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Old 03-28-2006, 12:45 AM   #1
ScorLibran
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How tiny is the SW galaxy?

I know it's a fantasy story, but any such story should be somewhat believeable, so bear with me...

In Episode V the Millenium Falcon traveled from Hoth to Bespin with no working hyperdrive well within the lifetime of the ship's occupants. And it was implied that it took, what, maybe a couple of weeks?

These are two seperate star systems. Next door to each other, yes, but Sol and Alpha Centauri are next door to each other too...and that trip would take over 4 years at the speed of light.

So this means the entire Star Wars galaxy - as shown on the galactic map in the game - is some 10 light years wide? Or even smaller? (Compared to the Milky Way, being about a hundred thousand light years wide.)

Also, at the end of the same movie, a galaxy was portrayed in the midst of a starfield. Not many stars exist outside a galaxy...just a few very sparse renegades. This, to me, implies another tiny galaxy within a larger one, if such a thing could exist.

So is the Star Wars galaxy portrayed as one of a collection of tiny "microgalaxies"?

Just trying to get an idea of scale, here...
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Old 03-28-2006, 03:10 AM   #2
Jan Gaarni
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No, it's stated to be 120.000 lightyears in diameter.
But that's for the Star Wars people.
For us, the star wars galaxy is almost 121.000 lightyears across, since a galactic year in star wars is 368 days (Coruscant year), rather than our 365 days in a year.

The star field you are refering to could be other distant galaxies.

And as for the hyperdrive, they may have been able to get it to work temporary in order to get to Bespin.




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Old 03-28-2006, 01:33 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jan Gaarni
No, it's stated to be 120.000 lightyears in diameter.
But that's for the Star Wars people.
For us, the star wars galaxy is almost 121.000 lightyears across, since a galactic year in star wars is 368 days (Coruscant year), rather than our 365 days in a year.
[...]
And as for the hyperdrive, they may have been able to get it to work temporary in order to get to Bespin.
Sure, they may have gotten it partly working, but it wasn't portrayed that way in either the book or the movie. So really anything's possible...it didn't work, then it DID work, then it didn't work again just as they reached Bespin.

Or perhaps the speed of light in the Star Wars universe is considerably faster than in ours? The equivalent of 100 light years in the Milky Way can be traveled in maybe a week under ion thrust in the SW galaxy?

Like I said, no big deal...just something to file under "background science blunder". It's rare for Lucas, we have to collect the few we can find.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jan Gaarni
The star field you are refering to could be other distant galaxies.
Not based on any real-life images we've got of galaxies to date. Having worked in observatories and planetariums for 10 years, distant galaxies appear even smaller than a galaxy in the foreground. As portrayed at the end of Ep. V, the galaxy shown resided in a larger galaxy - hence the scientific oddity.

But again, this is fantasy, and it's what makes it great. It's not constrained by rules of physics as we know them.

And there's no intent for a conflict of any kind...I love you guys. These things just seemed to be interesting "odd features" in one of the SW stories.
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Old 03-28-2006, 02:27 PM   #4
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This is an interesting point Mr Libran.

I love reading people dicuss space.
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Old 03-28-2006, 05:53 PM   #5
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In Episode V the Millenium Falcon traveled from Hoth to Bespin with no working hyperdrive well within the lifetime of the ship's occupants. And it was implied that it took, what, maybe a couple of weeks?
If you watch carefully the episode V again you will see that they are looking for planets within their actual star system after they fot dumped from the SD.



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Old 03-28-2006, 07:50 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Orao
If you watch carefully the episode V again you will see that they are looking for planets within their actual star system after they fot dumped from the SD.
Ahhhh.....yes yes yes. You're right. I completely forgot that part. The SD hyperspaced (apparently) to the area of Bespin before the Falcon went on its own during the trash dump (with Slave I in tow).

Thanks Orao...my mistake. And my apologies for the confusion.


Edit:

Waaaaait a minute...I'll have to watch the movie again to be sure...but as I remember it, they left Hoth, got jumped by the Empire, escaped into the asteroids, came out of the asteroids and attached to the superstructure of one of the ISDs. Han was counting on them dumping their trash before jumping to hyperspace, which they did. And when they did that, he detached the Falcon and floated away amongst the garbage (and still with Slave I in tow).

