'Bracing for a Dark Winter'

Discussion in 'Political/Religious Topics' started by K75RT, Oct 26, 2020.

  1. BigEd63, TXplt and Ten Man like this.

  2. Yes Sir you did...yet we do not know what depth the DS will stoop..will it be an electro magnetic pulse? Or just plain civil unrest...if I were a betting man I'd say the first, they are desperate and know how soft America has become..we love our amenities..I pray for our nation as we have not seen the worst...if concerned look up 'faraday cage' it may say your electronics...TM you obviously understand! Not directed at U
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2020
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  3. Ten Man

    Ten Man G&G Evangelist

    I was being a smartass.:p The article you posted is excellent.

    According to a very good friend of mine, who is a VERY smart Electrical Engineer with years of experience managing portions of the power grid, the nation's electrical power grid is so close to total failure on a daily basis, that a half dozen operatives with small bundles of dynamite could take down the whole national power system. He said it would not even require an EMP. He said they would have to know what they were doing, in order to pick the right targets, but totally doable. THAT does not give me a "warm fuzzy feeling" at all.

    As for Faraday Cages, if the whole grid goes down, nationwide, there's not much point in worrying about saving electronics, unless you have an independent "off grid" capability to generate electricity, that does not require solar panels (which would get fried in an EMP), or inverters to convert battery power to electric current.

    Power Grid loss = Instant 1800s Life Style


    Hey, TXplt. Weigh in on this. You are an EE.
     
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  4. TXplt

    TXplt Gun Toting Boeing Driver Forum Contributor

    Actually I've never much worried about an EMP event--at least outside of a non end of the world nuclear exchange type of thing. You run up against requiring a huge amount of voltage/current which decreases rapidly with distance (it's physics just like a non-laser light source rapidly gets dimmer the further you get from it). So actually being able to direct enough energy towards a potential target (or target area) isn't as easy a task as some people make it seem. Any generated pulse suffers from the inverse square law just like all other E-M wave propagators (there IS NO 'laser like' EMP device that I know about)--so it's either gotta be REALLY BIG (consuming REALLY LARGE amounts of power) or REALLY CLOSE to what you want to target (and the really close matters alot more than the really big). So I personally don't see a non-nuclear EMP pulse doing much unless the person initiating it happens to be at YOUR house right next to your electronics. NNEMP stuff just has such limited range--I mean look at THIS thing:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ATLAS-I

    This thing was OPERATING at a site not far from the departure end of RWY 08 at ABQ for years. It's HUGE with HUGE Marx generators. I've never heard of any radios or computers being fried ever at the airport which is only a couple of miles away. The cars entered and left the terminal while it was operating for years without any damage to electronics or the then early engine control units. Much less any damage to anything in Albuquerque which is only a few miles away.

    It would take a nuke detonated at a WAY high altitude for widespread destruction IMHO (it's just really hard to get the V/M you need for EMP destruction on a widespread scale without this; you need a large energy source. A nuke provides this and with Compton scattering the earth acts like a sort of amplifier, or generator depending on how you want to look at it). And not many terrorists or would be ANTIFAs have that ability--either in the nuke OR a vehicle which could reliably explode something 20 miles or more up.

    Conventional stuff like Ten Man said--taking out several sections of transmission lines at strategic points with conventional explosives (ala the original Ocean's 7) could cascade blackouts. Or sabotaging power plants (harder now that they kinda fall under DHS). Or substations (which are largely unguarded by anything).

    I think your friend is KINDA right but it would depend largely on where you are. I doubt you could bring down the whole US even with people across the country hitting nodes but certainly could take out the major metropolitan cities of CA and the like. And you wouldn't have to waste your time on the entire thing to cause chaos; you'd only have to selectively target larger population centers to get the population chaotic and panicking (I think a prankster would look more towards bang for buck).

    The ONE thing I'm really surprised HASN'T happened is widespread targeted jamming of datalinks. Most cell phones operate around 900 or (I believe) 1800 MHz. They are very narrow bandwidth and very low power devices. Small swept-spot noise jammers could take out these for very great distances (or target GPS as well--operating I think in the 1200s for the C-code which is required for handoff even when the crypto-coded P-code is active). Point being these are SO relied on, operate on very narrow frequencies, and low power. With line of sight transmission. Constructing small battery powered transmitters (or in conjunction with larger high power units) is easy.

