Whether caused by man or nature, electromagnetic pulse (EMP) and geomagnetic disturbance (GMD) events have the potential to disrupt and permanently damage electrical components and entire systems within most critical infrastructure sectors and impact large-scale infrastructure. While EMP hardening standards exist for military applications, they are often too case-specific, expensive, and impractical for the private sector to implement, leading to very little action being taken to address this threat, despite it having the potential to affect the nation at large.” Department of Homeland Security, Office of Science and Technology.
Gaven has wide spanning expertise throughout the 16 critical infrastructure sectors including both public and private entities. Gaven HEMP / EMP shielded structures are used to help maintain a resilient critical infrastructure. We have partnered with energy companies, telecommunications, data centers, water & wastewater, transportation and more.
An electromagnetic pulse can be generated by detonating a nuclear weapon at a high altitude (HEMP) at a lower altitude via non-nuclear (NNEMP) means. The event simultaneously generates multiple waveforms that vary in timing, duration, power, and wavelength.
The waveforms are broken into three phases, E1, E2, and E3. The first phase, E1 is characterized by a high amplitude, extremely short duration signal capable of overwhelming and destroying semiconductors embedded in electronics. The leaner, faster, high-capacity micro-circuits within modern devices are especially vulnerable.
The E2 phase consists of electromagnetic waves similar in intensity and duration to waves generated by lightning strikes. Lastly, E3 signals are characterized as being like a GMD, with lower amplitudes and much longer durations than the E1 and E2 elements. E3 waves tend to impact infrastructure connected to long conductors such as power lines, metal pipelines, or even railroads.
Solar storms are naturally occurring space weather events that produce coronal mass ejections (CME) which can travel through space toward Earth. When charged particles from CMEs hit Earth’s magnetosphere and ionosphere, they create a geomagnetic disturbance (GMD) that affects satellites, power grids, communications, navigation, and more
When CME-induced GMDs impact the power grid, they can overheat high-voltage transformers to the point of irreversible damage. Researchers estimate that the chances of a large-scale GMD event are as high as 12% every decade.