Terrashaping was an experimental technology developed by the Thulcandran Federation in 10,108 CE that involved bombarding worlds with asteroids and heavy duty lasers to create and carve a desired shape for continents and oceans on many different planets.
The idea for terrashaping was not a new one at the time of its final execution, but the many scientific communities of the Confederacy had largely ignored it due to what they thought was its frivolous nature. However, scientists on Thulcandra began to develop this technology in order to re-create many of the iconic worlds of fantasy and science fiction. However, their first objective was to recreate Earth, as it was a real world that could be finely detailed and shaped with the new system.
On August 25, 10,111 CE, work began on the recreation of Earth around the world known as Gaia. Its moons were torn apart and the larger one was recreated to imitate the Moon pre-terraforming. The process was painstaking and precise and took over fiftyyears, but eventually Gaia's terrashaping was complete.
The Federation then immediately shared the technology with the Confederacy, who immediately improved upon the technology and made the process faster and cleaner. The technology has been used since to create fictional worlds as well as recreating worlds that had been destroyed. The Terrashaping Program is useful for "sculpting" worlds, but must be done on lifeless worlds according to the Confederate Government.
In order to carve a world, there is a rigorous selection process that must take place beforehand. The main objective is to find a sterile world that fits the specs of the world that is being created within an acceptable margin.
Next, large and powerful lasers are brought into orbit. Depending on the size of the planet, the lasers will either carve out some of the planet's mass or asteroids will be shot into the planet to add mass. When the desired mass is achieved, then the lasers are programmed and begin to sculpt the world below. With the help of powerful tractor beams, any excess mass is either moved off the planet or moved to a place where it is needed. Once the rough cuts are done, the lasers are fine tuned and focus on any finer details.
Once the process of carving the land is complete, then comes the normal terraforming process. The world's orbit is fine tuned, an atmosphere is added, as is water and plant and animal life. Once that is done, the process is complete.