Follow MeDonationsWe have NO ADS on the site or ADS during the podcast all we ask is if you can afford it please give a small donation to help us keep the site up and free. This article will address a much misunderstood subject, the effects of EMP (Electromagnetic Pulse) and some practical countermeasures against the damaging effects it can cause. The interaction of these electrons with the earth’s magnetic field then generates EMP, which is actually three components. I am a degree electronic engineer with nearly 40 years in practice, and worked as a volunteer amateur radio operator in the MARS (Military Affiliate Radio System) from the early 1980’s into the mid 1990’s, a time in communications when we were migrating from vacuum tubes to solid state electronics and the military communication planners were well aware of the EMP issue, and produced quite a bit of documentation and training material on the subject. EMP produces high voltages and currents via induction from a magnetic field across a conductor.
What this means is that many small electronic items, from FRS radios, to cell phones may be untouched, because the voltages induced internally are small. Nearly all modern electronics are hardened against induced voltages from things like static electricity and tested using both contact and air gap discharge tests with a minimum voltage in the range of 4000-8000 volts or more. While your cell phone may be undamaged, the cell towers, and interconnections to the normal telephone network will most likely fail, leaving you with a rather useless communications device with perhaps a working mp3 player and camera. A large solar electric panel has a large surface area and wiring, and makes a pretty good antenna for induced power, and I’m not sure you can really do anything to save them, other than a duplicate set stored in an EMP proof manner.
Now imagine a heavy thunder shower coming over the area that lasts perhaps for only 15 seconds. Of those that are upright, some of the smaller shot glasses may have a little water, or even be dry, but the buckets, pools, and especially the rain barrel, contain a lot of water.
The larger the surface area of the antenna, and the more directly it faces the pulse wave front, the more energy is transferred and the more current gets induced. In 1962 the United States detonated a 1.4 Megaton nuclear device in the upper atmosphere 250 miles above the earth’s surface in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, about 900 miles from Hawaii. It is generally true that an EMP event will not harm most humans; the power induced by an EMP event can possibly harm someone with a pacemaker, the lead wires of which may make a good set of antennas. Old stuff: My 30+ year old Stihl chainsaw and my 40+ year old generator both use magnetos and no electronics for the ignition. Spares: Keep EMP protected spares of equipment or repair components for newer equipment that you have decided is required equipment. Naturally shielded Equipment: whenever possible, purchase electronics in metal enclosures and not plastic. Natural Faraday Shield: Storing equipment in naturally shielded enclosures can provide protection to varying degrees depending on the enclosure, and can make a good place to store commonly used devices. Also, since the container cannot have any holes in it, the only way to really be sure it is always protective, is to have an airlock type door system, ensuring that one of the two doors is always closed when accessing the contents. Storing devices in anti-static bags is not a bad idea, but is unnecessary when the device is encased in foil. To ground or not to ground: There seems to always be heated discussion on whether or not to ground a Faraday cage.
Once you get the radio to stop, add, and remove a ground and you’ll see that the radio is not affected. While this in itself won’t hurt anything, if it is long enough and enough power is induced into it, you could see arcing, in, around, and possibly through your cage barrier.
If a ground was required to be functional, then is would not be possible to protect aircraft from EMP. Another event generally lumped into the EMP discussion is that of an EMP type event due to a solar storm. Hopefully this information will give you a starting point to think about countermeasures for an EMP event, and give you some ideas on how to secure equipment in your own situation. The Prepared Prepper's Cookbook: Over 170 Pages of Food Storage Tips, and Recipes From Preppers All Over America! Please teache me: in case of the Faraday cage, is possible to build, say, a small shed and after it’s done coverall of it in chicken wire mesh, then ground the stuff with a buried metal pole or something? First I want to say to OhioPrepper that this was an excellent article and very informative.
Victor Fox; theoretically you could construct a shed and then construct a Faraday cage inside of it with careful consideration to the door of the shed.
It would also be useful to place an FM radio in the box, tuned to a local strong station, and make sure it goes away. Question, how well will a all metal building on concrete slab with one small window do in a “real” event?
I realize, with no air-lock, if the door is open during an EMP there is no protection – but other than that, would this building be effective? For those with ham licenses or FRS radios, these can provide a further test, since they operate at an even higher frequency than standard FM broadcast. If this is a static electrical charge going on around what effect would that have on stored ammunition either in a metal or plastic box? In the military, many artillery rounds today are electronically triggered, which means that when they are hit with a high voltage charge they go off.
Hangun ammunition is completely encased in metal, with the exception of some polymer bullet loads or possibly bean bag rounds. It is not a static charge; but, an energy wave front that turns into a voltage and current within a conductor. The information looks OK; however, the fallout from a high level atmospheric detonation would consist only of the fission or fusion products of the explosion and the radioactive material in the container. Something that occurred to me a long time ago regarding the shielding of devices is the use of Mylar bags.
If you wish, test both processes out by sealing your phone inside and calling it with another phone.
One point to make certain of protecting against is to make sure the device inside is effectively padded and insulated from physical or electrical contact with the shield.
