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Hyperspace, how does it work?


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#1 Reuben What Is?

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 11:59 PM

So, I'm wondering how the Empire or anyone else maintains control of space, given the realities of Hyperspace...

Are ships in Hyperspace detectable?

Are they interceptable (short of having a deployable sun)?

 

and given as any ship with a Hyperspace drive can simply jump, how do pursuits work?



#2 HappyDaze

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 12:02 AM

The Empire used the Interdictor class to pullships out of hyperspace.


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#3 Darth Ruinous

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 12:27 AM

Also, stable hyperspace lanes are pretty much defined by the time of the Empire. Traveling from system to system usually requires "Jumping" along known stable routes. For example: you can not jump from Coruscant straight to Tatooine as there is too much stellar mass or phenomina (Spelling?) in the way.

 

Most smugglers try to circumvent these charts, but only perform "Micro-jumps" to reduce the likelyhood of jumping too close to a star or blackhole. Trying to "micro-jump" from one side of the Galaxy to the other could take months or even years depending on the calculations.



#4 Rikoshi

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 12:29 AM

So, I'm wondering how the Empire or anyone else maintains control of space, given the realities of Hyperspace...

Are ships in Hyperspace detectable?

Are they interceptable (short of having a deployable sun)?

 

and given as any ship with a Hyperspace drive can simply jump, how do pursuits work?

 

I'd recommend looking on Wookieepedia for the details on hyperspace, but to answer your questions more generally:

 

Ships in hyperspace can't be detected, but hyperspace signatures can, so you can see where a ship has jumped and try to guess where it's jumped too (this is why, when trying to escape, ships will often plot a short jump, drop out of hyperspace, then make another jump or series of jumps before heading toward their real destination).

 

There are also Interdictor ships that the Empire (and other entities) use to pull ships out of hyperspace; basically, it creates a giant mass shadow to force a ship's failsafes to kick in and drop out of hyperspace--basically tricking the ship into thinking it's going to hit a sun or something so that it forces a stop.


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#5 TiLT

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 01:14 AM

Remember back in Empire Strikes Back when the Millennium Falcon, its hyperdrives damaged, attaches itself to a Star Destroyer only to drift off along with the ship's trash and jump into hyperspace? Boba Fett followed the ship in his Slave-1, and when the Millennium Falcon entered hyperspace, he used their jump signature to calculate where they were heading. Since the Falcon was going by reserve power and thus very slowly at this point, Fett was able to both inform Vader about this and reach Bespin before the Falcon. When Han Solo finally reached Bespin, the Empire had already prepared a trap for him. This is just one example of how this kind of thing works. 

 

It's possible to force ships out of hyperspace as well. Pirates sometimes do it by placing a large object (like an asteroid) smack in the middle of a known hyperspace lane. When the ship in hyperspace gets close to this obstruction, it is forced out of hyperspace and is immediately attacked. This only works if the obstruction is large enough to have its own gravity field. More advanced agencies, like the Empire, used gravity field generators to both force ships out of hyperspace and to prevent them from jumping out again, the most famous example of this technology being the Interdictor class Star Destroyer mentioned above. 


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#6 KRKappel

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 02:29 AM

I would also imagine you cannot jump while a tractor beam is locked onto your ship, as this would have been an easy way for the Falcon to escape the first Death Star. This is a bit more work than just using an interdiction field, but they can't put those ships everywhere.

The Empire has military grade ships, and it takes several minutes to calculate the jump to lightspeed (assuming you weren't planning to jump already). During those few minutes, if the Empire wants to, they can generally take out your engines, ion cannon the ship into submission, destroy it, or get a tractor beam on you. Basically, its not hard.


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#7 JP_JP

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 06:50 AM

It the Empire Sourcebook from West End Games, there was a system to detect ship in hyperspace and plot their course. Unfortunately, it was a large satellite system that needed to be deployed in advance. Each satellite was linked to others using some kind of hyperspace laser ; when a ship crossed one of those hyperspace laser, the satellites would read this and when combining all the positions and intervals at which they crossed the lasers, they could plot course, speed and destination.

