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"Some pretty serious burns, but nothing a night in the bacta tank won't fix."
Ahsoka Tano, to an injured Anakin Skywalker[10]

A bacta tank, also known as bacta pod,[9] was a cylindrical tank into which a being could be submerged for extensive exposure to bacta, a fluid that could accelerate healing and treat major injuries.[2]


Bacta tanks existed during the High Republic Era.[11] During the Clone Wars, the Galactic Republic used them to treat its injured soldiers.[5]

After a gruesome shuttle crash[12] that nearly killed him,[13] the Kaleesh warlord Grievous was fatally injured[12] and was put into a bacta tank,[14] resulting in his transformation into a cyborg.[15]

In a chamber, a bacta tank was located in Darth Vader's castle on Mustafar, where the Dark Lord would relax and meditate outside of his life support armor with a modicum of comfort.[8][16]

Obi-Wan Kenobi was put in a bacta tank to heal from burns inflicted by Darth Vader on Mapuzo.[17]

After being attacked and severely injured by a wampa ice creature on the frigid planet of Hoth, Commander Luke Skywalker was put into a bacta tank so he could recover from his wounds.[7]

During the scourge of the droids, two DT-series sentry droids infected by the Scourge attacked Vader's bacta tank with the element of surprise, killing the two Emperor's Royal Guards standing vigilant and destroying the tank. However, Vader harnessed the power of the Force to crush both units.[18] The tank was later repaired, from which Vader reached out to his master through the Force after another skirmish on Mustafar.[19]

Boba Fett Bacta Pod

Boba Fett lies in his bacta pod

A portable format of the bacta tank was available in Boba Fett's Palace on Tatooine.[9] Boba Fett bathed in his bacta pod at many points in time.[9][20][21] He used it to heal his burned scars.[22][23] After the battle for Mos Espa Fett's bacta tank was used on Cobb Vanth, after he was shot by Cad Bane, while a cyborg modifier was taking care of him.[24]

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Behind the scenes[]

"While I was in the bacta tank fully submerged in water, I had to hold my breath for all that too. For some reason I couldn't breathe through the regulator. Although when I saw Ewan [McGregor] inside of it, it looked like he was actually getting oxygen through his because you can see the bubbles going. But no, I had to hold my breath, and I really enjoyed it. I mean, I found it very peaceful in the bacta tank and they're sort of meditative."
―Hayden Christensen[25]

Bacta tanks first appeared in Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back, the second installment in the Star Wars original trilogy.[7] They were first identified in "Shadow of Malevolence," the third episode of the first season of the Star Wars: The Clone Wars animated series.[5]


Hayden Christensen in a bacta tank

In the Obi-Wan Kenobi television series, Hayden Christensen played a helmetless Darth Vader in a bacta tank. The crew knew the actor would have to hold his breath while submerged in the water, so he worked with a dive instructor who helped him build up his breath holds. Christensen wasn't allowed to breathe through the regulator, but Ewan McGregor, the actor who played Obi-Wan Kenobi, was getting oxygen during his bacta tank scene.[25] A team of make-up artists spent four to five hours applying make-up on Christensen for him to play Vader in those scenes. He worked very closely with executive creative director of Lucasfilm Ltd., Doug Chiang, who gave input into the overall look.[26]



Notes and references[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Ultimate Star Wars, New Edition
  2. 2.0 2.1 StarWars Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back on StarWars.com (backup link) (Story Gallery: Slide 7)
  3. AltayaCite "General Equipment (2)" — Star Wars Encyclopedia
  4. In Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back, the bacta tank was shown to be big enough to contain Luke Skywalker. According to the official StarWars.com Databank, Skywalker was 1.72 meters tall.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars — "Shadow of Malevolence"
  6. Obi-Wan Kenobi new series logo Obi-Wan Kenobi — "Part IV"
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back
  8. 8.0 8.1 Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 The Book of Boba Fett logo The Book of Boba Fett — "Chapter 1: Stranger in a Strange Land"
  10. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars — "R2 Come Home"
  11. The High Republic: The Rising Storm
  12. 12.0 12.1 Star Wars: A Galaxy at War
  13. Helmet Collection logo small Star Wars Helmet Collection 8 (Helmets: General Grievous)
  14. Star Wars Build Your Own X-Wing logo small Star Wars: Build Your Own X-Wing 47 (Starfighter Aces: General Grievous – Cyborg Raider) (German edition)
  15. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars — "Lair of Grievous"
  16. Star Wars: Rogue One: The Ultimate Visual Guide
  17. Obi-Wan Kenobi new series logo Obi-Wan Kenobi — "Part III"
  18. Dark Droids 3
  19. Darth Vader (2020) 39
  20. The Book of Boba Fett logo The Book of Boba Fett — "Chapter 2: The Tribes of Tatooine"
  21. The Book of Boba Fett logo The Book of Boba Fett — "Chapter 3: The Streets of Mos Espa"
  22. The Book of Boba Fett logo The Book of Boba Fett — "Chapter 4: The Gathering Storm"
  23. Per the audio description for "Chapter 4: The Gathering Storm" available on Disney+.
  24. The Book of Boba Fett logo The Book of Boba Fett — "Chapter 7: In the Name of Honor"
  25. 25.0 25.1 Star Wars' Hayden Christensen On Holding His Breath And Performing As Darth Vader In The Obi-Wan Kenobi Bacta Tank by Hurley, Laura on CinemaBlend (June 21, 2022) (archived from the original on June 21, 2022)
  26. 'Obi-Wan Kenobi' Star Hayden Christensen Explores His Latest Darth Vader Incarnation and Talks Anakin's (Much-Memed) Sand Feelings by Parker, Ryan on The Hollywood Reporter (June 13, 2022) (archived from the original on June 13, 2022)