WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- YouTuber and engineer James Hobson and his team applied thermodynamics to make a lightsaber fit for a Jedi.
- The lightsaber uses laminar nozzles that can actually cut through steel.
- One laminar nozzle can cost around $4,000.
“We did it. The world’s first retractable plasma-based lightsaber,” says James Hobson. And the price tag? Just one of its laminar nozzles is priced around $4,000!
StarWars fans will really go berserk over this creation, which, unlike previous lightsabers that only functions as a flashlight, can really cut through steel.
Hobson is a YouTube personality and engineer. He and his teammates, Dave Bonhoff, Ian Hillier, and Darryl Sherk, are the first to produce a lightsaber that can really cut through steel.
How did the team do it?
The team applied the principles of thermodynamics and laser engineering.
In an 18-minute “Make It Real” series video, Hobson demonstrates how the team produced the weapon.
He explains, “Even with all of our new equipment and capabilities, we’re still bound by the laws of thermodynamics. Well, theories say that plasma is best held in a beam by a magnetic field, which, scientifically, checks out. The issue is producing a strong enough electromagnetic field to contain a blade, well the lightsaber would have to be quite literally built inside a box coated in electromagnets, which turns it into a kind of useless science project.”
According to Hobson, the team employed the principle of “laminar flow” to capture a beam of plasma by combining liquified petroleum gas, or propane, with oxygen and sending them through “laminar nozzles,” a specialized tool for engineers, which generates a highly concentrated flow of gas to create a plasma beam.
Adding different chemicals would produce different colors: Strontium chloride makes red; Sodium chloride or table salt makes the beam yellow; calcium chloride turns the beam into an amber color; and Boric acid makes green.
The team also connected the lightsaber to a backpack power source that has a circuit that controls the flow of gas.
What came out is a lightsaber that is so bright — as it burns at 4,000 degrees Fahrenheit — and hot enough to cut through steel. It also retracts and projects on command!
“That is so bright,” says Hobson. “This actually hurts to look at.”
The team is still working on the lightsaber and Hobson says their follow-up demo of how the weapon actually works will “really put [the lightsaber] through its paces, including cutting through a steel door.”
Source: New York Post