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Revision as of 18:43, 3 December 2021 by Wiwiweb (talk | contribs) (Added info about experimental multiplayer start)
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Getting Started

Why wont SE work correctly?
If Space Exploration appears in red, you have an incompatible mod. (Here: RSO)

Most likely, you have a mod incompatibility. One of your installed mods has disabled one of SE's required mods.

You can confirm that by looking at Space Exploration in your mod list. If the name is in red like the picture on the right then you have a mod incompatibility. Compare your mod list with the "conflict" mod list linked above and disable any that are incompatible. You will need to "Apply changes" to restart Factorio before you can see if the name still appears in red.

Some commonly installed mods that are incompatible: RSO, Clockwork, Bob's and Angel

Which mods are recommended with Space Exploration?

Check out the Recommended mods page.

Why is the Bob's modules mod incompatible?

At the current time of writing, SE has its own system of modules that does not work with bobs, due to conflicts, Bob's modules will cause crashes.

In the future, there may be a fix or an option to disable the modules but that is unlikely.

Can I play multiplayer with everyone starting on different planets? Can I play PvP?

PvP and multiple forces is possible, but very experimental. Here are posts from people who have tried:

Reddit post: https://www.reddit.com/r/factorio/comments/l9zx3b/space_exploration_and_separate_starting_planet/

Archived discord post:

I finally was able to create my k2 + se multiplayer Map with 6 different teams (pvp scenario preset but a bit modified by commands). I know there is this command given:

/c remote.call("space-exploration", "setup_multiplayer_test", { force_name = "player-2", players = {game.player}, match_nauvis_seed = false})

But when you create a game and use this command to create different forces for your friends you don't have this nice team indicator at the top left where you can see who is online in which team. So create a pvp scenario Map with the amount of teams you need. As an example:

Team-1 --> User1 joins Team-1
Team-2 --> User2 joins Team-2

When people join your server let them join over the normal team selection in their team of choice.
Now use the command I mentioned earlier ago and create a new planet with a new spawn for each team and use the exact team name for the force name:

/c remote.call("space-exploration", "setup_multiplayer_test", { force_name = "Team-1", players = {game.player}, match_nauvis_seed = false})
/c remote.call("space-exploration", "setup_multiplayer_test", { force_name = "Team-2", players = {game.player}, match_nauvis_seed = false})

Now move each player into the new force, after that both players have to die to spawn on their new planet:

/c game.players['User1'].force = game.forces['Team-1']
/c game.players['User2'].force = game.forces['Team-2']

--> /c game.player.character.die()

Now every team has a own planet and you have that nice factorio team display. Maybe thats known but I saw a few people asking how to create this so maybe this can help a few people


Why is it that we cannot place productivity modules in any of the space structures?

This gives you a choice for where to produce your intermediate resources that need to be consumed in space.

Producing things in space is easier, since it is right where you need it, but you cannot use productivity modules.

Producing things on the ground will let you use productivity modules, but you will have to figure out how to ship it.

Note that there are 2 exceptions where you can use productivity modules in space: Space labs, and drills.

Can I use construction/logistic bots in Space?

Yes you can, though note that robot attrition is often higher in space. Verify the robot attrition of a zone in the Universe Explorer.

What do I need to take in the first rocket launch?

Below is a list for what you need; but first, here's an explanation of why you need those things. Note that this may change as SE development continues; the list here is intended for SE version 0.5.

If it's your first time playing SE, your best bet is to go first to Nauvis orbit. You can return from orbit to Nauvis with just the space capsule that is part of your cargo rocket, so you won't need to take the materials to build and launch a second rocket.

The first thing you'll want to do is build a larger platform with scaffolding, place solar panels to generate power, and start doing research that requires the basic (ground-constructable) sciences plus rocket science. It is always considered day in space, so solar power is always on. You may want to take some accumulators so that you can store power for peak usage. Also bring a landing pad, so that your future rockets will have a proper place to land.

Of course you'll need basic base-building materials -- the space versions where necessary -- like power poles, inserters, space assemblers, space belts, and space pipes. You'll also want roboports and bots if you have researched them.

