UPB source?


General Discussion


Is there any official canon information on how UPBs are made? What raw materials are used, who makes them, where they're sourced from, etc. Not trying to take away GM fiat, if the GM says down is up then that's a law of the universe, but I was curious and couldn't find anything in the Core Rulebook about where UPBs actually come from.


There's nothing.

Liberty's Edge

Since you can make anything out of UPB I imagine that there are IMMENSE recycling faciluities that take all the polymer, metal, and other complex elements that exist in the Material Plane and turn them into UPB.

AFIK The only way to craft UPB is with UPB at a 1-1 ratio.

Sovereign Court

UPB is people!


UPBs are, by definition, a raw material of whatever. There's no info on how they're made. It's just generic raw material, akin to currency. (And nobody says what the currency is made from.)

Why would you need to know?


'Generic raw material' is a bit too generic for the UPB description. They aren't just lumps of iron, gold and plastic. They are a couple steps away from smart matter. Basically mass effect omnigel hardened down into grains of rice.


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my head cannon is that UPBS are little bundles of plastic imbued with transmutation magic that can add or subtract protons from the nuclei of it's atoms and the atoms of anything it's in contact with.

Liberty's Edge

My take was that they were smart nano-particles that did nano stuff when they were combined into something.


New Nano-Stuff Oreos! The biggest smallest flavor imaginable!


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Starfinder Superscriber

non-canon: My answer would be that the PW, Veskarium, ASE and other governments, as well as any corporation over a certain size make them from raw materials. They probably use something like an Assembly Ooze that breaks down minerals/elements (mined from asteroids and/or planets) and spit out UPB's. My interpretation is that the grain of rice is a packet of nanites and raw materials capable of self-assembling into a larger whole, possibly pulling other raw materials out of the air and/or a provided feedstock.

Dark Archive

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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

There is a recycling system expansion bay for starships that states:

Starfinder #6: Empire of Bones pg. 46 wrote:

Note: The following Expansion Bay is compatible only with a Supercolossal ship.

A recycling system enables a Supercolossal starship to be nearly self-sustaining, operating independently for decades or even centuries. A combination of smelters, biomass processors, manufacturing, and UPB converters allows the ship to convert almost all its waste into goods and materials.

It appears that items can be broken down into UPBs with "smelters, biomass processors, and manufacturing." I assume the "UPB converters" then convert the UPBs back into useful items.

The recycling system is the size of a cargo bay, and it can convert "almost all" the waste generated on a starship into UPBs.

So, the raw materials for UPBs seem to be almost everything you can imagine. As to who makes them? Probably any organization with the resources and desire to make them.

Technological devices don't appear to be the only way to make UPBs. The stat block for the Assembly Ooze states the following:

Alien Archive wrote:
Thought to have been created on the planet Bretheda as a biotechnological replacement for automation processes, assembly oozes are essentially cores of nanobots suspended within blobs of animated protoplasm. As the ooze absorbs raw materials, the nanobots work at the molecular level to turn that matter into a functioning technological device, the blueprints of which have been entered into the machines’ original programming.

The Assembly Ooze can only make "virtual UPBs," but it does appear that UPBs might be created by both biotechnological and normal automation processes.


UPBlender


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Jasque wrote:
The recycling system is the size of a cargo bay, and it can convert "almost all" the waste generated on a starship into UPBs

I can envision certain people (like myself) being immensely amused by yesterday's biologically processed food being turned into a laser pistol.

Any quite a few others being rather horrified at the idea of their shirt being made of the same stuff.


Lethallin wrote:
Jasque wrote:
The recycling system is the size of a cargo bay, and it can convert "almost all" the waste generated on a starship into UPBs

I can envision certain people (like myself) being immensely amused by yesterday's biologically processed food being turned into a laser pistol.

Any quite a few others being rather horrified at the idea of their shirt being made of the same stuff.

hey, parts is parts.


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Object reading could produce some fascinating stories. What has this crate been? What has it seen? In most cases the answer to both will be a lot of other crates, but with some careful setup you could have a great show out of things like this.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Lethallin wrote:
Jasque wrote:
The recycling system is the size of a cargo bay, and it can convert "almost all" the waste generated on a starship into UPBs

I can envision certain people (like myself) being immensely amused by yesterday's biologically processed food being turned into a laser pistol.

Any quite a few others being rather horrified at the idea of their shirt being made of the same stuff.

hey, parts is parts.

