Star Trek Guide

Star Trek: Discovery Gives a Classic Planet a Whole New Name

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Star Trek: Discovery Season 3, Episode 7, "Unification III," now streaming on CBS All Access.

In the third season of Star Trek: Discovery, the crew of the U.S.S. Discovery is discovering a whole new universe after being transported to the 32nd century. In their short time there so far, they've already learned of a few drastic changes: the Burn took out all dilithium-powered spaceships, the Federation is now only a fraction of its former self and life among the stars has become lawless in certain places. And in the series' latest episode, the surprises keep coming. Indeed, as Burnham goes on a mission to collect more data to help her solve the mystery of the Burn, it's revealed Vulcan has a new name.

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After discovering that the Burn might not have been a simultaneous event as previously believed, Michael needs the data from an experimental technology that is currently out of the Federation's hands. The data belongs to the Romulans and the Vulcans, two alien races with common ancestry that have now been unified. Having the Vulcans and the Romulans make peace was one of Ambassador Spock's dream, and it's now a reality in the 32nd century. However, this unification has lead to some unexpected changes. With the two alien races now one, the planet Vulcan became Ni'Var. What's more, Ni'Var is, like Earth, no longer a part of the Federation.

Ni'Var stands apart from the Federation, and it's at odds with the space-faring organization. Michael spends most of "Unification III" trying to convince the people of Ni'Var to once again trust in the Federation so as to complete her brother's dream. When the episode comes to a close, Ni'Var may not be part of the Federation once more, but at least it's open to the idea, and the future looks bright for a new alliance.

As Spock's home world, Vulcan has long been part of the Star Trek franchise and is one of the most popular and well-known alien planets. These changes in name, population and attachment to the Federation are all major, showing how much things have changed in the future for both better and worse.

Streaming on CBS All Access, Star Trek: Discovery stars Sonequa Martin-Green as Commander Michael Burnham, Doug Jones as Commander Saru, Anthony Rapp as Lt. Commander Paul Stamets, Mary Wiseman as Ensign Sylvia Tilly, Wilson Cruz as Dr. Hugh Culber, David Ajala as Cleveland "Book" Booker, Blu del Barrio as Adira, Ian Alexander as Gray, Tig Notaro as Chief Engineer Reno and Michelle Yeoh as Philippa Georgiou. New episodes of Season 3 air on Thursdays.

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