Although the chance of an EMP attack is quite low, we cannot deny the fact that it might really happen in the future. An EMP attack can take down a power grid which will cause communication to be disabled. So, to be prepared, it is important to build a Faraday cage and making one is actually not that difficult.
History of the Faraday Cage
Although the Faraday cage was invented by Michael Faraday in 1836, it was Benjamin Franklin who started the idea. It began when Franklin was playing around with electricity and what happened is not something he is familiar with.
Years later, Faraday made experiments to prove the idea of Franklin through his famous ice pail experiment. Aside from that, he also tried lining a room with metal foil which he charged with electricity. To his surprise, no electricity penetrated the room because the electroscope that he placed inside did not detect any electrical charges.
At present, the concept of the Faraday cage is being used in a lot of things. A perfect example is a microwave because the appliance itself is a Faraday cage because it prevents radiation from getting out. So basically, a Faraday cage is an enclosure that prevents electromagnetic radiation from coming in or getting out.
How to Build a Faraday Cage
For a prepper or any person for that matter, having a Faraday cage is important because this is where you can put your valuable electronics when an EMP attack happens. Here are the steps on how to build your own Faraday cage if you don’t want to buy one.
Cardboard box Faraday cage
- Cardboard box with a lid, the size will depend on how big or small you want your Faraday box to be
- Aluminum foil
- Cover the lid of the box with aluminum foil making sure that everything is covered. Do the same thing with the box.
- To test if it’s working, put your phone inside, with the cover on of course, and try calling it. If you can still call your phone, that means you need more foil.
- Cover the lid and the box with another layer of foil and test it again. If you can’t call your phone anymore, that means it’s been covered enough and you now got yourself a Faraday cage.
Tin can Faraday cage
- Tin can with a tight lid
- Plastic wrap
- Aluminum foil
- Put a layer of plastic wrap inside the can. Then, add a layer of cardboard and aluminum foil. Add more layers to increase the effectiveness of the cage.
- Once you are done putting in the layers, put your devices inside and cover it. You may seal the cage with a temporary adhesive if you really want it tightly sealed.
Wood and aluminum screen Faraday cage
- Wood glue
- Aluminum mesh screen
- Wood strips, about one-inch thick
- Plastic wrap
- Non-metal hinges
- Create a square or a rectangular frame using the wood strips. Use wood glue to put the pieces of wood together instead of nails. The size of the frame will depend on your preference or the size of the electronics you will be putting inside.
- Using the wood strips create a door for your cage.
- Attach the aluminum screen to the frame and the door. Then, attach the door to the frame using the non-metal hinges.
- Line the bottom of your cage with plastic wrap and cardboard. Put your electronics inside and ensure that they don’t touch the aluminum screen.
- You may also make an enclosure for the door so you can lock it and also, to keep your electronics safer inside.
Phone Faraday pouch
- Conductive fabric
- Coordinating thread
- Sewing machine or needles
- A button
- A ruler
- Measure the fabric according to the size of your phone. Add a one-inch allowance for the stitching and a top flap for the cover of the pouch. Cut the fabric.
- Make a rectangular shape with the cut fabric, inside out. Secure it with pins and check if your phone fits.
- Then start sewing the sides and the bottom using a machine or by hand. If you’ll be sewing by hand, you can use the running stitch or back stitch for more durability.
- Turn it inside out to hide the stitching then, attach the button.
- Create a slit on the flap for the pouch’s enclosure.
- Put your phone inside and make sure it’s completely covered. The pouch can be used if you want to occasionally disable the signal on your phone.
Faraday Cage “Room”
Some people go to the lengths of creating a room that can block electromagnetic radiation. Making one needs planning and proper designing because this one is no joke. A simple but a not so stylish solution is to cover the room, from floor to ceiling, with perforated aluminum foil. That is if you are OK with your room looking like a giant aluminum foil.
A drawback of this, however, is low-frequency magnetic radiation, like wireless power transmitters and short waves will still be able to penetrate. Also, you can’t use electricity inside but you can use battery-operated devices such as clocks.
So, if you are concerned with design and functionality, the best solution definitely, is to hire professionals who do this kind of stuff but prepare your pocket for the amount of money you are going to spend. Even though you will be spending that much, you are assured that the room is effective in shielding electromagnetic radiation.
Creating your own Faraday cage is quite an easy project but it is going to be a different story if you want to shield an entire room or if you are more ambitious an entire house. It is best to do some research first before starting so you can be sure that what you’re building is effective.
Moreover, some of our everyday items can be used to create a simple Faraday cage. And with the instructions above, you can make one on your own effortlessly.