Mining yield is the rate at which miners mine ore, ice, or gas. As all mining modules mine a certain volume of ore/ice/gas in a given time, the amount of ore/ice/gas mined therefore depends on this mining rate (often quoted in m3 per minute) and on the volume of the ore/ice/gas (m3) being mined.
A note on word usage - the term "mining yield" here refers to the above definition. However, if a ship such as the Venture is shown to have a percentage bonus to mining yield, this bonus only affects ore mining.
- Main article: Asteroids and ore
There are sixteen types of ore in New Eden (each with two further subtypes, but which are functionally identical to their parent ore), and, as a general rule, the rarer the ore, the higher its volume. So Veldspar (the most common type of ore) has a volume of 0.1 m3 per unit, while Scordite (the second most common type or ore) has a volume of 0.15 m3 per unit. Therefore, a miner can mine 50% more Veldspar than Scordite in any given period of time. Rarer ores have ever higher volumes (up to 40 m3 for Mercoxit, the rarest ore type). Ore mining modules (mining lasers and strip miners) mine between 40 and 180 m3 of ore per minute by default; improving ore mining efficiency therefore involves increasing this mining rate.
You can check the volume of the ore you're interested in through the in-game "Show Info" window.
- Main article: Ice harvesting
There are twelve different types of ice in New Eden, but unlike ore, all types of ice have a volume of 1000 m3 per unit - and all ice harvesting modules mine 1000 m3 (i.e. one unit of ice) per cycle. Therefore, increasing ice harvesting efficiency involves reducing the cycle duration (which, by default, is around five minutes) of ice harvesting modules, in order to harvest more ice in a given period of time.
- Main article: Gas cloud harvesting
There are 25 different types of harvestable gas in New Eden, grouped into three categories. Mykoserocin and cytoserocin gases (found in known space) all have a volume of 10 m3, while fullerite gases (found in wormhole space) have volumes varying between 1 and 10 m3. Like ore miners, gas harvesting modules gather a certain volume of gas per second (around 20-30 m3/min by default), improving gas harvesting efficiency therefore involves increasing this rate.
"Residue" takes away from the overall units of that node being mined, it should really be called "waste" as its essentially being thrown away.
- Example 1: A node has 100 units, you mined 10 with 0 residue the node now has 90 units available.
- Example 2: A node has 100 units, you mined 10 with 10 residue the node now has 80 units available.
It does not affect your amount per cycle, it just affects the overall amount of units the node has which in turn affect the overall value of that node with the more residue you have. This means that if a T2 mining module is used, it may clear sites faster, but you will not get the full amount of isk possible from the site. Faction mining modules do not generate residue, but cost a greatly increased price.
Improving mining yield
Mining yield can be improved in four ways:
- Training mining skills
- Fitting different modules to your mining ship
- Fitting special mining crystals to certain mining modules
- Installing implants in your character
- Be part of a mining fleet and receive fleet boosts
- See also: Mining skills
Mining and Astrogeology both give a +5% bonus to ore mining yield per skill level, while Ice Harvesting reduces the cycle time of ice mining lasers and ice harvesters by 5% per skill level. Additionally, all the mining ships gain bonuses from their respective Spaceship Command skills; for example, if you're flying a Venture, Mining Frigate improves your ore mining yield by an additional 5% per skill level (or the cycle time of your gas harvesters by 5% per skill level). This last method is also the only way to improve gas harvesting through skills - Gas Cloud Harvesting allows you to fit an additional gas harvesting module on your ship per skill level, but doesn't improve the efficiency of those modules.
- Main article: Mining modules
Each category of mining module (basic ore miners, deep core ore miners, ore strip miners, deep core ore strip miners, ice mining lasers, ice harvesters, and gas cloud harvesters) includes a number of different modules which fulfill the same purpose, but some have better performance than others. In other words, mining yield can be increased by using higher-quality mining modules (i.e. modules with a higher yield). The downside is that higher-performance modules may have higher fitting requirements, may require additional skills to be trained, and are usually (but not always) more expensive.
Ore miners, in particular, have a large selection of mining modules to choose from. In addition to the improved (higher-meta, Tech 2 or Faction) versions available of each mining module, ore miners can also fit Strip Miners (which can mine several times more than basic ore mining lasers, but can only be used on Mining Barges and Exhumers) and Deep Core Miners (which are needed to mine Mercoxit, a very rare type of ore). Additionally, "modulated" ore mining modules can be fitted with mining crystals to greatly increase the mining yield for particular kinds of ore.
