The Imperial Center of Military Research, also known as the Imperial security complex and commonly known as Scarif base, was an Imperial research and development installation located on the tropical Outer Rim planet of Scarif. The facility was the center for research, structural engineering, munitions and manufacturing for the Death Star project. Shortly before the Battle of Yavin, the Rebel Alliance managed to penetrate Scarif's deflector shield and launch an attack on the security complex as part of their mission to steal the plans to the Death Star.
The Imperial security complex was a vast installation located on the surface of the tropical Outer Rim planet of Scarif. Consisting of a large, wide-based tower, known as the Citadel Tower, surrounded by various facilities, the security complex was the center for research, structural engineering, munitions and manufacturing for the Death Star project, a program dedicated to the construction of the Galactic Empire's planet-destroying superweapon, the Death Star. Because of its role in the program, the complex was often visited by its director, Orson Krennic of Imperial Military Department of Advanced Weapons Research.
In the year 10 BBY, construction of the Death Star moved to the planet Scarif. The facility was commanded by General Sotorus Ramda. Shortly before the Battle of Yavin, the Alliance to Restore the Republic launched an attack on Scarif as part of their mission to steal the plans to the Death Star. After penetrating the planet's deflector shield through means of a Shield Gate, the Rebel Alliance assaulted the security complex. While rebel forces waged a pitched battle against the Imperial garrison on land and space, Jyn Erso and Cassian Andor managed to transmit the plans with considerable difficulty to the rebel fleet in orbit. In a desperate attempt to prevent the rebels from escaping with the stolen Death Star plans, Grand Moff Wilhuff Tarkin ordered the Death Star to destroy the security complex and Scarif using its superlaser. This led to the deaths of all participants on Scarif. But despite his efforts, Princess Leia Organa managed to escape with the Death Star plans on the CR90 corvette Tantive IV into hyperspace.
Behind the scenes
The Imperial security complex was a location created and developed for the premier Star Wars anthology film, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, released on December 16, 2016. The first footage of the complex was shown in the Rogue One teaser trailer on April 7, 2016.
In early development of Rogue One, the Imperial security complex was envisioned as an installation that the Death Star would dock with directly, acting as an elevator through which materials were ferried to the battle station from the planet's surface. The overall shape of the facility was inspired by the data ports accessed by R2-D2 in Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope. Though many aesthetic characteristics were retained for the installation's final design, the docking tower was changed to the Citadel Tower which featured a large transmission array at the summit.