I like that idea, Tool Slots would be very nice to add to the Auto Extractor; Wide mod increases the range, boost mod increases speed of extraction, etc. Each would increase the power requirement of the AE of course. Still, having a more mobile item to gauge just how rich a node is before moving the AE all the way to it would be a nice QoL change. Also, maybe an item like the probe scanner that points you in the direction of a resource node when it has a filter?
With the Auto Extractor I found it difficult to find the perfect place for it and it's hard to tell at a glance how rich a node is. I propose an item, small enough to carry around on the backpack, that can be placed to give an approximate readout of the node to reduce juggling of the Auto Extractor. It would be useful to tell the richness of a node before digging, so I suggest it be made of either Iron or Steel, putting it at mid-late game, and cost somewhere around 5-8,000 bytes.