No Man’s Sky Cadmium [Location, Refining, and Uses]

One of the best parts of No Man’s Sky is its focus on collecting resources and using them to access new ones. Cadmium, found in the red star systems is a perfect example of this facet. However, keeping up with how you can access multiple resources to get to ones like this sometimes can take more trouble than you would like it to.

This No Mans Sky Cadmium guide should help you find the best source of Cadmium and refine it so you always have access to it when needed.

How to get Cadmium in No Man’s Sky

The best way to farm Cadmium is to collect whatever of it you can as deposits on planets orbiting red stars. This material can be used to produce more Cadmium by refining it along with chromatic metal, which is a much more easily available resource.

A setup like this should create a great Cadmium loop that can sustain itself. However, creating this system can be a little complicated for newer players. The following methods should help ease this burden with a guide for each step. 

Installing an NMS Cadmium drive

The Cadmium Drive in NMS is the first upgrade to the hyperdrive. It lets you travel to red star systems where you can find planets with Cadmium Deposits you can collect to start refining more Cadmium.

In order to craft a Cadmium Drive, you will first need to unlock the blueprints for it. You can do this at the anomaly in exchange for salvaged data.

After you unlock the blueprints, you begin crafting the drive. Use the Wiring Loom and Chromium Metal from your inventory to craft the drive and get ready to travel to a red star system. You can buy the wiring loom from space stations and get the chromatic metal by refining other materials like copper.

cadmium location

Where to find Cadmium Deposits – NMS Cadmium harvesting

With the Cadmium drive installed, make your way to a red star system and begin exploring the planets there. Scan your surrounding to find all the cadmium deposits around you. Make sure you collect enough Cadmium that hasn’t been activated as activated Cadmium serves a different function.

Soon enough, you should have enough resources to start refining the harvested cadmium to make more of it.

How to refine Cadmium

Once you have enough Cadmium, you can start running it through a refiner along with a chromatic metal.

Crafting cadmium this way gives you twice the amount of cadmium at the expense of chromatic metal. However, Chromatic metal is much easier to find around space than cadmium deposits are. This easily makes the refinement process worth it.

No Mans Sky Activated Cadmium

While exploring planets in red systems, you will probably come across a good amount of cadmium that has been activated. This is said to happen due to the extreme weather conditions of these plants on NMS.

Activated Cadmium may not directly be used to create the cadmium you want, but it can still help in the process. This resource can be refined to create more chromatic metal than most other ores would. The chromatic metal can in turn be fused with regular Cadmium to increase its quantity. It can also be used to refine Magnetised ferrite.

Cadmium Drive Recipe in No Man’s Sky

As the first upgrade to the Hyperdrive, the ingredients required for the cadmium drive are easily available. After you unlock the item, you can use the following recipe to craft a Cadmium drive:

  • 250 x Chromium Metal
  • 3 x Wiring Loom

What are Red Star Systems?

System colors depict various types of systems, each with its distinct features. The most prominent differences between these systems are the unique materials available on their planets, the items found there, and the biomes that are likely to be present.

Cadmium is a unique resource specific to red star systems. These red systems are known to mostly be uncharted and are more likely to have weird biomes than any other kind. 

How to get to Red Star systems

To get access to red star systems in NMS, you will need to craft a Cadmium drive by using chromatic metal and wiring looms. You can use this drive to explore red star systems and collect cadmium deposits from them.

Producing Chromatic Metal in NMS

Chromatic Metal is an important ingredient to refine not just cadmium, but many other resources of its kind. Fortunately, there are many ways to produce it.

Through the process of refinement, you could use one or a combination of items like Cadium, Emeril, Indium, and activated versions of them to create chromatic metal.

If none of these ingredients seem worth the exchange, you can always just buy it from certain galactic trade terminals or loot it from pirate and NPC ships.

cadmium deposit

No Mans Sky Cadmium Uses

Cadmium is a resource that you can access with your first hyperdrive upgrade and has a ton of utility.

The most important use of Cadmium in NMS is to unlock the next upgrade. It is a necessary ingredient in crafting an Emeril drive, which lets you access green star systems. It is the next step of progress in exploration and can further give you access to various other resources.

Cadmium is also used to craft the following items:

  • Soul Engine
  • State Phasure
  • Amplified Warp SHielding
  • Warp Core Resonator
  • AtlasPass V2

Acquiring Cadmium and refining it becomes a much easier process once you learn how to do it. After repeating the above process once, you can turn all your chromatic material into Cadmium when you want to.

Make sure to check out our guides on How to find a Derelict Freighter, Electromagnetic Power Hotspot and How to Get a Living Ship in No Man’s Sky.

Did you find this guide helpful? Do you know of other ways to increase the flow of NMS Cadmium into your inventory? Let us know in the comment section below.

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