This all happened BEFORE anyone went to hyperspace. So when the Empire left the area, the Falcon was still in the sublight vicinity of Hoth. After which they scouted out and traveled to Bespin. Which leaves me asking, "How small is the SW galaxy if they can travel sublight between two different star systems?"

Last edited by ScorLibran; 03-28-2006 at 08:23 PM.
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Old 03-28-2006, 09:06 PM   #7
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well here is a picture of the whole galaxy excluding a few planets(was made around ep 1 i think)

http://www.starwars.idv.tw/starwarsgalaxy.jpg

i couldnt post it directly on the forum b/c it is huge!!!!




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Old 03-28-2006, 09:27 PM   #8
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Hmm, interesting map. It seems like most of the SW galaxy maps I see have some of the planets in different places - Alzoc III is at the bottom of that map, for instance. And it still doesn't have a scale, though. "One inch = 1000 light years", for instance?

"Wild Space" looks interesting. I wanna go there!
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Old 03-28-2006, 09:55 PM   #9
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How big was that map originally?
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Old 03-28-2006, 10:14 PM   #10
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dunno i googled it but if u look closley there r 6 pieces so most likely 6 pages of a magazine




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Old 03-28-2006, 10:17 PM   #11
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I spose someone with too much time on their hands and access to a plotter could make their own. But I know no one with that sort of drive
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Old 03-28-2006, 10:40 PM   #12
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Quote:
This all happened BEFORE anyone went to hyperspace. So when the Empire left the area, the Falcon was still in the sublight vicinity of Hoth. After which they scouted out and traveled to Bespin. Which leaves me asking, "How small is the SW galaxy if they can travel sublight between two different star systems?"
We can't affirm this. All we can see in the movie is the Falcon disapearing and Vador asking the commander to calculate possible hyperspace routes for Falcon.

Next scene is with Han and Leai in the Falcon's cockpit.

Nothing affirm you that they did not made few hyperspace jumps before dumping. Rember the Empire was looking for them. Which means that they had to jump out of space from time to time in order to scan the space.



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Old 03-29-2006, 09:07 AM   #13
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But the whole point of them dumping their garbage is that they have to do before they go into hyperspace.
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Old 03-29-2006, 12:08 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Orao
We can't affirm this. All we can see in the movie is the Falcon disapearing and Vador asking the commander to calculate possible hyperspace routes for Falcon.

Nothing affirm you that they did not made few hyperspace jumps before dumping. Rember the Empire was looking for them. Which means that they had to jump out of space from time to time in order to scan the space.
Sure we can affirm this. It's a 5-minute scene from the movie, and perhaps 20 pages from the book. The Falcon faces off with the ISD, and attaches to the superstructure. No hyperspace yet.

Darth flips his wig - and maybe kills off a couple of lieutenants out of frustration - and orders a search for the Falcon. Still no hyperspace. And no, the ISD didn't jump to and from hyperspace to look for them. They search while still operating sub-light, until...

They dump their refuse - and the Falcon and Slave I with it. THEN the ISD and its battlegroup enters hyperspace. Still no hyperspace for the Falcon though, as critical to the story is that their hyperdrive doesn't work until they get to Bespin.

Hoth and Bespin being close-by even via sub-light = a tiny SW galaxy. Or rather, just that it's a fantasy story - as we all know. This is just one particular factor that can have a broad effect on the scale of the story's setting.
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Old 03-29-2006, 12:12 PM   #15
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Could be a particularly crowded galaxy?
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Old 03-29-2006, 12:36 PM   #16
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Sure. But even in the tiniest and most-crowded galaxy, traveling between two seperate star systems at sub-light speeds would still take years. Even Sol and Alpha Centauri are quite close to each other - at 4.1 light years apart.

Even going from one planet to another in the same star system could be a long trip without hyperdrive.

I just hope no one thinks I'm "bashing" Star Wars tech over this. There's probably no "scientific" explanation or solution for this event in the story. It's a fantasy - that's the only explanation that'll matter. It's just something that "jumped out at me" in Ep. V.

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Old 03-29-2006, 02:37 PM   #17
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I've never seen a full map like that...but there seem to be some obvious errors, for instance, that map shows Corellia, Selonia, Talus, and Tralus in separate, fairly widely separated systems. Established EU is that these planets are in the same system.

