- "The strongest stars have hearts of kyber."
- ―Chirrut Îmwe
Kyber crystals, also called the living crystal or simply the kyber, and known as kaiburr crystals in ancient times, were rare, Force-attuned crystals that grew in nature and were found on scattered planets across the galaxy. They were used by the Jedi and the Sith in the construction of their lightsabers. As part of Jedi training, younglings were sent to the Crystal Caves of the ice planet of Ilum to harvest crystals and then construct their own lightsabers. The crystal's mix of transparency and opacity was called "the water of the kyber" by the Jedi. There were also larger, rarer crystals of great power and that, according to legends, were used at the heart of ancient superweapons by the Sith.
- "We know little about kyber crystals, because the Jedi Order worked to keep knowledge of them secret. But to put it simply, they focus energy and amplify its intensity. That once made them ideal for use in Jedi lightsabers; now it makes them ideal for use in laser weapons."
- ―Jan Dodonna
Kyber crystals were Force-attuned crystals that grew randomly throughout the galaxy, and occurred in abundance in some places more than others. The crystals concentrated energy in a unique manner through the Force, resonating with it. The crystals exhibited a sort of "collective consciousness" veering on the edge of sentience, and could non-verbally communicate with both one another and living beings. Some theorized that the permutations in the kyber lattice were comparable to emotional shifts in a sentient being.
Internally, kyber crystals were composed of both organic and inorganic materials. They were impervious to fire and resistant to hammering, and noted for their intricate patterns. Kyber crystals were sturdy enough to survive the violent explosion of a lightsaber's power grid, such as those caused by accidentally inverting the emitter matrix during the weapon's assembly. Kyber crystals would not warm a sheath or a towel or any inanimate object, responding only to life, including plant life. If an individual were to wrap their hand around a crystal, the crystal would warm, but not change in temperature. The crystals grew in an organized way, adding to their prismatic structure one piece at a time. They had no discernible lifespan, and thus could be found from sizes as small as a fingernail to gigantic proportions. All kybers were attuned to the Force regardless of their size. Incorrectly pumping laser energy into the crystals weakened their lattices in the same way living cells were affected by radiation.
True kybers were only found in veins of pure kyberite. If the crystal contained impurities, it was regarded as a false kyber. Ranite was closely related to kyberite, but was denser and tougher, and did not contain kyber crystal veins. Crystals were typically brought to the surface of planets by seismic activity and movements along slippage fault lines, usually when an oceanic plate slid against a continental plate, and then only horizontally. As the crystals rose, they often gained impurities and other minerals. The crystals could be picked up in caves, streams, lava tubes of ancient volcanoes, or embedded in veins of kyberite.
Kyber crystals were most notably be found in Ilum's Crystal Caves. They were a critical component in the construction of lightsabers, focusing energy into the weapon's distinct plasma blade. The crystals shared a special relationship with the Jedi for tens of thousands of years, and welcomed them to hear their song and learn their lessons. Jedi younglings traveled to the ice caves to harvest their own crystals, which they then used to build their lightsabers. The Force guided their selection, finding a crystal that matched them as Jedi. To those not meant to receive it, the crystal was cold to the touch, however those the crystal chose would hear its "music" and "harmony," becoming attracted to it. Crystals lacked color before they were chosen by a Jedi. Once chosen, most lightsabers became blue or green, though other shades were created in rare instances, most notably Mace Windu's purple blade, the yellow blades of the Jedi Temple Guards, the black Darksaber, and Ahsoka Tano's white lightsabers.
Kyber crystals were inherently attuned to the light side of the Force, and would attempt to resist any effort by dark side practitioners to utilize them in lightsabers. To this end, the only way a Sith, or other darksider could make use of a kyber crystal was to use the Force to dominate the crystal, bending it to their will. This process would cause the crystal to "bleed", as if it were a living organism, resulting in the distinctive crimson-bladed lightsabers synonymous with the Sith. However it was also possible to "heal" a kyber crystal corrupted in this way. The only known instance of purifying a corrupted kyber crystal was when Ahsoka Tano purified the two crystals she retrieved from the Sixth Brother's lightsaber following his defeat. In this case, the crystals turned white.
