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139 votes
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How did no other engineer see the design flaw of the Death Star?

They did, but Galen misdirected them There's a supplemental document included in the Rogue One novelization, comprised of several messages sent between Galen and one of the engineering managers, ...
Jason Baker's user avatar
92 votes
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What do the Death Stars do, other than destroying planets?

The primary purpose of the Death Star is to create order through fear, as stated by Tarkin in A New Hope. TARKIN: The regional governors now have direct ...
Rogue Jedi's user avatar
74 votes
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Why didn't the Empire target Yavin Prime?

This was addressed in an "Ask the Jedi Council" feature on the StarWars.com website. According to LucasFilm's (former) Head of Fan Relations/Director of Content Management Steve Sansweet, ...
Valorum's user avatar
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70 votes

Why did the Empire need the Death Star?

The Death Star is the ultimate expression of the Tarkin Doctrine. Grand Moff Tarkin gained his favour with the Emperor in large part due to his belief that the threat of destruction was an effective ...
Ruadhan2300's user avatar
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68 votes
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How did the Rebels find the design flaw to the first Death Star?

The Rebels had a slight advantage: they already knew what they were looking for; Galen's message, relayed by Jyn, explained both what to do, and what the result would be: "What kind of trap?&...
Jason Baker's user avatar
64 votes
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Why is the superlaser dish in the southern hemisphere of the Death Star rather than the northern one?

In space, orientation is relative Unless the Death Star is very close to a planet or other massive body, any significant gravity it produces is artificial. As such, whether the laser dish is in the ...
Adamant's user avatar
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64 votes
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In episode IV, did the inhabitants of Alderaan realize what was about to happen?

According to the (canon) short story Eclipse, the inhabitants were largely in the dark about the nature of their impending demise. The "planet killer" was a closely guarded secret. A few individuals ...
Valorum's user avatar
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62 votes

Why is the superlaser dish in the southern hemisphere of the Death Star rather than the northern one?

It's always in the northern hemisphere. You're upside down. The Emperor's throne room on the second Death Star was on the top of a 100-story tower located on the north pole of the superweapon. The ...
Mazura's user avatar
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57 votes
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Why didn't the original Death Star's shields protect against small fighters?

This is directly addressed in the movie during the rebel briefing on Yavin IV (emphasis added): GOLD LEADER: Pardon me for asking, sir, but what good are snub fighters going to be against that? ...
ApproachingDarknessFish's user avatar
52 votes
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Why did the Death Star not target this location at the end of “Rogue One?”

I think it was because they didn't want to wait to get into ideal position. The Death star was rising from the horizon and positioning itself to attack. Turning huge battle station like that even ...
Sebustyan's user avatar
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51 votes

How did no other engineer see the design flaw of the Death Star?

Have you ever worked on or seen a FMECA? Even for a simple system, they are a truly stupendous amount of work. A few years ago, I reviewed one performed by someone else on a relatively complex system (...
fectin's user avatar
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43 votes
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Why is there a difference in the speed of explosions caused by the Death Star?

It wasn’t at full power The Death Star was not being used at full power. It only blew up a portion of the moon’s surface, not the entire moon. “Target Jedha City,” he snapped. “Prepare single reactor ...
Adamant's user avatar
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41 votes
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How did the Death Star 2 stay in orbit above Endor when it did not have functional ion engines nor a functional hyperdrive system?

Repulsorlift generators This is addressed by the canon reference book Star Wars: Complete Locations (2016). While the second Death Star was being constructed, it was at first held up by a repulsorlift ...
Milo P's user avatar
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40 votes

Was the thermal exhaust port on the Death Star really a design flaw?

Disney Canon: Absolutely not The exhaust port flaw was included by Galen Erso, one of the designers of the Death Star, as a means of deliberately sabotaging the Empire: “My colleagues,” Galen said, “...
Adamant's user avatar
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40 votes

What do the Death Stars do, other than destroying planets?

After blowing up Alderaan, the Death Star's role is Power Projection (aka Force Projection) for the Empire. See Wikipedia's article on Power projection. The Death Star was supposed to be impervious ...
paulzag's user avatar
  • 493
40 votes

Was it implied by the dialogue in A New Hope that the Death Star had never been used before?

