Like all technology improvements, the power and size requirements for cloaking technology seem to be getting smaller and more efficient.

In 2370, Quark illegally acquired a small cloaking device and installed it in the central engine core of a Cardassian shuttle. Also from DS9, the self-replicating mine invented by Miles O'Brien, Rom, and Jadzia Dax in 2373 were even smaller. Each mine was cloaked and extremely small, no more than a meter across. Can or has the cloaking technology been reduced in size even further than that? Say to a size suitable for an individual cloak?

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    “Say to a size suitable for an individual cloak?” What’s an “individual cloak”? Like for a person? The Jem Hadar could cloak themselves, Predator-style. Apr 29, 2014 at 8:21
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    @PaulD.Waite No kidding, I didn't know that. I've seen only a handful of DS9 episodes. Could you direct me to such an episode? BTW that would definitely answer the question.
    – Morgan
    Apr 29, 2014 at 8:24
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    @PaulD.Waite Close but no cigar. According to Memory Alpha the Jem'Hadar were designed (genetically engineered) with the ability to "shroud" themselves, a form of camouflage that acted as a personal cloaking field, effectively hiding them and their weapons from both sensors and the naked eye. (DS9: "The Jem'Hadar", "The Abandoned"). This is apparently an innate ability/attribute not a cloaking device.
    – Morgan
    Apr 29, 2014 at 8:40
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    very true, but it’s a genetically-engineered innate ability. What constitutes a device in your eyes? If it’s part of a sentient being, is it no longer a device? Is Data a device? (Gene Roddenberry is smiling down on us right now.) Apr 29, 2014 at 9:04
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    @PaulD.Waite If they can take it off or remove it and hand it to someone else to use, not only would that qualify, I would be impressed.
    – Morgan
    Apr 29, 2014 at 16:28

1 Answer 1


Assuming you're talking about a standard cloaking device (e.g. as opposed to one of the more exotic ways of hiding things such as the cloaking particles used by the Suliban, the miniature subspace cloaks used on the 'Houdini' mines in DS9: "The Siege of AR-558" or the holographic "isolation suits" seen in Star Trek: Insurrection) then within the TV series, the smallest cloaking device is Quark's "small cloaking device" from DS9 : Profit and Loss. The cloak is about the size of a honeydew melon.

Given the relative 1M size of the self-replicating mines seen in later episodes of DS9, it's likely that the cloak inside those was of a similar size and composition.

Small cloaking device

Outside the TV series, we see a "Romulan cloaking band" in the Star Trek game "Away Team". The device renders your player character invisible for a brief duration.

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    On a side note: impressively, Starfleet is quite adept at making cloaks. The phase cloak from TNG:The Pegasus was not only able to cloak and allow objects, at least as large as Ent-D, to pass through solid matter, but it was also smaller than the cloaking device Quark stole from General Martok's Bird of Prey.
    – Xantec
    Apr 29, 2014 at 19:29
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    @Xantec - That was certainly the point of both episodes. If they wanted to, the Federation could make excellent cloaks and skulk around like weasels. Roddenberry said that "Heroes don't sneak".
    – Valorum
    Apr 29, 2014 at 19:31
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    @Richard Except for Section 31 who certainly do skulk around like weasels. Once Roddenberry was gone the Federation got a lot more shifty and interesting.
    – Kyle Jones
    Apr 29, 2014 at 21:38
  • That's even smaller than the wall unit used in Sela's office...
    – user11521
    Jun 26, 2015 at 19:01
  • @Michael: There was no cloaking device in Sela's office. There was a holographic projector - they showed it earlier in the episode as part of the false Spock presentation. They created a duplicate of the existing wall offset just enough to give them room to hide behind it.
    – T.J.L.
    Sep 17, 2015 at 18:00

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