The rubber gasket allows an RF path; so, replace it with a metal gasket material, and make sure the contact area with the gasket are wire brushed down to bare metal. I have a 10 footer and a 20 footer; they are all metal, have no vents, are actually sealed for ocean shipment.
I like the size of my 20 footer, I’ve got a skidsteer, 4 wheeler, and some misc stuff in there.
First I would like to clear up a few things: I was confused about all the different “space weather” terms so several years ago I researched this subject.
Bottom Line: solar flare, solar storm, sun spots and coronal mass ejection are four separate “space weather” events.
As a result, aluminum wiring has been banned in construction because of its low flash point when overloaded.
Lastly, although a Farady Cage made of wire fencing will stop radio frequencies from penetrating, Farady protection of this type will NOT protect the contents from the high levels of electro and ferro magnetic energy emitted by an EMP or CME. Top this off with ANY Farady cage that is to protect its contents MUST be grounded – too many people forget this fact. Now to have a Farady cage like a trash can, metal lunch box or aluminum alloy pouch, etc that is grounded and then buried with about 2-3 feet of dirt covering it – should offer enough protection from the high range of electro and ferro magnetic energy emitted by a bulls eye CME or EMP. I agree with everything you said other then the reason aluminum foil is less expensive than copper, etc. The cost factor is all about how common or rare it is and what it cost to bring it to market, not it’s electrical use. I would also recommend that everyone go back and watch the video posted here about 3 weeks ago. Write the first Review!Tell us your opinion about "Sprayed Checkshirt" and win a ?25 voucher!Each month we randomly select two customers that have written a review and send each one a voucher! The Naval Surface Forces (NSF) of the Ministry of Defense (MoD) are reporting today that three nuclear-powered Akula-class submarines belonging to the 24th Submarine Division of the Northern Fleet (NF) successfully a€?war-gameda€? the American aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt [photo 2nd left] causing it to a€?flee in terrora€? towards the waters off the Hampshire coast in the United Kingdom. Within hours of the NSF reporting this critical incident, ita€™s interesting to note, British press sources confirmed that this US Navy behemoth of a€?100,000 tons of firepowera€? did indeed dock off Stokes Bay in Gosport stunning the thousands of spectators who jammed roads and lined the banks of the River Solent to see it, but which they, also, described as a port call, though none had been scheduled. With NATO forces, literally, lining the entire western border with troops, including the unprecedented US Armya€™s a€?Dragon Ridea€? armored convoy currently winding its way across six European nations, and Norwaya€™s equally unprecedented a€?Joint Vikinga€? combat war moves against the northern border, this report continues, President Putin himself gave the order to a€?target and disablea€? the USS Theodore Roosevelt.
As Russia had warned its citizens last week to prepare for nuclear war, and Moscowa€™s bomb shelters began to fill in response to the dire first-strike nuclear attack being planned by the US, and nearly all of the Federations military forces being on full combat alert across all 9 time zones, this report further notes, the approach of the USS Theodore Roosevelt towards the Baltic Sea made it a a€?legitimatea€? target. To how this US aircraft carrier was a€?disableda€? by the Northern Fleeta€™s attack submarines, this report says, was due to the Federations successful implementation of a€?magrav technologya€? weapons which had previously been used against American warships, and had a€?disableda€? them too. In fact, NSF experts in this report state, it was only a few weeks ago that the USS Theodore Roosevelt was a€?sunka€? by a French submarine using a€?magrav technologya€? off the coast of Florida during a war game wherein the Americans were testing their countermeasures against this revolutionary new weapon prior to their ships deployment to confront Northern Fleet forces.
The necessity of the US Navy to develop countermeasures against a€?magrav technologya€?, this report says, was clearly shown to them last year after Federation air forces completely disabled the feared AEGIS destroyer USS Donald Cook in the Black Sea. President Obamaa€™s signing of his Executive Order against a€?magrav technologya€?, it should be remembered, was due to the Iraniana€™s using it to down, and then capture one of the United States most secretive and sophisticated drones in December, 2011, and then Iran sharing this new weapon with Syria too.
I invite you to a direct presentation of our technology to you and your cabinet, to be given on neutral ground where the president of Iran could also be present and where no one betrays anyone else, so that we can all understand the fundamental change that is about to be brought to mankind.
As I said in my Sunday interview in Los Angeles, let us convert the military factories of the US to provide resources for a US space organization, so that the tools of war become the craft of universal peace.
The aircraft carriers of the US will become nothing but floating bathtubs if our Magravs technology is used effectively, and the runways full of F16s and 18s and so on will be nothing but runway museums of iron birds, as these craft will not be able to fly if their electronic systems are once touched by Magravs space technology. President Obama, we invite you to understand this change and to let us show you the technology that is bringing it about. Please sign a decree for genuine peace and not a gagging order for science and technology, which your people understand fully what we have developed as they try to protect the pride of your nation. This is not a question of the pride of one group or country, but pride for all of us in the advancement of the human race to new levels of understanding of the universal order of creation, in which we each have our place. Your Ambassador and Consul in Belgium have direct access to me from our previous talks and correspondence with them and would pass on any communication. Sadly, as this NSF concludes, it has cost the Obama the humiliating defeat of two of its most powerful warships since his banning of a€?magrav technologya€? in 2012, with the total disablement of the USS Donald Cook last year, the war game a€?sinkinga€? of the USS Theodore Roosevelt a few weeks ago, and now, today, this same aircraft carrier floating disabled off the UK coast, to realize the truth of Mehran Keshea€™s warning him that a€?the aircraft carriers of the US will become nothing but floating bathtubsa€?. And though not stated in this reporta€¦one need look no further than it to come to a full and complete understanding of why Obama is furiously attempting to negotiate with Iran, while at the same time trying to keep his military forces from igniting World War III in order to destroy those nations who have begun using a€?magrav technologya€? weapons against thema€¦.like Russia and Irana€¦and (of course) the French submarine communications centre thata€™s already being targeted by US drones.
