CHOAM Corporate Banner.
Combine Honnete Ober Advancer Mercantiles (CHOAM).
CHOAM Corporate Banner.
The Flag Of CHOAM.
The Combine Honnete Ober Advancer Mercantiles (CHOAM) is a "universal development corporation" in The Landsraad. Essentially, it controls all economic affairs across the Landsraad, although it relies upon the Spacing Guild for transport across space due to the Guild's monopoly on interstellar travel (within the Landsraad).
"Few products escape the CHOAM touch... Logs, donkeys, horses,
cows, lumber, dung, sharks, whale fur- The most prosaic and the most
exotic… even our poor pundi rice from Caladan. Anything the Spacing Guild
will transport, the art forms of Ecaz, the machines of Richese and Ix. But all
fades before melange. A handful of spice will buy a home on Tupile. It cannot
be manufactured, it must be mined on Arrakis. It is unique and it has true
geriatric properties… But the important thing is to consider all the Houses
that depend on CHOAM profits. And think of the enormous proportion of
those profits dependent upon a single product- The spice. Imagine what
would happen if something should reduce spice production."
- Duke Leto ATREIDES.
The corporation's management and board of directors are controlled by the Muad'Dib Emperor and the Landsraad (with the Spacing Guild and the Gesserit Bene as silent partners). Because of its control of inter-planetary commerce, CHOAM is the largest single source of wealth in the Old Empire; as such, influence in CHOAM (through partisans within it and control of directorships) is the central goal of political maneuvering, both to receive dividends and also (it is implied) to skim off profits. In The Dune Report, Frank HERBERT related this passage (an excerpt from a conversation between Baron Vladimir HARKONNEN and his nephew, Feyd RAUTHA, from the ancient Dune War):
"'You have no idea how much wealth is involved, Feyd (RAUTHA)," Baron (Vladimir HARKONNEN) said. 'Not in your wildest imaginings. To begin, we'll have an irrevocable directorship in the CHOAM Company.'
"Feyd RAUTHA nodded. Wealth was the thing. CHOAM was the key to wealth, each noble House dipping from the company's coffers whatever it could under the power of the directorships. Those CHOAM directorships- They were the real evidence of political power in the Imperium, passing with the shifts of voting strength within the Landsraad as it balanced itself against the Emperor and his supporters."
- Frank HERBERT, repeating an uncorroborated conversation between Baron HARKONNEN and Feyd RAUTHA.
Before the climactic battle in Dune, Paul Muad'Dib's Fremen watch the Padishah Emperor's encampment to see whether he would raise the Atreides flag, indicating a recognition of Paul's claims, or the banner of Paul's Harkonnen enemies. Instead, the Emperor raises the flag of CHOAM, as a reminder to all of the combatant parties that economics trump political considerations.
General Information
Name: Combine Honnete Ober Advancer Mercantiles (CHOAM).
Colors: Red and Black
Banner: Above.
Owner: The Muad'Dib Emperor (previously the Padishah Emperors) and an assembly of noble Houses of the Landsraad as senior partners, Spacing Guild and Gesserit Bene junior partners. (The UGC has no interest in CHOAM.)
Size and Orientation:
Large Company (500)
A: Sponsorship:
B: Outfits:
C: Equipment:
D: Vehicles:

Open Wardrobe (10)

Electronic Supplies/Good Gear (5)
Medical Clinic (20)
Company Fleet of Vehicles (10)

E: Weapons:
F: Communications:
G: Internal Security:
H: Permanent Bases:
Basic Weaponry (5)Deluxe Comms Network (25)Tight (10)Company Town (40)
I: Intelligence Resources:
J: Special Budget:
K: General Alignment:
L: Criminal Activity:
None (0); At least in theory they don't need any.

Big Bucks (45)

Evil: Miscreant and Aberrant (0); Morals are irrelevant; Money is all that matters.None (0); They hold a de facto total stranglehold on manufacturing, so they don't actually HAVE to care.
M: Reputation/Credentials:
N: Salary:
Direct partnerships (allies):
Known (5)Excellent Salary (20)Spacing Guild; CHOAM's only real ally.
Loyalty To The UGC:
Essentially non-existent; As far as CHOAM is concerned, the UGC could all die off, and their interests would be improved. However, they DON'T do business with the Council's enemies- All of them are also CHOAM's enemies.
CHOAM Corporate Banner.
CHOAM Spice Harvester.
CHOAM Corporate Banner.
A "Spice Harvester" is a large, heavy, mobile factory designed to harvest the Spice Melange. They were dropped by carrier ships (known as Carryalls) onto spice fields until Harveters began being equipped with their own flight apparatus under Leto II. These mobile factories harvest and process the spice off the top of the desert floor. This immense farming mechanism is used solely on Arrakis, as it was the only known source of spice before the Tleilaxu developed a substitute.
Because of the rhythmic sound they make, they are regularly attacked and often eaten by sandworms. Thatas why 2 or 3 ornithopters (called spotters) fly in the sky above the spice harvester, watching for wormsign (an obvious sign that a sandworm is approaching). Upon detecting wormsign, the harvester rises up immediately to clear out of the way.
There's not much to tell about the Harvesters. They have a top ground speed of about a mile per hour, weigh 200 tons, and process 100 tons per hour. The flight speed is a paltry 100 miles per hour, the climb rate of 10 feet per second, so an unware Harvester (such as a pirate harvester) could easily be caught off-guard by a sufficiently large sandworm riding low enough, and that happens from time to time.
A Fremen Watches As Two
Harvesters Ply Their Industry.