There are 7 different types of asteroids, one for each resource available in the game. Every different type is dyed in the color of the material it contains.
Asteroids can be mined for resources using a drone or a ship equipped with at least 1 mining laser.
Occasionally you will come across large material asteroids. These asteroids can have a material content between 20000 to 250000 units. Note that you can not mine an asteroid containing a resource 2 levels higher than your mining laser.
You may mine an asteroid containing any resource that is 1 level higher, the same level, or any number of levels below the level of your mining laser.
There are special, large asteroids that can be located either visually or with the aid of an object detector module. Claimable asteroids are almost always larger than regular ones and they are more irregular shaped or look like clumps of asteroids mushed together.
These asteroids can be interacted with at close distances (~0.2 km) and claimed, once claimed you have a choice of selling it to a local faction or to construct a mine of your choosing on it. Selling the asteroid to a faction will yield an increase in standing and a cash payment. The higher the factions opinion of you was before the sale, the more cash and the less standing will be gained (and visa-versa).
To construct the mine you must have the necessary credits.
Currently there are 14 different types of mines that can be constructed:
Asteroids can appear in a sector in a small number of 3 or 4, or they can appear in the form of an asteroid field (as depicted in the image).
Before version 0.5, there was an asteroid containing precious metal, which would result in money being dropped when mined.