Death Star prototype

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DS prototype
Death Star prototype
Production information

Imperial Department of Military Research


Death Star prototype battlestation



Technical specifications

120 kilometers[1]


120 kilometers[1]


120 kilometers[1]

Engine unit(s)

Ion engines (for sublight movement only)[2]


Concave Dish Composite Beam Superlaser (1)

Minimum crew



2 months[1]

Location information


Kessel system


Galactic Empire


11 ABY

Present for battles/events

Battle of the Maw

The Death Star prototype was a testbed for the first Death Star. It was constructed in the Empire's secret Maw Installation.


DSprototype egvv

Death Star prototype schematics.

The Death Star prototype was simply a durasteel frame with a reactor core, superlaser, engines, and a control room. First conceived by Grand Moff Wilhuff Tarkin, it was constructed by Bevel Lemelisk and his engineers at the Maw Installation.

The Death Star prototype measured 120 kilometers in diameter.[2] Its superlaser was only powerful enough to destroy a planet's core, rendering it uninhabitable,[2] although it was powerful enough to totally destroy larger moons. The superlaser also took a large amount of power and drained the vehicle's batteries. It took hours to recharge the batteries and superlaser.[2]

The targeting system on the Death Star prototype was also never calibrated, greatly hurting its accuracy. The prototype had no interior except a control room where all the computers including the superlaser were slave linked.[2] This meant the station could be run by a small crew. The interiors of the later Death Stars were taken up by the hyperdrive engines and other components.[2]


Death Star Prototype destruction

The Death Star prototype's destruction

The Death Star prototype was constructed to see if the planet-destroying superlaser could be built. As soon as the laser worked, the prototype was left anchored above the Maw Installation since it had fulfilled its mission. It was never completed.

A multi-kilometer access chute from the prototype later made its way to the Corellian Sector of Nar Shaddaa, where Shug Ninx integrated it into his workshop.

Tol Sivron used it to attack the New Republic in 11 ABY. He attempted to destroy Kessel by firing the superlaser, but missed and hit the moon. It was driven off by the Millennium Falcon and assorted pirate forces. Later that year, Kyp Durron destroyed the Death Star prototype by luring it into one of the Maw's black holes. However, there are indications that other prototypes might have existed.

Behind the scenesEdit

Originally, the Death Star prototype was considered to be just that—a project begun prior to work beginning on the Death Star I. However, following the appearance of Death Star plans in Attack of the Clones and the first Death Star in Revenge of the Sith (confirmed by George Lucas himself), The New Essential Chronology retconned the prototype into being built alongside the main Death Star because concerns were raised.



Notes and referencesEdit

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