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Space ports play a vital role in the 2300 AD universe. They serve as points of entry to various worlds and as a place to locate employment oportunities.  There are two distinct types of Spaceports in 2300, Orbital facilities or High Ports and Ground based facilities or Down ports. 

In most instances, major worlds will have one or two major High Ports which service a large number of Down ports on the surface of the planet below.   


  Core World Colony Outpost D E
Berthing fee Lv100 x Mass per day Cr80
x Law Level
x Law Level
x Law Level
Drydock fee Cr100 x dtons
per day
Cr80 x dtons
per day
Cr50 x dtons
per day
Repair fee: Cr10
x dtons per day
Trade tax Lv4 per ton of Cargo Cr3 per dton Cr2 per dton Cr1 per dton -

Berthing fees.  These depend on the port size, social conditions on the world, the nature
and quality of facilities, and the world's trade codes.

Drydock fees.  These depend on ship tonnage, time spent in dock, workers' salaries,
and equipment purchased.

Trade fees.  This is a percentage of all transactions made by parties using the starport.
Usually only a fraction of a  percent of the freights' value, these fees can really add up to
serious cash.


Starport Components

1. a landing area/volume
2. a parking bay/orbit
3. a beacon
4. a tower
5. warehouses
6. a plant maintenance center
7. a concourse
8. a fuel depot, with fuel shuttles or a refinery (or both)
9. a ship maintenance/construction yard
10. people

In addition, starports will have available a standard port authority
checklist against which they measure ships' spaceworthiness.


Ships have to land!  There are two ways to land a starship:
some are airframe, which means they can use a runway, while
the rest must stick to vertical thrust to slowly set themselves
down onto pads.

Most Imperial-standard landing strips have both built-in: a 5km
long strip for airframe landings, ending in a 1km diameter
circular landing pad.  These strips are also used for airframe

Landing facilities may also have an attached beacon, perhaps
placed midway along the strip or near other outbuldings.  A beacon
may include sensors and comm equipment, and may have its own
power plant.

The control tower contains the main body of comm equipment and
traffic control logic, as well as the administrative offices.

Component                           Price (MCr)

Module L: Landing Facilities (all tech levels)
L-0 1km radius landing pad          0.03
L-1 2km radius landing pad          0.06
L-2 4km radius landing pad          0.12
L-3 3km x 500m landing strip        0.03
L-4 4km x 500m landing strip        0.04
L-5 5km x 500m landing strip        0.05
L-6 6km x 500m landing strip        0.06
L-7 7km x 500m landing strip        0.07
L-8 8km x 500m landing strip        0.08


Module B: Beacons                    Down          Orbital
B-0 telemeter                        1             2
B-1 standalone transponder          5             10
B-2 radio transceiver (TL5)         0.05          0.1
B-3 laser transceiver (TL9)         0.5           1
B-4 maser transceiver (TLE)         5             10

Module T: Traffic Control Towers    Down          Orbital
T-1 small control outbuilding       1             10
T-2 4-person control station        5             50
T-3 8-person control tower (TL9)    25            250
T-4 16-person control tower(TLC)    100           1000

   Tower sensors: for best results, place
   two PEMS and two AEMS in orbit.

   PEMS: Passive sensors (TL B-F)
   TP-11: standard 100d sensor      10            20
   TP-13: high-res 100d sensor      100           200
   TP-14: inner system sensor       1000          2000
   TP-15: inner + GG sensor          10,000        20,000

   AEMS: Active sensors (TL B-D)
   TA-11: local orbit control       50            100
   TA-12: general system sensor     500           1000
   TA-13: deluxe system sensor      5000          10,000


Ships are moved via maglev rail to parkbays, which are circular
platforms with 11 bays, each of which can hold a ship of up to
1000 tons.  Maglev rail enters the parkbay and runs in a circle
around the inside, with a branch into each bay.  In the center is
a single shielded vertical liftoff platform (also connected to
the maglev system).

All parkbays are available at TL 10.

Component                            Price (MCr)

Module P: Parkbays (up to 1000 ton ships)
P-0 custom parkbay                   -
P-1 single 11-ship parkbay          100
P-2 double 11-ship parkbay          200
P-3 triple 11-ship parkbay          300
P-4 quad 11-ship parkbay             400
P-6 6x11 parkbay                     600
P-8 8x11 parkbay                     800

Parking Orbit Transponders

Think of them as being like the deep water mooring bouys at some
shallow water ports. The ship is assigned a parking spot, which is
marked by the transponder. It matches orbit with it and is then parked.

