While writing up an answer to this question, I was looking for information on how common dilithium mines were, trying to find evidence that dilithium couldn't be replicated.

The only dilithium mines I found in the TNG/post-TNG era were Rura Penthe (Klingon), Remus (Romulan), and the Breen one in DS9 4x05, Indiscretion. The Federation doesn't seem to have any dilithium mines after replicator technology becomes ubiquitous.

And then I realized, the only replicators that come to mind are Federation and Cardassian (from DS9), and I couldn't find reference to the others on Memory Alpha, either - and the Cardassians don't seem to have any dilithium mines of their own!

So, have the Klingons, Romulans, or Breen ever been shown to have replicator technology? (Despite being an offshoot of transporter technology, that does not count as evidence - they could be roughly in the ENT/TOS level of development in that tech., where they have transporters but have yet to develop replicators.)

  • Ferengi are shown to have replicators in the Voyager episode False Profits (3x5). And while it is not clear what is being mined, the Federation does continue to mine some materials as seen at the end of the Voyager episode Author, Author (7x20).
    – Xantec
    Oct 3, 2012 at 19:20
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    In the TNG episode Sins of the Father, Worf's brother, Kurn, did not immediately remember that the Federation replicated their food, which implies that at best it is very uncommon for food to be replicated in Klingon society.
    – Xantec
    Oct 3, 2012 at 19:29
  • @Xantec Memory Alpha lists the Author, Author instance as dilithium mining, but I saw/heard no evidence of that in that scene of the episode..
    – Izkata
    Oct 3, 2012 at 19:55
  • I would need to watch the episode again to be sure.
    – Xantec
    Oct 3, 2012 at 19:56
  • @Xantec - I could be wrong (and I don't remember where I'm getting this from), but I think it's a cultural thing; Klingons preferring the idea of food killed in battle, or taken in the hunt, where there is risk as well as honor to be gained. Ok, so in modern (relative) society, that's probably a fiction, but the underlying cultural identity probably still looks down on replicated food. Makes me think of a quote from the Ringworld books about Herbivores becoming sentient: "How much intelligence does it take to sneak up on a blade of grass?" I suspect most vegetables aren't a favorite, either
    – K-H-W
    Oct 3, 2012 at 21:07

1 Answer 1


Aside from the Cardassians having replicators in Deep Space Nine, there are at least two other non-Federation races that have replicator technology.

In The Next Generation episode The Next Phase, Riker asks some Romulans where their replicators are. Although the Romulans reply that they are offline (or damaged) they do not say that they don't have any. This implies that the Romulans do have replicators on their military ships (although it would not be unthinkable that a Romulan would lie about having replicators). Additionally, in the TNG episode Birthright: Part 2, at a Romulan prison camp Worf talks to one of the children about "The Hunt", to which the child replies that they "have replicators for that [food]."

The second example was in the Voyager episode False Prophets, during which it is shown that Ferengi have replicators.

Some extrapolation from the second example; Ferengi having replicators leads me to think that anyone with something to trade would likely be able to acquire a replicator, should they want one. A major political power like the Romulans or Klingons not having replicators, when there is no reason a Ferengi wouldn't sell them for profit, would be an odd display of weakness in the face of the Federation's ubiquitous replicator technology.

  • 2
    Concerning your last point; the Kazon were completely unfamiliar with replicator technology, but then they were about as backward as a spacefaring civilization can be.
    – Junuxx
    Dec 20, 2012 at 16:53
  • True, the Kazon blew themselves up when given a replicator.
    – Xantec
    Dec 20, 2012 at 16:55

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