Mining upgrade modules
Ore and ice miners can fit mining upgrade modules on their ships, which increase their mining yield (by 5%-9%, depending on the module), but increase the amount of CPU used by the mining modules fitted on their ship. There are no mining upgrade modules for gas cloud harvesting.
There are rigs to improve the ore mining yield of mining drones, the yield for mining Mercoxit ore, and the yield for ice mining.
- Main article: Mining crystals
Tech II strip miners and the Deep Core Mining lasers, both used to mine asteroid ores and moon ores are able to be fitted with special mining crystals that massively improve the mining yield of the module, with some caveats. These compatible modules generally have a lower base mining yield than their non-crystal variants, but when loaded with a crystal gives them a significant bonus to mining one specific type of ore.
Only mining modules with a Mercoxit crystal loaded can mine the rare ore Mercoxit.
Crystals can be categorized into six types based on standard asteroid ore types and five types based on standard moon ore tiers. Within each tier, the crystals are subcategorized into three types, each having Tech I and Tech II variants.
Mining crystal types
Type A crystals offer moderate yield and residue bonuses, striking a balance for standard mining. Type B crystals provide significantly improved yield bonuses, but also come with higher residue probability, resulting in greater ore wastage. They are best suited for high yield mining but at the cost of more waste. Type C crystals are unsuitable for standard mining due to their very low yields and high residue, making them ideal for strategic ore removal or "mining PvP" against hostile players.
There are several implants which you can plug into your head which increase your mining yield:
- Michi's Excavation Augmentor increases the yield of mining lasers by 5%
- The Eifyr and Co. 'Alchemist' Gas Harvesting implant reduces the cycle time of Gas Cloud Harvesters by 1%-5% (depending on the grade of the implant)
- The Inherent Implants 'Highwall' Mining implant increases mining yield by 1%-5% (depending on the grade of the implant)
- The Inherent Implants 'Yeti' Ice Harvesting implant reduces the cycle time of ice mining lasers and ice harvesters by 1%-5% (depending on the grade of the implant)
- The Low-Grade Harvest implant set increases the range of your mining lasers by up to 33% (if you have all six implants)
- Main article: Command Bursts
If a member of your fleet is flying a ship that can fit Mining Foreman Burst modules (e.g. an Orca), they can provide mining bonuses to you on grid, such as:
- Mining Equipment Preservation (Mining crystal volatility bonus)
- Mining Laser Field Enhancement (Mining/Survey module range bonus)
- Mining Laser Optimization (Mining Modules: Duration & Capacitor-use bonus)
The bonus amounts vary based on the relevant skills of the pilot, the tech level of the command burst module in use, the ship hull bonuses, and related implants.
When using a mining module (eg a mining laser, ice mining laser or an ice harvester), the ore/ice/gas is only harvested at the end of the module's cycle (so if a module mines, for instance, 100 m3/min of ore, and the module has a 60 second cycle time, then at the end of each 60 second cycle, 100 m3 of ore are deposited in the ship's cargo or mining hold). Unlike most other active modules in EVE, mining modules can be short-cycled; i.e. their cycle can be interrupted, and a new cycle can be begun immediately (most other modules will always complete their current cycle before shutting off).
If you short-cycle a mining module, it will deposit an amount of ore in the ship's cargo or mining hold, proportional to the length of time the module was active. For instance, if the above-mentioned 100 m3/min mining laser is shut off after 45 seconds (compared to a full cycle of 60 seconds), it will mine 100 * (45/60) = 75 m3 of ore.
Short-cycling comes in handy when mining asteroids with little ore left in them. If you used a survey scanner to check how much ore is left, you can short-cycle your mining laser to harvest just that amount of ore, and therefore not waste the rest of the mining laser's cycle. This technique becomes particularly useful when using strip miners, as they have very high yields and long cycle time (and can therefore waste a lot of time when mining nearly-empty asteroids). Short-cycling is equally useful when harvesting gas, but should never be used while ice harvesting (as ice mining lasers/harvesters only harvest 1 unit of ice per complete cycle; short-cycle your ice harvester, and you mine nothing).