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If people living on planets want to engage in interstellar trade, they have to go through the thalassocrats.The leader of the thalassocrats is of course called the thalassiarch.Rick starts with certain assumptions and follows them to various conclusions about the interstellar economy.

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An airliner's purchase price is $100 million so one year's uses costs about one-third of the purchase price.

A cargo jet can carry 50 tons so its purchase price is about $2 million per ton of cargo capacity.

This ignores taxes, station docking fees, and fuel.

Assumption: starship fuel is cheaper than cargo jet JP-4 fuel.

The ticket prices will not be similar between airliners and starships because FTL interstellar travel will probably take more than a few hours for the trip.

Therefore the starships will do fewer trips per year than airliners, so the starship passenger ticket price (and cargo waybill) will have to cover a larger share of the starship's yearly expense.

Include a note indicating your name and Social Security Number and that you want it added to your OMPF.

Your assignment officer will update your ORB, then send the certificate to Personnel Electronic Records Management System (PERMS) to add it to your OMPF.

Sometimes the traders live in large "clan-ships", developing a "trader culture." Each ship is a world, carrying the entire clan. Novels including this include CITIZEN OF THE GALAXY by Robert Heinlein, STAR WAYS aka THE PEREGRINE by Poul Anderson, the Cities in Flight novels of James Blish, MERCHANTER'S LUCK and FINITY'S END by C. Cherryh, RITE OF PASSAGE by Alexi Panshin, A DEEPNESS IN THE SKY by Vernor Vinge.

Sometimes these trader cultures in large clan-ships have a Thalassocracy, where they have a monopoly on trade since they control all access to space.

Men, my brothers, men the workers, ever reaping something new: That which they have done but earnest of the things that they shall do: For I dipt into the future, far as human eye could see, Saw the Vision of the world, and all the wonder that would be; Saw the heavens fill with commerce, argosies of magic sails, Pilots of the purple twilight dropping down with costly bales; This section is basically a rough outline of Rick Robinson's Interstellar Trade: A Primer.

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