Where are the Death Star's engines?

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by Darth_Lear, May 27, 2003.

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  1. Darth_Lear Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 21, 2003
    star 3
    So, where are they? The only significant macroscopic feature on the surface of the Death Star is the super-laser dish. Surely the engines of a space station the size of a small moon ought to have proportionately large thrust-exit feature.

    Maybe it's on the dark side of this 'moon' ;)

    DL
  2. rumsmuggler Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2000
    star 7
    I think that there are a bunch of engines all over the death star...
  3. Iron_Fist Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 30, 2003
    star 5
    They are on the equatorial "ring" around the DS. They are huge, but insignificant compared to the massive size of the Deah Star.
  4. Maulfly Moderator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2001
    star 7
    What Iron_Fist said. The engines are located in the equatorial trench. For sure the hyperdrive engines, at least. I would assume any sublight engines would be there, also.

    Either way, there's a diagram in the Star Wars Guide to (I think) Vehicles and Weapons. (At work, so I can't check at the moment.)
  5. generallee5 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 27, 2003
    star 3
    The Death Star's engines are probably in the same place as the reactor core. (Perhaps on the tower thing that Wedge blew up?)
  6. Darth_Deagol Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 22, 2002
    star 2
    Wouldn't it be fun to drive the Death Star.
  7. DARTH_VADER_AND_C3P0 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    May 8, 2003
    star 3
    I was going to post this same topic in the CT Forum.
  8. KenKenobi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 11, 2002
    star 6
    The Death Star's engines are located at the midsection of the battlestation.

    The hyperdrive is located on either side of the equalatorial trench at the "front" of the station (the side with the superlaser). This is principally because, since the superlaser recieves it's power from the primary power amplifier near the center of the station (since it is directly connected to the hypermatter reactor at the core), so does the hyperdrive. The induction hyperphase generator branches off of the primary power amplifier, which in itself follows to the firing field amplifier and up to the superlaser carrier beam itself.

    The hyperdrives were at least fast enough to allow Death Star I to arrive at Yavin from the Alderaan system within a day after the Millennium Falcon. This is proven as Lord Vader stated "This will be a day long remembered. It has seen the end of Kenobi; it will soon see the end of the Rebellion." This clearly indicates that only a few hours passed between the escape of Princess Leia and the Death Star's arrival at Yavin. ;)


    The ion sublight engines are located aft of the ship, also along the equalatorial trench. These are fed by the ion drive reactors, which are situated directly behind the equalatorial trench between the two massive atmosphere processicing units, just in front of the sublight engines themselves.

    The sublight drives of the Death Stars were not conspicuous when the battle stations were viewed from afar, as the actual nozzles were too small to be seen from more than a few kilometres away. The Mandel blueprints indicate that there are 68 "antimatter engines", which presumably are the sublight drives.

    The tiny size of the sublight drives in proportion to the whole vessel is an important hint to the nature of this technology: clearly the effectiveness of this propulsion mechanism does not increase greatly according to the aperture area.

    Though not impotent, the sublight drives of the Death Star were not strong enough to move the battle station's immense bulk around the planet Yavin in less than half an hour. According to dimensions of the Yavin system calculable from data in Galaxy Guide 2: Yavin and Bespin, the average of the velocity of the Death Star in this trajectory must have been of the order of 400km/s. Of course a sustained acceleration would make any sublight velocity attainable after a sufficient time, but this was the maximum attainable within the constraints of time and the celestial mechanics of the Yavin system.

    Rebel starfighters were capable of accelerating well enough to meet the Death Star within only a few minutes. Unsurprisingly, this is much better speed than the battle station could make.

    The STAR WARS blueprints quote the maximum acceleration of the first Death Star as "0.0001 grav", which probably means a ten-thousandth of the surface gravity of a standard habitable planet. This would mean something like 0.001 m / s² in metric units. If the Death Star I emerged from hyperspace at rest with respect to Yavin then it would have taken over four and a half days to accelerate to its proper orbital velocity. Either the "0.0001 grav" is in error, has been misinterpreted by me, or else vessels are able to emerge from hyperspace at whatever realspace velocity the pilots choose.



    For the Death Star II to achieve mobility and firepower similar to its predecessor, its power systems must at least be scaled up in proportion to the overall volume of the station. However when a sphere is scaled up its surface area increases much more slowly than the total volume. Therefore the density of sublight thruster nozzles and heat dispersion ducts on the surface of the Death Star II must be much greater than on the original station. Otherwise these systems must be built for markedly greater efficiency.



    ;) :)

    Ken Kenobi- And you have a nice day ;)
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