Peter F Hamilton
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The "Big15" are fifteen human-colonized planets along the rim of phase 1 space, around 100 light-years from Earth. They were founded, funded and run by various corporations. After Earth passed a series of strict environmental protection acts, major industrial manufacturing had to be moved offworld. The Big15 were founded with little to no environmental laws and provide the majority of high-tech gadgetry for most of the Commonwealth.

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