A New Hope does specifically state that Alderaan was the first planet destroyed by the Death Star, as mentioned by Valorum. Tarkin: Not after we demonstrate the power of ...
Rogue Jedi's user avatar
40 votes
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Why are stormtroopers stationed outside the Death Star near the turbolaser batteries adjacent to Bay 327?

They're Spacetroopers They were retconned identified as such at Celebration Anaheim 2015, and got a collectible toy release from Hot Toys; quoting from their description: The Spacetroopers are ...
Jason Baker's user avatar
38 votes

Why didn't the original Death Star's shields protect against small fighters?

It's too big. According to Catalyst: A Rogue One Novel, the Death Star was simply too large to have a single effective shield based inside the station. It had to make do with shielding for individual ...
Valorum's user avatar
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36 votes
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How does the size of the Death Star compare to the Yorktown Station in Star Trek Beyond?

This is a graphical depiction of how the two objects would look side-by-side, based on the best canonical evidence we have about their sizes. According the the concept artist for Star Trek Beyond, ...
Valorum's user avatar
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36 votes

In episode IV, did the inhabitants of Alderaan realize what was about to happen?

In addition to Valorums answer, there is a small hint in the movie itself imho. Obi Wan Kenobi felt the destruction of Alderaan and says: I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of ...
André Stannek's user avatar
34 votes
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Did the Empire Re-use the Death Star plans?

It's highly unlikely to be the same design. From the Return of the Jedi novelisation (page 3, prologue): The Death Star was the Empire's armoured battle station, nearly twice as big as its ...
Jane S's user avatar
  • 6,602
32 votes

What do the Death Stars do, other than destroying planets?

Tarkin put it best when he said Fear will keep the local systems in line. Fear of this battle station. Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope The Death Stars' superlaser is not intended to destroy ...
Null's user avatar
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31 votes

Why did Tarkin undertake this course of action at the end of Rogue One?

The film's official novelisation is pretty clear on this. Tarkin, a man known for his decisiveness and with a penchant for Gordian Knot cutting made a snap judgment that the situation had deteriorated ...
Valorum's user avatar
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31 votes
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Who piloted the First Death Star?

Death Star Troopers The Star Wars Databank has the following to say on them (emphasis mine). Death Star Troopers were the elite of the Imperial Navy who were stationed aboard the first and second ...
TheLethalCarrot's user avatar
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30 votes
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Is there a mind probe lying around in the middle of this Death Star meeting room?

The Star Wars Encyclopedia identifies it as a "holoprojector" This ties in nicely with the decription of the room in the Visual Dictionary Interestingly, the official Star Wars CCG (Collectible Card ...
Valorum's user avatar
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30 votes
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When Lando refers to the “north tower” in “Return of the Jedi” how can one determine the cardinal points in center of a sphere?

From Star Wars: Complete Locations (2016): 1 The primary stage focused on assembling components necessary for construction of the main reactor core—approximately one-tenth the diameter of the entire ...
Milo P's user avatar
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28 votes

How does the size of the Death Star compare to the Yorktown Station in Star Trek Beyond?

According to Sean Hargreaves, the designer of the Yorktown, each arm is intended to be 17.5 miles long and they open into the interior ball. This means the radius of the station is a little bit more ...
CBredlow's user avatar
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28 votes
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Why was firing the superlaser put on standby shortly before the DS-1 explodes?

When they said “stand by” they were not putting the firing of the laser on standby. Note that “stand by” is two words and “standby” is one word. The phrase “stand by” does not mean “put on standby”. “...
Todd Wilcox's user avatar
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27 votes

Why are stormtroopers stationed outside the Death Star near the turbolaser batteries adjacent to Bay 327?

As mentioned elsewhere, these are spacetroopers. There are all sorts of threats that could be spotted outside a space station, “in the cold vacuum of space,” and potentially effectively combated by ...
Adamant's user avatar
  • 117k
27 votes

How did no other engineer see the design flaw of the Death Star?

It's not from Rogue One, but Episode IV gave a somewhat different explanation--one more about the thinking and attitude of the Empire in general1: Dodonna: The battle station is heavily shielded ...
Jerry Coffin's user avatar
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