The orthodox church is gaining ground again after centuries of losses to Catholic and other Christian denominations. The Anglo-American empire is deeply connected to the Vatican and Catholicism forms the biggest support group of the empire. The quote above shows that the American empire and growth of Catholicism have deep synergy. The EMP was powerful enough to affect the electric grid in Hawaii, blowing out streetlights, and resulting in telephone outages and radio blackouts. Graham then went on to become one of the nationa€™s leading experts on the topic, helping advise on both defensive and offensive capabilities. We needed to protect our ballistic missiles, B1 bombers, and communications systems for command and control. More recently, he has shifted his focus to protecting against what he now sees as the potentially greatest existential threat to the United States: an EMP attack against our civilian infrastructure a€“ particularly the electric power grid. To that end, Graham has served as Chair to both the 2001-4 and 2006-8 Commissions to Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse Attack, and was a member of the Department of Defensea€™s Science Board and the National Academies Board on Army Science and Technology. Since then, there have been an enormous increase in our dependency on electronics, computers, and microelectronics. Graham expressed concern that Iran also has this offensive capability within their arsenal, and perhaps within their current military doctrine as well. We have data indicating that the Iranians have launched their versions of Scuds off of the Caspian Sea a€“ not from land, but from the sea a€“ and launched them over land.
Herea€™s an excerpted summary from the 2008 Report of the Commission to Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse Attack that would make great science fiction.
The electromagnetic pulse (EMP) generated by a high altitude nuclear explosion is one of a small number of threats that can hold our society at risk of catastrophic consequencesa€¦A single EMP attack may seriously degrade or shut down a large part of the electric power grid in the geographic area of EMP exposure effective instantaneously.
In fact, the Commission is deeply concerned that such impacts are likely in the event of an EMP attack unless practical steps are taken to provide protection for critical elements of the electric system and for rapid restoration of electric power, particularly to essential services. It goes on to note that we have become so efficient, technology-dependent, and highly leveraged that utilities would lack sufficient trained service personnel to address a disaster on this scale.
The International Electrotechnical Commission defines three components associated with a nuclear electromagnetic pulse: E1, E2, and E3. One curious facet of an EMP event is that we wouldna€™t even feel it pass through our bodies. We would have little idea of the dread potentially awaiting us, because there would be no communications. The bad news (again) is that the civilian infrastructure is about as soft as it gets, there is nobody in charge of coordinating a hardening of this infrastructure, and government response to date has been tepid or watered down to the point that it is relatively meaningless.
In fact, no less than two Congressional Commissions (2004 and 2008), a National Academy of Sciences report and other U.S.
And yet, legislation to address the issue never makes it out of committee, regulators come up with weak standards, and nothing really happens.
Unfortunately, that failure of imagination appears to be front and center with respect to protection against EMPs a€“ whether created by the sun or human antagonists. Surprisingly, there is only a relatively small group of people who are highly focused on this issue.
Over the past few weeks, I have interviewed Graham, Pry, and a number of other experts, to better understand the issue as well, as the lack of any meaningful or concerted response a€“ from either the national government, the electric industry, and its regulators. Pry comments that the main entity responsible for electric reliability, the North American Electric AEP -1.21% Reliability Corporation, and its member utilities, dona€™t want to spend the money. If you drive to where the high-voltage AC substations are, you can see how unprotected they are.
Meanwhile, there is nobody specifically in charge of protecting the nationa€™s electric grid from a national security perspective. We saw just how weak this collaboration was with the recommendations coming out last month from the NERC relating to protection of the power grid against both physical attacks and solar storms. Pry commented that NERC has lobbied against the bill, claiming that it represents over-regulation.
Ambassador Hank Cooper served with Graham at the Air Force Weapons Laboratory in the 1960s and later oversaw the Department of Defense programs to harden the Air Force strategic systems, including the command, control and communications systems to assure they could operate through, and the President could use them after, a Soviet nuclear EMP attack. Cooper believes that one reason for inaction to date has been because key information on the EMP threat and how to counter it was highly classified during the Cold Wara€”indeed until the EMP Commission was able to get it made public in 2008. They certainly have had little effect on an electric industry that is unwilling to submit itself to additional oversight. There are some things government should be regulating, and the electric power grid is one of them.
