- "Send the last tonnages of recordings from batch four to adept Gaffiner for transcription, reconsecrate and re-anoint the scanners, and then begin recording batch five immediately."
- — Subaltern Heironymous Molg, Datascribe
Imperial Research Stations (P-Class) are listed in the classification system of Imperial worlds, but are not worlds themselves. Some are based in orbit around planets or on asteroids, or on the surface of a planet, such as Dead Worlds or Death Worlds. Types of research stations include actual laboratories, as well as surveillance posts for defensive purposes.
The Imperium and the Adeptus Mechanicus have many research stations scattered across the stars to collect data in an often vain attempt to better control Mankind's surroundings. The aims of such stations vary, with researchers studying planetary storm patterns, dissecting captured xenos corpses, charting the stability of Warp entry locations, or probing the remains of ancient civilisations. Research stations provide a stable base of operations to Tech-priests, scribes, Adepts, Servitors, and the small armies sometimes necessary to support them in these often remote locations.
Most researchers never live to see any conclusive results. Once committed to a station, few ever leave, and their tasks are passed on through generations without end. Useful results might never occur, or be lost in the impossible depths of Imperial bureaucracies, but sometimes glimmers do emerge and catch the eye of those looking for aids in defending Mankind.
Life at a Research Station
Research stations are found throughout the Imperium in almost every situation, locale, or environment. Though many are on otherwise inhabited planets, they are invariably isolated or secluded from the general population, making contact only to restock supplies or take on replacement staff. Most social interactions at any given facility are bound with scripted and rote language, the original meaning of which might be long lost.
Control and predictability govern daily life at a research station, which can include extended families of expert fabricators who spin and polish massive crystalline lenses, or of brute haulers transferring the vats of ink necessary to transcribe daily findings. All understand the security and the progress of the station's research program require very strict scheduling to ensure optimal results.
Time not spent on duty, such as meals or sleep, is measured and monitored. Sites like these are very similar to manufactoria and forges, in that the master timetable dictates every quality of life. While this can vary considerably, there is generally one constant: regardless of individuals' wants and needs, the research always takes priority over them.
Whatever the project is, everyone -- from the lead Tech-priests and administrators down to the lowliest scribes and indentured labourers -- believes that their efforts contribute to the continued greatness of the Imperium. They believe this despite the fact that, unknown to most working at them, some stations dance precariously on the thin line between sanctioned research and abominable tech-heresy.
Though Tech-priests and scholars are often the core of these stations, there are also guards, codifiers, and support staff who make sure that the station as a whole runs smoothly. Regardless of what person's role within the strata of the facility, virtually everyone claims understanding of the basic nature of the work. This comprehension is often poor at best, however, with little or no bearing on any real functions within, due to the gossip and hearsay prevalent on any world or merely mirroring the stagnating technological understanding across the Imperium. Information is commonly mangled and distorted not only from one generation to the next but also from one research assignment to the next.
Instilled in all of them is a drive to make sure that the work continues; they are all in a perpetual state of analysis regarding their tasks and the time it takes to accomplish them. As a result, they are incredibly focused and punctual, and largely dispassionate about anything save their own specific assignments. This segmentation of tasks, however, often makes the project as a whole undecipherable, as those who began the experiments are often long-dead and the purpose of the research has either been diffused or lost entirely. In its stead is a misplaced reverence for the hypothesised outcome, and researchers may eliminate anything that contradicts that desired result, regardless of what is actually found.
While the Machine Cult and the Astra Militarum both have significant numbers on many research stations, other agencies provide staff and also draw personnel from them. The Adeptus Astra Telepathica operates many facilities to study the tides of the Warp, and no matter the type of research, the massive transcription and data sorting required can lead many to positions within the Adeptus Administratum. The dark and remote locations, as well as some highly dangerous research topics, also generate the deformed and shunned mutant. Some of these might in turn become subjects for research, a future only slightly better than the torch.
Notable Research Stations
|Biegel 9||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown||Biegel System||Unknown|
|Calyx Omnus III||Segmentum Obscurus||Calixis Sector||Golgotha Reach||Unknown||Unknown|
|Dalthodge's Pax||Segmentum Obscurus||Calixis Sector||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown|
|Delta-Beta-Tau-3||Segmentum Obscurus||Askellon Sector||Thule||Unknown||Unknown|
|Diogenes IV||Segmentum Obscurus||Calixis Sector||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown|
|Galomn II||Segmentum Obscurus||Calixis Sector||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown|
|Iridium Eta Rho||Segmentum Obscurus||Calixis Sector||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown|
|Konor||Ultima Segmentum||Unknown||Ultramar||Macragge System||Unknown|
|Lumin-Exol IX||Segmentum Obscurus||Calixis Sector||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown|
|Opal Lexit||Segmentum Obscurus||Calixis Sector||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown|
|Panopticon Station||Segmentum Obscurus||Calixis Sector||Unknown||Lathe System||Unknown|
|Regola Sensorium||Segmentum Obscurus||Calixis Sector||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown|
|Terimiv I||Segmentum Obscurus||Calixis Sector||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown|
(Dead World, former Research Station)
- Battlefleet Gothic Rulebook (Sourcebook), pg. 93
- Black Legion - A Codex: Chaos Space Marines Supplement, pg. 22
- Codex: Chaos (2nd Edition), pp. 48-50, 80-81, 109-111
- Codex: Eye of Terror (3rd Edition)
- Codex: Space Marines (5th Edition), pg. 31
- Codex: Tyranids (5th Edition), pp. 8-9
- Codex: Tyranids (4th Edition)
- Codex: Tyranids (3rd Edition), pp. 6-8
- Dark Heresy: Enemies Without (2nd Edition) (RPG), pp. 30-31
- Dark Heresy: The Inquisitor's Handbook (RPG), pg. 157
- Dark Heresy: The Lathe Worlds (RPG), pg. 96
- Xenology by Simon Spurrier
- Warhammer 40,000 - Planetstrike (5th Edition), pg. 54
- Warhammer 40,000: Rulebook (3rd Edition), pg. 115
- White Dwarf Weekly 22 (June 28, 2014), pg. 28
- Know No Fear (Novel) by Dan Abnett
|General||Dead World • Death World • Desert World • Ice World • Jungle World • Ocean World|
|Imperium||Adeptus Astartes Homeworld • Agri-World • Armoury World • Cardinal World • Cemetery World • Civilised World • Feral World • Feudal World • Forbidden World • Forge World • Fortress World • Frontier World • Hive World • Industrial World • Knight World • Mining World • Pleasure World • Penal World • Quarry World • Research Station • Sentinel World • Shrine World|
|Xenos||Craftworld • Crone World • Exodite World • Maiden World • Ork World • Tau Sept • Tomb World • Xenos World|