The DLC-13 mining droid, also known as the droid lava collector or Mustafar panning droid, was a fifth-degree droid modified by the Techno Union from the Kalibac Industries information cataloging droid. These so-called panning droids operated on Mustafar, mining minerals from the planet's lava rivers.
The Kalibac librarian droid was initially developed for the Mid Rim Lending Network, but Kalibac's parent company, the Techno Union, used the internal intelligence matrices from factory-model librarian droids within an imitative body shell crafted from heat-resistant carbonite, set for use by Mustafarian miners. The droids, produced on Mustafar itself, were programmed to use their scanners to locate minerals brought to the surface of lava floes by tractor beams. The panning droids were fitted with large, underslung collection buckets to transport minerals from the rivers back to Techno Union harvesting centers.
As an additional defense against the scorching heat of the planet, panning droids were fitted with low-powered deflector shield generators, though losses to the flames of the lava rivers were still high. The panning droid possessed only a rudimentary droid brain: its orders were transmitted to it from the primary mining facility. Although expensive, these droids proved their worth by the enormous profits gained from mining rare heavy elements.
Following the culmination of the Clone Wars, several panning droids bore witness to the duel between Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Vader. One droid, currently devoid of any particular task, set its photoreceptors on the duel as it progressed across precarious terrain, while another became more personally involved. Escaping from a fallen lava collection arm tumbling over a lavafall, Vader leapt onto the carbonite head of a panning droid in order to pursue Kenobi. Vader used the Force to override the droid's steering controls, distressing the unit enough to cause it to drop its collection bucket into the lava below.
During the reign of the Galactic Empire, panning droids saw continued service on Mustafar, particularly as part of a reclamation project helmed by the Tagge Company. One such droid went rogue and reprogrammed other droids to serve him in a Corellian hideout. It was eventually destroyed by Bane Malar and his companion.
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Jedi Alliance
- Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith (First appearance)
- Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith junior novel
- Star Wars Galaxies: Trials of Obi-Wan
- Star Wars: Complete Locations
- The New Essential Guide to Droids
- Star Wars: The Complete Visual Dictionary
- Star Wars Galaxies Trading Card Game – Champions of the Force (Card: Lava Mining) (Picture only)
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia (As "panning droid")
- Star Wars Galaxies Trading Card Game – Galactic Hunters (Card: DLC-13 mining droid) (First identified as DLC-13 mining droid)