A small craft introduced in the 24th Century to facilitate short-range scientific, exploratory, and personnel transfer missions, Danube-class Runabouts
are commonly based off of Federation outposts, effectively extending their spheres of influence. These bases use Danube Runabouts on
missions that standard shuttlecraft cannot. These vessels are
quite successful, and the design continues to be refined.
Runabouts can under some circumstances be carried and based off of starships rather than orbital or planetary bases. A runabout
stored in a ship's standard shuttlebay facilities occupies four (4) contiguous hangar boxes. Any ship that elects to convert hangar space for
runabout use must pay 5 combat points per structure box (20 per runabout) for the conversion. A minimum of two shuttlecraft must
remain onboard any ship. When launching runabouts, one runabout counts as a single launch/land point.
The Danube Runabout can elect when purchasing micro-torpedoes to assign up to 5 of them as being rear mounted torpedoes, in which case
micro-torpedoes can fire with the same arc as the aft-mounted gun. Note that when running in this configuration the Runabout still can only fire
one torpedo per turn.