- "For a machine it's pretty dumb."
- ―Blue Max comments on the CD-2's intelligence
CD-2 Harvesters were a type of agrirobot produced by the Corporate Sector Authority, the controlling body of the Corporate Sector. Not intelligent droids, they followed pre-programmed routes through fields of crops. They were capable of carrying out a range of agricultural functions including sowing seeds, harvesting crops and treating soil.
Used throughout the Corporate Sector and by various other galactic factions, CD-2s were considered one of the best agribots available. A CD-2 was used by the smuggler Han Solo and his comrades to escape from the Security Police on the planet Orron III in around 2 BBY. Solo's slicing droid Blue Max took control of the agribot and used it to transport the group, before sending it to plough through a spaceport where it was destroyed.
- "Afoot, Captain Solo…but the harvester has insulated deck plates!"
- ―The academic Rekkon explains to Han Solo how they can survive driving through an electric fence
CD-2 Harvesters were gigantic automated agrirobots which were bright yellow in color. The machines were equipped with a large set of cyclonic durasteel harvesting blades, which were positioned on arms in a twenty meter row at the front of the droid. Directly behind the blades was a large intake shaft where the reaped produce would be collected, cleaned, separated and then be passed through a discharge chute and stored in an internal tandem load-carrier. Chaff and other unneeded material was released through a discharge chute at the rear of the vehicle, above which an external hydraulic storage hopper was located when retracted. As well as their harvesting equipment, the CD-2s had three large hydraulic soil-tilling arms positioned at their front, which when raised and not in use were positioned above the harvest blades. Also located on the front of the droid was an area where additional nose attachments could be equipped to the droid which allowed for additional agricultural processes to be carried out.
A CD-2's control center, which consisted of various hook-ups and components, was located at the top of its chassis, which was twenty meters high. The control center was protected by a heavy and durable industrial cover, although a member of the Wookiee species was capable of ripping this off with tremendous effort. CD-2's had primitive guidance systems and were relatively clumsy and slow moving on their four tractor treaded tires, the front two of which were smaller in size. The droids had a speed governor to limit how fast they could go, but if the governor was disabled, the vehicle could travel at up to forty kilometers per hour. The harvesters traveled pre-programmed routes, but could also be managed by a remote interface control mechanism. The agrirobots had a limited optical perception suit located on the front side of their chassis, although this could only be used to monitor condition of grain directly in front of them. It could not detect obstacles like organic workers or react well to sudden changes, and although the machine could be remotely shut down in emergencies accidents did sometimes occur. Various programs could be installed onto the CD-2s to allow them to perform additional agricultural tasks, and so they could be adapted to the different seasons they worked in.
Several maintenance ladders were attached to the sides of the droid and allowed it to be mounted from ground level, with the ladders leading all the way up to the control center. Narrow catwalks with hand rails were also constructed across the droid to allow movement over it, and these included thick insulated strips large enough for a Human to stand entirely within. Generally uncomplicated machines, they were extremely difficult to damage with small arms fire, which could remove cutter blades and non-vital plating but to little effect. The droids could be destroyed by larger weaponry however, such as cannonades. The machine was kept running by a power plant, which could, under heavy fire, explode with enough force to tear the entire machine in two.
CD-2s were designed to go beyond assisting agricultural industry and complete the entire labor process themselves, from sowing and to harvesting. They were used to harvest the huge agricultural fields of produce on planets like Orron III. They would follow their pre-programmed route through the fields collecting the grain and requiring no organic crew to operate them on site. The harvester was also capable of soil preparation, crop planting and yield expansion, using its tilling arms. This could create optimal seedbed aeration, moisture saturation and allowed for improved root penetration. With different nose attachments the agrirobots could also distribute liquid fertiliser or granule herbicide pellets and act as a furrower. Many of the top one hundred most commonly used crops including tallgrain and denta beans were harvested by CD-2s. Some specialist crops, such as berries, could not be harvested by the CD-2 however. The droids were especially useful for struggling farmers on desolate worlds, as the droid could function in any terrain, and its tillers could break even the hardest soil.
