The lightsaber is a complex instrument consisting of a pommel cap, hand grip, control module, main hilt, focusing lens, and blade emitter, with an energy core powered by a kyber crystal. (Illustrations courtesy of Star Wars: The Visual Encyclopedia)



Darth Maul wielding a double-bladed lightsaber

While most lightsabers have a simple metal hilt with one blade, others can be more complex and feature salient designs. Darth Maul wielded a deadly double-bladed lightsaber, allowing him to parry easily in his duel with Obi-Wan Kenobi and Qui-Gon Jinn

Jedi surrounded by Battle Droids during the Battle of Geonosis

Although use of the lightsaber is the mark of a Jedi, it is also used by their sworn enemies, the Sith. Typically, a Jedi’s lightsaber blade is colored green or blue. Other colors are rare but possible, most notably seen with Jedi Master Mace Windu’s purple blade. Sith uniformly use red-bladed lightsabers -- an intense, aggressive color that represents their view of the Force.

Ahsoka Tano mentoring Katooni and Ganodi as they construct their lightsabers

An essential rite of passage for young Jedi is the Gathering. In the Gathering, younglings go to the frigid ice world Ilum, where they search for kyber crystals to build their first lightsabers. The crystals are located in the planet’s Crystal Cave, an intimidating maze, and “call out” to the Jedi they are in tune with. Once the correct crystal has been found, younglings rendezvous with Huyang, and ancient droid who chooses the parts necessary to build a lightsaber. With everything in place, younglings complete the ritual by constructing their Jedi weapons through a graceful use of the Force.