Impacts of a Nominal Nuclear Electromagnetic Pulse on Electric Power Systems. Phase 3. Final Report
OAK RIDGE NATIONAL LAB TN ENERGY DIV
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A high-altitude nuclear detonation several hundred kilometers above the central United States will subject much of the nation to an electromagnetic pulse EMP consisting of intense steep-front short-duration transient electromagnetic fields followed by a geomagnetic disturbance with a duration of tens of seconds. Since 1983, the Department of Energy has been actively pursuing a research program to assess the potential impacts of one or more EMP events on the nations electric energy supply. A nominal EMP environment suitable for assessing geographically large systems has been used to provide an indication of EMP impacts on electric power systems. It was found that a single high-altitude burst, which significantly disturbs the geomagnetic field, could cause significant load and generation loss, but permanent damage would be isolated. Multiple bursts would increase the disturbance. Nevertheless, based on the effects of a nominal EMP environment, a long-term black-out is not expected since major components such as power transformers are not likely to be damaged.
- Electric Power Production and Distribution
- Electromagnetic Pulses