How to get Cadmium in No Man's Sky

No Man's Sky screenshot

No Man's Sky screenshot
August 24, 2023: Now the No Man's Sky Echoes update is here, brush up on how to get Cadmium.

No Man's Sky has dozens and dozens of materials that you will eventually either come across or need to complete some recipe. Whether that recipe is something for your base, your starship, or your character, some materials are certainly more important than others. One of the more vital resources that you will need soon after starting your journey in No Man's Sky is Cadmium, which is used in several varieties of recipes.

You'll need Cadmium to complete the base-building quests in No Man's Sky, and to build technology like the Soul Engine. You can only find it in a particular kind of system, though, and will need to warp to get to this specific system. In this guide, we will explain where to go to get Cadmium and how to find it once you get there.

You can also check out some other resource guides to help you travel the galaxy in No Man's Sky - here's where to find Tritium, and Paraffinium, and how to increase your ship's storage.

How to get Cadmium in No Man's Sky

To get Cadmium, you will first need a Cadmium Drive installed in your ship. This can be unlocked at the Space Anomaly, specifically at the Starship Research Station. Spend the Salvaged Data required to unlock it, and take a look at the recipe in your starship inventory.

The Cadmium Drive upgrade shown in the research station aboard the Anomaly
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You'll need the following to craft the Cadmium Drive:

  • Chromium Metal (250) - Refine from Copper
  • Wiring Loom (3) - Purchase from Space Station Trading Posts

Install the drive into your starship inventory once you have the required resources, and then head out into space. You will now need to warp to a red star system. These can be seen as red orbs in the galactic map, which can be brought up using the Quick Menu. Find one that is in range and warp there. You will, of course, also need a Warp Cell to charge your starship's Hyperdrive before you decide to warp to a new galaxy.

The galaxy Map in No Man's Sky showing a red star system
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Once you've entered the new system, scan planets and look for Cadmium listed in their available resources. Land on a planet that has Cadmium available and use your scanner to highlight Cadmium deposits. They are shining red piles of metal, so they are fairly easy to spot once you're on the ground. Using the Terrain Manipulator on your muti-tool, mine the Cadmium and watch it be added to your inventory.

Making Cadmium in a refiner

If you already have some Cadmium on you, but not enough for an upgrade, you can actually make more using a medium refiner. Add Cadmium and Chromatic Metal to get double the amount of Cadmium that you put in. This can be useful as Chromatic Metal is refined from Copper, which is one of the more abundant resources in any system.

cadmium shown in the Exosuit inventory in No Man's Sky
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What is Cadmium used for?

Cadmium is primarily used in the forging of the Soul Engine, an item required to complete the main storyline. Here are some other uses for the resource:

  • Atlas Pass V2 - A permission pass that allows access to higher-level areas and outposts.
  • Emeril Drive - The second upgrade to the Hyperdrive, allowing warping to green star systems in the ship.
  • Amplified Warp Shielding - A freighter technology that allows players to warp to red star systems in the ship.
  • Warp Core Resonator - Another freighter technology that upgrades the Hyperdrive's capabilities, and increases the distance you can travel.

That's all you need to know about getting Cadmium in No Man's Sky. For more help with the game be sure to check out our guide on finding portals. Elsewhere, there's our look at getting a free freighter.

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