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Material Level

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Blueprint Material Level(ME) is one factor in determining how many minerals will be used in manufacturing an item. ME can be increased by performing material research on a blueprint in a lab at an outpost, NPC station, or in a Player Owned Structure (POS).


Wastage in production

Wastage in manufacturing has two factors:

  • production inefficiency
  • and design inefficiency

Production inefficiency

Production inefficiency is determined solely by the skill of the player. A flat 20% (some sources claim 25%) is added to the base cost of the item. The Production Efficiency skill reduces this by 4% (or perhaps 5%) per level, until at Production Efficiency V, this factor is at 0.

As this factor is not influenced by anything but the base cost of the blueprint, training this skill is highly important in production requirements.

Note that Industry Level III is a prerequisite to learning Production Efficiency.

Design Inefficiency

Design inefficiency ('Wastage Factor' on the blueprint attributes) is determined by the blueprint, and is modified by the Materials Efficiency level ('Material Level' on the blueprint attributes).

The blueprint starts with a set waste factor. Most blueprints have a waste factor of 10%. Drone blueprints seem to have a waste factor of only 5%.

Increasing the Material Level of the blueprint reduces this wastage amount. The effective design inefficiency waste amount for a blueprint uses this formula:

Effective waste % = (Wastage factor) / (1 + Material Level)

Given a standard wastage factor of 10%...

  • ME 0 = (10% / 1) = 10%
  • ME 1 = (10% / 2) = 5%
  • ME 9 = (10% / 10) = 1%
  • ME 19 = (10% / 20) = 0.5%
  • ME 99 = (10% / 100) = 0.1%

This highlights the importance of the Production Efficiency skill: Gaining rank 1 in Production Efficiency provides as many benefits as researching each and every blueprint used (for blueprints with design efficiency waste factor of 10%) by one level. Gaining 2 ranks doubles that, which you simply cannot match by improving the blueprint.

Mineral costs are rounded, so perfect ME can reasonably be achieved with blueprints having lower mineral costs. As a rule of thumb, perfect ME = the quantity of the most used mineral in the blueprint / 5.

The above assumes you know what the perfect material amount is. This information is not easily accessible in game. To figure perfect ME from an unresearched (ME 0) blueprint ingame use material amount / 5.5 rounded down.

Perfect and 'You'

When examining a blueprint's materials requirements, you are shown two columns, labeled 'you' and 'perfect'.

'Perfect' accounts only for design efficiency wastage. 'You' adds in the production efficiency factor according to your current skill.

For example, take:

  • a blueprint that requires 100 tritanium, has a 10% wastage factor, and a materials level of 0
  • a character with no Production Efficiency skill

The blueprint would read:

(you) (perfect)
135 110

See also

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