Any American who has a cell phone—or who just wants to be able to flip on a light in the morning—should be concerned about our nation’s preparedness in the face of an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack. An EMP, which is a high-intensity burst of electromagnetic energy caused by the rapid acceleration of charged particles, can be produced by intense solar storms or by a nuclear weapon detonated high in the atmosphere. This past week, Jeanine Pirro of Fox News broadcasted a segment on the gravity of this issue and the lack of action taken by Congress to better prepare and defend our nation against such an attack. In fact, the current Administration has harmed our nation’s ability to counter such an attack by reducing our nation’s missile defense, one of our only defenses against an EMP attack. While some may view an EMP attack as something out of a sci-fi novel and those who caution against it as reactionary nuts, keep in mind that such an event has already happened. Rebecca Robison is currently a member of the Young Leaders Program at The Heritage Foundation. Ever feel like the only difference between the New York Times and Washington Post is the name?
Imagine not having any electricity for days, weeks, months or even years… no lights, no communication channels, no water, no refrigeration, no navigation systems, no gas pumping, no food transportation, no waste pumping or garbage collecting. Understanding the probability of an EMP of sufficient field strength, during your lifetime, is sufficient to warrant action on your part to protect your devices and solar panels from it. There are differences in effect and magnitude between nuclear high-altitude EMP (NHEMP, or EMP caused by a nuclear weapon detonated high above the earth), geomagnetically induced EMP (GIEMP or EMP caused by solar weather), and nuclear low-altitude EMP (NLEMP or EMP from a nuclear weapon detonated near the ground).
NHEMP is not a single EMP pulse, but rather, it a pulse consisting of three separate components: E1, E2 and E3. E1 is an extremely fast and brief pulse that induces very high voltages in electronics within roughly line of sight of the detonation.
Unlike the previous two components, E3 induces extremely high voltages in long conductors that run parallel to the earth’s magnetic field such as power lines, phone lines, railroad tracks and metal pipelines. The affected area can be as small as a few hundred mile radius, or can be so large that it can affect the entire planet. NLEMP is similar to NHEMP, but it lacks the thousand-fold amplification caused by its higher-altitude sister. How can we shield solar panels against all three components and all against all three threats? Current should be able to travel unimpeded through the conductive outer skin of the Faraday cage. Since most DIY Faraday cages are either too bulky, too heavy or too delicate to travel with you in your rucksack or backpack, another solution is needed to protect portable solar arrays, portable solar chargers and other portable solar gear in your pack. Since an NHEMP could produce almost double the field strength that 40dB of shielding will protect, take the added precaution of sealing your solar panels inside two layers of bags which each provide at least 40dB of shielding. Some shielding is definitely better than no shielding, but there is no reason to run the risk.
Lastly, make sure that the bags that you choose have a non-conductive inner layer just like needs to be installed in a Faraday cage to prevent electricity from arcing from the conductive layer(s) of the bag into the solar gear that you are trying to protect. EMP caused by nuclear weapons has three different types of effects that need to protected against.
Solar panel & electronics stored in inexpensive shielding solutions such as Faraday cages and Faraday bags are only protected from E1 & E2 while they are inside their shielded storage containers! And you know the principles involved in building an effective Faraday cage, what to look for in Faraday bags and that one layer of most of the bags on the market today is insufficient to protect against EMP. Now you now know the basics of protecting your stored and portable solar gear against EMP in ways that almost anyone can afford! Watch for the second part of this article HERE to learn the principles involved in protecting grid-connected solar installations like you may have mounted to your rooftop or near your home. About the Author Latest PostsAbout Cache Valley PrepperCache Valley Prepper is the CEO of Survival Sensei, LLC, a freelance author, writer, survival instructor, consultant and the director of the Survival Brain Trust.
Part II of the article will be published tomorrow and it goes into more detail specifically about protecting a structure and its contents. Read Part II and if you still have questions about that, ask again and I'll answer your question in the comments section of Part II, OK? The short answer is, "EMP can affect some small batteries, so shield them." But this is a VERY important question and I'd really like to write an article (or perhaps a paper) addressing this topic since there is so much lousy advice circulating about it online. Hi, I presume the generators were under load, or at least cycling, if they were damaged, correct? My understanding is that the generators were running and connected to energized and monitored sections of overhead telecom cables.
Since making and storing a faraday cage is more challenging for a 4' x 8' solar panel, are there any alternate ideas?
