Solar Flare Survival - Faraday Cage Protection

Submitted by Mark Stanley, Yelm, WA.
Author of The Sacred Spring of the Blood Royal

I would like to clarify some issues concerning protection of electrical equipment during geomagnetic storms induced by Coronal Mass Ejections [CME]. There seems to be some conflicting ideas about Faraday-style proteciton circulating through the community. This is not surprising, considering that some of the answers to some of the questions we all have we simply do not know. Opinions generated by anyone purporting to be an expert (myself included) should be considered just that—opinions.
However, there are a few basic tenets of physics that many will agree on:

Metal, water, concrete and stone are conductive materials.
Electric current will readily flow through conductive materials.

Wood, plastic, dry cardboard and paper are non-conductive materials
Electric current will not flow easily through non conductive materials.

A Faraday cage is a sealed structure constructed out of a conductive material. A Faraday cage can be grounded or ungrounded. Both types use the Faraday Cage Effect which effectively provides a shield for electrical gear inside the cage. The effectiveness of any Faraday cage is dependent on it's design, and on the amount and type of radiation bombarding the cage.

Your concrete or metal UG is a Faraday cage!

Think about it-------It is a sealed structure built of conductive materials. Thick is good---but it does not have to be excessively thick to function as a Faraday cage. Remember how much you paid for all of that steel rebar that is now imbedded in the concrete? That helps the conductivity factor.
This is all just common sense.

My opinions:

There is a very good chance that electrical gear inside of a UG that is NOT plugged in and NOT contacting the floor, walls or ceiling, or other grounded conductive surface will still work after a geomagnetic storm.
It's still not a bad idea to create “nested” cages as outlined in my book—Solar Flare Survival. That means putting electrical gear inside of a smaller cage that itself is inside of the UG (a cage). You can wrap your computer with aluminum foil and seal it up well. The foil-wrapped computer then needs to be placed on a non-conductive surface. It becomes an ungrounded cage inside of a larger grounded cage (UG). Metal garbage cans are good, but they must be insulated from the floor to function as an ungrounded cage---at least for protection from CME and EMP attacks.
In normal situations, a grounded cage provides the most stable protection (as in industrial applications).
However, CME's through a wild card at us:-----subterranean current flows.
During powerful geomagnetic storms, particles flow in through the earth's polar regions and create electrojets---wild currents that swirl around the polar regions like banshees—contacting the ground and creating havoc as well as beautiful auroras. They also flow into the conductive oceans, under the continents and can surface---into your ground rods!   Ouch!
This is where it all becomes speculative.
The type of currents that might flow into your concrete or metal floor are not going to jump back into the air and zap electrical gear inside of the big grounded cage (UG).
However, they will flow into any gear that is grounded---generators, inverters, and electrical panels.
I honestly do not know what to do about those permanent pieces of equipment, except to try to make sure they are not running and/or unplugged.
Here's the key: Remember to ensure that no non-permanent electrical equipment has conductive contact with the floor. Most appliances have plastic feet, but some have metal feet. Use your common sense in all of this, and remember---conductive/non-conductive.
For those who do not possess UG's, do your best building Faraday cages with Metal garbage cans, file cabinets, appliances, and aluminum or copper foil.
Also, remember to unplug all types of plugs going to your gear during a CME

My fellow students~~~~~~~I love you all!
Have a great Christmas!

Mark Stanley

P.S. Look for my latest novel to be released on Amazon in January:
The Sacred Spring of the Blood Royal
by Mark Stanley



0 #1 Karla Broschinski 2013-01-07 13:03
Hi Mark,
are you willing to share your knowledge as a guest speaker at one of our next time bank (Hour 4 Hour)meetings.( approx 1 hour with Q & A)
Thanks so much for what you are doing!

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