Cooper notes that Congress has provided a dysfunctional regulatory arrangement that mirrors what it would be like if you could only buy medicine from completely unregulated pharmaceutical companies selling their waresa€”like buying a€?miracle drugsa€? from a traveling salesman in the a€?Old West.a€? There is a well-defined purpose for the Federal Drug Administrationa€”no matter what its performance may be. Connecting the dots requires only limited imagination, so it clearly stands to reason that the U.S.

The problem is the way it is set up is the FERC has to ask NERC to draft regulations, standards, and procedures along the lines and areas that the Commission specifies. In June of 2013, Graham, Cooper, and other experts concerned with the EMP threat wrote a highly detailed letter outlining the EMP threat and ways to protect against it. The Russian military went on high alert and actually brought the nuclear briefcase to then President Boris Yeltsin, while their intercontinental ballistic missiles were placed on high alert to prepare for a nuclear strike. Today, that danger from Russia still exists, but it is not what keeps Pry, Graham, or the EMP threat experts up at night. Even though the Department of Defense and the intelligence community has known about and dealt with the EMP threat for 50 years, it wasna€™t until about 2008 that many people knew about it. Concerns related to nuclear EMPs have heightened in recent years as a result of the continued activities of states such as Iran and North Korea, as well as various non-state actors such as Al Qaeda. Any casual observer of North Korea will note that the country routinely tests missiles (as they did this month) a€“ often during periods of heightened tensions on the Korean peninsula. Ambassador Cooper observes that the enemy has shifted, and we have not changed our doctrine in response.
We assumed that if the Soviets ever attacked us, they would lead with a high altitude attack on the U.S.
Mutual Assured Destruction works fine, if both parties understand and play by the same rules. It should be noted that Iran launched last year satellites that could carry a light weight a€?Super-EMPa€? weapon that they may have learned how to build from the Russians via their join programs with North Korea. And then there is the possibility of a massive geomagnetic storm, far greater than the Hydro-Quebec solar storm of 1989, which was sufficient to cause the HQ grid to collapse within 92 seconds, took out a transformer at a nuclear plant in New Jersey. A geomagnetic storm occurs when a solar wind interacts with the planeta€™s magnetosphere and transfers energy to that magnetosphere. The famous 1859 Carrington event reportedly created an aurora borealis bright enough so that people in the northeast could read a newspaper at night. However, no one knows if a voluntary blackout of the grid would, in fact save it from an EMP catastrophe. Given that high level of uncertainty, what would it take to harden the grid against either a solar or military EMP event? One individual who has done a good deal of work in evaluating the preventative technologies and associated costs a€“ with many publications to his name a€“ is John Kappenman.
Kappenman comments that this is a result of the tremendous amount of energy these plants process each day. These boilers take 20,000 tons of coal per day, and pulverize it to consistency of talcum powder to inject into the furnace and boiler systemsa€¦They have an enormous amount of energy input into the conversion process.
He notes that thousands of plants would experience the same thing at the same time, and the nukes would have radioactive energy as well.
The industry has badly miscalculated the risks that are posed by these disturbance or attack scenarios.
Kappenman looks at this problem as one that has to be responded to immediately in a post-event scenario. I care about the availability to bring the system back rapidly in a few days at most a€“ if we cana€™t do that, we see the potential for lots of innocent lives being lost, perhaps within the matter of just a few weeks, more than all of the wars this country has fought in its history.
The problem is that even if the transformers are protected, there is still enormous risk to thermal power plants.
Now you are down to looking at natural gas, oil fired, and hydroelectric sources that may have a better chance of surviving this scenario. If we talk about vulnerable electronic systems, most of this has to do with cords and leads into electronic boxes where electronics are housed. The expense comes from the fact that we have put a lot of this stuff in without thinking about these things, and the expense is in going in and retrofitting. With the bigger hardware, such as transformers, it is not necessary to harden every one of them. To take the most recent example of the lax approach to just one part of this issue a€“ solar storms a€“ the approach proposed by NERC and approved by FERC requires the utilities to monitor space weather, and have written plans in place to protect against solar storms. At the same time that we write $645 billion in annual life and health insurance premiums, and $460 billion in policies for property and casualty, we as a society are completely unwilling to protect against one of the potentially greatest natural and man-made threats to our existence.
The Finnish Speaker of Parliament, Eero HeinA¤luoma, has expressed surprise with the visit and wondered what kind of message the visit was intended to send. Haglund visited the USS Theodore Roosevelt along with Swedish Defence Minister Peter Hultqvist and British Defence Secretary Michael Fallon. Haglund dismissed that his visit was in any way connected with the Finnish debate about a NATO membership.
Commenting on the criticism by HeinA¤luoma, Haglund said it would have looked odd that a Finnish minister cannot visit a U.S. The joint exercises take place mainly over international waters between Finland and Sweden.
Write the first Review!Tell us your opinion about "Star Wars" and win a ?25 voucher!Each month we randomly select two customers that have written a review and send each one a voucher! When a nuclear weapon is detonated in the atmosphere, gamma radiation travels in all directions (spherically) and ionizes the air molecules around it, stripping the electrons in a cascade effect. We will not go into the physics here, bit a search of EMP and Compton Effect will bring you all of the heavy-duty reading you can handle.
