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- "When the Imperials blockade a planet, they scatter Defenders throughout the near space orbit of the world. It is nearly impossible to get through the blockade without encountering at least one of the mines."
- ―General Airen Cracken
The Defender ion mine was an automated space mine manufactured by Merr-Sonn Munitions, Inc. and used by the Galactic Empire. During a blockade, the mines would be scattered in a planet's orbit. Cloaking revvers and particle-beam scatter projectors worked to keep the mine invisible to starship sensors. A cluster of sensor rods enabled a Defender to detect nearby objects, though the mine would ignore anything less than four meters in diameter. When a ship came within 10 kilometers, the mine would use its ion cannon to disable the vessel. After the target was incapacitated, the mine would send a transmission to its control station. A nearby customs vessel or other capital ship would then come to investigate. Defenders were nearly undetectable due to their small size and sensor countermeasures, making minefields containing Defender mines difficult to clear. Defenders were also used by the New Republic, the Imperial Remnant, and planetary governments.