These are ships designer for a single purpose, mining.
Equipped with an advanced power core, no weapons and minimal systems, they are the only ships that can run drill lasers continuously.
There are 3 mining ship sub-classes:
These are the smallest mining ships available. They can be equipped with a maximum of 2 Drill Lasers. They have a relatively small cargo bay to store the mined ore.
Can be equipped with a maximum of 3 Drill Lasers. They have a larger cargo bay, and a stronger power core, but due to a design flaw they can only be equipped with basic propulsion making them slow.
These behemoths are the largest of the mining ships. They can equip 5 mining lasers and run them continuously. Their massive cargo bays can hold mountains of ore.
Due to their extreme mass and size it takes a more experienced pilot to maneuver these ships in asteroid fields, but their thick hull makes them almost immune to medium speed collisions with asteroids.
The main beam of the mining laser is comprised of two sub-beams:
The outer beam is a simple laser that cuts the rock and ore into manageable chunks.
The inner beam pulls the chunks into the barrel of the turret.
In the barrel a series of wheels grind the rock and ore into a powder. The ore is then separated from the rock. The rock powder is ejected into space and the ore is compressed and moved to the cargo bay.