The Force Is With the Discovery
Lucasfilm loans original light saber to NASA for upcoming flight
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 29, 2007 8:56 AM CDT
The Star Wars light saber arrives in Houston.   (Space)
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(Newser) – Astronauts aboard the space shuttle Discovery will have a bit of extra protection on their next mission: Luke Skywalker's original light saber from 1977's Star Wars. Lucasfilm has loaned the prop—in real life not much more than a slick flashlight—to NASA for the shuttle's launch this October, reports the Oakland Tribune.

Passengers at Oakland airport witnessed the spectacle of Chewbacca, Boba Fett and other Star Wars characters handing over the vaunted weapon to NASA, whose engineers are more than a little excited about the loan from a galaxy far, far away. The saber arrived in Houston and will blast off on October 23, after which it will have a short stay on the International Space Station.