White Paper: Energy

Applications and the Evolution of EMP/HEMP Filter Technologies Designed to Mitigate Naturally Occurring EMI and Intentional EMI Threats


A new age of electronic warfare and terrorism has already begun, as some of the most vulnerable targets of a rival nation or organization are their energy infrastructure, communications, and networking systems. These resources are extremely sensitive to electromagnetic interference (EMI), specifically the interference from high power electromagnetic (HPEM) intentional EMI (IEMI), such as electromagnetic pulses (EMP) and high-altitude EMP (HEMP), and naturally occuring EMI from solar storms, geomagnetic storms (GMS), and lightning. In many critical systems, for instance electrical infrastructure, emergency communications, public safety networks, and medical facilities, even a brief interruption of electrical power or electronics could be loss of life, reduced emergency response capability, and a nullification of law enforcement. A new breed of filters, EMP/HEMP/IEMI filters are designed to mitigate these threats, and ensure critical system operation even in the event of nuclear attack.

This article aims to discuss the function of EMP/HEMP filters, their evolution and specification by U.S. MIL-STD-188-125-1/2, UK DEF-STAN-59-188-1/2, IEC 61000-1/2/3/4/5, and what instances EMP/HEMP filters are used in commercial, industrial, governmental, and military applications.

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