During the Conjoiner-Demarchist War it served as a key strategic resource. As the conflict dragged on the Demarchists, still crippled by the residual effects of the Melding Plague, were unable to produce militarily-useful quantities of antimatter. As such, they were forced to rely on fusion to power their ships, in the form of hydrogen. In gas giants such as Tangerine Dream hydrogen was compressed into a metallic state around its rocky core, a liquid state on its surface in the form of oceans, and a gaseous state in its atmosphere.
During the war whale-brained tankers were used by the Demarchists to pre-process metallic hydrogen into slugs which could be quickly transferred to their ships; to be used as either fuel or ammunition.