- "Can you program this crate so it'll run without you?"
"That's what it's built to do, but it'll remember only simple things, Captain."
- ―Solo asks Blue Max to program a CD-2
The CD-2 was manufactured by the Corporate Sector Authority, the controlling body of the Corporate Sector. Considered one of the best agricultural droids available, the harvesters were sold for 45,000 The droid was used on many worlds within the Corporate Sector, but thousands of units were also purchased and used by the Galactic Empire and the New Republic, as well as various planetary confederacies. The droids were vital to the success of agricultural worlds such as Taanab, Ukio and Salliche, which not be able to sustain their vast agricultural output without them. Due to their efficiency and importance, the droids continued to be used even after they became considered fairly primitive in technological standards.
One CD-2 on Orron III was programmed to harvest large fields of an Arcon Multinode Agricorp hybrid grain. While the droid was routinely harvesting a field in around 2 BBY, the smuggler Han Solo and a group of accomplices entered the area in a skimmer attempting to escape from the Security Police. After having their vehicle shot down, one of the group, the Wookiee Chewbacca, boarded the harvester and placed the slicer droid Blue Max into the CD-2's control panel. The slicer then managed to take control of agricultural behemoth and used it to run down several of the Security Police officers pursuing Solo and the others.
Concentrated fire on the droid forced Blue Max to order it to flee however, picking up the rest of the fleeing group as it did, apart from Chewbacca who was captured by the Police. The harvester was then piloted through the electrified security fence of a nearby spaceport, where Solo and his allies abandoned it with orders to plough through the rest of the port. As its one-time crew fled to Solo's starship, the Millennium Falcon, the harvester dutifully carried out its orders to run through the port, being attacked by Security Police as it did so. The droid was partially disabled but made it halfway through the port before a cannonade shot caused its power plant to explode, tearing the CD-2 in half.
Behind the scenesEdit
The CD-2 Harvester, identified only as harvester, first appeared in the novel Han Solo at Stars' End which was written by Brian Daley and released in 1979. Archie Goodwin and Alfredo Alcala then adapted the story into a newspaper comic strip published in 1980 which also included the harvester. The comic adaptation included several notable differences in the scene including the harvester, with Solo and his companion all mounting the droid together instead of just Chewbacca initially. In the comic it is the academic Rekkon, not Chewbacca, who opens the hatch and puts Blue Max in the control center. The comic also depicts the harvester as grey, not yellow, and with distinctly different harvesting blades. This article assumes the information from the original novel and not the adaptation are correct.
The agrirobot was first given its model designation of CD-2 in the 1993 West End Games sourcebook Han Solo and the Corporate Sector Sourcebook, which was written by Michael Allen Horne and also provided role-playing stats for the droid. The droid then received an entry in De Agostini's The Official Star Wars Fact File series in the 31st issue. The magazine, claimed the droids stood twenty meters tall as opposed to the fifteen meter height given by the Han Solo and the Corporate Sector sourcebook. This article assumes the fact file, as the more recent source, is correct.
- Han Solo and the Corporate Sector Sourcebook (As "Harvester Droid, Model CD-2")
- The Essential Guide to Droids (First identified as CD-2 Harvester)
- The Official Star Wars Fact File 31 (HAR1-2, CD-2 Harvester Droid)
Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 Han Solo and the Corporate Sector Sourcebook, p. 126
- ↑ 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 Han Solo at Stars' End
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 3.8 3.9 The Official Star Wars Fact File 31 (HAR1-2, CD-2 Harvester Droid)
- ↑ 4.00 4.01 4.02 4.03 4.04 4.05 4.06 4.07 4.08 4.09 4.10 4.11 4.12 4.13 4.14 4.15 4.16 The Essential Guide to Droids, pp. 86—87
- ↑ The Essential Reader's Companion