After reading this question (How did the Death Star move?) it sounds like the Death Star moves by firing ion drives around its equator. The answer also states that it can move faster than the speed of light.

Are there any in-canon instances of a Death Star (or other Worldcraft-class vessel) colliding with a large object such as an asteroid at those kinds of speed?

  • 6
    the same thing that would happen to the millennium falcon going at that speed? apparently their nav computers can dodge those, at least thats what it sounds like han was saying in episode 4. Also typically in deep space there isnt many astaroids floating around, and usually you would use hyperspeed to a solar system and then sublight to the planet to avoid the debris in a system. , (think the time it took to get alderan in range in 4)
    – Himarm
    Sep 4, 2014 at 14:48
  • 1
    This deals with one of the inherent risks of traveling at light speed, impact even with something as small as a grain of rice at that speed could cause severe damage to any ship regardless of size. This is usually hand waved in Sci-Fi as the ship being enveloped in some sort of "hyperspace bubble" and or "deflector shields".
    – Monty129
    Sep 4, 2014 at 17:12
  • 2
    What types of questions should I avoid asking? - "What if ______ happened?"
    – user8719
    Sep 4, 2014 at 18:04
  • 7
    Well, if it went into a thermal exhaust port...
    – Zibbobz
    Sep 4, 2014 at 18:23
  • 1
    If the object it hits - or rather that hits it in the following instance - is rather large, like, say, a Super Star Destroyer, you might actually feel it like a quake around the superstructure of the Death Star (if you're near). The DS hitting an asteroid at any relativistic speeds should be the same as an asteroid hitting it (or any planetary object the size of a small moon) at the same (accumulated) speed. If point-defense weapons & particle shields do not manage to destroy/deflect it in time it will impact, like a meteor hitting the moon... look up: that is what it would do.
    – BMWurm
    Sep 5, 2014 at 7:41

4 Answers 4


There is a non-canon example in the X-Wing game's companion story book/strategy guide. It included a novella called The Farlander Papers where an Imperial frigate decelerating from hyperspace hits an X-Wing fighter. The X-Wing was obliterated and the frigate was unharmed. It was explained that the frigate's shields protected it from such collisions.


Did it happen? No.

In current (Disney) canon, there are only two moon-sized or larger hyperspace-capable ships: the Death Star (I and II) and Starkiller Base. Neither of them has collided with anything in hyperspace in any of their canon appearances. There may be Legends examples, but I can’t find any.

Is it possible? Yes.

It’s important to distinguish between two related but distinct situations here, either of which could be considered as “colliding at lightspeed.”

  1. An object could emerge from hyperspace close to another body and collide with it. It would be traveling very fast, but not at lightspeed; faster-than-light travel is only travel is only possible in hyperspace. This has happened, but never to a ship the size of the Death Star.

    If destruction of the base was the goal, why hadn’t whoever was behind the attack used the ship as a bomb by reverting from hyperspace in closer proximity to the moon? Planetary bodies larger than Sentinel had been shaken to their core by such events.


    If this happened to the Death Star, it might be destroyed, or might not be. Its shields could protect it from collision, depending on the mass of the colliding body, and possibly whether the colliding body had shields.

  2. An object could intersect another object’s gravity field in hyperspace. Such fields are referred to as gravity wells, though there are also free-standing gravity wells. This, again, has happened, but not to a Death-star-sized ship.

    Another, the Arbitrator, made a bad hyperspace calculation to escape pursuing NR ships. It evaporated when it was sucked into a gravity well.

    Aftermath: Life Debt

    If this happened to the Death Star, it might well be destroyed.


It's not canon, but in Star Wars Infinities: A New Hope, The Death Star is piloted into Coruscant.

enter image description here

The station is obliterated, dealing massive damage to the planet in the process, though it is unclear if Coruscant is entirely destroyed.

This is the only instance of a Death Star-sized ship crashing into something comparatively large in an officially licensed work that I am aware of.


Same thing that happens when anything gets hit, the large thing takes damage, the small thing gets pulverized. Granted it would be unlikely that the Death Star would be hit with debris that could damage it seriously. At sub-light speeds the Death Star has limited shields and arrays of turbolasers intercept or deflect debris that pose a threat. As for FTL, Star Wars ships use Hyperdrives that take a ship out of normal space and into hyperspace. It is how they avoid dealing with impacts at luminal velocities.

  • 1
    Going into hyperspace doesn't avoid impacts. That's why exploring new space lanes was so dangerous. Sticking to the known space lanes prevented them from running into anything. Sep 4, 2014 at 19:32
  • 6
    "Traveling through hyperspace ain't like dusting crops, boy! Without precise calculations we could fly right through a star, or bounce too close to a supernova and that'd end your trip real quick, wouldn't it." Hyperspace computers plot a safe route. Travelling through hyperspace does not inherently enable them to avoid impacts.
    – phantom42
    Sep 4, 2014 at 19:41

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.