Module O: Parking Orbit Transponders (TL 7)
O-0 custom orbit transponder        -
O-1 standard telemeter transponder  4
O-2 programmable transponder        8

To hold a million ships, you only need 40 orbits with 25,000 slots each
or 50 with 20,000 slots each. Assume the radii are set every 100 km or
so, that has the ships spread out in an annulus 5000 km "across". But
there's still plenty of space for traffic.

Module H: Hangars
H-0 custom hangar                    -
H-7 10t small vehicle hangar        0.01
H-8 100t boat hangar                 0.1
H-9 1000t hangar                     1
H-10 10,000t hangar                  10
H-11 100,000t hangar                 100

Fuel and Maintenance

Fuel depots can be as simple as huge holding tanks, and may have
mechanical hookups or pumps to refuel ships with.

Module F: Fuel Depots                Down        Orbital
F-0 custom tank                      -
F-7 10t fuel tank                    0.001       0.5
F-8 100t fuel tank                   0.005       1
F-9 1000t fuel tank                  0.01        5
F-10 10,000t fuel tank               0.1         10
F-11 100,000t fuel tank              1           100
F-12 1mt fuel tank                   10          1000
F-13 10mt fuel tank                  100         10,000
F-14 100mt fuel tank                 1000        100,000

Fuel tankers, which may be simply shuttles or modular cutters, are
ships outfitted to carry fuel, and may or may not have refineries
on-board to provide refined fuel for the starport holding tanks.
Tankers run at the going price of spaceships; for example, the
price may be around MCr4 per ton of fuel the tanker can carry
(or per normal spaceship cost). Refineries are priced per normal
spaceship cost and volume..

Fuel refineries are cousins to the shipboard fuel refineries, and
are used to refine fuel on the spot for ships requiring it.

Component                            Price (MCr)

Module M: Installation Maintenence Centers     Orbital
M-0 custom maintenance center       -
M-1 storage shed                     0.01        2
M-2 portable outbuilding             0.1         5
M-3 permanent outbuilding            1           10
M-4 maintenance complex              10          100

The Shipyard

A shipyard is necessary for the construction and maintenance of
spaceships and starships.  Shipyards can be quite large -- their
size may depend on the amount of trade going through a system,
or the size of the local population, or even the strategic
importance of the system's location.

A shipyard consists of two components: a drydock area, which
holds ship hulls, and the shipyard itself, which embodies all
machinery and support for the build process.

A shipyard will have one naval architect's office per 100 ships
(or 1000 dtons).

Drydocks and shipyards are built at the tech level of the mainworld.

Module DD: Drydocks                  Down        Orbital
DD-0 custom drydock                  -
DD-7 10t drydock                     1           10
DD-8 100t drydock                    10          50
DD-9 1000t drydock                   100         200
DD-10 10kt drydock                   n/a         2000
DD-11 100kt drydock                  n/a         20,000
DD-12 1mt drydock                    n/a         200,000

* Drydocks are required for shipyards.

Module S: Shipyard                   Down        Orbital
S-0 custom shipyard                  -
S-1 machine shop                     1           10
S-2 minor repair center/1 ship      10          100
S-3 repair center/10 ships          50          1000
S-4 repair center/100 ships         400         4000
S-5 overhaul center/10 ships        200         2000
S-6 overhaul center/100 ships       1000        6000
S-7 overhaul center/1000 ships      8000        50,000
S-8 boatyard/1 ship/year             400         4000
S-9 boatyard/10 ships/yr             2000        15,000
S-10 boatyard/100 ships/yr           16,000      100,000
S-11 boatyard/1000 ships/yr         160,000     1,000,000
S-12 shipyard/1 ship/yr              10,000      20,000
S-13 shipyard/10 ships/yr            50,000      100,000
S-14 shipyard/100 ships/yr           400,000    4,000,000
S-15 shipyard/1000 ships/yr         4m          40m
S-16 shipyard/10,000 ships/yr       50m         500m


Warehouses (with environmental controls,  security systems, heavy shielding,
&tc) are used to store goods for transport.  One complex is used to store
out-bound freight, while another complex is used to store in-bound freight.
There is usually an additional set of warehouses dedicated to storing ship parts,
construction equipment, and other starport machinery.

Module W: Warehouses                 Down         Orbital
W-0 custom warehouse                 -
W-7 10t storage                      0.01         5
W-8 100t storage                     0.1          10
W-9 1000t storage                    1            50
W-10 10kt storage                    10           200
W-11 100kt storage                   100          500
W-12 1mt storage                     1000         4000

The Concourse

The concourse is where all public areas are housed, including
retail shops, services, non-starport-related offices, passenger
ticketing, and gates.

