The Science of Star Wars

May-The-Fourth-Be-With-You-1To celebrate Star Wars Day (May the Fourth be with you), dive into the science behind this iconic franchise with questions like:

Could the Death Star really destroy a planet?

When the Death Star fires, six laser beams are generated around the circumference of a circular depression on the exterior of the space station. The six beams meet at the center of the circle and head down toward the planet as a single, huge beam. What would actually happen…

Would the Sarlacc really 1,000 years to digest its prey?

We can’t be sure how big the Sarlacc is, but it must be fairly large to have such a huge appetite. While burrowing seems limited to smaller animals on Earth, the Sarlacc somehow manages to…

Would jumping to light speed kill you?

It’s no problem for Han to accelerate the Falcon from zero to 60 miles per hour in five seconds. Inertia will push him slightly back in his seat. But accelerating from zero to 186,000 miles per second in five seconds will…

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