In order to make and use rocket science you need not only the ingredients for it, but also the ingredients to build several required buildings that can only be constructed in space (mainly in space manufactories). The rocket science ingredients that you can make before going to space are rocket fuel, scaffolding, solar panels, vulcanite blocks, red and green circuits, copper plates, iron plates, glass, water, petroleum gas, lubricant, and substrates. It also requires empty barrels, but you'll have plenty of those from shipping the necessary fluids, so you won't need to bring empty barrels (nor build them in space).

The new buildings you will need to make in space include space manufactories, supercomputers, decontamination facilities, hypercoolers, radiators, and space science labs. You'll only need a few (in some cases one) of each in order to get started, but this means you need to bring all the ingredients for those buildings. Here you could just bring a lot of basic materials and build things in space, but it's much more efficient and convenient to bring higher-level intermediate products directly (doubly so since productivity modules don't work in space). The materials for constructing the buildings you need include LDS (low density structure), heat shielding, electric engines, more circuits (including blue) steel plates, iron plates, copper plates, bricks, space assembling machines, and fast inserters. Optionally you could bring some simpler intermediates like pumps, and copper cables, but those are simple enough to just make a few in space when needed.

Finally, you'll want to bring 6 productivity modules of the highest tier you can produce (should be tier 2 or 3) for each space lab, in order to get the most out of your initially limited rocket science production.

Remember that you can use your own inventory as well as the cargo rocket slots. Be sure to put on a thruster suit (ideally outfitted with power generation, jetpacks, and personal roboports) and pack a stack or two of life support canisters.


You WILL need the following:

  • 2000-3000 scaffolding - scaffolding will take up quite a few slots in the first cargo rocket; I would take up 5000 so that there is enough even with losses.
  • 2-3k of automation (red), logistics (green), and chemical (blue) science packs. I would also take up at least 1-2k production and utility science if you can access them.
  • About 300 solar panels for power generation and to make rocket science, as well as 3-4 stacks of power poles and substations.
  • A landing pad.
  • Chests (logistic chests if you can access them).
  • 1-2 stacks each of regular and fast inserters.
  • A stack of roboports if you can access them, as well as construction and logistic bots so you can clean up the mess from rocket landings.
  • At least one stack each of space belts, space pipes, and space assemblers.
  • 200 each of rocket fuel, vulcanite blocks, satellite telemetry, and 800 rough data storage substrate. This will be enough to make ~2000 rocket science.
  • 1k each of petroleum gas and water, and smaller amounts of lubricant and heavy oil (in barrels)
  • 1k of each type of plates: iron, copper, steel, glass
  • 1k each of LDS, heat shields, green circuits, red circuits, blue circuits
  • A few stacks each of electric engines, electric motors, sulfur, and bricks.

Additional info:

  • Your first rocket launch to a location will always crash, this is because there is no landing pad.
    • If the rocket contained a spidertron, it will deploy automatically and can be remote controlled via the navigation satellite.
  • In space it is always considered to be dawn/twilight, as such, for balancing, solar panels give half output but produce all the time, additionally, solar panels will get a production boost based on proximity to the closest star.
  • Rockets can lose parts of their inventory along the way, but you will always get at least a tenth of a stack rounded up. you can take important items in your inventory.
    • Any item with a stack size of 1 won't be lost.
  • WEAR A THRUSTER SUIT- you want to be able to breathe right?
  • The space sciences take a lot of resources, you might want to use the signal transmission mod to make a circuit that allows you to call items up to the space station via cargo rockets through circuit signals.
  • Asteroids are still present in space, there is no escape from these little balls of fun.
What to do once I reach space?
  • Once you reach space, you should start by setting up a science lab and making rocket science. This requires a number of new buildings and intermediates, and will in turn allow you to unlock the more complicated space sciences that require special resources not found on Nauvis.
  • When you get to the more advanced space sciences, you may either focus on a single one or diversify since they give much better returns at higher tiers, while multiple sciences give you more significant data.
  • Each science provides its own challenges, but it is agreed that Biological science is the hardest to do.

Other things to do once you reach space include:

  • Working towards making spaceships by following the astronomical science path.
  • Go to an asteroid field and set up a base there.
  • Make other planet-side bases to send up resources.
  • Create better energy production by following the energy science path.
  • Finally, you should try and expand your rocket launches from Nauvis, so that you have a steady supply of resources in space.

Why am I getting a "Cannot connect systems with different fluids" error when everything seems fine?
Avoid buildings touching like this

Factorio considers a building's different outputs to be part of the same system and this cannot be fixed. Make sure you don't have two different fluid input/outputs touching like the picture on the right.

