored by the Enterprise. Approaching at speeds exceeding warp nine, the cube broadcast its familiar litany:
"We are the Borg. Lower your shields and surrender your ships. We will add your biological and technological distinctiveness to our own. Your culture will adapt to service us. Resistance is futile."
The fleet opened fire, but to minimal effect. The defense perimeter was quickly shattered, with numerous ships being lost, as the cube continued on unrelentingly towards Earth. The surviving ships, including the USS Defiant and the USS Bozeman, assaulted the cube all the way to the Sol system. Realizing that the battle was not progressing well, Picard ordered the Enterprise-E back to Earth in violation of his orders. It has been noted that from the point of the initial Borg attack to a distress call being sent, the attack lasted just over forty seconds.
By the time the Enterprise arrived in Earth orbit, a large portion of the fleet had already been lost, including Hayes' flagship. However, by this point in the battle, the fleet had succeeded in dealing heavy damage to the cube's outer hull, causing fluctuations in their power grid. The Defiant, commanded by Lieutenant Commander Worf, had been heavily damaged and was preparing to ram the cube when the Enterprise-E arrived, distracting the Borg long enough to transport the Defiant crew off their stricken ship as its life support failed.
Picard, taking advantage of his residual link to the Collective, took command of the fleet and ordered all weapons to be targeted on a seemingly non-critical point on the cube. The resulting barrage destroyed the cube, though the explosion also claimed several nearby starships.
Shortly before its destruction, the Borg cube launched a small spherical vessel from its interior – a type of Borg vessel not seen before by the Federation. The sphere headed straight for Earth, with the Enterprise in hot pursuit. The sphere began generating chronometric particles, forming a temporal vortex. The sphere disappeared inside the vortex near the boundary of Earth's atmosphere, traveling back in time to 2063 and disrupting First Contact. As the Enterprise was caught in the temporal wake of the vortex, its crew saw an assimilated Earth with a drone population of nine billion. The Enterprise followed the sphere into the past, and was able to restore the normal version of history before safely returning to the 24th century.
Starfleet's losses in the battle were comparable to the earlier fleet action at Wolf 359. The destruction of so many ships left the remaining fleet stretched thin across the quadrant, as was later rued by Captain Benjamin Sisko shortly before Dominion forces passed through the Bajoran wormhole into Cardassia, and would prove of even greater significance following the later outbreak of hostilities.
In addition to the losses inflicted by the Dominion, the casualties due to the Borg also caused a policy change within the Federation Council, and the admission of new members was accelerated. First and foremost, however, the Council tended to act more questionably ethically, even compromising the principles upon which the Federation was founded during the Ba'ku incident.
Starships at the Battle of Sector 001
The following is a partial list of Federation starships that fought in the battle.
And at least:
- 3 unnamed Oberth-class starships
- 2 unnamed Miranda-class starships
- 4 additional unnamed Saber-class starships
- 2 additional unnamed Akira-class starships
- 2 additional unnamed Norway-class starships
- 5 additional unnamed Steamrunner-class starships
- 1 unnamed Nebula-class starship
- 1 other unnamed starship