ComparisonNotes Enterprise
Episode IIThe Original Series
Episode IIIMovies
Episode IVThe Next Generation
Episode VDeep Space 9
Episode VIVoyager
Star WarsStar Trek Related Reading
Power Generation TechnologyFTL Travel
STL Travel
The Death Star has a main reactor core several kilometers across and roughly ovoid (possibly toroidal) and highly unstable. This reactor core was capable of providing enough power for all the systems onboard the battlestation, and most notably the main weapon, a device of unknown but complex operation capable of blowing up a planet. This suggests a high if difficult to quantify level of power consumption and generation. The exploding reactor of the Death Star is referred to as the "unleashed power of a small artificial sun."

A ship necessarily exists some distance beyond a planet before engaging hyperdrive, referred to as jumping to lightspeed. We may take this literally in order to establish a minimum groundwork for FTL travel's power requirements by conservation of energy by assuming a ship may drop out from hyperdrive at any time during the trip.

If the minimum distance to jump to lightspeed away from a planet is at some local value of g, beyond which the hyperdrive may not develop sufficient power, then we can calculate the minimum power of the hyperdrive system, by rate of change in gravitational potential, as mgc. For one planetary diameter from the surface of an Earthlike planet, this is ~357 megawatts per kilogram. For 6.5 planetary diameters, this is 17 megawatts per kilogram.

An exawatt range plant should therefore power a hyperdrive for a 2.8-60 million ton ship; as we may suggest with great certainty that an Imperial Star Destroyer has a mass falling within this range, it is appropriate to estimate an ISD's output as being in the general neighborhood of an exawatt and possibly higher.