EMPStorm-Logo
Pre-order EMPStorm, $300, Free S/H

Pre-orders Opened: October 19, 2018
Devices Expected to Ship: Summer of 2019
Production limited to 500 units – order now to avoid missing out

Send questions to Arthur@disasterpreparer.com.

*Note that all pre-orders come with a risk-free guarantee! I deliver, or you get your money back.

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I begin all my lectures and books by asking one simple question: Why bother? Our lives are already busy enough, our money stretched thin, and our worries piled high. Is a surge suppression device that protects your home’s or business’s electronics from a solar storm or electromagnetic pulse really something you should care about?

I strongly believe the answer to this question is “yes,” but obviously, you’ll have to decide for yourself. Surprisingly, my goal is not to talk you helping to fund the development of this new surge suppression device, but rather to help educate you on two very real threats to our nation: the electromagnetic pulse (EMP) and the solar coronal mass ejection (CME). The first is caused by a nuclear warhead detonating high in the atmosphere, and the second by the Sun ejecting charged plasma toward our planet. Each threat is briefly discussed below.

The Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP)

EMP low burst website

EMPs were first discovered during the testing of nuclear warheads back in the 1960s, the most famous of which was known as Starfish Prime. The atmospheric detonation over the mid-Pacific Ocean caused tremendous electromagnetic energy to be felt 900 miles away in Hawaii, knocking out street lights, setting off burglar alarms, and damaging microwave communications. In 1962, the Russians took it a step further, testing three EMP-producing nuclear weapons over a populated area of Kazakhstan. While the warheads were extremely small by today’s standards, the pulses induced on underground power lines were so great that they caused a fire in a city’s power plant. Hostile countries that could initiate such an attack today include Russia, China, Pakistan, and perhaps North Korea.

The threat was viewed as so grave that in 2001 our government formed a special commission to assess the impact of such an attack. Their conclusion was that an EMP “has the capability to produce significant damage to critical infrastructures that support the fabric of U.S. society and the ability of the United States and Western nations to project influence and military power,” and “damage to or loss of these components could leave significant parts of the electric power grid out of service for months to a year or more.” The damage to electronics and loss of electricity would lead to the subsequent disruption of every other national infrastructure, including food and water distribution, telecommunications, banking, transportation, emergency services, government, and energy production.

Solar Coronal Mass Ejection

CME NASA Website

Likewise, a solar storm that releases a large coronal mass ejection could introduce similar hardships. The power grid would again likely be disrupted, and surges would damage countless electronic systems attached to the grid, both within industry and in the home. The differences between a massive solar storm and an EMP are twofold. First, unlike in the case of an EMP, a solar event would only have low-frequency content, which means that it would be limited to coupling onto long conductors. This means that free-standing electronics, like cars or iphones, would not be damaged. Instead, it would be things that drew power from the electrical grid that were destroyed.

The second difference between an EMP and a solar storm is that an EMP is not a certainty. Perhaps our enemies will never decide to initiate such an attack, although I should point out that both Russia and North Korea have explicitly threatened to do so. By comparison, a solar storm is a certainty. Simply put, it is only a matter of time before Earth is hit by a large coronal mass ejection that cripples our electrical grid and causes unimaginable damage to electronics all around the nation. It’s a case of when, not if.

Major solar storms occur every one to two hundred years. The most significant one in recent history hit in 1859 and was known as The Carrington Event. The event was so powerful that telegraph stations caught fire. If such an event were to occur today, experts agree that it would significantly disrupt our electrical grid and cause extensive damage to electronic equipment across the continent, if not the entire globe.

power lines horizontal Website

Both the EMP and CME could cause extensive damage to your personal property and leave you vulnerable during a national (or global) crisis. While the mechanisms of these two threats are quite different, the impacts are largely the same. Both would cause incredible currents to flow on the power lines, damaging transformers and other grid components, as well as personal devices that were plugged in at the time of the event.

I hope that I’ve convinced you that these threats ARE MOST DEFINITELY worth bothering over. Probably the question I’m asked most often is “If the grid is fried, what good is protecting my home electronics?”

There are four very good reasons to protect your personal electronics:

1. Obviously, it could save you thousands of dollars in damage from a surge on the power lines caused by any reason.
2. In the case of an intermittent disruption, the EMPStorm could allow you to power up your home (or business) when power was restored, even if it was just for brief interludes. This would be crucial to maintaining a reasonable quality of life.
3. In the case of a prolonged outage, the EMPStorm would enable a backup system, like a generator or inverter, to be connected to the home to conduct important activities, such as tuning into the radio for updates, washing clothes, cooking food, cooling the house, charging batteries, etc.
4. If you have a solar (or wind) power generation system, the EMPStorm products could help to ensure its survival — see details below.

