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The TIE bomber, a spacecraft of the fictional Star Wars universe, is a larger, less maneuverable version of the TIE Fighter used for destroying larger Rebel ships and pinpoint planetary bombardment. It can carry large numbers of torpedoes, bombs, orbital mines or thermal detonators. The bomber is also slow and not very maneuverable and must be protected by fighters. Whilst the design was done for A New Hope, the craft did not appear until The Empire Strikes Back.
The TIE bomber has two hulls next to each other; one carries the pilot and the other carries a universal warhead launcher, enabling them to carry a variety of weapons tailored for the mission. Extending from the launcher is a bomb chute for downward bombing operations. The bomber is much more heavily built-up than the "fighter"-series of TIEs; it carries more sophisticated sensors to penetrate capital ship jamming and presumably stronger engines to move all of those warheads (in keeping with the Star Wars "atmospheric flight" spacecraft physics).
The craft can most prominently be seen in The Empire Strikes Back, where a group of them bomb the asteroid on which the Millennium Falcon is hiding.
Rebellion/New Republic pilots gave the TIE bomber the slang name "Dupes" because they were slower, and somehow "dumber", than the regular TIE fighter. It also comes from "Double" or "Duce", in reference to the twin pods.
TIE shuttle (TIE/sh)
A variant of the bomber replaced the warhead bay with a small cargo bay that could hold two passengers. This craft could ferry important personnel from one ship to another or from a ship to a planetary base. In The Empire Strikes Back, Captain Needa used a shuttle of this type to personally apologize to Darth Vader for losing track of the Millennium Falcon.
TIE Boarding Craft
Another variant of the Bomber features an enlarged secondary pod with clamps and a hull-cutter. This can carry a Stormtrooper raiding party for insertion into a captured or disabled enemy ship. Developed for A New Hope, the technical limits at the time prevented the craft from being explicitly shown in the movie, although footage of it in the movie has survived in the form of a deleted scene. Expanded Universe sources and fact books depict it being used by Darth Vader and a team of Stormtroopers to enter Princess Leia's Corellian Corvette Tantive IV, at the start of A New Hope, even though it is not shown.
- TIE bomber in the Star Wars Databank
- TIE shuttle in the Star Wars Databank
- TIE/sa bomber on Wookieepedia: a Star Wars Wiki
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