Good time to scan

16th February 2011 – 7.18 pm

What a silly time to think about taking a break. Sure, the Hulk exhumer has gone, and all the other pilots, but that's just it: all the pilots have left the system. Being all alone offers me just the opportunity I need to do some proper scouting. For a start, I warp from the tower in our neighbouring class 3 w-space system to the gravimetric site where the Hulk was mining. This gives me the approach vector I would use when monitoring the tower and warping for a bombing run, and I can see where the rocks are in relation to the vector. If the rocks get in the way I risk decloaking and losing the target, needing a closer approach and reliance on torpedoes. But, in this case, dropping out of warp at thirty kilometres from the Hulk's mining position leaves me in empty space, which allows for a covert approach and bomb launch. This is good to do now where I can be decloaked with no consequences instead of finding out later when it matters.

And warping in to the gravimetric site reminds me that the Hulk's final jet-can remains there, which must hold some ore. Not much ore, I imagine, as a hauler collected a load before I started scanning for the Hulk, but still some ore, and no one to collect it. My second task in this recently deserted system is to claim the ore for myself. I jump home, swap the Manticore stealth bomber for a Crane transport ship, and return to the gravimetric site. The Crane can travel cloaked, which lets me check the C3 for other ships before committing myself to picking up the ore, and the system remains quiet. I manage to empty the jet-can in to the Crane's hold, although the can was mostly empty to start with, and I take home a mere sixty-three units of arkonor.

Scouting the gravimetric site and collecting the ore seems like all I can do in the C3, and I consider taking a break now. But I realise there is still more I can achieve, and take my Buzzard covert operations boat back to scan the system thoroughly. I only located the tower and found the mining site earlier, which was the focus of my operation, but there may be more to find. And there is, but not much. I resolve the system's static wormhole, which is a connection to low-sec empire space in its end-of-life stage, and perhaps where the local Buzzard from earlier came to scout after the Hulk inferred my presence. It's possible the pilot warped here to see if I was a low-sec tourist and would exit, or he anchored the bubble that currently encompasses the wormhole.

I also resolve one anomaly and two ladar sites in the C3, the final signature being another wormhole. This connection is a K162 from null-sec space and also bubbled. I wondered why the locals didn't consider my presence to be the result of a new connection opening in to their system, and this existing K162 may be a good reason for them to assume I came from null-sec instead of somewhere new. Considering the handful of signatures in the system it would have been trivial to perform a quick blanket scan and see a new signature had appeared, though. As both other wormholes here are bubbled I am quite surprised they didn't scan again. It works to my advantage, though, and now that I have a complete scan of the C3 I finally decide it is time to take a break.

And I return to find glorious leader Fin has taken an Armageddon battleship in to the C3 to pop the warp bubbles on the wormholes. Well, the bubble that covered the static connection now sits in empty space, the wormhole having collapsed. I follow behind Fin in my Buzzard to scan for the new connection as she shoots. I have all the signature identifiers noted in my bookmarks from the earlier scan, making it easy to find the new wormhole amongst the half-dozen signatures, and the exit puts me in to the Black Rise region. I am in Caldari space, but even if I am only ten hops from Jita it is mostly through low-sec. The class 3 w-space system remains sleepy and I imagine it will stay that way now. I am getting sleepy too, so will leave a fuel run until another day. We still have time.

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