EMP and Solar Event Website

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For years, readers have asked me if there exits a whole house surge protection device that would specifically guard against an EMP and CME. My answer has always been “no.” There have been a couple of products that claimed to protect against an EMP, but when evaluated by experts were found to to be terribly inadequate. The sad truth is that industry hasn’t seen a large enough market to spend the nonrecoverable engineering costs required to develop an effective device that would protect against these threats.

Until now… allow me to introduce the EMPStorm. The EMPStorm is to be the first UL 1449-approved Type 2 Surge Protection Device designed from scratch to protect not only against common threats like a nearby lightning strike, but also against the conducted effects of an electromagnetic pulse and a solar storm.

By pre-ordering one or more EMPStorms, you are ensuring that you receive one of the units. I am limiting production to 500 units, and I may never make any more! If you want one, you should pre-order now.

Surge_Protector_Design Website

Protected devices could include computers, televisions, stereos, home security systems, appliances, electric cars, generators, solar generation systems, etc. The EMPStorm will have the potential to save users thousands of dollars in damage, as well as help to ensure that their critical electronics are operational during times of national crisis.

Features

While the final specifications have not yet been determined, the following graphic illustrates the EMPStorm’s preliminary specifications. Keep in mind that some numbers are dictated by the tests that Underwriter’s Lab conducts and should be viewed as minimums. Also, my plan is to test this product both to UL 1449 and MIL-STD-461 (CS116) to show effectiveness of suppressing both low-frequency and high-frequency transients associated with EMPs and coronal mass ejections. If additional funding comes available, I will also try to test it to the now dated MIL-188-125-1, as well as European standards.

Specs

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Many people write to ask if the EMPStorm will protect their Solar Generation System. The answer is yes, but it requires suppressing unwanted induced energy at perhaps more than one point in the system.

Consider the figure below:

Solar Generation Image AB3 Website

There are several points in the system that have long wires attached. These wires act as antennas, picking up harmful energy. An effective protection strategy would be to connect an EMPStorm across the breaker feeding the home, and an DC-EMPStorm near the charge controller.

The DC version of the EMPStorm is specifically designed to connect to three points in the solar generation system to suppress that energy. Typically, it would connect between the charge controller and the solar panels, between the charge controller and the battery, and between the battery and the inverter. Systems with very long runs out to the solar panels may benefit from a second EMPStorm connected at the panels.

The DC-EMPStorm is being developed in parallel with the conventional AC home versions and is expected to have a pre-order price of $300.

The very best way to ensure that you can get the DC-EMPStorm is to order one of the current AC versions for your home. This will put you on the mailing list to know when the DC version is available for pre-order.

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As with most technologies, there are tremendous differences in quality when it comes to surge suppressors. Not only does their performance vary greatly, so does their build construction. I invite you to watch the video below where I illustrate this point by showing you the internals of two well-known surge protection devices. One is built reasonably well and offers L-L, L-N, N-G, and L-G protection, while the other offers limited protection and is built to the poorest of workmanship standards.

Rest assured that the EMPStorm will be of the highest quality, designed and built to provide protection for many years to come.

 

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Below you will find a 10-month development schedule that I’ve put together based on over 30 years of experience in designing and building electronics. Note that I have added 2 months of margin into the schedule (spaced throughout) to account for unexpected events.

Notice that the schedule below includes a 4-month production period to fill the pre-orders. My goal is to begin shipping pre-order units in the summer of 2019. By pre-ordering, you will receive regular updates throughout the development process, including videos of testing, discussions of design considerations, etc. I’ve overlaid a progress bar onto the schedule so that you are always up to date on the development.

Basic RGB

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Testing of a surge protection device (SPD) requires the use of high-voltage surge generators. These generators apply several thousand volts to the input lines with predefined timing and waveform shapes that are dependent on the specifications that the product is trying to meet. In the case of the EMPStorm, the product will be certified to meet UL 1449 by an independent facility. Such testing is incredibly expensive but also critical to ensuring a safe and effective product. Never attach a surge suppression device to your home that is not tested to UL 1449 levels!

Unfortunately, testing to UL 1449 in no way ensures that the unit would protect your home or business during an EMP or solar storm. Rather, additional testing is required in which the pulse rise time and duration can be carefully controlled to mimic those of the E1 and E2 waveforms of a nuclear-generated EMP (see waveform figure below). Likewise, to ensure the product would protect against a coronal mass ejection or the EMP E3 pulse, a lower voltage, long duration pulse must be applied. These tests are explicitly called out in MIL-STD-461 (CS116).

HEMP Field Generation

While most quality surge protectors would offer some protection against E2 (the Intermediate Time pulse), few would offer much against E1, and none would protect against E3. This is because E1 is simply too fast for conventional surge protection devices to turn on. Likewise, E3 would be felt as a long low-value slug of energy that likely would not trip either the surge protection or the panel breakers. By combining conventional UL 1449 surge testing with specialized testing of MIL-STD-461 (CS116), the EMPStorm will be demonstrated to protect against not only routine surges from nearby lighting strikes or load switching, but also the unique and harmful effects of both a nuclear-generated EMP and a solar coronal mass ejection.

