Base Extraction Rate, or BER, is the base rate at which a harvester will collect resources per minute. This rate varies among different types of harvesters, and is also affected by the skill of its architect, the quality of the tools, and materials used to create the harvester. Because of this, many people look at the BER before looking at the hopper capacity when purchasing these from a Bazaar Terminal or player vendors.
Actual Extraction Rate Edit
BER is not, however, the lowest rate at which your harvester will extract. Nor is it the highest. Resources are found on each planet in levels of concentration, displayed as a percentage when surveying. This percentage affects whether or not your harvester will extract at a rate higher or lower than its BER, hence the "actual extraction rate" found on your harvester's operation screen. About 66%-67% concentration extracts at a rate equal to the harvester's BER. To estimate your harvesters "actual" extraction rate, use the following formula:
Concentration Percentage / 0.6665 x BER = ~Actual Extraction Rate
Example, say you're harvesting resources at a concentration percentage of 95%, and your harvester has a BER of 10.
0.95 / 0.6665 x 10 = 14.25
- Percentages based on X/100, where X=concentration level
- 0.6665 = 66.65%, roughly the percentage needed to equal your harvester's BER
As you can see, a concentration of exactly 95% would give you an extra ~4.25 units extracted per minute. Likewise, a lower concentration level will yield an extraction rate below the harvester's BER. Using the same formula, a concentration of exactly 40% using the same BER of 10 would result in an actual extraction rate of ~6.15
However, since concentration levels and your harvester's BER are based on fractional numbers, your harvester will most likely see a slightly higher rate than the estimate.
While lower concentration levels still get the job done, it's less efficient than placing a harvester with the same BER over a higher concentration. Such efficiency can be taken into account when calculating the exact cost to operate your harvesters in a given area, if one were inclined to do so.
There's another formula, perhaps easier to go by, that yields identical results. Take the BER, multiply by the concentration percentage, multiplied by 1.5. In Publish 27, harvesters saw 50% increase to harvest rates, hence the 1.5.
10 x 0.95 x 1.5 = 14.25