In Trek lore, the Klingons originally obtained cloaking technology from the Romulans (during their ill-fated alliance, IIRC).

My question is, are there any official/canon sources that would indicate a difference in the technology or how the devices currently operate? For example, are their any sources that show the Klingons modified cloaks to work better with their technology and/or tactics? Or, are there any canon indiciations that Romulan cloaks are technologically superior to current Klingon designs? That sort of thing.

1 Answer 1


We know that Klingons have the technical ability and know-how to modify the cloak. In Star Trek VI, they have a bird of prey that can fire weapons while cloaked, a no-no even up to the Voyager era (the idea being that the cloak requires much of the power of the ship, and any weapons system will emit signals that must be cloaked as well). They also know how to discard modifications that don't work out for their tactics.

The Romulan-Klingon Alliance was responsible for Klingons getting the cloak. They didn't develop it themselves; during the short lived alliance, Klingons traded D7 cruiser technology for cloaking technology. After the alliance dissolved, their technology would diverge.

In fact, a technology divergence would be tactically necessary! As opposing empires, having a common cloaking technology would be bad, as they would know how to build countermeasures for each other.

We also know for a fact that Klingon cloak is different than Romulan cloak... and that Klingon cloaking devices have been advanced over time. In Star Trek: Generations a Klingon D-12 Bird of Prey has it's cloaking device triggered by an ionic pulse; that model of cloak was retired because of this weakness. However, this "trick" is never used on any Romulan ship, and it's never brought up as a possibility against any other Klingon cloak.

So, we can say for sure that Klingon and Romulan devices are different. There's no indication that Romulan cloaks are SUPERIOR, but that they ARE different.

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    That'll work. Very thorough answer.
    – Helbent IV
    Commented Jan 30, 2017 at 16:45
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    Somewhat related. All three major Alpha powers have shown that they are developing or have developed new Cloaking tech. The Klingon's work on cloaking while firing weapons. Federation (and later Romulan) Phasing Cloak (may well have been inspired by Federation tech), and the Scimitar's super-cloak.
    – ench
    Commented Jan 30, 2017 at 21:21
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    Correction - the Klingons only had the ability to fire while cloaked in Star Trek VI (6) The Undiscovered Country, not IV (4) The Voyage Home
    – Derek
    Commented Jan 31, 2017 at 0:18
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    Curses, @Derek, foiled by roman numbers AGAIN!
    – Zoey Green
    Commented Jan 31, 2017 at 6:33

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