Related to questions:

I could probably answer this on my own, but I know there are much better people that can explain the answer to this question in more detail than I can manage.

I realize one of the related questions I listed is a method (if unorthodox) of powering a gate, however, for this question, the answers I am expecting to find concentrate on typical gate power sources and not specialized gates such as the Ori Supergate.

2 Answers 2


Asker's Answer:


It seems that two processes are required to establish a successful connection:

  • Dialing in and locking the addresses with the correlating chevrons
  • Creating a stable wormhole from the source gate to the destination gate

This answer attempts to explain the 2nd requirement, since the 1st is relatively easy.

Typical Stargates: Ground Based

For typical, ground based stargates within the Milky Way gate system, as well as the Pegauses and (Universe)/Destiny/Seedship system, power is supplied by the DHD's Cold Fusion Reactor Core1, which also powers the DHD itself. While not explained directly in cannon, power is likely transferred from the DHD's power source wirelessly2 through either microwave radiation, or more likely induction, since both the DHD and the stargate are made of the superconductive Naquahdah3.

Typical Stargates: "Space Gates"

Gates that are fixed within the vacuum of space (space gates), most typically found in the Pegauses gate system, possess attached power nodes4, which are affixed along the outer edge of gate. While the method of power is not exactly known, most likely the power source of each node is a modified version of the Cold Fusion Reactor Core, with the addition of electrical RCS stabilizers.

Non-Typical Stargates

For atypical cases, in which a DHD is absent or damaged, power can come from a number of sources, though in some cases those sources may have undesirable behaviors:

Direct Methods

  • Static Electricity via lightning (SG-1, Torment of Tantalus)
  • Current Electricity via heavy-gauge conduit (Stargate @ Stargate Command (SG-1)); via jumper cable (SG-1, 1969)
  • High Energy Electromagnetic Radiation via energy weapons fire (Atlantis, First Strike)

Indirect Methods

  • Extreme Gravitational Fields via black hole (SG-1, A Matter of Time)

static and current electricity, high energy electromagnetic radiation (e.g., microwave, infrared (heat), x-ray and gamma-ray), and even indirectly from strong gravitational fields.

  • I doubt the gate uses that power source to form wormholes, however. Remember that when dialing manually, the gate only requires a small jolt of electricity to engage chevrons. Once the point-of-origin symbol is locked, the gate activates without any additional energy input. Probably some form of subspace, dimensional, or zero-point energy is used to create wormholes. Aug 13, 2013 at 14:16
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    Stargates are known to accept power from many different sources. It is canonical that DHD's do contain power sources, but I cannot recall of any episode where a separate power source is mentioned to actually open the wormhole. Edited the related links to include power related info. Aug 13, 2013 at 19:27
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    The gate in SG-1 episode "Prisoners" does not have a DHD, but SG-1 still successfully dials it manually by only providing charges from their organic cold fusion circuit to engage chevrons. I suppose you could argue that the cold fusion provides the power for the wormhole as well, but this doesn't seem to be the case. Aug 13, 2013 at 19:33
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    @called2voyage Hell, the SGC doesn't have a DHD!
    – Izkata
    Aug 13, 2013 at 23:54
  • The gate at the SGC has an electrical room that supplies power to the gate. I wouldn't call it a typical setup. I should probably ask the question; how much power does it take to create a wormhole, and refine the answer to this question so it covers more. Aug 15, 2013 at 1:30

You only need to connect the gate to the other, because there is a safety feature when the power is interrupted from sending the gate. The receiving gate will supply power to both gates.

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    Though true, this assumes the presence of an active, powered gate to sustain the (de-powered) sending gate. The question asks how a gate becomes powered in the first place.
    – larissa
    Aug 15, 2014 at 23:35

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