Encyclopedia Galactica

TRANTOR -- By the middle of the Interregnum, Trantor was a shadow. In the midst of the colossal ruins, there lived a small community of farmers.

Sector Centre
Location Core Worlds
Surface Area 194 million km²
Day Length 1.08 GSD
Population 40 billion
Affiliation - First Galactic Empire
- The Second Foundation
Status - Populated by humans
- Terraformed

Trantor was the capital planet of the Galactic Empire. A huge world of more than forty billion humans, it took the agricultural output of twenty-five farming worlds to feed its population, which was made up entirely of Imperial functionaries. The majority of Trantor was domed, except for the Imperial Grounds, which were the only surface exposed to the natural environment of the planet. Trantor was composed of many different sectors, some of which were quite independent, and almost all of which vied for power. Taking over Trantor was considered much easier than taking over the entire Galactic Empire, which pushed many factions to concentrate their power-grab on the capital. In Second Foundation , it is discovered that Trantor is also the seat of the Second Foundation.


Almost all of the 194,000,000 square kilometers of Trantor was covered by metallic domes. The Imperial Grounds, however, were not. An interesting characteristic of Trantor is the fact that vegetation grew even on top of the domes, sometimes clustering into small patches of woods where one could even hide (as Hari Seldon did in Prelude to Foundation).

The location of Trantor, relative to the Galaxy, is mentioned several times - Trantor is located at the centre of the Galaxy, or as close to the center as it could be without getting sucked into the turbulent, chaotic region surrounding the central black hole of the Galaxy.

The surface of the Trantor was not the only area that was inhabited. The planet is described as being slightly larger than Earth, but contains a population of forty billion. Most of the people live underground, as the planet extends down into its crust.

Trantor is divided into administrative districts (see below).


Trantor was initially the center of the five worlds that made up the Trantorian Republic. The Republic would eventually grow into the Galactic Empire, with Trantor as its capital. Around 260 FE, Trantor was sacked during a rebellion led by Gilmer. The sack of Trantor is considered one of the seminal events that occurred during the fall of the First Galactic Empire. After the sack, most of the population either left or was killed (the sacking of Trantor is described as an extremely brutal and violent event).

Over the years after the sacking of Trantor, most of the metal that covered the planet's surface was foraged and sold to other planets. The amount of metal on the planet was enough to sustain centuries-long trade with other worlds. Throughout this time, however, the Galactic Library was left untouched, and would play an important rule in the struggle against The Mule. It is eventually discovered that Trantor is actually the seat of The Second Foundation, who protect their identity and their location by sacrificing some of their own. Eventually, the only people left on Trantor became farmers knows as the Hamish, and the Second Foundationers used these Hamish farmers as cover for their existence. Trantor again plays a key role in determining the fate of the Galaxy when the Second Foundationer Stor Gendibal and the Hamish woman (covert Gaian) Suri set off to find Gaia .

Population & DemographicsEdit

The population of Trantor is said to be more than forty billion at its peak. Asimov describes the great majority of the population as being dedicated to the bureaucracy of the Empire. Due to Trantor's different districts, and the fact that most people emigrated to it from other worlds, there is perhaps greater human diversity on Trantor than on any other planet.


Trantor, as seen above, looks very similar. This is because the design of Trantor inspired many science fiction planets, including Star Wars, Bill, the Galactic Hero and even a name for a real planet.