Noun: /jəˈlatnəs eTHˈīˌän/
Gelatinous Ethion is a scary by-product of beryllium mining on asteroids. The toxic goo is pollution, pure and simple. Beryllium is found in the mineral bertrandite, and there are massive asteroids around the galaxy with deep veins of bertrandite. Beryllium is mined by attaching huge, subsonic rumblers to the face of the asteroids. These rumblers turn the insides of the asteroids into gravel and then suck out the beryllium like a gritty milkshake.
The rumblers themselves look like old-fashioned oil wells poking up off the asteroids – picture the RKO tower logo of yesteryear, but with the functions of a butter churn and a straw. The space miners use the long bore of the rumbler to cut a little hole in the surface of the asteroid and fill it with inert gelatinous ethion, the goo. Then the rumbler gets to work churning the insides up. The goo keeps all the rumbled pieces of the asteroid from flying out into space and wrecking space ships. As they mine the beryllium, the goo absorbs all the dust and minerals that are shaken free. These combine with the inert ethion to become highly toxic ethion! Miners are supposed to contain the now toxic goo and dispose of it properly at intergalactic space garbage and goo recycling centers. But some less-than-reputable alien miners don’t follow these rules. They leave their toxic goo floating behind. This is where the problems begin.
Example: The space pirates did not contain all their gelatinous ethion and some globules were set afloat in space.