(Found) Settled planet absorbs metals on surface and extrudes alien cables

Mar 7, 2017
No time frame for this one but I know it's 20+ years old. Humans settle a world and start terraforming, only to discover that if the planet's surface gets enough metals spread about (fertilizer is the first, accidental catalyst) the planet absorbs all the metals into a central core and alien machinery extrudes and launches a cable into space many kilometers in length. The cable is immensely strong and humans end up selling it to aliens.
The humans do end up making their way into the planet's interior to investigate the ancient alien machine responsible for the creation of the cables.
Parson grumbles.... "I knew that one!" and "I know so few." Danny, you're a genius.
I always say "If you got it; flaunt it."

I got sent the Captain Kirk meme by nephew when he passed his driving test last week. Been waiting for a chance to use it. Can't imagine anyone ever asking 'bout a Trek book, that would have been brilliant to use!

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