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  1. #1

    Death Star Magnetic Field

    I was recently watched Star Wars IV A New Hope, and realized something wierd. When the millenium falcon was captured by the death star and put in the docking bay they lowered the magnetic field. I think the line was "Clear Bay 327 we're lowering the magnetic field". From what I read, the magnetic field was to keep air, soldiers, ships, and anything else in and space out. if lowered anything in the bay would be sucked out by depresurization? This field was lowered to let the ship in but was not lowered to let it out. If it was lowered why weren't the stormtroopers (dead or alive) and tech support personnel not sucked into space, and if it was still up was wasn't the falcon destroyed when it hit it?
    Last edited by chrisc; 05-02-2003 at 08:30 AM.
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  2. #2
    Good question! I have wondered the same thing. I suppose it is just one of those situations where you have to suspend disbelief and just let yourself go with the flow. However, if anyone has any theories, I would love to hear them.
    Of course that's just my opinion...I could be wrong!

  3. #3
    Perhaps they meant it as a curtain, they were "lowering" it into place so it would become active. After all, only once they lower the magnetic field do the soldiers start to assemble by the Falcon.

    Or perhaps they use a series of 2 fields, with one being a temporary one that allows ships to pass through it with the tractor beam on, and once the Falcon is fully inside the bay and the tractor beam is no longer penetrating the bay door, they can deactivate that field.
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  4. #4
    I took it to mean the defensive shield. Lower the defensive shield around that part of the station to let a large vessel enter the docking bay. I mean in ROTJ they have the shield generated by a huge complex on Endor because the station isn't complete and probably once completed it would generate it's own shields with several overlaps created by many smaller shield generators. In ANH there is no planet side generator creating the defensive shields. The atmospheric pressure is probably maintained by some other means independent of the shield generators.

  5. #5
    Jargo, that makes a lot of sense, especially when taken into context with a line later in the film:

    Red Leader - "We're passing through the magnetic field, switch your deflectors to double-front!"
    Darth Vader is becoming the Mickey Mouse of Star Wars.

    "In Brooklyn, a castle, is where dwell I"
    The use of a lightsaber does not make one a Jedi, it is the ability to not use it.

  6. #6
    PFM: Pure F...... Magic

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  7. #7
    I think we are all forgeting one major point. Remember Darth let them escape with the homing beacon. Maybe Obi broke it down when he took care of the tractor beam. He did pull a bunc of levers and turn a bunch of knobs....

  8. #8
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    Well...I've always thought it was like on Star Trek...where if you set your sheild harmonics to the same frequency as the enemy you could pass right through their shields. This is evident in several episodes of ST:TNG. Sorry to reference Star Trek...but also...the magnetic field wouldn't necessarily have been in place to pressurize the cargo bay...since if it were necessary to do so...like you said everything would get sucked out into space. Personally I like Jedi Trick's explanation.
    "The darkside of the force is a pathway to many abilities some consider to be...unnatural"

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  9. #9

    Re: Death Star Magnetic Field

    Originally posted by chrisc
    I was recently watched Star Wars IV A New Hope, and realized something wierd. When the millenium falcon was captured by the death star and put in the docking bay they lowered the magnetic field. I think the line was "Clear Bay 327 we're lowering the magnetic field". From what I read, the magnetic field was to keep air, soldiers, ships, and anything else in and space out. if lowered anything in the bay would be sucked out by depresurization? This field was lowered to let the ship in but was not lowered to let it out. If it was lowered why weren't the stormtroopers (dead or alive) and tech support personnel not sucked into space, and if it was still up was wasn't the falcon destroyed when it hit it?
    No, I think you're right. The reference was in regards to that specific docking bay. My understanding has always been that those soft edge lights around the mouth of the bay were part of that system. A magnetic field of some kind is a high tech garage door.

    So anyway, I believe that Obi was disabling the tractor beam, not the magnetic field for the bay. Han says, "Let's hope that old man put that tractor beam out of commission or this is going to be a real short trip. Hit it!" My assumption is that the magnetic field either really works like a garage door and "opens" when a ship approaches, or it just allows the ship to pass through it at which point some amount of life support might be compromised which would justify the clearing of the bay.

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