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Old Rabbit, you sure have hit it on the head!
This is a topic I fuss over a lot. 
I agree with you Old Rabbit, education is key.  Knowing what will happen will keep us from being surprised, and we will remain calm and civilized.


Its funny, I have worked in water treatment, father worked in sewer treatment.  Went to college with a prof. who worked for a power grid and talked about EMP/solar flares.  Brother is a prepper.  I am  HAM radio op.  So EMP comes up from time to time in our family discussions  :-[

I do not want to alarm anyone...   :o
here is what I have learned about hacking the grid and EMP.
hacking the grid is too easy.  or at least it has been in the past.  Wauwei brand routers were used in some grid systems, and later found to have back-doors engineered into them by the Chinese company who made them.  Our power grid is on its own internet, but has links to the normal internet.  It can be hacked...

It is rumored that America and allies wrote code called Stuxnet that was put into the Iranian nuclear plant to cause its motors  to speed up and down at random to fatigue the impeller blades on the centrifuges.   It caused it to blow up.  McAfee found it in OUR homeland WWW networks later and uncovered the plot!

You can engage and disengage a contactor to put a generator on line and off line in rapid succession, and cause it to JERK like a bomb went off.  Its called losing sync.  Its disastrous.  (there is a video somewhere of this...)

In college, I and a few other students, with supervision, put a small hydro generator on the grid.  It was nerve racking.  Do it wrong, and the generator made in 1918 breaks off its mounts and leaps into the air!  You change the speed of the generator by adjusting water flow until its at almost the same speed as the grid.  Then when the three light bulbs are all out, the phase is right, and you can throw the switch and lock-sync it to the grid.

In America, hydro plants are all owned by the US government, or at least controlled by them (Western Area Power Administration?  Another job interview… ).  And for good reason.  for black start capability.  if the grid is down, neuc plants are immediately put into shutdown.  They have to have power to start up, and need constant power for cooling pumps or else Fukishima.  coal plants similar story.  only plants able to come up from nothing are hydro.  Hydro plants get power on the grid, and that power gets others on line.  Syncronization is a challenge.  you can not just put a generator on grid.  its not that easy.

Most if not all grid tie solar will also STOP when there is no power on the grid.  This is multifold.  It is to protect the grid, and the workers repairing it.  Power outage happens, electrical workers isolate the line from the active grid, fix it and then put it back on line.  But if your solar inverter turns on, it kills many innocent people on the line during the repair.  The inverters are therefore not allowed to work without a grid voltage present.  Also, imagine 100,000 solar inverters trying to synchronize to the grid in the case the grid is down.  This is not possible.  They will all fight.  There has to be a master “clock” and that is the power grid its self.  So don’t think that your solar system will work, unless you have grid isolation and power storage.  Sorry.

Many people do not realize that the generators, transformers and such in the grid are often custom made by hand to order, with lead times of 4+ months!  we are not talking get it at Home Depot.  we are talking about transformers that handle 38KV and 550Mega Watts and transform it to 330KV for transmission.  Such transformers when they blow are catastrophic and take out other things in the area. 

I remember being at a coal fired 850MW power plant for a job interview, and everything there is run at the edge of failure.  (Read extreme environments).  Anything out of tolerance can cause big trouble.  There were 3 generators, 2 operational, 1 in maintenance mode.  If one were to blow, all is lost.  People die!

An EMP will as you know induce DC currents into the grid, like a solar flare can do. Similar mechanisim.  This DC current is not normal on the AC power grid.  It causes transformers to "saturate" and they lose their ability to do their job.  They heat up and boil the oil and blow up.  Protection circuits also kick in and drop systems from the grid.

The currents made by EMP can also blow electronics of any kind.  Radios that are connected to leads, power leads, RF cables, anything at all, are susceptible.  Only equipment sealed into metal cases with no holes are going to survive.  This would be like a back up HAM radio.  no computers, sorry no cell phones folks!  one reason to get your ham license.  (and if you do, please get a license and study and follow the rules)

And above ground neuc detonations cause issues for Ham radio too, but they can operate without a framework in place.

power lets you get gas (petrol)  into the vehicle.  electricity lets hospitals run and traffic lights work.  lets police talk to each other.  Power is used for everything.  power is out for long enough, you really think you are getting out of town?  Nope.  All the panicked people are doing the same thing.  This has happened before I bet. 

I bet airports will also not work!   x_x

gas pumps dead, traffic lights out, multiple accidents, no police support, anarchy.  it could happen.  tensions build, people get hurt.  I see it coming.
I honestly believe that if an EMP hits above a large city, its going to be catastrophic, not at first, but in hours to days.

Here it is...
while at my local water company for a job interview, I learned how it works.  water quality is controlled by the computers.  Chlorination, fluoridation, UV dis-infection, sand/coal bed cycling, water pups, water tanks, all controlled by a central computer.  There is no backup at the site I was at!  its extremely massive and complex.  Using old parts that are hard to find.  If they get hit by EMP, that water plant would be at ground zero, and have to rebuild the system from scratch!  It would take months, or longer.  In that time , water could stagnate in the pipes, get algae growths, clog valves, run dry in some neighbor hoods.  Water pressure would be variable, and maybe have siphons in some areas if pressure and valves are not operated right.  it would cause a big headache.