Yes, whether your solar panels are mounted on the exterior of your vehicle or carried inside, they would be vulnerable to EMP unless you take steps to protect them. Yes, I know for a fact that 1 mil thick aluminum foil provides enough shielding to protect against EMP of up to 50 thousand volts per meter. The amplitude, frequency and polarity of the wave(s) which impinge upon your equipment will be the determining factors in estimating the damage which will ensue from an EMP.
Shielding the solar panel with a conductive medium will of necessity reduce the effectiveness of the panel by diminishing the amount of light it receives. Shielding the output wires requires encasing them in a grounded conductive shield which is grounded at one end only to prevent ground loops. Since we don't know the frequencies involved in a potential EMP threat we must design for a worst case scenario.
An expensive way to proceed is to NOT shield the system and allow it to operate until (and if) an EMP strike occurs. I do not belive a person can be prepared to survive I do how ever believe you can have the education and tools for a fighting chance to prevail and this is a good start at an education for. We already have the technology available to us to protect the grid and homes from EMP, but it cost's more money, so a utility company that implements it won't be able to compete with a company that doesn't. If you want to know more about what you can do to make that happen, sign up for the newsletter at to learn more about EMP, advances that our enemies are making in the field and when legislation is being proposed.
First, I should make it clear that I do benefit in any way by recommending any particular vendor. Water pump will be wind powered and the greenhouse and house heated by sun and an HHO furnace. Be sure to check out Part II of this article since it contains information that applies to the type of project that you are working on.

American Culture Under Attack With Obamaa€™s Assault on Gun Owners Armed Guard Disarms Shooter At Atlanta Middle School Texas Gun Writer John Wootters, Passes Gun Owners Wouldna€™t & Shouldna€™t Accept a€?Universal Background Checksa€™ NY Times: Obamaa€™s Gun Ban Wouldna€™t Have Prevented Newtown Are we preparing for Civil War?
Shopping For The Best Deal Finding and Creating Heat Sources in the Wilderness Forget Gold and Silver; This is the Investment you NEED to Make Fearing Obama, Its Palpable Attempted Robbery At Waffle House Stopped By Men With Concealed Carry Permits What Is The Difference Between A Prepper And A Survivalist? Isn’t it interesting that NORAD is moving back in and calling it home?  Do they know something we don’t know? No one truly knows the risk of an EMP attack (either man-made or natural) actually occurring.  However, based on the actions and statements of our government, it should definitely warrant your attention.  In addition, regardless of the probability, can you imagine how an EMP might upset your Bug-In or Bug-Out plans? Are you planning to drive long distances?  Imagine bugging out without a motor vehicle.  Do you have supplies at your location already or were you anticipating on loading up your vehicle? Do you have a means to heat your home since HVAC is electronic and cannot push air through your home? You should avoid any water bath canner or pressure cooker than has a rubber gasket as Faraday cages need to have a continual metal covering. In fact, while it may sound like a term from a high school physics textbook, an EMP in action could result in the death of thousands of people.
When such a solar storm occurred in 1859, operators of the telegraph—the first widespread electrical device—were “shocked unconscious, and machines caught on fire.” Imagine the repercussions of such an event today, when virtually everything we own relies directly or indirectly on the power grid. In fiscal years 2010 and 2011 and in the START Treaty with Russia, the Obama Administration substantially cut missile defense programs and limited the defense system’s capabilities. Our nation’s enemies, such as North Korea, have the capability to launch such an attack on the United States.
Our nation must not remain defenseless in the face of this inevitable—and potentially devastating—event.
Then get The Morning Bell, an early morning edition of the day’s most important political news, conservative commentary and original reporting from a team committed to following the truth no matter where it leads.
This is the potentially cataclysmic threat that EMP poses, and the reason to plan your survival.
Gamma rays interact with the earth’s magnetic field causing it to re-radiate a powerful EMP and scatter high energy electrons, creating a thousand times the EMP that the same weapon would cause in a lower-altitude burst. It affects all electronics that have sufficient conductive area, whether they are connected to the grid or not. Much of its effect on the grid would be protected against by lightening protection, if the lightening protection circuits were not already burnt out by E1 when E2 arrives. E3 travels through the grid, blowing fuses, destroying transformers, knocking out substations, power plants and burning out any sensitive electronics connected to the grid. Although the GIEMP can affect a greater area, it can’t perturb any electronics that are not connected to the grid.