EMC Testing Website

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Before you decide to pre-order one or more EMPStorms, you might want to Google “Dr. Arthur Bradley EMP”. You’ll find quite a few videos, blog interviews, books, etc. in which I discuss EMP-related topics. I’ve been educating people on the subject for many years, as well as conducting practical research into being better prepared.

My resume shows that I have a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering, am a licensed Professional Engineer, as well as a certified iNARTE EMC Engineer. Those credentials really just mean that I’ve been doing electrical engineering for quite a long time (about 30 years). As such, I have the experience and industry connections to successfully execute this project.

Credentials Website

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Designing, building, and testing a commercial product like this could easily cost a million dollars. The reason is that engineering labor, material, and certification costs are all very expensive. To help buy down the costs, I am going to do much of the work myself, including the design and testing. Assembly and manufacture will be done by a US-based company that has all the appropriate ISO certifications. This will ensure both a higher quality product and timely delivery of the final production units.

The other thing that I’m going to do is offer significant cost sharing. If you look at the budget below, you will see that I estimate the development cost (w/out Paypal fees) to be around $200,088. To help reduce the funds needed, I am willing to contribute my labor, as needed. That brings the fund raising goal (with Paypal fees) down to $123,690.

If the fundraising effort should exceed the $123,690 goal, I will look to add stretch goals, such as certifying the EMPStorm to European standards, MIL-STD-188-125-1, building a DC unit to connect to solar panels, and sprucing up the device with more indicators and features.

Costs Website New 4

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Every project comes with risks. I’ve created a simple risk matrix to better summarize them. As you can see, the risks are all very manageable, and mitigation steps will be put in place to further buy them down.

Basic RGB

Risks are classified as Technical Challenges, Cost Overruns, Certification Failures, Delivery Challenges, and Subcontractor Delays. The biggest risk is that an insurmountable technical issue will arise during the design and testing that prevents the successful development of the product. There are always issues that arise during the initial design phase, but in my experience, nearly all of them can be overcome with a little design tweaking. With nearly three decades of design experience, I expect to be able to resolve any such issues during the prototype phase with minimal impact to cost or schedule.

The second risk is that product will not pass the required certification (UL 1449). Obviously, for safety and legal reasons, I won’t ship a product that fails certification. To reduce that risk, I have already consulted with Underwriter’s Laboratory, and I fully understand the costs, schedule, and complexity of the tests. I also plan to conduct identical testing prior to sending the product off for final certification. For these reasons, I believe the risk of not passing certification to be quite low.

Finally, the third risk is that some aspect of the cost or schedule will prove unworkable. To help minimize this risk, I’ve put together a well thought out budget, with a basis of cost for every item. I’ve also added 15% margin to the costs to account for price hikes or other unforeseen challenges. Finally, I’ve added two months to the schedule. Keep in mind that I’m already very familiar with parts vendors, printed circuit board manufacturers, and assembly houses, which should help to ensure that the development process goes smoothly.

With all that say, I’m offering a “Risk-free guarantee.” Simply put, I will either deliver a Type 2 EMPStorm surge protection device to you, or I will refund your money.

EMPStorm-Logo
Pre-order EMPStorm, $300, Free S/H

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Below are a set of frequently asked questions. If you have additional questions, please email them to me at arthur@disasterpreparer.com.

Why should I pre-order?
Pre-ordering helps fund the initial development and guarantees a low introductory price. Also, I may decide not to make any additional units beyond the pre-orders. If you definitely want one, you should pre-order.

If power goes out, why do I need to worry about my electronics?
There are four very good reasons to install the EMPStorm even if power is disrupted.

1. Obviously, it could save you thousands of dollars in damage from a surge on the power lines caused by any reason.
2. In the case of an intermittent disruption, the EMPStorm could allow you to power up your home (or business) when power was restored, even if it was just for brief interludes. This would be crucial to maintaining a reasonable quality of life.
3. In the case of a prolonged outage, the EMPStorm would enable a backup system, like a generator or inverter, to be connected to the home to conduct important activities, such as tuning into the radio for updates, washing clothes, cooking food, cooling the house, charging batteries, etc.
4. If you have a solar (or wind) power generation system, the EMPStorm products could help to ensure its survival — see details above.

*Plus, don’t forget that the EMPStorm will protect against all kinds of other surges too, such as a nearby lightning strike.

Why won’t a regular surge protection device provide the same protection?
Most SPDs are designed to protect from commonplace surges, such as from a nearby lightning strike or load shedding by the power company. They will provide limited protection against the E1 pulse, reasonable protection against the E2 pulse, and no protection against the E3 pulse. The EMPStorm is designed to protect your home or business from all three transients.

