In its natural form, alch looks like stone though it is brittle like chalk. Most alch is deep purple or brown in color with veins of blue, yellow and red running through it. A unit of alch weights about half as much as an equal unit of stone.
Alch is converted into energy using a device known as an alch boiler.
Alch is a naturally occuring substance found floating within the Sea of Clouds, or embedded into the soil of bergs and cays. While some alch deposits can be reached through mining, about two thirds of alch is mined by cloud cruisers specially designed for prospecting. Miners take these ships and find floating alch deposits, cut away the useless rock and harvest boulder sized chunks of alch to sell as fuel.