The following responses to important questions and problems with maps and distances in the Star Trek universe come "first-hand" from Rick Sternbach, the senior illustrator of Star Trek: Voyager, co-author of the Star Trek Encyclopedia and author of the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Technical Manual.
Is Voyager still in the Delta Quadrant now [in late 2375] or is she already in the Beta Quadrant?
"The producers admit that yes, we should
have crossed the border some time ago, but they want to keep us in Delta for a bit longer,
so I figure we might have about 1500 ly to go. It's not so much a
matter of adhering to the numbers as it is keeping the bosses happy."
Rick Sternbach, e-mail, September 29th, 1999
In [VOY] Message in a Bottle, we see a a counter-clockwise quadrant arrangement of the Galaxy, however, another arrangement has already been established before? Which one is the right one?
"The above arrangement [Gamma-Delta / Alpha-Beta] is correct. The most recent published map is in the DS9 Tech Manual, which shows, IIRC, Voyager's straight-line yank into the Delta Quadrant. The start and end points aren't -exactly- right, but we won't nail those until we get to do the Voy TM. Voyager is very close to the D-B border, and they've got about 29,500 lightyears of Beta to cross before getting back to HQ, but I'm assuming that with the Dominion War done, Starfleet can allocate assets to go meet the ship sort of "halfway." Assuming Starfleet mounts some kind of S&R mission in Season 7, we might pick up the escort anywhere between 2500-10,000 ly out from HQ (just guessing), depending on whether either side can get TW or slipstream working or find a wormhole-like phenomenon to use as a shortcut."
Rick Sternbach, rec.startrek.tech, August 1st, 1999
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