Also included is the surface transport terminal, which often has
its own customs and security office from the mainworld government.
It also has scheduled (or not!) shuttle flights to and from orbit.

Module C: Concourses                 Down         Orbital
C-0 custom concourse                 -
C-1 portable outbuilding             0.1          1
C-2 permanent outbuilding            1            20
C-3 outbuilding complex              10           500
C-4 large starport complex          100          5000
C-5 industrial starport complex     300          50,000
C-6 commercial starport complex     1000         100,000

A major subsection of the concourse is the living quarters for
the starport personnel and visitors.  Larger starports require
ship crew to leave their ship while they are docked.  In some
cases, the living quarters represent a hostel or hotel; on others
it may represent a whole uburban or suburban section of the

Personnel requirements can balloon rapidly.  Think about the
personnel requirements for a town or city.  However, please note
that downports can pull workers from Startown and therefore may
require less maintained living space than orbital ports.

Module LS: Living Section            Down         Orbital
LS-0 custom living section
LS-1 Up to 10 people                 0.1          1
LS-2 Up to 100 people                1            10
LS-3 Up to 1000 people               10           100
LS-4 Up to 10,000 people             100          1000
LS-5 Up to 100,000 people            1000         20,000
LS-6 Up to 1 million people         10,000       200,000

Hospitals are ranked by volume; however,
they are also divided into room-spaces
when they are built.  Hospitals can treat
one patient per 2 DTons; however, they can
charge more for a larger allocation per patient.

Module H: Hospitals                  Down         Orbital
H-1  10 dtons                        10           100
H-2  100 dtons                       100          500
H-3  1000 dtons                      1000         5000
H-4  10,000 dtons                    10,000       20,000


The starport maglev rail network connects the internal starport
components together: airstrips, parkbays, building complexes, and
shipyards.  Likewise, the external maglev rail network comprises the
transport between the starport and the outside world, and usually
only connects to the concourse and warehousing, which tends to
allow better installation security.

After landing, the ship must wait for several people to perform an
Inward Clearance check on the ship in person.  Upon their arrival,
several documents must be presented.  Planetary law level is a
general guide as to whether or not these papers will be accepted,
plus any crew member with Admin skill.

  • ship's registry papers (signed by the owner)
  • ship's log (signed by the ship's captain)
  • medical log (signed by the ship's medical officer)
  • cargo manifest (signed by the cargo master)
  • passenger manifest (signed by the head steward)
  • crew manifest (signed by the captain or owner)
  • etc!

If documentation is insufficient, hurdles will be imposed: a
quarantine, confiscation, fines, or worse.  The hurdle can be
cleared by correcting the problem, bribing one of the people
responsible for Inward Clearance (or perhaps just paying
fines or fees).  The presence of a noble or influential passenger
can help; or perhaps an old friend who has pull with the Port
Captain's office.

Safety requirements for spaceships and starships generally follow
this pattern:

1. Computer software no illegal software
2. Evacuation planning a. One vac suit per crew member 
b. Two rescue balls in each stateroom 
c. One emergency vac suit per airlock 
    and ship's locker 
d. One emergency vac suit per airlock 
    in ship's boats 
e. One rescue ball per seat in ship's boats 
f. One hazard suit per airlock in ship's boats 
g. One hostile environment kit per 4 seats 
    in ship's boats 
h. One standard Imperial Survival Kit
    per airlock
3. Portable life support systems (PLSS) Life support in vac suits inspected every year
4. Emergency survival system Extra survival bubbles or rescue balls 
on bridge & engineering
5. Small med kits Bridge, engineering, airlocks, ship's boats
6. Tools a. Bridge: 1 set of electronic tools 
b. Engineering: 1 set of mechanical 
    & electronic tools 
c. Ship's boats: 1 set of mechanical tools 
d. 1 set of metalworking tools in engine room
7. Rescue system a. 1 hull patch per displacement ton 
b. 1 portable airlock 
c. 1 radiation counter per airlock 
d. Entry cutter 
e. Iris valve opener 
f. 1 flashlight per crewmember 
g. laser cutter
8. Survival items: any 3 of the following Atmosphere tester (2) 
Emergency radio beacon (1) 
Survival still (2) 
Backpacks (1 per crewmember) 
Flare gun and flares (2) 
Inertial locator (1) 
Machete (1 per crewmember) 
Night glasses (1) 
Desert survival kits (1 per crewmember) 
0.05MW or greater fusion+ plant



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Copyright 1998,1999, 2000 by the  2300 AD Collective
Last modified: Monday, March 13, 2000 03:32 PM