Tuesday, May 20, 2014
By Paul Martin

by Bryan Wilde

An electromagnetic pulse (EMP) is a very real threat. Not only have EMPs been weaponized, meaning that a rival military force could use one against the United States, terrorist organizations have also adopted the technology. If that weren’t enough, scientists acknowledge that a large solar flare could produce a natural EMP powerful enough to disable electronics around the world simultaneously. Although an EMP event may seem more like a science fiction movie, it could very likely be the event that catapults the world into an apocalyptic frenzy.

What is an EMP?

An EMP is typically characterized by short bursts of electromagnetic energy across a range of frequencies. Although not an exact comparison, the range of frequencies experienced during an EMP is most comparable to the difference between very low frequency AM radio transmissions and the much higher FM spectrum. This means that EMPs are capable of disrupting a large number of devices across a broad spectrum of frequencies. The source of the EMP can be radiological, electrical, or magnetic. EMPs are actually a common occurrence; however, most of them are very weak in nature and do not affect surrounding electronic equipment. For the purposes of this guide EMPs refer to large scale pulse events that have the potential to permanently disable electrical and electronic devices.

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