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A recycler on Ceres

A recycler is a machine for breaking down wastes into their constituent materials for re-use.


Recyclers have become a vital technology for humanity's space faring civilization by nearly eliminating waste, dramatically reducing the need for new materials and finished goods to be delivered to inhabited locations.

Recyclers, combined with advanced fabrication technology, allows people to live on what is available in their immediate area. An example is how the Rocinante's Books • TV machine shop is capable of fabricating replacement parts for the ship from materials gathered form the ship's recyclers, something that would require extensive industrial infrastructure in the early 21st century. They are especially critical for ships to function while traveling on long journeys over vast distances and essential for stations like the ones on Ceres and Ganymede to function far away from any other human settlements.

Recyclers have components that require palladium, much of which is delivered from the Kronos system, and supports a large portion of the system's economy.


Recycler is a broad term for any device used to process waste material back into re-usable material. Water recyclers process waste water into potable water, air recyclers filter and clean air and remove carbon dioxide to keep an area habitable, and solids recyclers break down solid wastes ranging from food waste, clothing, hand terminals, glass bottles and almost anything else into re-usable materials.


  • By the year 0 BXT it is estimated that Earth spends roughly 30% of its GDP on recyclers to handle the waste generated by 30 billion people[1]
  • In the novella "Drive" , it is implied that in the year 129 BXT recyclers have not been invented yet when it is mentioned that Earth was mining old landfills in an attempt to recover rare-earth metals vital to building advanced technologies.
  • In episode "The Weeping Somnambulist", Captain Martens Books • TV mentions that Earth's ocean was dirty and smelled like a recycling vat due to environmental damage inflicted on the planet.

See also[]


  1. Caliban's War, Chapter 15 Page 115