Just because water systems "work by gravity" doesn't solve it.  actually nowadays, many water systems rely on pumps.  only some areas will have water by gravity alone!  in the city i was talking about, 2 subdivisions used pumped water.  the old part of town was gravity fed.  think about that!

And for sewage treatment.  I actually studied for my D license last year.  I learned that its basically the same thing as water treatment.  Thankfully sewage treatment works mostly by gravity.  But again there are "lift" stations that need pumps.  there is chlorination, process pumps, etc...  And if the sewer lines back up, they can come into your house destroying it.  And hydrogen sulfide gas is generated by stagnant sewage and is explosive. So is methane.  It needs to flow or it’s a big problem.

my dad recalls stories of no power at the poop plant..  He was running around like a mad man, turning hand valves, using portable generators to power pumps.  he was a pro with decades of experience. Now, when he retired all the valves were replaced with electric-operated-only models.  previously, they were electric with manual override.  which do you think is a good choice?  His manager thought there was no need for manual override!  Bad idea.  And the new employees only knew how to use the computer to make the system work.  Bad idea!

There is no backup generator that can do the job bringing up a large town or city.  we will all be on our own.

you can do nothing adequate to protect circuits from EMP unless you use special designs, special parts, and take special precautions.  its the Achilles heel of all electronics. its super costly and only military has it.

Hopefully it never comes.  But if it does, few will be ready.  And those who are ready, will stick out like a sore thumb because they are okay.  And they will be targeted by scared neighbors. 


The only thing we can all do is to agree to not panic and to have a fall back plan.  We will need to work together or die together.  Our culture has a lot to say about this.  we need to be a family and look past differences and love each other like never before.

Again, think Fukishima.  The Japanese seemed to be okay because they worked together.

Humanity worked and lived without power.  We can do it again.  We just need to remember how.  We need to remain civilized.

Maybe as furs, perhaps we all can think more animal like when needed, and will be more ready to adapt?  We are also more friendly and accepting which should go a long way towards cooperation in a survival situation.  Animals do not need electricity.  Just water food shelter and love. 
(And part of my furriness is my independent "wolf" spirit that makes me be ready and prepared.  I often think "what would an animal do"?)

I like to think we furs will be more ready than others!

What do YOU think?  Are you ready?  Will being furry change how you react or prepare?
What scenario do you think will play out in your local area?
Will you be willing and able to help others?

<<ADMINS...If this is too long, please tell me and I will refrain from doing so in the future.>>
Thanks Old Rabbit for the thought provoking post!
 :) (:
the polling booth / Re: Pineapple on pizza
« Last post by Jade Sinapu on Today at 06:58:36 pm »
I love pineapple raw, and that's it!
People who like pineapple on pizza are a different breed.  My mom digs it, I loathe it.
Just glad some love it that way.  Not for me thanks!

general furry discussion / Re: Non-performance uses for Fursuits?
« Last post by Jade Sinapu on Today at 06:56:32 pm »
OH!  I have it!   (its catching too, so be careful  :o )

Use the head as a Tea Cozy!   BAM!  (please don't tell me someone thought of this already, I will probably exile myself)
Keep your tea pot hot for longer using the insulation properties of the head!

So stylish!
I can see it now, a line of designer tea cozies made in the style of popular characters! 
"Get yours now for only $1350 USD, less sipping and handling."  so affordable, you can own 2!
general furry discussion / Re: Non-performance uses for Fursuits?
« Last post by Michen_S on Today at 03:51:42 pm »
Use it as a rug/carpet!

Do not walk over it with shoes or dirty socks on.
general non-furry discussion / Re: Local weather
« Last post by Rocket T. Coyote on Today at 03:01:22 pm »
Clear, calm, sunny, and upper thirties.
general non-furry discussion / Re: The "Good News" thread.
« Last post by Rocket T. Coyote on Today at 02:58:09 pm »
We learned yesterday that my parade unit received attention from a local television station last Sunday.
It likely depends on what era you were born in. I don't freak out if my cel phone is left behind. Got along fine without a pocket calculator until taking advance math classes. May have been the last of the litter to go online. I see many folks driving around with one hand on the wheel and the other holding an Ipod or Tablet and marvel at how empty their lives would be without such devices in constant use.
Bought a new battery for my laptop a few months ago and it's already taking a dive. Battery status reads "97% available (plugged in, not charging)". Good thing I have a spare.
Lay one across the bottom of your garage door to keep drafts out.
Yes, that is a danger. And a big one at that. Now I might live in a different country, but I know that when there's a power blackout, there would be a LOT that won't work anymore at all. It's good that it's there, don't get me wrong. But if there suddenly is a power cut of any kind, we're in a lot of trouble and it's getting worse until we actually get one. Very few people/companies/institutions have a backup plan for when a power cut happens. Uh, they usually have one, but not one for a power cut of days. Just for one that lasts a few hours...

With that in mind, if an other country manages to take down a part of the Dutch electricity network, a part of the country will be disrupted quickly. Not a nice thing to think about. On the flip side, it would be a very effective way to counter light pollution!
...Yeah, I got nothing.
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