More information to add to the mix is the actual exchange Han and Leia have while looking at the Falcon's monitor. As I recall, it was somewhat like:
Quote:
"Where are we?"
"Anoat System."
"Anoat System? Not much there."
"Nah...wait, this is interesting...Lando!"
"The 'Lando' System?"
"...Bespin's pretty far, but I think we can make it."
So either Bespin is in the Anoat system, or the Falcon travelled from Anoat to Bespin sub-light (the hyperdrive was broken the whole time).


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Old 03-29-2006, 03:31 PM   #18
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Well according to that map Anoat is a system right between Hoth and Bespin.
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Old 03-29-2006, 05:54 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScorLibran
Sure, they may have gotten it partly working, but it wasn't portrayed that way in either the book or the movie. So really anything's possible...it didn't work, then it DID work, then it didn't work again just as they reached Bespin.
It's a possibility. Not a confirmed possibility, but to me it sounds like the most believable and viable explaination. They would have to go to Bespin in either case, wether they got the drives working or not, in order to get help stabilizing the drives so they operated reliably.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScorLibran
Or perhaps the speed of light in the Star Wars universe is considerably faster than in ours? The equivalent of 100 light years in the Milky Way can be traveled in maybe a week under ion thrust in the SW galaxy?
Well, no ship in Star Wars (to my knowledge) can go as fast as the light in real space, appearantly as I understand it because it's based on our notion you can't go faster than light. What they do is having special drives called Hyper Drives on board which flings the ships into a parallell dimension called Hyperspace. In hyperspace there are no speed limits, only the hyperdrives' efficiency to fling the ship into hyperspace (this last bit is my explaination as it must be the drives' fault that jumps arn't instant, if there is no speed limit in Hyperspace itself).
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScorLibran
Not based on any real-life images we've got of galaxies to date. Having worked in observatories and planetariums for 10 years, distant galaxies appear even smaller than a galaxy in the foreground. As portrayed at the end of Ep. V, the galaxy shown resided in a larger galaxy - hence the scientific oddity.
I was just throwing out ideas.
The galaxy we see could be another galaxy very close by, that's another explanation. That again would be the best explaination as according to Star Wars source materials, it is impossible (or atleast thought to be impossible even at that time and age) to travel thru Hyperspace outside the galaxy due to some kind of barrier.
Then again, I don't know if it's ever stated how far out from the galaxy this barrier reaches, so who knows.




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Old 03-29-2006, 06:14 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jan Gaarni
Well, no ship in Star Wars (to my knowledge) can go as fast as the light in real space, appearantly as I understand it because it's based on our notion you can't go faster than light. What they do is having special drives called Hyper Drives on board which flings the ships into a parallell dimension called Hyperspace. In hyperspace there are no speed limits, only the hyperdrives' efficiency to fling the ship into hyperspace (this last bit is my explaination as it must be the drives' fault that jumps arn't instant, if there is no speed limit in Hyperspace itself).
True. I just dump it all together and refer to it as "faster-than-light" (FTL) travel, even though it's not really "travel" at all. Whether it's hyperspace, warp drive, folding space or hopping dimensions - it's most often the same concept being referred to for traveling 100 light years in (almost) an instant.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jan Gaarni
I was just throwing out ideas.
The galaxy we see could be another galaxy very close by, that's another explanation. That again would be the best explaination as according to Star Wars source materials, it is impossible (or atleast thought to be impossible even at that time and age) to travel thru Hyperspace outside the galaxy due to some kind of barrier.
Then again, I don't know if it's ever stated how far out from the galaxy this barrier reaches, so who knows.
Good point - it could be a galaxy "next door" to the one they're in. You'd be seeing another galaxy through a portion of your own, hence it'd look like it was in a larger "starfield". By actual science, I doubt there are two galaxies so close that they'd look like that (the other galaxy would be hardly visible beyond the closer starfield), but in the vast scope of the Star Wars universe, I think they could exist that way just fine.

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Old 03-29-2006, 10:42 PM   #21
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I think the Empire Strikes Back novel refers to the Rebel rendesvouz point as unusual and particular risky because it was "out of the galactic plane" or some other similar terminology, meaning that the galaxy we see is the Star Wars galaxy.


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