SE's buildings are made in a way that you can often rotate them to get what you need:

Fluid mixing.jpg
Is there a way to keep generating biosludge in space?

Yes, there is a positive feedback loop using biomass. For a single cycle of the biosludge loop:


  • 190 biosludge
  • 1 petroleum gas
  • 131 cosmic water
  • 1 iron
  • 0.1 blank data card
  • 0.4 coal


  • 250 biosludge
  • 1 contaminated scrap
  • 99 contaminated cosmic water
  • 40 contaminated biosludge
  • 0.1 junk data

Total return per loop: 60 biosludge


40 contaminated biosludge can be recycled to give back 39.6 biosludge. After recycling, the total return per loop is 99.6.

These calculations ignore the extra biosludge that might be obtained from recycling the contaminated cosmic water, since it's a negligible amount compared to the 99.6 return.

How does spaceship integrity stress work?

You have an integrity stress limit based on your tech. With just spaceship tech you have a limit of 200. Spaceship Integrity research increases it by 100 per tech up to a max 1000. Factory Spaceship research increases it by 500 per tech with no limit.

Integrity stress is calculated in 2 parts, whichever value is higher determines the actual stress.

Part A is based the size and structure of the ship: Each spaceship tile with a spaceship wall takes 0.5 integrity, each spaceship tile without a wall takes 1 integrity.

Part B is based on cargo capacity: Each item slot of a chest or similar container takes 0.5 integrity, each 2k of fluid capacity takes 1 integrity (except booster tanks which are 1 integrity per 4k).


The ship has 60 tiles with walls, and 160 tiles without walls. The integrity stress is 30 + 160 = 190 from size.

The ship has 10 containers with 48 slots each. The integrity stress is 10 * 48 / 2 = 240 from cargo.

The total stress is 240 because 240 is higher than 190.

If 2 containers are removed for a total of 8 containers the stress would drop to 192.

If 2 more containers are removed for a total of 6 containers the stress from containers would drop to 144, but the total stress would be 190 from the spaceship size.

Technical Issues

After a Factorio/"Space Exploration" mod update, my game freezes. What can I do?

Load the game and wait. After the update, structures and maps seem to need a regeneration. That normally takes few minutes. After a while the game will be working as usual, so save the changes and keep enjoying the game.

Can I use this mod in Linux?

Yes you can.

Can I use my Factorio blueprints?

The short answer is yes. All Factorio structures are still available. However a lot of recipes have changed, so you will probably need to re-design blueprints involving producing items. Space requires new buildings/belts/structures, so your normal Factorio blueprints will not work in space.

My save file is too large and saving/loading takes forever. What can I do?
Use the red buttons to clear out unused parts of your game.

Every new planet chunk, structure, enemy, etc. increases the game file size.

If you quickly scanned a planet but decided it will not be useful, make sure to "Delete surface" so that it will not inflate your save file. If you change your mind and decide to look at the surface again, it will be generated identically.

If you have stuff on a planet, you can instead use "Trim surface" which will draw a rectangle around your stuff, and then delete all chunks around it. Beware, this can revive biters when those chunks are explored again! Also note that pollution will automatically generate chunks that it reaches, so if your pollution cloud covers the whole planet, trimming will not be useful.

Also check the "performance issues" question in the FAQ for other performance improvements.

How can I resolve performance issues?

(Based on my experience. This is not an official answer)

  • Reduce Factorio graphics settings to the minimum details.
  • Ensure Factorio runs from a fast local drive(SSD if possible).
  • Check your memory usage and increase your virtual memory (Pagefile/swapfile) if necesary, since this mod will easily use 16GB of memory as soon as you start being interplanetary.
  • Avoid the use of "Scan Surface" for planets where you do not have a base yet or "Delete Surface" if you have already scanned them.
  • Launching a spaceship in a loop (say, triggering with circuit network but not enough fuel) can be the cause of the game freezing momentarily every second or so.
  • "Meteor showers" and "Console notifications" seem to freeze the system from time to time. So disable those options:
      - Settings > Mod Settings > Map
          * Set "Meteor map interval" to "600"
      - Settings > Mod Settings > Per Player
          * Disable "Print Meteor Alerts to the console"
          * Disable "Alert when satellite discovers nothing"