If we think of the conductor as an antenna, then the smaller the antenna, the smaller the induced power will be. Unfortunately, most devices connected to the power line will suffer damage, up to and including complete inoperability, due to the induced high voltages on the power grid, which then are presented to the outlets in your home. Keep in mind however that you may have antennas on some of your equipment that is not connected to the power grid.
In short, anything not connected to the power grid that has its own extended wiring (antenna) is vulnerable. Take a collection of containers, from shot glasses, coffee cups, 5 gallon buckets, kid’s swimming pools, and the rain barrel attached to your downspout, and set them all over the yard.
To some extent this may affect things in a seemingly random fashion, because it depends on a lot of factors that cannot be known when the event occurs. Even here, the location of the person and orientation to the pulse will have an (unpredictable) effect. While not perfect, the metal enclosure will provide some amount of faraday shielding to your device. Metal desks, filing cabinets, metal storage boxes (tool box with tight-fitting lid), or even a 30 gallon metal trash can with a tight-fitting lid, can be convenient and are a better place to store things than laying out on the countertop or table. Any metal will do, and although commercial cages are generally constructed with copper mesh, copper is not required. The simplest way to provide protection is to keep things in their original boxes, and wrap the boxes like Christmas or Birthday presents with several overlapping layers of aluminum foil, being careful not to tear the foil on the corners or any sharp edges. The short answer is that it isn’t necessary and indeed may be harmful in some configurations. If the cage is physically close to earth ground, a heavy breaded ground may not hurt anything, but is not required. The only real danger of leaving the cage ungrounded is that if you are touching it at the moment of an EMP event, you will likely receive a nasty shock. Keep in mind that the LED’s in flashlights are solid state devices, and although superior in almost every way to the older light bulb based lights, may be susceptible to EMP when those old light bulbs are not.
The good thing here is that NASA keeps a pretty close eye on the sun and we generally get some warning on future events. The effects of an EMP event are in many ways theoretical, and all we can do is the best effort based on what we do understand if the physics involved.
They are quite inexpensive, I like the concept and design, they are pretty much reliable when well maintained and almost all-terrain. I have old cell phones and computers but it sounds like they will be useless if the towers are out.
I’ve got my back-up solar panels and charge controller stored in a small metal building that was originally used to house signal equipment along a local railroad. In theory, if you had a polymer bullet with a metal core that was exposed to the powder, it could act a bit like a spark plug and a static charge could set it off. These particles may be quickly drawn up into the stratosphere, particularly so if the explosive yield exceeds 10 Kt. It may not display this or other websites correctly.You should upgrade or use an alternative browser.
These crafts and battleships would have to be rewired from A to Z before they could ever operate again. It is a diseased faith that is weak and old, and is losing its adherents in its primary support base. The most common estimates of the number of Orthodox Christians worldwide are approximately 225a€“300 million. William Graham was active in the follow-up to the project, working out of the Air Force weapons lab in Albuquerque, New Mexico. One effect was an electromagnetic pulse, but nobody knew it was going to be anywhere nearly as large it proved to be. Graham continued to lend his expertise, and became a member of the Presidenta€™s Arms Control Experts Group and Science Advisor to the President.
He is concerned that in the last half century since we first became aware of this issue, our increasing reliance on electronics, and hence our vulnerability, has increased tremendously. And wea€™ve also seen them launch missiles that have gone up and apparently exploded near their highest altitude a€“ when you put those two ideas together a€“ that is an EMP attack.
Because a single missile with a warhead that actually doesna€™t have to be all that large, has the potential to take out the U.S.
There is also the possibility of functional collapse of grids beyond the exposed one, as electrical effects propagate from one region to anothera€¦Should significant parts of the electric power infrastructure be lost for any substantial period of time, the Commission believes that the consequences are likely to be catastrophic, and many people may ultimately die for lack of the basic elements necessary to sustain life in dense urban and suburban communities.
The E1 pulse is brief, intense, and very quick (traveling at over 90% of the speed of light), and can take out computers and telecommunications equipment owing to its ability to exceed voltage limitations.
The EMP would pass unnoticed through us, even as it fried the iPhones and Galaxies in our pockets, knocked out our telecommunications system, rendered our cars and computers without the ability to function, and took out our power grid. The military had been working on hardening its capabilities since the Cold War in the 1960s (as have the Russians, Chinese, and other nations).
It is only after a significant harmful event has occurred that we, as a society, raise questions as to why didna€™t we do more to guard against the potential effects. And yet, that hurricane had to hit New York before the city seriously addressed the threat a€“ we could not extrapolate from Katrina and connect the dots.
Peter Pry, who has written extensively on the topic, most recently publishing the book ELECTRIC ARMAGEDDON: CIVIL-MILITARY PREPAREDNESS FOR AN ELECTROMAGNETIC PULSE CATASTROPHE as head of the Task Force on National And Homeland Security.
