Introduced in the latter half of the 23rd century, these ships typically performed patrol and survey assignments. Despite the small size, the class performed satisfactorily. Several series and variants of these ships were produced throughout the 23rd and 24th centuries, with many still serving in the fleet through the mid-2370s. The design filled a number of different mission profiles, from supply ship (the USS Lantree) to science vessel (the USS Brattain). These vessels served in a large number of engagements during the Dominion War. Used primarily as escorts, many were subsequently lost.

Many ships of the class saw action during Operation Return, the First and Second Battles of Chin'toka and the Battle of Cardassia. Many ships of the class were stationed near Deep Space 9.

The configuration of the Miranda-class shares a similar design lineage and features with the Constitution-class, implemented in 2270.

All Miranda-class starships have a saucer section making up the majority of the vessel. The saucer is similar to that of a Constitution-class, but with a bulkier aft end with shuttlebays and a warp core. Below the saucer, at the aft edges, are the nacelle pylons connected to the warp nacelles.

There are four configurations of the Miranda-class.

The most common was the USS Reliant configuration, which had a "roll bar" immediately above the nacelle pylons. The "roll bar" had two phaser emitters on each side that could fire both forward, aft, and to the ships flanks, along with two forward and two aft photon torpedo launchers.

Another configuration was the USS Lantree configuration, which lacked the "roll bar" and featured only Class 3 defensive armaments. This type of Miranda-class was apparently suitable for transport duty.

The USS Saratoga configuration, which lacked the "roll bar", and had two large sensor pods installed on the port and starboard sides of the ship. It also had a modern solid-beam phaser array mounted on the lower part of the sensor dome.

The USS Majestic configuration, which had the "roll bar", but the warp nacelles were different from the other Miranda configurations, along with some other details which could indicate a further design variant or refits to the original Reliant configuration .

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