There are numerous instances in the Star Wars Canon where the central “eye” of a TIE series starfighter is outright vaporized with a single well placed shot from starfighter grade laser cannons. We see this in A New Hope and Return of the Jedi, the canon novel Smuggler’s Run, the canon Poe Dameron comics, even regularly throughout the Star Wars Rebels animated series (which is notorious for being underpowered and inconsistent).
So what does it take to vaporize the central “eye” of a TIE series starfighter?
TIE eye size
Below is a drawing from an old Star Wars reference book which gives us a proper front view of the standard TIE/ln fighter.
Total TIE/ln height = 882 cm (official canon height)
Red line = 693 px = 882 cm
Green line = 195 px = 882 * (195/693) = 248 cm
^ I always knew the TIE eye was around at least 2.5 metres in diameter.
The central eyes of the standard TIE/ln and TIE Interceptor are basically just simple spheres of advanced alloys which contain the cockpit, ion engines, two laser cannons, fuel tanks, and other typical starfighter stuff (but no life support).
TIE eye volume = (4/3)(22/7)(124^3) = 7989662.47619 cm^3
The standard practice when dealing with ships and spaceships is to multiply by 20% to account for hollowness.
So net TIE eye volume = 7989662.47619 * 20% = 1597932.49524 cm^3
Energy to vaporize a TIE eye
TIE fighter hulls are built with Titanium alloys.
Vaporization of Titanium = 49079.7 J/cm^3
And so vaporizing a TIE eye:
= 1597932.49524 * 49079.7
= 78426047486.6 J = 18.74 Tons of TNT = 8-B (City Block level)
Starfighter grade laser cannons have other feats in the Small Town level to Town level+ range. While the result of this calc is underwhelming compared to those, it is still a good piece of evidence to show how powerful are the basic guns of the basic fighters in this verse. It is also an impressive result when compared to downplayer assertions that starfighter grade laser cannons are not even in the Gigajoule range.