"The Iron Tower is the greatest symbol of Imperial tyranny on Aridus! While it operates…the Chubbits are being steadily destroyed!"
―An Obi-Wan Kenobi impersonator[src]

The Iron Tower was an automated power transformer and signal amplifier constructed by the Galactic Empire on the planet Aridus to overcome the intense interference generated by its ionized atmosphere. However, its powerful emanations had crippling effects on the nervous systems of the native Chubbits, forcing them to take up arms against the Empire. It was disabled and partially destroy as a result of the sacrifice of a man impersonating Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi, who was fatally injured by the ensuing explosion.


"Atmospheric conditions on Aridus make long-range communication impossible…"
"The Iron Tower is something the Empire built to overcome that, Ben?"
"It's a gigantic power transformer and signal amplifier, Luke… totally automated. Without it… their hovertrain ore transport system couldn't function. But the ultra-strong frequency of its signals has a devastating effect on the native Chubbits… crippling their nervous systems… in time, fatally!"
―An Obi-Wan Kenobi impersonator and Luke Skywalker[src]

The Iron Tower was an automated structure that functioned as a massive power transformer and signal amplifier,[1] allowing the Galactic Empire unrestricted communications and supplying energy to run its hovertrain[4] ore transport system.[1] Its control chamber could be accessed via turbolift or emergency stairwell. While the Iron Tower had automated defenses, including deathtrap mechanisms such as death beams, it was also protected by Imperial patrol speeders.[1] The area immediately surrounding the tower[4] was the planet Aridus' mining region,[1] the location of hazardous lava pits.[4]


Iron Tower explosion

The upper levels of the Iron Tower are destroyed

"The Iron Tower was a trap set by Darth Vader…but this man caused it to backfire!"
―Luke Skywalker, in reference to an Obi-Wan Kenobi impersonator[src]

When Imperial scouts located valuable natural resources on Aridus, Imperial mining teams rushed to exploit them.[3] However, the ionized atmosphere[3] resulting from the planet's magnetic fluctuations generated intense interference[2] that wreaked havoc with the tunneling equipment[3] and made all long-range communications impossible.[4] The mining foreman pleaded with his superiors to authorize the construction of a massive power transformer and signal amplifier; otherwise, operations on Aridus would have to be scrapped. Anxious to protect his investment, the[3] Narvath sector's[5] Moff approved construction of the Iron Tower, a monumental structure that could punch its signal through any interference. Mining resumed, and Imperial hovertrains began ferrying workers to the dig sites.[3] However, the Imperials never stopped to consider what effect the Iron Tower might have on the native Chubbits. They quietly watched as the Empire ravaged their world, but the new structure was a lethal threat.[3] Its ultra-strong signal frequencies[1] had crippling effects on the Chubbit nervous system, and they were forced to take up arms for their continued survival, while the Alliance to Restore the Republic gladly supplied weapons to their cause.[3]

In the year 0 ABY,[1] months after the Battle of Yavin,[6] the Sith Lord Darth Vader sent a trained actor impersonating Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi, who Vader had killed aboard the Death Star, to take control of the Chubbit resistance as part of a plot to capture Luke Skywalker. Vader had the impostor lure Skywalker to the Iron Tower, under the guise of destroying the structure, which the impostor described as "the greatest symbol of Imperial tyranny on Aridus". Once there, the actor was ordered by Vader to meet him in the control chamber in order to lure Skywalker there by pretending to be hurt. However, the impersonator refused due to his respect for Kenobi[1] and pulled a control level,[3] the tower's overload circuits,[1] to start a catastrophic overload spiral in the structure's upper levels,[3] but not before summoning Skywalker's ship with an emergency directional beacon. He and the Sith were caught in the resulting explosion,[1] which disabled[3] and partially destroyed the Iron Tower.[2] Skywalker arrived in the control chamber after the destruction ceased and cradled the fatally injured man in his arms as he confessed that he was just an impostor who came to love his part. After the impersonator's death, Skywalker's ship arrived and he departing Aridus.[1] Meanwhile, the blast nearly killed Vader, who was rendered unconscious for a period of time. He was found by Wrenga Jixton, a former Imperial Gunnery Sergeant who befriended the local Chubbits while in hiding from the Empire on Aridus, who brought him aboard his starship. Knowing that Vader's death would only draw more Imperial forces to the planet, he offered the Sith a deal; in exchange for keeping the Empire away from Aridus, Jixton would do anything he commanded, which Vader accepted.[7]

Behind the scenesEdit

The Iron Tower was originally created for the Star Wars Legends newspaper comic strip The Return of Ben Kenobi, written by Archie Goodwin and penciled by Al Williamson, which ran from May 17 to July 25, 1982.[1]



Notes and referencesEdit

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