In Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith, Obi Wan tells Anakin that the shields are still up and Anakin destroys them before going into the hangar of the Invisible Hand. Why does it matter that the shields are up if it is a hangar shield that fighters regularly go in and out of?

I looked in the cross section and it says that Anakin blew up the “Atmospheric Containment Shield”, which doesn’t really explain why they couldn’t land while it was on. Why didn’t Obi-wan and Anakin just land inside the Invisible Hand (name of Grievous’ ship here)?

Why did they need to blow up the shield? Did the shield need to be turned off for vulture droids to exit? Was it a one way shield? We see in clone wars shields being left on with ships leaving from republic ships. Was it like the droidika’s shield and they were traveling too fast to make it in?

I would like a in-universe answer that can be canon or legends.

  • Hmm. Thinking about that, how even COULD they land and get out without a pressure suit or something similar? Oh, wait. The blast doors. facepalm May 24, 2018 at 17:03
  • 1
    Can you please rewrite this into a more cohesive text? Set up the situation in the movie, then explain your problem. Note that the title of a question is not the first line of a question.
    – BCdotWEB
    May 24, 2018 at 17:44
  • Also, there is no reference to an specific atmosphere shield in the movie (as I recall) so this question seems to be based in a presumably non-official "cross-section"....
    – Paulie_D
    May 24, 2018 at 17:59
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    Oh...look - scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/82320/…
    – Paulie_D
    May 24, 2018 at 18:05
  • That doesn’t answer my question and I don’t see a source for his information. Also, that information is wrong because in clone wars the shield is on and ships/troops still go in and out. May 24, 2018 at 18:09

2 Answers 2


Per the script, the ship lowered its ray-shields (shields capable of repelling incoming energy and matter) to allow the droid tri-fighters to leave the hangar. It presumably raised them again shortly afterward, necessitating Anakin to blow up the generators before they can land.


ODD BALL: We're on your tail, General Kenobi. Set S-foils in attack position.

[The protective ray shield lowers on the main hangar of the TRADE FEDERATION CRUISER, and six new DROID TRI-FIGHTERS emerge and join the DROID VULTURE FIGHTERS heading toward the Jedi. The JEDI STARFIGHTERS extend the stability foils on the ends of their wings].

As to what would have happened had they not lowered the shields, the official novelisation gives us a fair indication.

Reaching into the Force, his mind followed the starfighter’s mangled circuitry to locate and activate the sublight engines’ manual test board. With a slight push, he triggered a command normally used only in bench tests: full reverse.

The cometary tail of glowing debris shed by his disintegrating starfighter shot past him and evaporated in a cascade of miniature starbursts on contact with the hangar shield. Which was exactly what was about to happen to him.

The only effect of full reverse from his failing engines was to give him more time to see it coming.


There are two types of shields in star wars

  • Particle shields which deter projectiles and physical objects at sufficient velocity
  • Ray Shields, stopping energy and high velocity impact.

Yes the shields on the Invisible hand were up, but were hybrids of the two to keep the hangar bay atmosphere in. At the speed they were going they'd crash into the shields, Only by slowing down could they enter, but doing so would render them vulnerable to enemy fire.

  • Alas this is just plain wrong
    – Valorum
    Dec 30, 2023 at 12:40

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