That’s because the nuclear weapon detonates too low to cause the earth’s magnetic field to re-radiate EMP. Just protect them against NHEMP, since it packs all three components and is the most powerful type of EMP. If you use an ammo can, for example, remove the paint where the lid touches the body of the box and remove the rubber gasket since they would impede the free flow of current through the can.
Because of the large frequency range we must protect against a hole as small as a ? inch could compromise the integrity of the Faraday cage for our purpose.
Make sure to find out the strength of the shielding in the bags before you make a purchase. Most bags are designed to protect sensitive semiconductor products from electrostatic discharge or to hide your passport and credit information from would be identity thieves so the most shielding currently offered in a bag is a little over 40dB. You may not be far enough away from “sky zero” for the field strength of the EMP to weaken enough that your panels will be safe. A descendant of pioneers, Cache was raised in the tradition of self-reliance and grew up working archaeological digs in the desert Southwest, hiking the Swiss Alps and Scottish highlands and building the Boy Scout Program in Portugal. That should be easier since Part II goes into how to shield installed panels and larger spaces, but I'd be glad to go over some of the aspects of shielding a vehicle for you. Part II of this article, which will be released tomorrow, will talk about what is involved in protecting larger volumes and installed panels. Part II of this article will be published tomorrow and it's about the principles of protecting installed solar arrays and larger spaces so be sure to check back.
If only a small percentage of our largest transformers are knocked out it would take 3-4 years to get the power back since no protocol even exists to "cold start" modern power plants. It is my understanding that the powers that be were told of maybe an impending EMP attack on America, And I am wondering if the power companys and the government have been work on a way to secure our power plants and sub stations, In my town there is a big power generation plant, and crews have been working on it for 2 years now nonstop, But as always secure your own gear people.
Because of this, nothing will be done to shield our critical infrastructure until we pass legislation requiring it, so vote for the shield act!
I'm working on building a camp and running everything on 12 volts with a small inverter for the fridge (until I can build a water-cooled unit), furnace blower and whatever small appliances I'll have.
The trickiest part will be any cable runs since they should be shielded and surge suppressed.
No More Censorship, Unlike YouTube and Others!Hold onto your seatsa€¦this week survivalist expert Brian Brawdy sits down to talk with Off The Grid News writer, Tara Dodrill. I do know that they do not have a full metal seal, and there are warnings to never stand close to a microwave as microwaves can and do escape.
Additionally, even if one believes that our enemies lack the resolve to carry out such an assault, a solar flare, like the one that occurred in 1859, occurs approximately every 150 years.
Try the Morning Bell and get the day’s most important news and commentary from a team committed to the truth in formats that respect your time…and your intelligence. It happens so fast (1-2 nanoseconds) that surge protection used in the power grid can’t clamp fast enough to stop it and will be disabled by it.
We should round up to 80dB to allow for wear and tear that will occur to Faraday cage over time. But because large currents could be induced into conductors, it is a good idea to ground large cages to prevent electrical shock when you touch the cage to open it. To protect portable solar equipment carried in my backpack, I use lightweight bags marketed as Faraday bags to shield them. Cache was mentored in survival by a Delta Force Lt Col and a physician in the US Nuclear Program and in business by Stephen R. The whole shell needs to allow the free flow of electricity so special attention must be paid to where the sheets join, windows, doors and where they seal. But keep in mind that it's a lot harder to shield an electric vehicle than an older vehicle that uses a gasoline or diesel engine.

But just Compton scattering was once new to us, we are constantly learning about new properties of EM energy. Your vehicle should be made as EMP-resistant as possible, which would be a good topic for another article (or an entire book), but I'd be happy to give you some pointers on what's involved in protecting your vehicle once you've read Part II of this article since it talks about shielding larger volumes and installed panels, so be sure to ask again after you've read part II so I can address them both together. Faraday cages work because they are made of electrically conductive materials as opposed to magnetic materials. You fill it out once and it will send letters to your representatives and you don't even have to buy a postage stamp or make a phone call! I'm really glad that the article will help witCould EMP-attack send America back to 'Dark Ages' ? The two sit down to discuss the solar flare that just barely missed the earth two weeks ago. Although surge protection with fast enough clamping times exists, it is not typically used since it’s more expensive and more commonly occurring surges are much slower than E1. The larger the cage, the more important the ground is to prevent anyone from being shocked. Current will take the path of least resistance, so arcing large gaps will not be an issue unless the flow of the current through the cage’s conductive skin is impeded like in the example of the ammo can where paint along the lid to can contact surfaces and the rubber gasket should be removed.
