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That's Not What the Death Star Cost [Science]

Okay, there's been a lot of buzz around the Internet about a group who calculated the cost of building the Death Star. Based on 2012 prices for steel, they estimated the Death Star would cost $852,000,000,000,000,000. While it's all very interesting and cool, the basic assumption on which the entire exercise is founded is wrong.

The whole calculation is based on the premise that the Death Star is made of steel. This is a highly advanced technological world we're talking about. The idea that they would build the Death Star out of ordinary steel is like Jules Verne assuming we would get to the Moon with a cannon. Star Wars uses a lot of other futuristic stuff. For example, according to the Expanded Universe, the primary construction material in the Star Wars universe is durasteel (not to be confused with the real substance, durasteel). Durasteel is used in everything from buildings on Coruscant to spaceships to Darth Vader's armor. It's extremely lightweight and durable. Most likely, they would use a lot of that.

As for the Death Star specifically, the Wookieepedia says at least the outer hull is made Quadanium steel. What's that cost? Who knows. Which is the point. The actual cost of the Death Star is unknowable, because it's a fantasy universe. Might as well ask how much the Time Lords spent on the TARDIS. Just...let it go.

Do you care how much the Death Star costs? How much do you think it cost?


  1. Damn. I won't be building me a death star any time soon. Them evil dudes must be loaded.

  2. Yeah, if their numbers were right, it would be enormous, ten percent of the world's income, and use most of the iron on Earth.


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