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How the Disney ‘real life’ lightsaber works after parks chief unveils it in the flesh

How the Disney ‘real life’ lightsaber works after parks chief unveils it in the flesh

Lightsabers are real and Disney have unveiled something about as close to the real thing as we're going to get

Lightsabers are real now and it's a moment for Star Wars fans around the world to rejoice, before wondering how much of a dent we're willing to put in our bank accounts to get one for ourselves.

Disney parks chief Josh D'Amaro caused quite a stir at the weekend when he unveiled a 'real life' lightsaber and demonstrated that in appearance at least it works just like that elegant weapon for a more civilised age we know and love.

Before you get your hopes up, this 'real life' lightsaber is not going to slice through metal or hack down Sith Lords like in the movies, but it looks just like the iconic weapon of the Jedi.

D'Amaro declared that he was holding 'a real lightsaber' and was clearly having plenty of fun with it, saying he loved 'firing this thing up'.

Honestly, that is one of the best things about a lightsaber and you get to make the dramatic 'SHOOM' noise they have when being ignited.

If you're wondering how this all works in real life then join the club, because we want to know that as well.

Back in 2018 Disney filed a patent for a 'sword device with retractable, internally illuminated blade' which gives us some clues but we want more details than that.

This is the appropriate response for holding a real life lightsaber in your hands.

Luckily, someone very observant and clever has figured out how it all works and it's basically like a more advanced tape measure.

In a way that makes absolute sense, because who hasn't retracted a tape measure without making the 'SHHTTK' sound of a lightsaber at some point in their lives?

VR developer Ben Ridout explained that contained within the hilt of the real life lightsaber were three spools, two of which were 'blades wrapped around each other' that joined together to form a cylinder while a third provided the lighting.

When ignited two spools of translucent material shoot out of the handle and pull up a string of LEDs which put the light in lightsaber.

Whether this lightsaber is durable enough to replace the props currently used in the Star Wars movies and TV shows is unknown.

Two connected spools make the saber while a third spool of LEDs in the middle provides the light.

If it isn't then people can always keep on with that tried and tested method recently promoted by The Mandalorian star Giancarlo Esposito of using a stick.

For the real lightsaber to see widespread use it'll need to be tough enough to take a few hits, nobody will want to fork over a fortune for a toy that breaks on first contact and then you've got to consider the official sport of lightsaber duelling in all of this too.

This isn't the only 'real' lightsaber that's been made either, as some very tech-savvy Star Wars fans have created their own versions which actually function as cutting tools.

It's times like this where it's handy to remember that swinging around a weightless blade that can cut through pretty much anything besides beskar would actually be really dangerous, especially if the wielder is not force sensitive, and we know you're not.

Featured Image Credit: Twitter/@DisneyFoodBlog/Lucasfilm

Topics: Star Wars, Technology, Disney