I remember reading a sci-fi book decades ago which had large scale space battles. One side utilised the power of a sun as a weapon. I recall that the sun dimmed (similar to the latest Star Wars films) as the weapon was used against a fleet of spaceships.

  • My first thought was the John Ringo "Troy Rising" series. They use an enormous number of solar mirrors to redirect the suns energy into power beams to vaporize enemy fleets. But the first was written in 2010.
    – NJohnny
    Commented Mar 15, 2021 at 16:23
  • Not what you are looking for, but this reminds me of one of Stephen Baxter's latest novels where Earth escapes the alien Xeelee by using the sun to generate an enormous wormhole through which the Earth goes. Commented Mar 16, 2021 at 14:14

2 Answers 2


Sounds like the Lensman series by E.E. "Doc" Smith which included the "Sunbeam", specifically Second Stage Lensman


As before in this series, the ultimate weapon featured in the previous book becomes the standard for the opening stages of this one, and newer, more powerful weaponry must be developed to deal with the new danger. In this case the weapon developed is the “Sunbeam”, where the entire output of the sun is converted to an energy beam and used to vaporize much of the Boskonian fleet when it shows up.

Unresisted, then, the Boskonian center bored ahead into nothing, until Haynes, through his Rigellians, perceived that it had come far enough. Then Klovia’s brilliantly shining sun darkened almost to the point of extinction. Along the line of centers, through the space so peculiarly empty of Patrol ships, there came into being the sunbeam - a bar of quasi-solid lightning into which there had been compressed all the energy of well over four million tons per second of disintegrating matter.

Scouts and cruisers caught in that ravening beam flashed briefly, like sparks flying from a forge, and vanished. Battleships and super-dreadnoughts the same. Even the solid warhead of fortresses and maulers was utterly helpless. No screen has ever been designed capable of handling that hellish load; no possible or conceivable substance can withstand save momentarily the ardor of a sunbeam. For the energy liberated by the total annihilation of four million tons per second of matter is in fact as irresistible as it is incomprehensible


The beam winked out; Klovia’s sun flashed on. The sunbeam was - and is - clumsy, unwieldy, quite definitely not rapidly maneuverable. But it had done its work; now the component parts of Civilization’s Grand Fleet started in to do theirs.

Second Stage Lensman - E.E. "Doc" Smith

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    Yes, they positioned drifts of metallic meteors and had atomic power plants feeding energy into the system. They basically made the entire star system into a giant vacuum tube with the sun as the cathode. Commented Mar 15, 2021 at 18:58

Is it called "Suntaps." I also remember reading a story with weapons using PEETs as a measure of how "stealth" a craft is in space, and 14 aaa max, but the protagonist made a black hole-like weapon with 15 PEETs. I don't know if I'm mixing two stories up. The characters were Will and Rachel, and Will was from a different planet humans colonized he had extra cyborg stuff that allowed him more brain capacity. And they found an alien ship or something at the end they discovered the "transcended" species are waiting for humanity. The suntaps were weapons used to test humanity's self destructive tendencies or something like that.

  • Hi, welcome to the site. Are you saying that "Suntaps" is the title of the book the OP is looking for, or just the name of the weapon in the book? If you think that's the title of the book, could you provide a link to a page with some info on this book, or tell us who the author is? I googled the title "Suntaps," and couldn't find any record of a book with that name. Commented Aug 2, 2022 at 8:29
  • If "Suntaps" isn't the title of a book, and you're just describing a book with a similar plot which you don't know the title of, then this shouldn't have been posted as an answer, as without a title and author, it doesn't qualify as an answer to this question. This would have been fine if posted as a comment, but you need to earn a minimum of 50 reputation to unlock the comment everywhere privilege before you can leave comments in threads you didn't start yourself. Commented Aug 2, 2022 at 8:38
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    If you don't know the title of the book you described, it might also be worth posting a story identification question of your own, which you can do by clicking on the 'Ask Question' button at the top of the page. If you choose to do so, try and tell us everything you remember about the book you read, including when you read it, and when you think it might've been published. Then, if someone manages to identify your book, you'll have an actual title and author which you could post here as a legitimate answer. Commented Aug 2, 2022 at 8:42
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    Main story referenced in the answer, not the OP question. Valid point on driving behaviours - have deleted my comment, but happy to post as an answer if asked as a new story-id question.
    – Michael
    Commented Aug 2, 2022 at 14:20

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