- "We're entering the Deep Core Security Zone, planet Byss has acknowledged our approach…"
- ―Shug Ninx
The Imperial Hyperspace Security Net was an overlapping network of hyperspace disruption technologies used by the Galactic Empire to control hyperspace traffic through the Deep Core. As a response to Rebel hit-and-run attacks on Imperial convoys and worlds, the Security Net was installed across common hyperspace routes throughout the Deep Core to give Imperial strongholds advanced warning of approaching enemy fleets. The Security Net utilized non-mass hyperwave transceivers emitting cross-channeled radiation to detect incoming starships traveling through hyperspace. Once a starship was detected, gravity well projectors were brought online to drop the ship out of hyperspace and prevent it from escaping. The ship then had to present the proper registration code to the local planetary security forces or else be fired upon by surrounding Imperial ships. Emperor Palpatine's fortress world Byss was one of the many Imperial planets that used the Security Net during the Empire's resurgence in 10 ABY. After the Dark Lord Darth Krayt's usurpation of the Imperial throne in 137 ABY, the Security Net was expanded to include the Core Worlds and utilized space stations strewn across common hyperspace routes to monitor hyperspace traffic.
- "Rumor has it that the Security Net has interdictor ships, minefields, and entire starfleets patrolling the few routes in. If you ask me, anything the Emperor wants to guard that badly? He can have it."
The Imperial Hyperspace Security Net was a system of gravity well projectors and non-mass HoloNet transceivers utilized as an early warning system by the Galactic Empire to detect starships entering the Deep Core. The Security Net was able to give Imperial star systems—and with some refinements, starships—in the Deep Core advanced warning of ships approaching through hyperspace. It was able to do this by using a system of non-mass hyperwave transceivers, originally developed for the HoloNet to pass communications in specific frequencies, linked by a network of coordinated S-threads. The transceivers projected cross-channeled radiation, which registered a hyperspace disturbance whenever a ship passed through it. The transceivers were able to detect these disturbances at cosmically short distances and signal the gravity well projectors to drop incoming ships out of hyperspace.
Gravity well projectors served as the backbone of the Security Net, creating artificial mass shadows that pulled ships into realspace and prevented them from escaping. Sometimes gravity mines or Interdictor cruisers were used in place of, or in addition to, gravity well projectors. Once a ship was pulled out of hyperspace, it had to present proper authorization to Imperial Customs officials or else be fired upon by any surrounding Star Destroyers and support craft. All ships wishing to pass through the Security Net had be registered with the Bureau of Ships and Services and have Imperial Security Authorization and Imperial Intelligence Clearance.
Security Net technology was incredibly bulky and expensive. Sections of the Security Net could have been built around systems, but practically they only covered the most common hyperspace entry routes. Even then, the Security Net had the potential to have many holes in it and thereby be subverted through the use of experimental routes. Some transceivers were outfitted with hyperdrives and navigation computers, allowing them to randomly jump from point to point and cover more space. Ships unaware of the jump patterns of these transceivers often found it difficult to penetrate the Deep Core Security Zone undetected. Any system using the Security Net often rounded out its security with patrol vessels, asteroid mines, antimatter particles, and probe droids. By 137 ABY, use of the Security Net had branched out to include the Core Worlds. In addition to gravity mines and Imperial Navy flotillas, the updated Security Net consisted of space stations placed along common hyperspace routes where random inspections were performed on ships entering and leaving the Deep Core and the Core Worlds.
- "These days, nobody is allowed to go there. The Empire has set up this thing called the Imperial Hyperspace Security Net to make sure no one gets into the Deep Core Security Zone without his mighty majesty's permission."