Some friends of mine in California deliberately hung around a substation for hours just to see if anybody would ask them what they were doing there and nobody showed up. The Department of Defense has no jurisdiction for protecting the domestic civilian infrastructure, despite its national security implications. In both cases, the standards approved by NERC are far below what is necessary, and dona€™t even include power plants. In 2011, Representative Trent Franks (a Republican from Arizona) attempted to address this situation, sponsoring H.R. He notes that in his view, the Edison Electric Institute is no better, characterizing this effort as a€?Obamacare for the electric grida€™ and stating that the industry should be left to address this issue. He was President Reagana€™s Chief Negotiator at the Defense and Space Talks with Soviets and Director of the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) during George H.W. We should have some kind of regulatory body to deal with the electric power infrastructure that has grown up helter-skelter over many decades.
He suggests we need an analogous authority with teeth to assure a viable electric power grid. You can be right almost of the time, but there are times that when you are wrong the results can be catastrophic.
This letter a€“ from the Foundation For Resilient Societies a€“ was addressed to the White House as well as to the Secretaries of Defense, State, Energy, and Homeland Security, as well as a host of other federal agencies. The goal was to paralyze our military systems, as well as civilian critical infrastructure.
One of the Soviet Uniona€™s greatest fears was that we had an EMP attack in our military doctrine, and they prepared for it. A Norwegian meteorological rocket was launched (to study the Aurora Borealis) and the Russians thought it was an incoming missile.
They thought it was an EMP missile, to take out the general staff and paralyze the forces to enable a surprise attack. Today, the danger is less likely to emanate from an organized state within the community of nations, and more likely to come from a marginalized nation or a stateless entity a€“ somebody who has less to lose, and against whom it would be harder to strike back. We were visited in 2004 by a delegation of Russian generalsa€”two of their top EMP experts. But that is exactly what a super EMP would look like a€“ low yield but designed to maximize the production of gamma rays which, if detonated above the eartha€™s atmosphere, interact with the geomagnetic field to produce the EMP effect. And these satellites were launched to the south from Irana€”they approached the United States from the south. This results in increased electric current, which can be picked up by power lines essentially acting as antennae. The EMP impact was sufficient to cause telegraph machines to catch on fire and took out the newly laid transatlantic cable.
Just two years ago, a solar superstorm erupted that was likely similar to or greater in magnitude than the Carrington event. That depends on what and who you are trying to protect against and what kind of post-event capabilities one is trying to achieve. Kappenman is a consultant to the Department for Homeland Security, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and the DoD concerning the risks and costs of solar storms to the electric grid. I think we probably need to do somewhere like 1700 a€“ 2000 large transformers to protect against the EMP magnetic stormsa€¦we are talking about something in the neighborhood of around a billion dollars or so. Ita€™s equivalent to exploding one ton of TNT per seconda€¦When you get the E1 blast, it could cripple virtually all of the electronic systems that are driving the entire power plant.
Thata€™s a serious problema€¦It is perhaps the largest natural disaster scenario that could occur to modern day society. The question a€“ whether in a natural or man-made catastrophe a€“ is what functional pieces are left, and how quickly you can stitch them back together to some functional level. Many of those would likely be out of commission for some time, including the nuclear and coal plants.
But with natural gas, it doesna€™t have any on-site stored fuela€¦Pipelines have control systems that are going to be challenged by the same E1 threat and may not survive it.
Kappenman indicates that this depends significantly on how one approaches the issue and what is the target to be hardened.

The cost a€“ if we had thought about it in the first place a€“ would have been inconsequential.
The key is to apply systems thinking, look at the entire grid as a whole, and determine where you need redundancy and what critical assets must be protected.
FERC estimates an annual compliance burden of 20 hours per utility, costing approximately $1,200. Randy from The Grawlix Podcast calls in and joins us as we discuss the tech news of the week and podcasting software and hardware.
The lights were damaged precisely because they were part of a large antenna system which allowed large voltages and currents to be produced. All of my Yaesu radios are build this way using heavy cast aluminum for the main body, although those connected to a power supply or antenna during an event would most likely be damaged. Make sure to remove paint and rust so the lid and the container have a solid electrical connection.
The problem with constructing a single Faraday Cage is that everything must be stored there, and may not be easily available for everyday use. BTW, the copper mesh is generally used due to weight concerns and to allow external light to penetrate the cage, since having anything but a battery-powered light in the cage would represent a break of the cage integrity to the outside world. Assuming the cage is constructed properly, which can be tested by placing a battery-powered radio inside (the radio should stop producing sound when the cage is closed). Connecting a lighter (single copper wire) more than a few feet, may seem like a ground connection, but in reality can act like an antenna. Lightning is generated as a high voltage differential between the upper atmosphere and the ground, and the lightning strike is natures attempt to bring the differential to zero. Keeping additional supplies (like the diodes for the vehicle alternator) wrapped in aluminum foil and tucked in the bottom of the drawer, will give you the ability to fix the broken things if an event actually breaks them. So, get some cheap aluminum foil and look around the house and I suspect you’ll find a lot of potential hidey holes that will fit the bill. I thought about just keeping spares for the generator protected and found the price of the spares cost more than the generator. Mine has no windows and is bolted onto the concrete floor slab but there are no actual metal connections to the earth.There is no wiring or plumbing connecting to it. Some folks wonder if clothing and a static electricity charge would set off their ammo in their carry pistol as they CCW. They will then be dispersed by atmospheric winds and will gradually settle to the earth’s surface after weeks, months, and even years as worldwide fallout.
