Known as "The ship that opened the Federation", the Daedalus class marked the beginning of a United Star Fleet. The practice in the early years of the Federation was for the member worlds to patrol their space with vessels of their national navies and to loan ships as requested by the Federation Council for overall Federation objectives. The new Deadalus instituted a standardized design to be produced in a coordinated manner at shipyards throughout the Federation. In practice, at least one Daedalus-class starship was produced at each major shipyard and with minor local variations as Federation-wide standards were worked out.
The Daedaluses have a proud history of space surveyed and new civilizations discovered - and, sadly, a great number of ships lost - before they were superseded by ships of rapidly advancing technology.