Subnautica Below Zero: How to Find and Use the Mineral Detector

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The mineral detector is a device introduced in Subnautica Below Zero that allows players to find the location of various valuable crafting materials and metals while searching underwater. We’ll show you how to find, craft and use the Mineral Detector in Below Zero here, as well as what to do if it's not working.

Read More: How to Unlock the Moonpool


How to Find and Use the Mineral Detector in Subnautica Below Zero

The Mineral Detector in Subnautica Below Zero cannot be found anywhere, instead players will need to scan a broken version of this tool to add the blueprints to their PDA. Once that’s done, you’ll be able to craft one in the Fabricator with basic materials. We’ll cover how to get the Blueprints first, as you won’t be able to do anything else without that.

Mineral Detector Blueprint Scan Location

Broken versions of the Mineral Detector for you to scan can be found in three locations, which we’ve outlined all of below. You only need to scan one, so simply pick whichever one you think is easiest or closest and head to that (we've included coordinated for PC players).

  • Underwater Emergency Supply Cache (Arctic Kelp Forest Northwest of Drop Pod): -584, -33, 22
  • Floating Tech Site (Shallow Twisty Bridges at Surface Level): -125, 3, -198
  • Delta Island (South from Drop Pod): -234, 31, -728
Subnautica Below Zero Mineral Detector fragment being scanned

Crafting the Mineral Detector

Once you’ve scanned the broken versions of this tool, head back to any Fabricator and construct it with the following component materials:

  • Battery (1)
  • Titanium (1)
  • Copper Wire (1)
  • Silicone Rubber (1)

These are all basic-enough materials that you can find in the starting area, so there’s no need to go beyond the Twisty Bridges in searching for them.

Using the Mineral Detector

Equipping the Mineral Detector automatically activates it, and begins to deplete the battery power, so don’t have it in your hand if you’re not using it for anything. The Mineral Detector has numerous minerals and objects programmed into it, and when you select one, it begins to indicate on the screen with a green circle, as well as with an audio beeping, how close you are to it. This can allow you to find certain materials in the local area more easily.

However, the range of the Mineral Detector is not far - we found it caps out at 50 meters at the very most - so players can only use it to home in on what they’re looking for, once they know they’re in the right area. We’ve put the full list of searchable objects below.

Subnautica Below Zero Mineral Detector being crafted in the fabricator

Mineral Detector List

  • Argentite Outcrop
  • Calaverite Outcrop
  • Copper Ore
  • Crystalline Sulfur
  • Diamonds
  • Fragments for undiscovered Blueprints (the Detector will not pick up already-discovered fragments)
  • Galena
  • Gel Sacks
  • Gold
  • Ion Cubes
  • Kyanite
  • Lead
  • Limestone
  • Lithium
  • Magnetite
  • Metal Salvage
  • Nickel Ore
  • Quartz
  • Rubies
  • Salt Deposits
  • Silver Ore
  • Spy Pengling Sites
  • Table Coral
  • Titanium
  • Uraninite Crystals
Subnautica Below Zero Mineral Detector scanning for Argentite Outcrop

Mineral Detector Not Working

Some players have reported issues with the Mineral Detector, likely not helped by the game being unclear about how it works. Here are some important things to remember when using it:

  • You have to manually select the object you want to search for by cycling through them with the Right Mouse Button. If you don’t have it on the screen, the Detector won’t look for it.
  • The Detector burns up power fast. Make sure you have a fresh battery.
  • Again, the Mineral Detector’s range is actually pretty small, usually a few dozen meters. It’s just a way to narrow down a search radius once you’re already in the right area.

Looking for more Subnautica info? Find out how to find the Phi Robotics Center here, or check out what to expect from the future of the game here!