You yourself are already made of the stardust of your ancestors. I don't see why having a shirt made from an apple would be a big deal. Everything transitions in time.


Ravingdork wrote:


hey, parts is parts.

You yourself are already made of the stardust of your ancestors. I don't see why having a shirt made from an apple would be a big deal. Everything transitions in time.

you're alsp 90% dinosaur pee at this point.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

My personal in game theory for our home game is that deconstructor oozes are used on a mass scale to produce them. Their creation by corporations where a happy accident that led to the discovery of just how useful the by products of these creatures were. It ties in nicely with how industrial sabotage and accidents later lead to these being released in the wild. I like to think of massive oozes harnessed and fed inanimate matter to churn out / repurposed waste into UPBs


Jasque wrote:

There is a recycling system expansion bay for starships that states:

Starfinder #6: Empire of Bones pg. 46 wrote:

Note: The following Expansion Bay is compatible only with a Supercolossal ship.

A recycling system enables a Supercolossal starship to be nearly self-sustaining, operating independently for decades or even centuries. A combination of smelters, biomass processors, manufacturing, and UPB converters allows the ship to convert almost all its waste into goods and materials.

It appears that items can be broken down into UPBs with "smelters, biomass processors, and manufacturing." I assume the "UPB converters" then convert the UPBs back into useful items.

The recycling system is the size of a cargo bay, and it can convert "almost all" the waste generated on a starship into UPBs.

I do think it's worth noting that while it is 1 Expansion Bay in size, the recycling system only works with supercolossal ships. AKA a size beyond the "15,000+ feet" long category. So while technically all expansion bays are supposed to be the same size, that kind of size restriction makes it not unreasonable to believe there might be something more to what goes into the recycling system. Like, it might not be all that compact.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

OTOH, something that requires a supercolossal ship is still well within the range of something you could just put in a fixed factory, in terms of size. Probably not even nearly that big, if you are just building the factory around being able to do UPB production, without all the star drives and force fields and other warship requirements of such a giant vessel.

Also, consider the description and how it focuses on near-perfect recycling. The "Recycling System" is implicitly about making a ship self-sustaining, so that it needs essentially no outside input. That goes above and beyond simply "able to turn energy and resources into UPBs", instead reaching into the territory of "We must not even need any input resources, and we need to sustain this indefinitely". A UPB manufactory that doesn't also need to be 100% self-sustaining likely would be smaller and cheaper.

( Which might actually be the reason for the minimum size requirement; its not just about having a bay for the physical recycling systems, but also all the infrastructure built around the entire ship to ensure 100% recovery of matter from all systems that use matter. )


BigNorseWolf wrote:
Lethallin wrote:
Jasque wrote:
The recycling system is the size of a cargo bay, and it can convert "almost all" the waste generated on a starship into UPBs

I can envision certain people (like myself) being immensely amused by yesterday's biologically processed food being turned into a laser pistol.

Any quite a few others being rather horrified at the idea of their shirt being made of the same stuff.

hey, parts is parts.

If you can manipulate matter at a small enough level its all lego blocks animal/vegetable/mineral makes no real difference it's all atoms and molecules.


Shinigami02 wrote:
Jasque wrote:

There is a recycling system expansion bay for starships that states:

Starfinder #6: Empire of Bones pg. 46 wrote:

Note: The following Expansion Bay is compatible only with a Supercolossal ship.

A recycling system enables a Supercolossal starship to be nearly self-sustaining, operating independently for decades or even centuries. A combination of smelters, biomass processors, manufacturing, and UPB converters allows the ship to convert almost all its waste into goods and materials.

It appears that items can be broken down into UPBs with "smelters, biomass processors, and manufacturing." I assume the "UPB converters" then convert the UPBs back into useful items.

The recycling system is the size of a cargo bay, and it can convert "almost all" the waste generated on a starship into UPBs.

I do think it's worth noting that while it is 1 Expansion Bay in size, the recycling system only works with supercolossal ships. AKA a size beyond the "15,000+ feet" long category. So while technically all expansion bays are supposed to be the same size, that kind of size restriction makes it not unreasonable to believe there might be something more to what goes into the recycling system. Like, it might not be all that compact.

It may just be that the amount of "feedstock" necessary to keep the reaction going in a sustainable manner needs a super colossus worth of input from people to be efficient enough to bother with. It may also be energy requirements if you have enough energy to pump into something there are a lot of conversions you can do simply by throwing atoms at each other.

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