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Science Forum

  1. 22 Dec '09 19:53
    i thought for abit of fun lets talk about if it is possible to make such a weapon like the lightsaber
  2. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    22 Dec '09 20:21 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by raywood
    i thought for abit of fun lets talk about if it is possible to make such a weapon like the lightsaber
    First we need a definition of exactly what a light saber is. I of course saw all the star wars movies and you see what it does but what is the supposed operating principle?
    For instance, it could be an extremely high power laser where the extending end is actually a very high tech mirror and the light source a multi-megawatt laser reflecting back and forth between an extension mirror not visible because of the intense light and the only reason we see the colors is air is being ionized in the light column.
    The only part about that I don't like is when Obi was attacking the blast doors, he pushed the end into the metal, something I don't think you could do if the end was just an extendable mirror. Remember how it sunk into the metal blast door? That would take something outside my descriptive powers. It would seem to be more like an extending force field or something. Don't see how we could confine a force field like a magnetic field to the limits of the glowing end of the saber.

    On second thought, I guess the end mirror could be configured to just retract if the end were to touch something so the full power of the laser would just hit the object being touched. Any laser we make today in the megawatt class would have a lot of spalling, I mean a LOT of spalling where it would flash and so forth, spitting metal all over the place, which isn't happening to the blast doors, it is just melting.
  3. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Do ya think?
    23 Dec '09 16:15
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    First we need a definition of exactly what a light saber is. I of course saw all the star wars movies and you see what it does but what is the supposed operating principle?
    For instance, it could be an extremely high power laser where the extending end is actually a very high tech mirror and the light source a multi-megawatt laser reflecting back and forth ...[text shortened]... ting metal all over the place, which isn't happening to the blast doors, it is just melting.
    What if it's a magnetically or electrically bound plasma? Is that possible?
  4. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    24 Dec '09 20:50
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    What if it's a magnetically or electrically bound plasma? Is that possible?
    Sort of possible I suppose but look at what the effects were in the movie, when crossed they stop each other like two steel swords and the penetrating of very thick metal, it would mean some kind of fusion or anti-matter power supply, megawatts at the minimum but if our level of technology were used there would have to be extensible guts that may be like ultra high temperature superconductive rings, I call hyperconductors to make extremely closed magnetic fields and plasmas, everything being confined to the one rod not extending even a millimeter outside the shaft. One heck of an engineering feat for sure! My guess is it would take tens or hundreds of megawatts to pull something like that off and ultrahigh temp superconductors and probably a hundred other developments we have no inkling of in THIS century.
  5. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Do ya think?
    24 Dec '09 23:19 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    Sort of possible I suppose but look at what the effects were in the movie, when crossed they stop each other like two steel swords and the penetrating of very thick metal, it would mean some kind of fusion or anti-matter power supply, megawatts at the minimum but if our level of technology were used there would have to be extensible guts that may be like ul ...[text shortened]... superconductors and probably a hundred other developments we have no inkling of in THIS century.
    Maybe it's just a superheated filament.

    EDIT - Wiki says it's "made of light" and that there are sound effects based off of magnetic fields.
  6. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    25 Dec '09 01:14
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    Maybe it's just a superheated filament.

    EDIT - Wiki says it's "made of light" and that there are sound effects based off of magnetic fields.
    Any radiation, IR or whathaveyou would have to be tightly confined to the saber itself.
    That in itself is a good trick technologically speaking. If there were megawatts of energy involved, you could not stand to be anywhere near it. For instance, a couch burning in full flame would be putting out about 1 megawatt of heat, about 1300 horsepower of energy if it were turned kinetic, and you would not be able to get anywhere near an inferno like that if the IR was uncontrolled and went everywhere.
  7. 06 Jan '10 12:35
    Interesting concept. It's actually a pretty rubbish weapon, though, isn't it? No range.
  8. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Do ya think?
    06 Jan '10 19:09
    Originally posted by mtthw
    Interesting concept. It's actually a pretty rubbish weapon, though, isn't it? No range.
    It makes the Jedi immune to ranged weapons though. Besides, Jedi are so tactically mobile that they can get close.
  9. 07 Jan '10 11:38
    Well we have lasers and they use lasers to make lightsbers
  10. 07 Jan '10 13:56
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    It makes the Jedi immune to ranged weapons though. Besides, Jedi are so tactically mobile that they can get close.
    It makes them immune to the slow-motion lasers that get used in Star Wars. I wouldn't fancy their chances against a physically realistic laser. Or even gun, for that matter.
  11. Standard member Traveling Again
    I'm 1/4 Ninja
    07 Jan '10 15:17
    Originally posted by mtthw
    It makes them immune to the slow-motion lasers that get used in Star Wars. I wouldn't fancy their chances against a physically realistic laser. Or even gun, for that matter.
    What you see in the movies are the out-of-work and/or retired Jedis that work as actors to make some money.

    The top notch Jedis are out there Jediing - and they are much faster. Basically, they're so fast they can stop lasers or bullets before they're even fired.
  12. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Do ya think?
    07 Jan '10 20:54 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by mtthw
    It makes them immune to the slow-motion lasers that get used in Star Wars. I wouldn't fancy their chances against a physically realistic laser. Or even gun, for that matter.
    I doubt blasters are lasers. They seem more like plasma bolts to me.

    A blaster (also called a gun) was a ranged weapon that fired bursts of particle beam energy called blaster bolts

    http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Blaster
  13. 08 Jan '10 14:52 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    I doubt blasters are lasers. They seem more like plasma bolts to me.

    A blaster (also called a gun) was a ranged weapon that fired bursts of particle beam energy called blaster bolts
    Slow-motion particle-beam weapons, then.
  14. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    10 Jan '10 00:27
    Originally posted by mtthw
    Slow-motion particle-beam weapons, then.
    The only problem with that concept is the motion of particles is what gives them energy, if the particles move slowly, the energy would be correspondingly low. I used to be a field service engineer working on Ion Implanters, an industrial particle and ion accelerator, and the idea was to imbed or implant ions inside silicon wafers (and other types) and the depth of the implant is directly related to the velocity of the ions, for instance, one of the big three as I call them, Arsenic, when accelerated to 200,000 EV, attains a velocity of about 500,000 miles per hour, a good clip, and penetrates several microns into the silicon but disrupts the surface and destroys the crystal structure for that depth and I have seen powerful beams like that where the wafer had stopped moving and the beam drilled a 1 cm hole right through the wafer. I kept that wafer for years as a reminder of the power of the implanter, but it never could have done that if it had been accelerated to say, only 10 KEV instead of 200 KEV.
  15. 10 Jan '10 02:01
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    The only problem with that concept is the motion of particles is what gives them energy, if the particles move slowly, the energy would be correspondingly low. I used to be a field service engineer working on Ion Implanters, an industrial particle and ion accelerator, and the idea was to imbed or implant ions inside silicon wafers (and other types) and the ...[text shortened]... it never could have done that if it had been accelerated to say, only 10 KEV instead of 200 KEV.
    You sounded just like Roy Batty then.

    "I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser gate. All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain. Time to die."