The crystals were noted for their unmatched ability to channel energy and generate enormous returns. To this end, numerous individuals attempted to make synthetic kyber crystals, though their artificial nature made them highly unstable and explosive. If a crystal was subjected to forceful attempts to study it or harness its power, it would "flee" such attempts, hindering those that sought to use it against its will. Furthermore, those that worked in proximity to them would experience headaches and a loss of sleep, becoming incessantly fanatic and fixated over the crystal in the process. For centuries, the Jedi cut and faceted the crystals to eliminate occlusions and intensify their power yield. Galen Erso theorized that larger crystals needed to be faceted, not only to eliminate these occlusions, but also to minimize diffraction resulting from the introduction of energy from a lasing medium. With proper faceting, the pulse of energy released by the crystal could be greatly amplified and, with the help of containment devices, provide inexpensive power for developing worlds, or be directed into a collimating beam of incredible power; as was used on the DS-1 battle station. Galen Erso also theorized that increased energy yield could be further attained by forcing what the Jedi called the "day and night" lattices of the Force to realign. By realigning the crystals lattices along the dark or nighttime axis of the Force, Galen postulated that it could allow for greater control over the crystal's tendency to diffract. Thus, technology could be used to force the crystals to obey their masters. The abundant yield could then be siphoned off, contained, and utilized as enriched energy. Without containment, the yield could result in a catastrophic event, capable of wiping out a large population center.
- "Long ago in forgotten times, when the Sith and Jedi fought for control of the galaxy, weapons there were, of unimaginable power. Always at their heart, a kyber crystal was."
Before the Jedi and Sith orders, kyber crystals were worshiped by primitive societies for their fire-resistant properties, intricate structures, and near impermeability; signs which made them appear outwardly eternal. Ancient beings associated them with wind, rain, and breath. It is believed that the Jedi saw them as embodying an aspect of the Force. Over the centuries, the Jedi amassed an almost exclusive right to the crystals, protecting and collecting them to decorate their temples and power their lightsabers. Some saw this collection of the kybers as proof of the Jedi's inordinate greed, and their secrecy over its nature a result of their wish to remain in power. Others saw the Jedi as protecting the galaxy from those who might use the powers of the crystal for dark purposes.
During ancient wars between the Jedi and the Sith, in which both sides fought for control over the galaxy, superweapons were created by the Sith that were powered by giant kyber crystals. The Sith temple on the planet Malachor was one such weapon. Although these stories were considered legends, a giant kyber crystal was discovered on Utapau during the Clone Wars. The Confederacy of Independent Systems attempted to acquire the crystal, but they were discovered by Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi and Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker. The Jedi were able to prevent the crystal from falling farther into Confederate hands, though Yoda was concerned that Darth Sidious would discover another giant kyber crystal in order to construct another superweapon.
After the fall of the Galactic Republic and the rise of the Galactic Empire, Sidious—publicly known as Emperor Palpatine—and his Empire continued the Republic's former construction of the Death Star, a battle station capable of destroying entire planets. Kyber crystals were used as part of the Death Star's superlaser and Galen Erso was brought on as the main researcher under Project Celestial Power. Kyber crystals were looted from Jedi lightsabers, temples, Ilum, and other worlds where they could be found. To some, studying the crystals was not disrespecting the Jedi's teachings, but allowing galactic society to expose some of the Jedi's long-held secrets. Five years before the Battle of Yavin, one such crystal was located by the rebels from Lothal, who discovered its location and destroyed it. The destruction produced a large shockwave, destroying everything in its path.
Known crystal colorsEdit
- "The heart of the lightsaber, the crystal is."
The following is a list of all known lightsaber blade colors:
- Black (such as the Darksaber)
- Blue (such as Obi-Wan Kenobi's lightsaber)
- Green (such as Luke Skywalker's lightsaber)
- Purple (such as Mace Windu's lightsaber)
- Red (such as Darth Vader's lightsaber)
- White (such as Ahsoka Tano's lightsabers)
- Yellow (such as the Jedi Temple Guards' lightsaber pikes)
- Ultimate Star Wars
- Star Wars Rebels: Rebel Power!
- Star Wars: The Force Awakens: The Visual Dictionary
- Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Incredible Cross-Sections
- Star Wars: Complete Locations
- Star Wars: Galactic Atlas
- Star Wars: Rogue One: The Ultimate Visual Guide
- Rogue One Rebel Dossier (First identified as kaiburr crystal)
- ; images #3, 7 (of 22)
Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 Catalyst: A Rogue One Novel
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 Ultimate Star Wars
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Ahsoka
- ↑ Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "A Test of Strength"
- ↑ Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The Wrong Jedi"
- ↑ Star Wars: Uprising
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The Big Bang"
- ↑ Star Wars Rebels – "Breaking Ranks"
- ↑ Star Wars: The Force Awakens: The Visual Dictionary
- ↑ Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Incredible Cross-Sections
- ↑ 14.0 14.1 Dave Filoni FaceBook Q&A