Aarhus Universitets segl

Studenterkollokvium - Lærke Niclasen: The Physics in the Destruction of Alderaan

Oplysninger om arrangementet


Mandag 9. november 2020,  kl. 14:15 - 15:00


Fys. Aud/Zoom

The Death Star as seen in Star Wars: A New Hope.
The Death Star as seen in Star Wars: A New Hope.

Supervisor: Peter Balling    


In 1977, the movie Star Wars: A New Hope was released. It starred the Empire's newest weapon of mass destruction also known as the Death Star. The Death Star had a built-in superlaser powered by so-called "kyber crystals". It was used to wreak havoc on the galaxy - and in the Battle of Alderaan it showcases the superlaser's power by pulverising an Earthlike planet. Now, this weapon has not yet been created in the real world, but would it be possible to replicate this laser?

Employing laser theory and thermodynamics, I will analyse the incredible energies associated with an explosion of this size, and elaborate on three different methods to realise the weapon. Plan A considers vaporising the planet entirely; Plan B utilises mechanical shock waves created by ultrashort laser pulses; And plan C will make use of antimatter.

Will the Empire truly strike back?