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Skimming Fuel


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It's come to my attention that the SKIM order in the Order Supplement is completely wrong when it states that your fleet must be at a Gas Giant to skim for fuel. The SKIM code was written well after the Order Supplement description was put together, and the two don't link up right. It is indeed possible to skim for fuel at non Gas Giants, but the efficiency is often much lower.


Here is the formula for fuel skimming efficiency based on the world, atmosphere & ocean types. Hydrographic % is not considered as it is assumed that there are sufficient fluids and that your skimmers will always touch down wherever there is available liquid.


If the world is a Gas Giant, skimming efficiency is 100%

Otherwise, the atmosphere and ocean type are checked as follows:



Hydrogen: +50%

Methane: +50%

Hot Gases: +40%

Ammonia: +30%

Nitrogen: +20%

Chlorine: +10%

Carbon Dioxide: +10%

Oxygen: +10%



Any Semi-Liquid: +40%

Any Liquid Gases: +20%


Each Fuel Shuttle produces 200 Fuel from skimming operations, multiplied by the skimming efficiency. Gas Giants therefore yield the maximum 200 Fuel. A world with a Methane atmosphere and Semi-Liquid Hydrogen would produce 180 Fuel, almost as good as a Gas Giant and pretty impressive in its own right. A Chlorine atmosphere world with Liquid Methane oceans would produce 60 Fuel, not bad but not even close to a Gas Giant.


Yes, it is possible to SKIM at your own homeworld and obtain Fuel that way. Whether this is worthwhile or not would depend on several factors: do you have a Gas Giant nearby for superior skimming? Do you have access to Fuel Distillation Complexes or the impressive Fuel Purification Refinery?


Finally, you'll almost certainly need to create fuel depots on the frontier, to fuel up fleets that arrive after many jumps. Your homeworld might be swimming in Fuel, but that doesn't mean much to Task Force 52 six jumps out and running on fumes.... :P

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Using water as a fuel


Two easy ways to do this


1) split the water into it's component atoms (easier than you'd think) burn the hydrogen with the oxygen, waste product steam (water), rinse and repeat. Not self sustaining as you need another energy source to spilt the water in the first place.


2) spilt the water again, throw away the oxygen it's not needed, fuse the hydrogen in a fusion reactor (actually I think you need Deuterium for fusion a.k.a. Heavy water so i would change the formula as deuterium is wound in water)


Problem with using water as a fuel is the oil companies don't like it :angry2:

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That's right, the atmosphere and ocean #'s add together. That's why the example of Chlorine atmosphere and Liquid Methane ocean came out to 60 Fuel per skim: +10% from the Chlorine, +20% from the Liquid Methane = 30% times the normal 200 Fuel = 60 Fuel skimmed per Fuel Shuttle.


Water doesn't add, so you'd need an atmosphere bonus to skim from Water ocean worlds.

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This is excellent information.


While I'm normally an "err on the side of surprise", game mechanic information that clarifies functions is critical. This is awesome to see coming from official sources.



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So my CO2/Water homeworld isn't helping much!

However, the water sure helps out with meat, fruits, grains and/or water production which more than makes up for some lost gas.



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This is the place where official rules & clarifications are posted, so it's a good idea to check here. However, I do try to add important notes to the turn results. This board is eminently more "fair", though, because notes on turns only go out that one time, and players joining later wouldn't see 'em :o

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  • 3 months later...

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