How do you protect a device from an electromagnetic pulse?


Quick Answer

It is possible to protect electronic equipment from a electromagnetic pulse through a Faraday cage, according to The Survival Mom. Heavy-duty aluminum foil and a galvanized steel trashcan are affordable and easily available materials that are ideal for constructing a simple Faraday cage. In the event a trashcan is unavailable, adding more layers of aluminium foil can boost the level of protection.

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Full Answer

An effective Faraday cage requires approximately three layers of heavy-duty aluminum foil that completely surround the electronic device, writes The Survival Mom. Around five sheets are necessary if the Faraday cage does not incorporate a galvanized steel trashcan as secondary protection, which provides a sturdy outer shell. The enclosed electronic device must not touch any part of the Faraday cage, otherwise an antenna effect may occur. Non-conductive materials, such as paper and wax, help prevent the electronic device from directly touching the aluminum foil.

For a Faraday cage to be effective against an electromagnetic pulse, it must block out the entire wavelength of the EMP, explains The Survival Mom. To determine whether a prospective Faraday cage may be successful against an EMP, individuals can test AM/FM radio reception for the device in question. If the device stills receives an AM/FM radio signal while enshrouded by the Faraday cage, more reinforcement is necessary. Although the wide range of AM/FM radio signals approximates the range of an EMP, the electromagnetic pulse's range is still broader. Therefore, it is better to err on the side of caution and provide more layers of protection if in doubt.

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