The Elegance message drone was a message drone variant.
An Elegance message drone measured at least nine meters long and almost entirely composed of engines. Its hyperdrive could travel fast but it was limited to one jump before it needed to refuel, and five jumps before its motors were destroyed by use. Having arrived in a system, the Elegance would broadcast a beacon signal to alert ships or space stations that it had arrived.
Since they were often used to transport classified government or military information, the Elegance was equipped with fail-safe self-destruct systems; two electrite crystal triggers snapped together, destroying the drone and generating enough force to destroy everything within 600 meters to prevent it from falling into unauthorized hands.
Before the HoloNet was established, most governments relied on such droids for long-range communications. During times of peace in the Galactic Republic, sometimes messages that had to travel only a short distance (such as from a planet, to one of its satellites) were carried by Elegance drones.
Alternately, in times of political uncertainty, (much later when the HoloNet was active in most parts of the galaxy), messages were sent over short distances using an Elegance drone, to avoid being picked up and decoded by eavesdroppers. Even under the Galactic Empire, some remote Imperial outposts kept several of these as backups in the event their comm satellites were destroyed.
Following the Battle of Endor in 4 ABY, an Elegance drone arrived at the Forest Moon of Endor addressed to Emperor Palpatine (who at that time had recently been killed during the battle) which was retrieved by Wedge Antilles and Luke Skywalker. Having deactivated its self-destruct systems and decoded its data, the Alliance of Free Planets forces on the moon were alerted to the first of the Ssi-ruuvi invasions of Bakura.
- The Truce at Bakura (First appearance)
- The Truce at Bakura Sourcebook
- The Essential Guide to Droids
- Cynabar's Fantastic Technology: Droids
- C-3PO: Tales of the Golden Droid
- The Official Star Wars Fact File 61 (Messenger Droids)
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia