Arbran III is an ice-bound world that orbits the system’s star at a distance of one hundred seventy-five million kilometres, close to the edge of the system’s habitable zone. The air is cold but breathable for short periods, although lung damage can occur in a little over three hours if some form of cold weather protection is not used. Daily temperatures average five degrees below the freezing point of water at the equator, dropping to thirty below at the poles, and at the height of summer. In winter, the temperatures near the poles can go lower than one hundred degrees below freezing.
Most of the planet is wrapped in permanent glaciers hundreds of metres thick, while vast areas are covered in thick forests of cold-resistant Melan and Olan trees. These trees have a symbiotic relationship with several types of bacteria that help them with photosynthesis. The chemical reactions within these bacteria produce enough excess thermal energy to enable liquid water to flow within the trees’ circulation system, as well as making these cold forests relatively free of frost for most of the year.
Despite the cold, Arbran III boasts a healthy population, especially of cold-tolerant species such as Whiphids and Talz. Surprisingly, there is even a thriving colony of Wookies, whose thick fur stands them in good stead in the frigid environment. Much of the planet survives in its native state, with wildlife still able to follow ancient migration routes. Herds of tauntauns are common in the northern and southern polar regions, and the local wampas hunt them as their primary source of food. The wampas, in turn, are hunted by settlers for their thick fur, which provides excellent protection from cold and ice.