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"Those things were floating death traps!"
―B1 battle droid R0-GR, on STAPs[src]

The Single Trooper Aerial Platform, or simply STAP, was a repulsorcraft used by the Trade Federation and later the Confederacy of Independent Systems. It was often piloted by a single B1-series battle droid as a reconnaissance and patrol vehicle.

Characteristics[edit | edit source]

A STAP in the color scheme of the Confederacy of Independent Systems

The STAP was a Baktoid Armor Workshop product designed by Trade Federation engineers, who were inspired by civilian airhooks. These similar craft were re-engineered for greater performance and reliability, and were purpose-built to be piloted by a B1-series battle droid,[1] as their humanoid frames were more suited to control the vehicles.[5] Slim and lightweight, the tiny repulsorlift craft was fueled by high-voltage energy cells, which powered drive turbines providing the STAP with impressive speed and maneuverability. The agile vessels were typically bolstered by signals from an orbital Droid Control Ship, which skillfully guided the STAP's pilots. However, battle droids were exposed to enemy fire while riding the fragile craft. The vehicles were armed with a pair of forward-mounted blaster cannons.[1]

Role[edit | edit source]

Designed as a reliable reconnaissance and patrol vehicle, the STAP was typically deployed by the Trade Federation Droid Army at landing zones where their pilots could survey the area and transmit data back to a Droid Control Ship.[1] STAPS were often deployed as support vehicles alongside other, larger craft[4] which bore the brunt of combat, and only occasionally forayed into battle in order to harry enemy forces. STAPS were also utilized for "mopping up" missions once a battle was finished.[1]

History[edit | edit source]

Service in the Invasion of Naboo[edit | edit source]

B1 battle droids riding STAPs over the plains of Naboo

The Trade Federation deployed STAPs alongside its invasion forces during the blockade of Naboo. Numerous STAPs patrolled the swamps surrounding the landing zone, and accompanied Multi-Troop Transports into the city of Theed, where Viceroy Nute Gunray declared victory and occupation. The Jedi Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi were harried by STAPs in the swamps, but Jinn destroyed the vehicles by deflecting their pilots' blaster bolts back into the craft with his lightsaber.[6] STAPs surveyed the Great Grass Plains and transmitted data back to the orbital Droid Control Ship.[1]

Service in the Clone Wars[edit | edit source]

"I'm still convinced more battle droids were destroyed by STAPs than by Jedi during the Clone Wars—and we were the ones flying the darn things."
―R0-GR[src]

STAPs were later used by the Confederacy of Independent Systems during the Clone Wars,[4] a galactic war between the Confederacy and Galactic Republic. During the final stages of the Battle of Christophsis, several STAPs patrolled the landing zone of General Whorm Loathsom's[7] newly arrived droid army,[8] with Jedi Generals Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker stealing two of the vehicles from their B1 pilots to return to the Republic frontline.[7] After the Republic victory on Christophsis, Skywalker and his 501st Legion were rerouted to the Wild Space world of Teth to rescue the son of crime lord Jabba Desilijic Tiure, Rotta. Seeking to protect their captive, a detachment of the Separatist Droid Army was stationed on-world, defending the B'omarr Order Monastery they were using to hold the infant. During the ensuing Battle of Teth, B1s on STAPs made attack runs against the 501st, but Skywalker cut down a number of the B1 pilots before stealing one of the STAPs, using it to reach the top of the mountain.[9] Additionally, at least one STAP was used by a B1 during the Battle of Mimban, flying against Clone Captain CT-7567 "Rex" and Junior Representative Jar Jar Binks when they journeyed to take out a deflector shield generator. Firing one of his DC-17 hand blasters at it, Rex took out the STAP.[10]

STAPs served in major battles for the Separatist Alliance, including seeing action at the Third Battle of Mygeeto.

Later in 21 BBY,[11] while the Separatists worked on a secret effort to recreate the deadly Blue Shadow Virus on Naboo, a squad of B1-mounted STAPs were led by T-series unit TR-350 to contain a small amount of the disease that had leaked out. However, the squad was attacked by Royal Naboo Security Forces, leading to the capture of TR-350 and a raid on the Separatist laboratory.[12] Later, STAPs patrolled the energy bridge into the occupied capital of Ryloth, Lessu, and Jedi General Mace Windu jumped off one of the vehicles in order to get over the gap the bridge had covered.[13] STAPs also served as patrols at the Citadel on Lola Sayu, being flown by BX-series droid commandos and Warden Osi Sobeck in a failed attempt to stop a Republic infiltration.[14]

At one point, an Umbaran officer commanded a force of the Separatist Droid Army that included STAPs.[2] General Grievous, Supreme Commander of the Droid Army, utilized a combat speeder that was bulkier than the standard STAP.[15] During the Separatist takeover of Florrum, Grievous led a team of STAPs aboard his combat speeder against a WLO-5 battle tank used by Jedi younglings.[16] On Utapau while trying to reclaim a massive kyber crystal from Skywalker and Kenobi, IG-100 MagnaGuards rode on STAPs to chase them.[17] STAPs rode by B1 droids were also part of the Third Battle of Mygeeto.[18]

After the war[edit | edit source]

"They are antiques, remnants of the Clone War."
―Senior Lieutenant Thrawn collected pieces of Clone Wars technology, including half of a STAP[src]

Senior Lieutenant Thrawn and Captain Rik Virgilio came to discuss the purpose of the former's collection of Clone Wars technology.

During the Imperial Era, half of a STAP was among various pieces of technology leftover from the Clone Wars in a scrap market. When the Imperial Gozanti-class cruiser Blood Crow investigated the market for smuggling activity, Senior Lieutenant and first weapons officer Mitth'raw'nuruodo "Thrawn" found the antiques and sought to learn more about the technology of the Clone Wars-era by studying and possibly repairing them. Purchasing them with five hundred of his own credits after Captain Rik Virgilio allowed him to, Thrawn stored the STAP and the other pieces of technology in a part of the Gozanti's storage bay he was permitted to when he was not working on them. However, after Filia Rossi became captain of the Blood Crow, Senior Lieutenant Nels Deyland told her of Thrawn's collection, so she confronted the Chiss officer about the objects.[19]

Looking at the STAP and everything else he had gathered, Virgilio considered the entire assortment to be garbage and ordered Thrawn to get rid of it all before his next watch, furthering telling Deyland to make sure it was done. Even so, Deyland was interested when Thrawn proposed another solution, leading to Rossi allowing him to speak and discuss how the lot had been worth five hundred credits because of the presence of Mark One Pistoeka sabotage droids. Learning of the value in such units, she gave Thrawn three months to work on the technology before she took it when they returned to Ansion. Thrawn's aide, Ensign Eli N. Vanto, was surpirsed Rossi allowed him to keep the assortment until Thrawn noted she would take it. Ultimately, however, Rossi would suspend Thrawn from duty aboard the Blood Crow after his mission on the Dromedar, sending Vanto away with him.[19]

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Sources[edit | edit source]

Notes and references[edit | edit source]

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