Cargo Loading rates?


Banded Mongoose
We recently ran into a scenario where it was important to know how long it took for a speculative cargo lot to arrive and then how long it took to load the cargo onto the ship. I could not find anything that discusses this. Does anyone know if/where something like this is addressed?
The only real reference I found was in the UNREP option where it states that each ton of UNREP can process 20 tons per hour.
Also, the loading belt states that it can do the work of 10/25 crewmen but I couldn't find how much a crewman can do.
Another thing was speeding up the delivery of the cargo. Are there rules for getting a rush order on a speculative cargo?

What the referee in one game I play in uses:
The rule of thumb I have been using is that * if the cargo is on the deck, the tonnage times two equals the minutes with average stellar TL (13) at a type B Starport at population 5, and then factor of 2 up and down the TL scale, starport type, and population score. Another factor of 2 for poor and rich (equipment conditions). Where there are no real facilities/population, there is no loading. It is all on you.
We extrapolated from the Robots handbook.
"Looking at the robot handbook, the cargo loader can move up to 5 tons, and has a move of 3. Move of 3 translates to 3 meters per minor action, or 9 meters per 6 second, or 1.5 meters per second, or 90 meters per minute, or 5400 meters per hour, or 5.5 km per hour, or 8.7 mph. Of course that's top speed; adjust downward as appropriate. So, what does that translate to in terms of 'how much cargo can it unload per minute/hour?"

Leading to:
Average (TL 13, Type B, Pop 5 average wealth) 10min/ton on or off < - - - - 20 mins per tonne ("the tonnage times two")

There is more math involved that I can post if you want.
I'd contemplate the world's starport grade, tech level, population, and the result of a die throw, then pull a number out of my butt that felt like it went along with all of those.
That's basically what I did, but was wondering if there was a more systematic approach available somewhere...
Because if you want to do it "right" (ie be inordinately tedious :p) you need to know what the loading equipment is, does the freighter have a cargo loader or internal gantry, how many cargo doors does it have, how many stevedores/robots/whatever are available to help... In a properly run starport of A or B rating, it'll be fast. In a D or E starport, the freighter's probably on its own resources. A class C starport could go either way.

And for extra fun: Is it liquid? Gas? Containerized? Palletized? Floor load? :D
I'm not particularly worried about the method as I am consistency in the "ballpark" region at least. So I'll hoover up any ideas that look good coming out of this thread. Oh, and Vormaerin? Palletized Liquid Gas Cylinders ^.^
Found the thing from the back of my memory. In the Starports book ( it talks about length of time to load/unload at type A Starports.

Landing pads of every conceivable shape and size are
available, fully equipped with hangers and airlocks. The loading
and unloading of even the most exotic or dangerous cargoes
is fully catered for. Loading times of five minutes per ton are
the norm – though specially equipped industrial hangers can
reduce this to one minute per ton.

Nothing is noted on B - E types.
I would imagine there is little difference between A and B ports in this regards. Most of that difference is shipyards and overall size, not facilities.

Type C ports would probably vary wildly from highly efficient to pretty slapdash, while D ports would probably be much slower and E ports would be "Well, hope you brought a forklift with you".
Underway Replenishment is presumably in the middle of space, utilizing only the cargo transfer facilities organic to the spacecraft in question.

If the loading belt or crane seems more of a question of quantity and/or size of package.