How is the EMPStorm installed?
Like all Type 2 SPDs, the EMPStorm will need to be installed at the circuit breaker panel by a licensed electrician. An installation guide will ship with the product. Installation consists of mounting the unit to the wall (or inside panel) and connecting four wires to the main breaker. It is critical for any Type 2 SPD to install it as close to the breaker panel as possible. The further away the SPD is mounted, the greater the transient level the home’s electronics will see.

Will the EMPStorm have indicator lights?
Yes, the EMPStorm will at a minimum have lights to indicate that the product is still protecting your home or business.

Will the EMPStorm protect against other types of surges besides an EMP or solar storm?
Absolutely! The EMPStorm will be certified to UL 1449 and shown to be effective at suppressing a broad range of transients.

Will the EMPStorm protect against a direct lighting strike?
The EMPStorm is not a lightning arrestor, but like all quality SPDs is designed to protect against the indirect effects of a nearby lightning strike. Keep in mind that the vast majority of damage from lightning is due to indirect effects of a nearby strike.

What’s inside the EMPStorm?
Surge Protection Devices are designed using passive filters and current steering devices. Nearly all commercial designs rely solely on inexpensive metal-oxide varistors (MOVs). The EMPStorm will contain multiple protection devices, which may include MOVs, transient voltage suppression diodes, thyristors, polyfuses, thermal cutoffs, and gas discharge tubes. With the expert use of multiple devices, the effects of both the EMP and solar storm can be suppressed.

Will the EMPStorm be certified for safety?
Safety will ensured by having the EMPStorm independently certified to UL 1449, which is the highest standard in the US for electrical surge suppression devices. Many surge control devices are not certified to this standard due to the high cost of testing.

Will the EMPStorm come with insurance against damage?
Some companies offer “insurance” against the loss of electronics due to a surge. However, if you look into such insurance, you’ll quickly discover that it’s little more than a marketing ploy. The payout on such policies is almost zero, and I view any such offers as disingenuous. The EMPStorm will be a very high-quality product that will offer unprecedented protection, but a guarantee that any SPD will always prevent damage is not possible.

Will the EMPStorm completely protect my electronics from a solar storm or EMP?
Disaster preparedness is about putting in place layers of protection. The EMPStorm is meant to be one such layer. No surge protection device can offer a 100% guarantee that it will protect your electronics against any transient. With that said, the EMPStorm will be a fully-certified surge protection device, proven to be highly effective at suppressing unwanted power line transients.

What about the energy that couples into the house wires directly?
The EMPStorm acts as a sink for unwanted energy, both coming in on the lines and that that develops close to it from within the house. Yes, there will still be some energy coupled into the house wires, but it will be much less than what would come in from the power lines.

What about the radiated effects of an EMP?
A solar storm is a low frequency event that will only couple into very long conductors, such as power lines and buried conductors. The only realistic path for a solar storm to harm your home or business electronics is to come in as a conducted surge on the power feed. The EMPStorm is specifically designed to guard against such transients.

A nuclear-generated EMP is a broadband event capable of damaging electronics both by a conducted pulse brought in on the power lines, and by a radiated pulse that propagates through the air. The EMPStorm will not protect against radiated fields, and alternative methods, such as a Faraday cage, might be necessary to protect sensitive electronics. With that said, it’s important to understand that the conducted pulse is a far greater threat to home electronics, because many home appliances are naturally robust against a radiated pulse. While it is certainly possible that some small personal electronics could be damaged by the radiated effects of an EMP, most unpowered devices would likely survive. The greatest threat to a home and business’s electronics from an EMP would be the tremendous conducted surge that would come in on the power lines.

Will a single EMP or solar event destroy the unit?
No. The unit should survive a number of powerful surges before being damaged. It’s hard to say exactly how many because it would depend on the size and characteristics of the pulse, but a reasonable guess would be 20 or more. Indicators on the front of the EMPStorm will tell if the unit has been damaged.

When will it ship?
My goal is to begin shipping in the summer of 2019, but will push hard to beat that date.

Do you guarantee a specific delivery date?
No. Delays could arise that push out the delivery date. What I do guarantee is that I’ll work tirelessly at developing the product until it ships to every supporter.

Can I cancel my pre-order after I place it?
Please only pre-order if you’re willing to be patient and wait for the product to be developed. I won’t have the means to refund any pre-orders once placed.

EMPStorm-Logo
Pre-order EMPStorm, $300, Free S/H

Pre-orders Opened: October 19, 2018
Devices Expected to Ship: Summer of 2019
Production limited to 500 units – order now to avoid missing out

Send questions to Arthur@disasterpreparer.com.

*Note that all pre-orders come with a risk-free guarantee! I deliver, or you get your money back.

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