The Imperial Hyperspace Security Net was constructed in response to surprise ambushes on Imperial convoys and planets by Rebel Alliance ships. Alliance tacticians such as General Jan Dodonna and Admiral Ackbar perfected the use of hit-and-run skirmishes on Imperial ships through careful use of the hyperdrive, forcing the Empire to stop sending out unarmed transports. Full-scale Alliance fleets dropping out of hyperspace also had the potential to devastate key locations on an Imperial world before planetary defenses were able to be brought online. The Security Net was installed throughout the Deep Core to give Imperial worlds advanced warning of approaching enemy fleets.
The technology used to create artificial gravity wells was developed after an accidental discovery by Imperial scientists in the Sedri system. The scientists discovered that it was possible to create an artificial gravity well, and though their mission in the system was foiled by agents of the Rebellion, the scientists learned much. After several months of research, they were able to learn how to create an artificial gravity well on their own. Gravity well generators were soon installed on the Empire's newly constructed Interdictor cruisers and, eventually, were used in the Security Net. The introduction of this technology caused the Rebels to become more cautious about attacking Imperial convoys and worlds. The Security Net was soon installed around Imperial planets in the Deep Core such as the fortress world Byss.
The Security Net was not without its weaknesses, however. When the Trade Federation lost control of the Deep Core world Vulpter after the formation of the Empire, the shipping of foodstuffs to the planet was halted due to the Empire's anti-alien bias. Vulpter, cut-off from the rest of the galaxy after the establishment of the Deep Core Security Zone, became a safe haven for Rebels and criminals who were able to bypass the Security Net. Although Galactic Emperor Palpatine wished to conceal the Deep Core from the rest of the galaxy behind a veil of secrecy through its inaccessibility, he still needed supplies and troops brought into the region. Deep Core haulers, freighter captains hired by the Empire, carried out this task and were some of the few individuals outside of the Empire given clearance to pass through the Security Net.
One of these Deep Core haulers was Salla Zend, a smuggler whose freighter, the Starlight Intruder, was licensed to transport goods beyond the Security Net to Byss. After Palpatine's resurrection in 10 ABY, Zend attempted to smuggle her old flame, Han Solo, along with his wife, Leia Organa Solo, into Byss to rescue Organa Solo's twin brother, Luke Skywalker. En route to Byss, the Intruder was followed by the bounty hunter Boba Fett, who intended to collect a bounty on Solo. Thanks to the Security Net, Byss Security was able to track the Intruder as it exited hyperspace and allowed it safe passage through Byss's planetary shield. Byss Security also noticed Fett's approach right behind the Intruder and, after receiving no authorization from him, was able to close the planetary shield quickly, causing Fett's ship, Slave II, to crash into it with devastating effects.
At some point, the pirate Grinner wrote a memo about smuggling opportunities within the Deep Core, claiming that the Security Net made it incredibly difficult to make runs through the area. By 137 ABY, the Security Net had expanded to include the Core Worlds. With the addition of space stations along hyperspace routes, the Empire, now controlled by the One Sith under the Dark Lord Darth Krayt, was able to perform random inspections on starships and stop attacks against protected planets.
Behind the scenes
The Imperial Hyperspace Security Net was first mentioned in Tom Veitch's endnotes from the second issue of the 1991–1992 comic book series Star Wars: Dark Empire. It first appeared in the fourth issue of Dark Empire, as well as the comic's audio adaptation. The Security Net was first detailed in West End Games' Dark Empire Sourcebook and later in several Wizards of the Coast sources such as Byss and the Deep Core and the Legacy Era Campaign Guide.
- Dark Empire endnotes (Part 2: The Power of the Dark Side) (First mentioned)
- Dark Empire Sourcebook
- A Guide to the Star Wars Universe, Second Edition, Revised and Expanded
- Star Wars Encyclopedia
- A Guide to the Star Wars Universe, Third Edition, Revised and Expanded
- (Intro and Part 4: Vulpter)
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- Legacy Era Campaign Guide (Under Galactic Gazetteer)
- The Essential Atlas (Under The Deep Core)
- Star Wars: Edge of the Empire Core Rulebook
- Nexus of Power