While you may not immediately think of realistic science and technology when you think of Star Wars — the laws of physics kind of take a back seat to hyperdrive, the Force, and all that — the fictional universe still provides an interesting jumping off point for questions about what's theoretically possible in this reality. Which is exactly what the new Facebook Anthology series, Science and Star Wars does. On top of asking those kinds of questions, the show's members also build things, like functional plasma lightsabers.
The Lucasfilm series, which is sponsored by IBM, just launched on the Star Wars Facebook page, and it essentially aims see how closely the physics and technology of the galaxy far far away can be mimicked here in reality. Like other online science- and pop culture-focused shows, like our very own Because Science, Science and Star Wars aims to educate as it entertains by explaining the science behind what's built or theorized.
In this first episode (above), host Anthony Carboni is joined by Taylor Gray (who plays Ezra Bridger on Star Wars Rebels), as well as Allen Pan, the engineer behind the YouTube channel, Sufficiently Advanced. The episode centers around an attempted build of a weapon for a more civilized age, the lightsaber, by utilizing Pan's knowhow to build a functioning "thermic lance." And while the thermic lance definitely allows Bridger to Qui-Gon the hell out of a steel door as if he were using a lightsaber, it's actually a common heavy duty demolition tool that's used to cut down metal scraps and remove axles from their casings.
Because the show is sponsored by IBM, Carboni is also joined by Watson, IBM's natural language processing A.I., which in this case is used to scour through Star Wars data and also suggest which lightsaber color works best for somebody's personality. Watson may be used for more in-depth tasks in the future however, as the show continues its ten-episode run exploring everything from bacta regeneration tanks to a H.U.D. (Heads-Up Display) for Boba Fett.
New episodes of Science and Star Wars will premiere on Tuesdays on the Stars Wars Facebook page, but if you just can't wait for more Star Wars — and — science, you check out one of the many Because Science videos that focuses on Star Wars, including the one below.
What do you think about this new science-focused Star Wars series? Give us your thoughts in the comments below!
Images: Lucasfilm, IBM
Enjoy more examples of science being awesome!
- Neural network creates 3D model of 2D faces and boy they're creepy!
- Final amazing images from Cassini prior to its death!
- How dense is Legolas from Lord of the Rings!