Dubbed Operation Starfish, this exercise was part of a larger project to evaluate the impacts of nuclear explosions in space. After the blast, it was his job to understand the data collected, find out just what had happened in Hawaii, and what the defense implications were of this phenomenon.
They had all this data and they didna€™t understand very much of it, including the EMPs that had been observed and the effects produceda€¦all kinds of electrical disturbances were seen over 1000 kilometers away in Oahu. The E2 element is intermediate in duration, lasting from a microsecond to a second after the initiation of the EMP, and is similar in its effects to lightning.
All found that the EMP threat poses a significant and existential threat to the United States. Graham, they also happen to be the ones who were most involved in developing our own EMP weaponry capabilities or countermeasures during the Cold War, so they know better than most how devastating these weapons can be. NERC is relatively toothless, made up of its member utilities a€“ whose chief responsibilities are to their shareholders and ratepayers, not to safeguard national security. There is simply no holistic view being applied, and no serious response to the potential severity of the threat. 668, the Secure High-voltage Infrastructure for Electricity from Lethal Damage (SHIELD) Act.
Industry and the private sector is wired to provide goods and services efficiently a€“ they will always be against spending that extra dime to protect against a black swan event. Bush eraa€”where he worked to assure our ballistic missile defense systems were hardened to EMP effects. Ita€™s as if you were in the pharmaceutical industry and the industry decided what pharmaceuticals to approvea€¦ What this arrangement does is it allows NERC a€“ which is just another vehicle of the electric power industry a€“ to retain the rewards of having a regulated utility while at the same time handing the risk off to the taxpayera€¦If you can privatize the rewards and socialize the risks, you cana€™t get a better deal than that. The FERC-NERC arrangement is whistling past the graveyard, working on the assumption that nothing ever happens for the first time. The Russians were also hoping it would interfere with emergency action messages to all forces, including ballistic nuke submarines.
That was the first time I had ever heard them admit leakage of technology to third world bad guys.
We spent a lot of money to harden our strategic military infrastructure, including redundancy. We face an existential threat from somebody who has openly stated the Iranian regime wants to destroy usa€”the a€?Great Satana€? as they say.
Our missile defense systems are deployed to counter missiles approaching us from the a€?north.a€™ We are vulnerable to EMP attacks from the south. He has modeled the costs to protect against potential massive solar storms, as well as having invented some of the defensive technology.
With an E1, after the blast occurs, there is a big atmospheric heave that creates a geomagnetic field disturbancea€¦One of the things I am concerned about is all of the power plants that are out there. It would only take seconds of energy mismatch between energy input, and you would have a very volatile situation that could explode the plant and not only hurt people but make it unavailable for restoration any time soon. Ita€™s also the largest terror attack scenario that the country could possibly be exposed to as well. But people havena€™t thought through the fact that all of these leads connected into that smart box act like antennas that wait to be pulsed and kill that electronic brain.
These are all technologies that exist, are well known, and are not expensive in their own right.
And you dona€™t need to harden all of SCADA (supervisory control and data acquisition systems that provide remote monitoring and control) as such.
Those on their side are similar, but some of them nay contain water, based again on their orientation to the storm. The same would also apply to older vehicles with carburetors and standard points & condenser, or maybe some of those old tube based radios.
When possible, line the edges of the container and lid with copper or other electrical braid to act as an electrical gasket. The magnetic field gradients within the box should always cancel out to zero, regardless of whether or not the cage is grounded. I’ve replaced the rubber door gasket with a metal mesh one and keep the stored equipment isolated from the floor and the walls. Common handgun ammo uses a metal bullet in a metal casing, so you have a conductive enclosure that contains the powder. The radiobiological hazard of worldwide fallout is essentially a long-term one due to the potential accumulation of long-lived radioisotopes, such as strontium-90 and cesium-137, in the body as a result of ingestion of foods which had incorporated these radioactive materials”. The bottom line is that an ungrounded cage protects the contents from harmful electromagnetic fields as well as a grounded one. The missile, launched from Johnson Island, 900 miles from Hawaii, was armed with a 1.4 megaton warhead, programmed to explode at 240 miles above the earth. Just because a storm hit New Orleans and caused tremendous damage, why should New York worry? And they are extremely frustrated with the utter lack of meaningful action in Washington to address this issue.
Pry is an expert in the space, has served on numerous congressional advisory groups concerning national security issues. This legislation would have directed the FERC to enable emergency measures to protect the power grid via directive of the President. If pharmacies did that for drugs, people wouldna€™t stand for it, but this is more complex so people dona€™t understand it. It was my specialtya€¦to educate policymakers and military leaders about EMP and what the bad guys were planning to do with it. Pry noted that this preparation and mindset almost proved our undoing, because the Russians took this threat very seriously, even after the Cold War was over. In 2008, the contents of the updated report on critical national infrastructures was released as a result of a deliberate decision to inform the public and declassify enough to raise awareness that there was a threat to the unhardened infrastructure.
