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Hard-working and strictly regimented, Bolians are always seeking knowledge; they believe innovation and learning will allow them better to understand and therefore control the universe around them. For this reason, Bolarus IX has become a center for learning within the Federation, home to some of the finest engineering and applied science academies in the galaxy. However, the workload the Bolians expect a student to carry is enough to cause most non-Bolian students to drop out within the first year. Graduates are, understandably, highly respected throughout the UFP.
Bolarus IX has also become the hub of the so-called "Mineral Chute," a trade run connecting the Bolarus system to most of the other Federation core worlds. Most of the rare minerals used in spaceframe and hull construction are found in abundance on Bolarus IX, and the Bolians have developed some of the most sophisticated processing and refining complexes in the galaxy. Alloys such as rodinium and polyduranium are synthesized from raw materials transported to the surface from deep within the planet’s crust; transports and cargo carriers then carry these refined materials to shipyards and Starfleet facilities throughout the UFP. It is ironic that while Bolians build few ships of their own, their world and their technology remains largely responsible for keeping Starfleet in top working order. Since Bolarus IX is primarily a water world, many of its richest mines rest deep beneath the seafloor, accessed by vast underwater arcologies and factories.
Bolarus IX features a large number of small landmasses, islands, archipelagos, and atolls surrounded by major oceans, isolating most of the major cities from one another. Only three islands are really large enough to be called continents, and each of these is still smaller than any single continent on Earth. The world is largely a water world, and the disparate nature of most early population centers caused much of hte independent cultural development that remains apparent among the various Bolian races to this day. There are no large anchoring continental masses, and as a result the legendary surface storms of Bolarus IX are able to move across the planet's surface unchecked by geographic barriers.
Since ancient times the Bolians have been a seafaring people, and the raging oceans are a source of great interest to the Bolians, who spent many centuries in their early history studying them and the strong tidal currents which rule them. The planet's atmosphere features a nitrogen-oxygen-argon mix slightly different from Earth's, making it an argon-rich environment (which gives rise to the blue skin tone of the Bolian people).
Bolarus IX has a temperate climate that fluctuates radically based upon the raging winds that follow the oceans' tidal patterns, inflicting powerful hurricanes upon the planet's surface during the Rusar (monsoon) season. While the hurricanes were once a significant problem for the Bolians, they have largely been checked in recent centuries by advanced weather-control technology. The Bolians can now predict when and where a hurricane is going to strike and gauge its strength, based on their meteorological skills and analysis of the moons' positions in the heavens. The monsoon season is followed by a hot, dry season which lasts for several months before the rains return.
The islands and small landmasses of Bolarus IX exhibit a wide array of temperate flora and geography. Low-lying mountains with forested slopes; short, powerful rivers; irregular, deep lakes; and fertile plains characterize the landscape. Substantial regions have been restored to their natural states to help preserve the planet's wildlife. In addition, many Bolians live and work in huge complexes which rest on the ocean floors. While most of these structures were originally built to house mining operations, many have since been adapted for research and undersea agrarian purposes.
Bolarus IX features four moons known as Dorin, ALat, Kot, and Rim (names derived from figures in Bolian mythology). The moons follow similar orbital paths, but travel at different speeds. This causes severe tidal conditions and seismic instability on the planet's surface; it also disrupts the planet's orbital rotation, significantly slowing and speeding it up at different times of the year. Bolian chronographers (calendar-keepers), geologists, and oceanographers often have their hands full dealing with the moons' effects on their planet; however, advanced technology has eliminated many of the problems which the moons have caused historically.
Bolarus IX is home to three main continents, Rabinu, Rasara and Bol’ki. These continents lie along the planet's equator, making Bolarus a much more temperate planet than Earth. Its land mass is mostly hydrosphere, although aside from the major continents there are other smaller landmasses; B’olos, Izos and Kastron, each named for the tectonic plate to which they are attached. While these are technically continents in themselves, they are comparatively very small. Due to the increased proportion of water to land on the planet, tectonic shift is somewhat slower than normal, and nearly all of the planet's fault lines line below the surface of the ocean. As such, mountain ranges are very rare, but ranges of island archipelagos are common.
The Senden Funnel
Hundreds of years ago an unusual storm front developed over a large area very close to the southern ice cap of Bolarus IX. It became stronger, but conditions at the time prevented it from breaking or moving. As such, a standing storm developed, which remains in situe even at present. Manifested as a violent electrical storm accompanied by torrential rain above an oceanic maelstrom, scientists have been unable to determine what caused this strange atmospheric event. Starfleet scientists have debated various ideas, but without the ability to watch its original formation they are unable to settle upon a final hypothesis.
Although Bolarus IX has many large cities (some underwater), the three largest urban centers are also three of the oldest settlements on the planet. They are each named after the nations for which they serve as capitals: Bolkinua, Bolsetu, and Bolrabi. Bolkinua features many sprawling one-story housing complexes. Since it is built on a broad plain and therefore does not lack space, Bolkinua is very spread out; its people are community-oriented and there are many large parks, activity centers, and similar gathering places throughout the city. Most of the planet's heavy industrial facilities exist here and in Bolrabi, and the ourskirts of Bolkinua have become a veritable field of ore refineries and mineral processing plants. Bolsetu is marked by tall buildings and learning centers, and the most prominent Bolian libraries and universities (including the Bolian Interstellar Research Institute) are found here. The architecture itself remains some of the most beautiful on Bolarus IX, a reflection of the aesthetic and artistic proclivities of its people. The surrounding lands are very pastoral, and are largely used for farming and recreation. Bolrabi is unlike either Bolkinua or Bolsetu; it varies widely in its architecture and layout from district to district, and conveys an overall appearance of function and utility. The city is actually built across several small islands on the Rabor Archipelago, with significant portions resting underwater on the reef that surrounds the island chain. Graceful bridges and mag-lev tubes connect the above-ground portions of the city.
The Bolian Academy of Applied Sciences, one of the Federation's top science academies, is based in Bolsetu in a great pyramid-shaped edifice which covers four city blocks. Like a beehive, the Academy is constantly active, with students coming and going at all hours of the day and night. Although students from all over the Federation enroll at the Academy, very few last through the two-year program due to the highly intense nature of the curriculum and the heavy workload. Bolians and Vulcans seem to do best; only the most dedicated humans make it to graduation.
Some of the most sensitive research in the Federation is performed at the academies and institutes found on Bolarus IX. This includes the mining and processing of numerous alloys used in starship construction. Additionally, the Bolian warp technology research station on Bolarus XIII continues to improve warp drive power and efficiency. The largest antigravity research and manufacturing structures in the Federation are found on Bolarus XIII.
Starbase 307 orbits Bolarus XIII. It includes extensive starship construction and repair facilities. Most workers on the starbase are Bolians, but there are also crewmen from all over the Federation who are able to keep up with Bolian work requirements and ethics. Understandably, Starbase 307 has some of the highest efficiency ratings in Starfleet and continues to expand its research facilities every year.