Walter "Matt" Jefferies, the art director who designed the original Enterprise vessel for the first Star Trek series has died, the official website of the sci-fi series has announced.
The Enterprise is instantly recognisable
His design of the NCC-1701, as it was designated in the first series, has become one of the most iconic images of 1960s television.
The exact cause of his death is not known but Jefferies had been battling cancer.
The website reported that he had recently been given the all-clear by doctors.
He is survived by his wife Mary Ann.
Although conceived in the years before space flight became common, the overall shape of the Enterprise has remained close to Jefferies' first vision, through 10 films and five TV series.
As a tribute to the designer's creation, access tunnels in the Enterprise were named "Jefferies tubes" and have featured in many different episodes and films.
Jefferies: "Quiet modesty"
Herman Zimmerman, production designer on the latest Star Trek series Enterprise, said: "Matt was a gentle soul. He has put his stamp on everything we have done since his brilliant, classic Enterprise."
Michael Okuda, technical consultant on Enterprise, said: "Matt Jefferies' quiet modesty belied the genius of his work, which set the path for all of us who are lucky enough to follow in his very large footsteps.
"Today, nearly four decades later, Matt's original Enterprise still stands as a design classic. We will miss him greatly."