The survey ship is a medium sized starship capable of exploring anomalies, you start the game with one survey ship and at the time it is both your flagship and largest ship. When other medium scale ships are available it may be upgraded into a combat vessel.
Be careful with your first survey ship. If it gets destroyed early, you won't be able to build another ship that can survey until you finish researching at least 4 particular technologies: Xeno Engineering > Xeno Research > Stellar Cartography > Sensors as well as Life Support III. To build a ship that has the same components as your original survey ship you need even more techs.
Core ship design Edit
Class: Survey Ship
Required Technology: Sensors, Sensors IV, Ion drive, Medium Scale Building, Life Support III
Hull Type: Medium
Components: Survey Module, Sensors IV, Ion Drive