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84-Watt DIY Death Star Can Cut Through Steel

Can you feel that slight disturbance in the Force? As if…  six-watt beams of light all aligned on a miniature Death Star by a German tinkerer with a laser fetish…

Remember when we told you about those awesome physicists at the California Institute of Technology who did the math on how much power it would take to operate various weapons systems from Star Wars? Now, thanks to German engineer and tinkerer Patrick Priebe and his 84-watt DIY Death Star, we’re one (extremely tiny) step closer to making the moon-sized planet-destroyer a reality.

Priebe’s outlines the steps he took to build the scaled-down version of the Imperial battle station in the DIY video above, and it looks like the whole thing was brought to life using aluminum panels, LED lights, a plexiglass coating, a beach ball, and of course, a big ol’ handful of lasers.

The result of Priebe’s efforts is a Death Star about the size of said beach ball, which glows from the inside thanks to the LEDs. And although the mini battle station achieves its destructive force by harnessing 14 separate lasers, unlike the “real” Death Star, it does not converge all of its beams together into a single photonic pin of destruction; unless you use a plexiglass rod to simulate the effect (you can check out both laser set-ups in the photo gallery below).

So, what we’ve got here is a $4,500 84-watt Death Star that can cut through steel, smoke various meats, and torch paper like it ain’t no thang. But how much closer does that get us to the real deal? Well, considering the real Death Star would likely require 598 billion times the Earth’s total power supply, we’re gonna go ahead and say, not too close. But still, it’s a working Death Star you can build yourself, which means that unlike anything directly in front of Priebe’s laser array, that’s pretty cool.

And don’t think you can just get 14 laser pointers to accomplish the same operation. Each of Priebe’s lasers is almost 3,000 times stronger than something you can get at Office Max.

Does Priebe’s DIY Death Star awaken the Force inside of you? Is what the world needs now love sweet love, or more miniature Death Stars? And what else should Priebe laser-ify, since he’s so good at it? Let us know in the comments section below!

HT: Gizmag

Image: Patrick Priebe/Laser Gadgets

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