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In A New Hope it's clear that the Death Star has an atmosphere around it. Explosions near its surface result in fireballs indicating oxygen, and ships show clear signs of being affected by drag (air resistance). They need to keep their engines running to maintain speed and when hit immediately fall back.

The Death Star is too small to maintain an atmosphere through gravity, much like a similarly sized moon. So how is it possible that it has an atmosphere?

Note: I have read Is the Death Star’s gravitational force strong enough to hold an atmosphere? and all the answers explain why it couldn't have an atmosphere, yet it clearly does so this is a different question.

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    Ships in deep space show signs of drag. Physics is just different in Star Wars. – Harry Johnston Jan 13 at 7:24
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    Sorry, but stating that a question isn't a duplicate doesn't mean that it's not a dupe. If you have concerns about the other question, you can raise those by posting a bounty or asking some pointed comments. – Valorum Jan 13 at 8:04
  • Most likely it was just for the dramatic effect than anything else. Lucas designed this to be a space opera, placing real-world physics on the back burner. It looks far more dramatic and exciting to have explosions and fireballs in a vacuum outside of a massive spherical space station. – MissouriSpartan Jan 13 at 18:19

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