Every now and then you'll lock on to a Pirate ship. 'C'ommunicate with him, and notice the eye patch! If you destroy him (not too difficult), two things happen:
|a. If he's from a race foreign to the sector you're in, you'll get a thank you (and a bounty if you have a license).|
|b. His cargo will be left lying around for you to pick up. (Remember your training with the 'F' and 'O' keys?)|
|(Tip) By and large, this isn't worth the effort.|
Each race has a Pirate Base somewhere in their territory. They're not on the map until you lock on to them. They work just like a Trading Post; dock and buy/sell whatever you want.
is where you get your engine and rudder "tuned"; i.e., performance improved.
It's expensive, so have money because you do need it.