I don't remember the name of this system...

The Empire also had few of those systems and would only use it for high stakes missions like a blocade on a valuable world or while tracking a top target (Luke Skywalker style)... For the common outlaw, he will never face this system...



#8 Merlin82

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 08:01 AM

It the Empire Sourcebook from West End Games, there was a system to detect ship in hyperspace and plot their course. Unfortunately, it was a large satellite system that needed to be deployed in advance. Each satellite was linked to others using some kind of hyperspace laser ; when a ship crossed one of those hyperspace laser, the satellites would read this and when combining all the positions and intervals at which they crossed the lasers, they could plot course, speed and destination.

I don't remember the name of this system...

The Empire also had few of those systems and would only use it for high stakes missions like a blocade on a valuable world or while tracking a top target (Luke Skywalker style)... For the common outlaw, he will never face this system...

Byss and the Deep Core were surrounded by the Imperial Hyperspace Security Net. I don't know if there were any similar systems with different names.



#9 HappyDaze

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 08:06 AM

Remember too that courses through hyperspace are not straight lines, so determining a ship's destination simply from it's entry vector makes little sense unless there are very limited options (like for the damaged MF that Fett was chasing).

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#10 fjw70

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 08:31 AM

Remember back in Empire Strikes Back when the Millennium Falcon, its hyperdrives damaged, attaches itself to a Star Destroyer only to drift off along with the ship's trash and jump into hyperspace? Boba Fett followed the ship in his Slave-1, and when the Millennium Falcon entered hyperspace, he used their jump signature to calculate where they were heading. Since the Falcon was going by reserve power and thus very slowly at this point, Fett was able to both inform Vader about this and reach Bespin before the Falcon. When Han Solo finally reached Bespin, the Empire had already prepared a trap for him. This is just one example of how this kind of thing works. 
 
It's possible to force ships out of hyperspace as well. Pirates sometimes do it by placing a large object (like an asteroid) smack in the middle of a known hyperspace lane. When the ship in hyperspace gets close to this obstruction, it is forced out of hyperspace and is immediately attacked. This only works if the obstruction is large enough to have its own gravity field. More advanced agencies, like the Empire, used gravity field generators to both force ships out of hyperspace and to prevent them from jumping out again, the most famous example of this technology being the Interdictor class Star Destroyer mentioned above.


I thought the Falcon didn't have hyperdrive for the flight to Bespin. I always assumed they made the trip in sublight speed. I know this doesn't make sense scientifically but it is Star Wars.
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#11 TiLT

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 08:33 AM

 

Remember back in Empire Strikes Back when the Millennium Falcon, its hyperdrives damaged, attaches itself to a Star Destroyer only to drift off along with the ship's trash and jump into hyperspace? Boba Fett followed the ship in his Slave-1, and when the Millennium Falcon entered hyperspace, he used their jump signature to calculate where they were heading. Since the Falcon was going by reserve power and thus very slowly at this point, Fett was able to both inform Vader about this and reach Bespin before the Falcon. When Han Solo finally reached Bespin, the Empire had already prepared a trap for him. This is just one example of how this kind of thing works. 
 
It's possible to force ships out of hyperspace as well. Pirates sometimes do it by placing a large object (like an asteroid) smack in the middle of a known hyperspace lane. When the ship in hyperspace gets close to this obstruction, it is forced out of hyperspace and is immediately attacked. This only works if the obstruction is large enough to have its own gravity field. More advanced agencies, like the Empire, used gravity field generators to both force ships out of hyperspace and to prevent them from jumping out again, the most famous example of this technology being the Interdictor class Star Destroyer mentioned above.


I thought the Falcon didn't have hyperdrive for the flight to Bespin. I always assumed they made the trip in sublight speed. I know this doesn't make sense scientifically but it is Star Wars.

 

 

Ships typically have both a standard hyperdrive and a backup hyperdrive of considerably lower power, meant to allow the ship to limp to the nearest safe haven in case of emergency. That's what the Falcon used. Traveling in realspace would have taken decades, if not centuries. 



#12 fjw70

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 08:34 AM

Is the backup hyperdrive used mentioned in an EU source?

