Before I was done with work on Tuesday a ping had gone out for an op to defend assets from our neighbors to the east. That actually ended up being three fleets worth of people heading out to defend a timer… enough people that nobody showed up to oppose if I heard right.
There was a follow-up ping from Asher indicating that there would be another USTZ fleet going out later for those of us who were busy or lived on the wrong coast. That seemed to mean me, so when that ping showed up later I was ready to go in the coalition staging Keepstar. The call was for Cerberus fleet.
Once we had formed up a good enough composition… with three fleets already out we were not likely to get an ideal form up… we undocked and flew north to meet up with a titan to get a bridge.
There we met up with a couple of force auxiliaries who proceeded into siege mode to repair the tower shields once it had exited reinforcement.
They went about their slow work while we waited to see if The Culture would respond. Scouts out reported nobody coming our way, so we flew in a lazy formation following Asher in his dirty Phantasm. (It seemed much shinier back in Saranen, though that might not be the same ship.)
I have been on any number of such operations over the last five years. You go out to the tower and see if there is going to be a fight. If not, you just wait until the tower’s shields are repaired back up to 50%, at which point the tower can be refueled with strontium clathrates, which enables the tower to go into reinforcement mode.
With two faxes and our own logi the tower took a while to get back to 50%. But once there GSOL showed up to get things into shape.
That was one tower down. However, there were three in the system, all of which had come out of reinforce and needed to be repaired and refueled.
Fortunately a few more faxes ended up joining us so the second and third towers ended up going by much more quickly.
Once the last tower was finished we were set to head home. Nobody showed up to oppose us, so it was more of a “cost of doing business” sort of op. We got our participation credit to show our service to the coalition.
These specific sorts of ops will be coming to an end at some point. All three of these were moon mining towers. Those are fairly passive operations, just needing to be fueled regularly and have the output collected now and again.
Come the winter however, CCP is suppose to implement refineries. Mentioned back in March, these will act as moon mining platforms while will be much more hands on when it comes to harvesting the output. These platforms are supposed blow chunks of moons into orbit where they will need to be harvested by mining ships.
At that point it will be an Upwell Consortium structure running the operation, which will no doubt be more akin to the Citadels and Engineering Complexes already available in its mechanics. The somewhat strange mechanics of POS towers will be a thing of the past.
Currently we hold a moon mining towers outside of our home region. We shall see how that works out when moon mining becomes a more active operation.