Space Elevator-Before the development of anti-gravity technology, ponies built two of these, the griffins built one, and you can tell the early colonies that happened before anti-gravity technology. One of the big things about the Princess Platinum-class Orbital Foundry Ships was that it had a weaving loom to build orbital elevator cables. The space that the loom used to take up is now filled with fabricators and smelters.
The RESF maintains and operates the various colony ships that establish new colonies for ponies. Needless to say, they are very valuable ships that are almost always escorted by destroyers or cruisers, and often are escorted by whole fleets of warships. For the most part, the RESF has used the same hulls for the colonization mission for the last four hundred years, and the only difference between older and newer hulls is the internal fittings.
Commander Hurricane-class Exploration Ship
When the Starswirl and Daring Dos leave to explore and discover new worlds, what comes next is the Commander Hurricane-class ships. Roughly heavy-cruiser sized, the class is built around two large shuttle and isolation bays for exploration parties. Capable of landing a whole three hundred being exploration base in a single lift of cargo and personnel shuttles, the Commander Hurricane-class will spend months over a new world, exploring and discovering everything that can be found out about the new world.
In the event of disaster, the class is well equipped for emergencies. This includes very extensive medical laboratories, enough blank cybershells to pull the cortical stacks of every member of an exploration party and give them a body, and enough firepower to cauterize a dangerous biological effect on a planet. Commander Hurricane-class ships also have a small staff of ponies from the Ministry of Ghosts, in case they run into something that could be that kind of threat to ponies.
Princess Platinum-class Orbital Foundry Ship
Built in the days when the first and most vital piece of orbital infrastructure was an orbital elevator, the Princess Platinum-class might not carry the weaving array for an orbital elevator cable, but it has everything else you might need. Fitted with AI-driven drone miners, nano-machine smelters and fabricators, and shuttles to carry the finished products to a new colony or build the stations needed for a newly established colony.
Well guarded by it’s naval escort, a Princess Platinum-class ship is one of the most wanted ships by pirates. While it might not have military fabrication templates for weapons, it has the templates to make everything else, and that includes spare parts for ships.
Chancellor Puddinghead-class Colonization Ship
This massive ship not only carries over 10,000 beings in cryosleep, it also carries everything a colony would need to be established that a Princess Platinum can’t manufacture. The most distinctive feature of this huge ship is the Party Cannon-a massive spinal grav driver that fires a colonization seed onto a location on a world. When the seed hits, the internal fabricators and nano-machines start to scavenge everything in the local area to build pre-fabricated buildings and structures needed for a new colony. Everything from houses to factories to roads to sewers, a Chancellor Puddinghead-class ship can launch ten seeds before it needs reloading. Every new city has a random fractal generator to ensure that each city is just different enough that it’s not a repeat of another early city somewhere else.
Also, everything is covered in frosting. Real, honest-to-Faust edible sugar frosting. And, there’s a one chance out of fifteen that all the buildings would be filled with chocolate fudge. It’s not quite as bad as everything looking like a police box from 1963, but the engineers are so very confused as to why this happens.