#13 TiLT

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 08:37 AM

Is the backup hyperdrive used mentioned in an EU source?

 

My source is the West End Games RPG, which forms the most important basis for the EU. 


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#14 fjw70

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 08:45 AM

So the Falcon using a backp hyperdrive is speculation bases on WEG SW?

It's a pretty good explanation since obviously sublight speed makes no sense, but I doubt Lucas was thinking any such things when he made TESB.

#15 Nashable

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 08:58 AM

It's also mentioned in the Essential Atlas and a ton of other sources, see the bottom of this page: http://starwars.wiki...wiki/Hyperdrive


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#16 Rookhelm

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 09:04 AM

So the Falcon using a backp hyperdrive is speculation bases on WEG SW?

It's a pretty good explanation since obviously sublight speed makes no sense, but I doubt Lucas was thinking any such things when he made TESB.

 

I was always under the impression the falcon flew to Bespin at sublight from Hoth (realistically, the journey would probably take years), which is why the empire was able to get there with enough time to sway Lando, set up a trap and all that.

 

Also, Luke was on Degobah for this same timeframe as well.  So, I kinda thought the whole ordeal took like 2 weeks or something.  Also, remember...after Han escaped from Hoth, and after the ordeal with the trash, they were in the Anoat system...which is (presumably) a neighbor system to Hoth.  So, Lucas never considered even sublight speed to take THAT long.



#17 Bayard91

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 09:06 AM

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#18 TiLT

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 09:06 AM

So the Falcon using a backp hyperdrive is speculation bases on WEG SW?

 

That's not how I would put it. Keep in mind how canon works in Star Wars. At the top are the movies. They trump everything. As far as I'm aware they never mention backup hyperdrives, so if the movies are all you want to consider for Star Wars, any theory of yours is perfectly valid. 

 

The second tier of canon consists of official TV shows, most notably the Clone Wars cartoon. As far as I'm aware backup hyperdrives are never mentioned here either. 

 

The third tier becomes more interesting. This is where the EU is introduced. The EU, to a large degree grew out of the West End Games RPG. The RPG was so thorough and so popular that Star Wars authors used it as a reference. As a result, you can consider the West End books to be a kind of lexicon to the EU, the innermost source so to speak. They are the first source to mention backup hyperdrives, and just about every ship has one. As far as EU sources go, this is as official as it gets, and it's certainly not speculation. If you want to dig up the source yourself, Wookieepedia refers to Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game, First Edition pages 54-58 when talking about backup hyperdrives. 

 

For the record, there are two more tiers of canon below EU. These are (in order of importance, high to low) secondary canon (stuff like Star Wars Galaxies and the Old Republic MMO) and finally non-canon (such as Han Solo dancing in the Star Wars Kinect game for Xbox 360). 


Edited by TiLT, 12 July 2013 - 09:08 AM.


#19 Nashable

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 09:16 AM

 

So the Falcon using a backp hyperdrive is speculation bases on WEG SW?

It's a pretty good explanation since obviously sublight speed makes no sense, but I doubt Lucas was thinking any such things when he made TESB.

 

I was always under the impression the falcon flew to Bespin at sublight from Hoth (realistically, the journey would probably take years), which is why the empire was able to get there with enough time to sway Lando, set up a trap and all that.

 

Also, Luke was on Degobah for this same timeframe as well.  So, I kinda thought the whole ordeal took like 2 weeks or something.  Also, remember...after Han escaped from Hoth, and after the ordeal with the trash, they were in the Anoat system...which is (presumably) a neighbor system to Hoth.  So, Lucas never considered even sublight speed to take THAT long.

 

 

It's been established that the Falcon was using a back up hyperdrive and the jump from Hoth to Bespin took "weeks" (see page 186 of the Essential Atlas)


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#20 TiLT

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 09:19 AM

 

It's been established that the Falcon was using a back up hyperdrive and the jump from Hoth to Bespin took "weeks" (see page 186 of the Essential Atlas)

 

 

Just keep in mind that the Atlas is also a third-tier canon source, on the same level as the West End books. 






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