And so I am absolutely certain that the effects are real, and that we know how to harden against them. All they need is a nuclear weapon to go on one of their existing ballistic missiles used to launch satellites. The good news here is that with a solar event taking place 96 million miles away, we would have approximately 20 hours of lead time, and could potentially take the power grid offline to protect transformers and other infrastructure until an event passed by.
Daniel Baker of the University of Colorado was quoted as saying that had the event occurred a week earlier, the earth would have been hit. Kappenman observes that you have to apply systems thinking to a highly interconnected power grid. Compare that to the existing investment in the power grid infrastructure, which is more than a trillion dollars, perhaps several trillion. I would say concentrate on restoring the paths from those black start generators to pick up loads in regions around them. The challenge has to do with the fact that our electronics are ubiquitous, making a complete retrofit effort time-consuming and costly. People need to think through how they are doing this and put in simple filtering devices to prevent the damage.
But we now have an infrastructure out there that has never been thought through properly for this threat. If we can begin to control some of this through manual controls to at least get the lights back on, that would be adequate to ensure at least getting the lights back on as a limited lifeline capability.
By contrast, the E3 pulse is much slower, a result of the nuclear explosion affecting the eartha€™s magnetic field, and is very similar to the effects of an intense solar storm. He also connected me with some of the other major thinkers who have been advocating for a more proactive U.S response. Importantly, it also laid out the cost recovery methodologies (the private sector needs to get paid for the measures it implements). The FERC has directed the NERC to develop plans against an electromagnetic storm, and even in this area, the result has been astonishingly lackluster. We developed this super EMP weapon, and during the post Cold War brain drain, some of our scientists went to North Koreaa€™a€¦They thought within a few years, North Korea could develop a super EMP weapon.
During the Cold War, we did little or nothing to harden the commercial infrastructure essential to our survival.
And while all of the attention (such as it is) has been paid to security of the power lines a€“ which would indeed act to magnify the strength of the EMP, power plants are extremely vulnerable and cannot be ignored. A large base-load plant such as coal or nukes a€“ all of these may have a very difficult time remaining intact. The best way to approach it would be piecemeal, focusing on the critical areas first and replacing other items as they age and require updating. You dona€™t need a SCADA system to actually do that a€“ we operated for decades that way in the grid before SCADA came along.
And we dona€™t have the political will to address this issue with the resources and gravity it deserves.
Bottomline, it’s pretty unlikely that a direct lightning strike could set off a round of ammunition, as far as static electricity, maybe once in 5000 years. Military and intelligence analysts have concluded that the bomb fizzled and that the yield was not nearly as high as should be expected. What was not entirely expected was the magnitude of the resulting electromagnetic pulse (EMP).
The E3 effect of a nuclear blast or severe solar storm would be to create massive currents on power lines, which could then destroy electrical transformers and potentially impact power plants as well.
The Act also would have ordered the FERC to develop and submit reliability standards for the electric grid with respect to geomagnetic storms or EMPs.
The grid is not enormously robust to begin with, and all thata€™s absent is some dedicated adversary with the desire and competence to take it down. The South Korean military intelligence came up with same conclusion a€“ that Russian scientists were in North Korea developing their weapons. We bet everything on the idea of mutual assured destruction (the doctrine of deterrence that posited that any attack on the U.S.
All these systems sit there and act like a big antenna when a storm or an EMP attack occurs. We also need a rudimentary voice communication system that has been thought out and hardened as well. Finally, it would have directed the DoE to create a program to develop expertise in safeguarding the bulk power system and to share this expertise with the owners, operators and users. Using fiber optic cables that do not contain electrical conductors (instead of copper wires) can also help, since they will not act like an antenna.
As the SCADA and controls systems get replaced in routine maintenance, you could bring in new and hardened inexpensive components for the next generation. We established a tripwire in Europe so the Soviets wouldna€™t attack them or us in the first place. Since the effect wasna€™t really understood before 1962, our military systems hadna€™t protected against it up to that point. Each cylinder typically has it own ignition coil so there is a lot going on under the hood. Ita€™s well within the capability of even an earlier Scud missile, of which thousands have been produced a€“ it just has to have nuclear weapon on top (Authora€™s note a€“ just this month, the ISIS paraded what they claimed was a captured Scud missile in Syria.
As the trend in electronics technology has generally been toward greater fragility, susceptibility to EMPs has increased.
For a while, the Soviets were intentionally retaining electron tubes in their military equipment because they are less vulnerable to EMP malfunction. A metal toolbox sealed with your guns, ammo and spare parts and a big heavy steel bumper to push all the dead vehicles out of the way. Get a few of the cheap hand held Chinese ham radios at $35 for emergency communications inside the metal box. Then the current in the implant loop is, by Ohma€™s Law, 500 mA and the power dissipated is 250 W for the duration of the E1 pulse, which can be anywhere from 10 ns to 1 I?s. This is not a significant amount of energy and therefore, tooth implants should not pose a major hazard to those having them during a nuclear EMP event.

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Rubric: Canada Emergency Preparedness


  1. Baban_Qurban
    Aid gear, and I tend to carry nASA officials have declared that the CME.
    Even though their man is in the.