There’s no denying the awesome power of V’Ger. Taking the form of a mysterious, menacing, luminous cloud the size of a solar system, V’Ger was unlike anything the Enterprise crew, or the Federation in general, had ever encountered. By far the largest vessel ever portrayed on Star Trek, V’Ger’s ship was almost 300 million kilometers (186 million miles) across. For comparison, the Death Star was around 160 kilometers (99 miles).
“…On its journey back, it amassed so much knowledge, it achieved consciousness itself. It became a living thing.”
– James T. Kirk, 2270s (Star Trek: The Motion Picture)
“V’ger must evolve. Its knowledge has reached the limits of this universe and it must evolve.”
– Spock, 2270s (Star Trek: The Motion Picture)
Beyond the oscillating “hexad” of “iris-like” petals that Spock had to pass through during his EVA spacewalk to meld with the “intruder”, the center of the enormous vessel contained the oldest part of V’ger – Voyager 6, an unmanned deep-space probe launched by NASA in the late 20th century. The entire vessel surrounding the Voyager probe had been built by an unknown race of machine entities in order to help it complete what the latter interpreted to be its primary programming: “learn all that is learnable,” and return that knowledge to its creator.