When a pilot's ship receives catastrophic hull damage (breaks apart) or becomes incapable of supporting life, the commander automatically escapes via an ever-present escape pod. In most circumstances, the escape pod transports the pilot back to the last station that they docked at. In the event that the pilot has committed a crime, acquired a bounty, and is then destroyed by security vessels or ATR, they will instead be transported to the nearest Detention Centre belonging to the security force's affiliation: Federation, Empire, Alliance, or Independent.
The Remlok Suit provides environmental protection from extreme temperature variations and hazards such as hard vacuum in depressurization. During emergencies the Remlok Survival Mask appears instantly to protect the wearer's head.
When the player's ship explodes, the screen will show "Ship Destroyed". There is no simulation of the escape pod. The player can select "Continue" to view the insurance costs to rebuy the old ship loadout, or get a Sidewinder MkI for free. Players will respawn at the last station with a shipyard that they docked at; if the last station they docked at had no shipyard function, they will respawn at the closest station with a shipyard to the location where they had lost their ship. Criminal players will respawn at the nearest affiliated Detention Centre.
When the player's SRV is destroyed, the player respawns onboard their ship.
Respawn is not used when a Ship-Launched Fighter controlled by the player is destroyed, since they are remotely-piloted vehicles ("telepresence control"). The player remains onboard their ship.
After respawn the player retains all credits, stored ships and modules, materials, and ranks. All cargo, unsold exploration data, and unclaimed bounty vouchers and combat bond vouchers are lost. All uncompleted missions are terminated.
The total number of respawns and the related insurance claims are displayed on the right-side Systems HUD (under Status > Statistics > Balance).
- Before Elite Dangerous: Beyond Chapter One (3.0), players always respawned at the station where they last docked.