    In fact, an ambitious prankster could put these on a drone and with a few drones perhaps wipe out comms across a major city. If he were creative with power sources enough, he could also target the UHF repeaters of first responders (these and the individual radios operate at relatively high power but are on specific frequencies which in the old days actually used to be published in scanner books before comms became encoded. But they may still be operating on the same frequencies. So it becomes a question of burn-through and distance--then again the hippies could have a mobile VW microbus (to avoid DFing) with high power rigs and potentially do the same thing).

    I'm kinda surprised the cops AREN'T using frequency denial to wipe out the cell phones of mobsters, but perhaps they need them too.

    And we do so much over them. INCLUDING controlling our power grid and infrastructure. So you could wipe out everything we do to control the (electronically controlled) distribution of power and water. And move them around as necessary.

    Think about all the stuff you do electronically that demands the device be able to talk to others (via datalink and communication nodes). Ya stick your plastic into the gas pump to get gas; into the grocery store cash register to pay for groceries. Into the ATM to get cash. Imagine if those devices couldn't talk to anything else and quit working. In fact, most of us have been to stores where their system goes down and they gotta go back to cash (actually writing slips out like the old days). Imagine that with the WuFlu scenario.

    Stuff like this could be combined with 'hard kills' of parts of the (heavily taxed) grid.

    In all honesty though I think we're doing more damage with propaganda and letting peoples' fears consume them. Look at all the masks. Look at all the fear. So I think THAT'S how this happens. Mobs and fear.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2020
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  5. Speaking from the POV as a plant operator It wouldn't be that hard to knock out the grid long enough to collapse society and I can see several ways that could be played that would all be effective.

    A Several well placed EMP's I believe could easily do it. The problem with EMP's isn't so much the heavy duty electrical portions, it's the electonics and Digital Control Systems that would get Waxed, and the issue there isn't that it has to fry everything, just enough key componants to keep you in the dirt long term. The issue is that there are so many specific parts that can be effected and they are very costly and having a large inventory of spares hurts the company financially, so like most businesses your supply model evolves around having enough to cover potential maintenance failures with just a little extra and there is no way to bypass this kind of stuff. I've seen what a single lightning strike can do to a control system when it hits the unit structure even with a proper grounding grid and that's not coming in from you power feed or transmission lines and it's ugly. Scale that up and there just won't be enough parts to repair stuff and there is a long lead time on a lot of it, so from a simple damage POV it's not undoable, but from a supply and demand perspective it would be absolutely brutal IMO, and significantly longer than Society could tolerate.

    Similarly a series of coordinated attacks could do the same thing and for much of the same reason, Large Transformers like those used to match unit voltages to the Grid are not off the shelf items and specific for units, items like that can take a couple of years to get replaced (again we had one go due to an insulator failure and it took a couple of months (taken from somewhere else) to get back up and the spare that was ordered took close to two years to procure. So yes, with proper knowledge and coordination it wouldn't take a "World Class" foe to knock things out.

    The other thing to remember is that the current safety net in case of failure to prevent brown outs or cascading failures pretty much works like this. You have an assigned area or region of the grid and the planning is for the largest single unit to trip off line unexpectedly and the the grid stay stable. To do that each Utility that is on that section of the grid is assigned a certain amount of online reserve capability that they have to maintain based on their presence in the assigned area referred which we call spinning reserve. So my company at all times has to maintain the ability to rapidly ramp units to cover their share of a catastrophic loss. Often depending on load etc we will have units online at minimum load just to provided the ramp rate to meet our obligations or we get fined (and are expected to self report if we screw up) there's a lot more that goes into it but the bottom line is that again, if you know how the system works all you have to do is take enough large plants out and you will have a cascading failure that will knock out a large area, once that happens things are going to be rough for a while to get everything goign again from scratch. So while we've done a lot in the last 10 years or so to prevent things like that from happening, the planning is for natural occurrences and isn't designed for military grade performance.

    I work for a utility and have three generators (two 2k's and a 750watt) and am building a small (300watt) solar system for essentials (which doesn't include things like refrigerators or freezers if that tells you anything.