The level of difficulty of protecting the shed's contents would increase if it is connected to outside power. A couple of years back we learned about new threats to spacecraft from "killer electrons." I think the important thing to take away is that the USSR was ahead of us in EMP research when we signed the high altitude test ban and most of what we think we know is largely theoretical.
If you still have questions or if it raises additional questions, I'd be happy to answer those too.
Maybe we could even talk the editor into publishing a part III covering vehicles or a companion article to an existing Survivopedia article on protecting autos from EMP. A steel box or "cage" basically stops the inward flow of the magnetic field much the same as if it was placed in flowing water, it would take on the same temperature of the water while shielding the contents from getting wet. Faraday cages protect their contents from external electrical fields but magnetic fields penetrate them, and that's fine. They have a non-conductive layer on the inside so all you have to do is place your gadgets inside, get rid of excess air and zip the bag shut. It was a solar flare that could have taken down mobile communication systems and other electronic devices worldwide.
If you use aluminum foil for the conductive skin, be sure that there is plenty of foil on foil overlap and that the pieces seal tightly to each other. For a cage protecting an entire building, for instance, a proper ground is strongly recommended. You can catch up with Cache teaching EMP survival at survival expos, teaching SERE to ex-pats and vagabonds in South America or getting in some dirt time with the primitive skills crowd in a wilderness near you. Since aluminum does not become magnetized, it does not stop the flow of the magnetic field. EMP damages electronics by inducing high voltages in them as opposed to exposing them to a magnetic field. Dodrill brings up some hard-hitting points about what kinds of disasters would be created by an EMP. Quantifiable standards must be established and used to properly qualify the claims of products and so on.
So a Faraday bag can protect electronic contents from electrostatic discharge or EMP, yet you can't stick magnets to them. As must be the philosophy of Faraday bag manufacturers, since they don't seem to make products with more than about 40dB shielding, if you aren't right under a nuclear EMP you could get by with less shielding since some shielding is definitely better than no shielding and not every single device will be damaged. She mentions factors like the number of planes over the United States at any given point in time.
Although small batteries of a given type (such as AA) may look the same on the outside, many differences exist on the inside.
They only came online within the last few years because of the congressional investigations into the EMP threat. How many lives would be in danger if the electrical control systems go down in a plane while it is midair? Tests at NASA show up to 49 dB of protection (Average 45 dB) but don't know if the batteries also need to be protected.
Dodrill and Brawdy really get fired up when they start talking about the lack of attention this is getting from the media and from the government.
So does whether or not the battery is installed in a device, the length of conductors in the device, it's conductivity, whether or not it is connected to the grid or other long conductors, whether or not the device is turned on, whether or not the device has fuses (and the properties of the fuses), the field strength of the EMP, the distance of the EMP, whether there is any shielding between the battery and the EMP, even the orientation of the battery and the shape of the earth's magnetic field lines between the battery and the source of the EMP will factor in. I think that where the shielding could fall apart is if someone has developed a super-EMP weapon capable of generating EMPs of higher field strengths. Some small batteries have very vulnerable microelectronic charge controller circuitry in them. While they are not sure whether or not the Shield Act is the end all be alla€¦it is at least a step in the right direction.
It's a safe bet that newer battery designs will make use of more microelectronics and become increasingly more vulnerable. Transcription Coming Soon In this episode youa€™ll also learn: How many people in airplanes would be affected when an EMP happens? Some batteries lack the conductor length to be affected by E1 or E2, but will still be vulnerable when installed in a device that is vulnerable or that is connected to the power grid. Soviet high altitude nuclear testing in Kazakhstan in 1962 damaged very simple diesel generators that lacked any electronics whatsoever, and those tests only yielded 10-20% of the EMP field strength that we are trying to protect against. So, I hope that if you read somewhere online that small batteries won't be affected by EMP, you will know better.
I store my batteries in battery organizers and remove batteries from stored electronics in order to prevent oxidation on contacts and to prevent battery leakage from damaging the the electronics. I store the organizers on top, inside Faraday cages, where they are easily rotated and maintained. Even if EMP wasn't a factor, I would still carry my batteries in organizers so they wouldn't short out on each other or other conductive gear.

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Rubric: How To Survive Emp


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