The Importance of Low- and Medium-Voltage Filters 

Electromagnetic radiation (EMR) poses significant risks to critical infrastructure across various industries and institutions.  

Shielding critical infrastructure from the damaging effects of EMR, including high-altitude electromagnetic pulses (HEMPs) resulting from nuclear detonations or solar storms, is crucial to maintain functionality and prevent catastrophic disruptions.  

Across industries, leaders have called for initiatives to prevent this worst-case scenario.  We will explore examples of critical infrastructure where organizations have undertaken strategies of shielding and other protective measures. 

In many cases, a specialty filter can be installed at important nodes in electrical and communications networks, shunting off the excess current induced in cables and equipment by EMR. These military-grade filters are designed for low-voltage equipment (at 250V or 480V or 800V) and those with medium voltages, up to 5000V.

Transportation Infrastructure 

In an emergency, disabled transportation modes can exacerbate a situation, hindering attempts to provide support and supplies.  

Railways, for example, are responsible for the circulation of goods and passengers. EMR can interfere with signaling systems, traction power systems, and communication networks. A failure in electronics in one of these systems can shut down an entire line, leaving people stranded and shipments stalled. 

Low- and medium-voltage filters have been installed in power substations and along the railway network to help mitigate excess inducted current from EMR. These interventions aim to protect critical control systems and maintain the continuity of operations. 

Similarly, airports can play a crucial role during a widescale emergency. EMP events can disrupt airport operations, affecting avionic navigation systems in planes as well as networks in control towers. 

Again, both low- and medium-voltage filters incorporated into power distribution systems and critical airport infrastructure help safeguard against surges and overheating of equipment. Mitigating the risk of equipment failure increases the chances that an airport can keep in operation during and after electromagnetic events. 

Energy Infrastructure 

Power generation and distribution is a vast operation in terms of both geography and complexity. Safeguarding against regional electric supply failure often requires multi-level engineering interventions and cooperation between stakeholders to make an effective EMR strategy.  

At the source, nuclear power plants, thermal power plants, and renewable energy facilities are susceptible to the damaging effects of EMR. Control systems, generators, and grid connections. The implementation of low- and medium-voltage filters in power generation plants helps protect sensitive equipment from excess inducted current and ensures continuous power generation. 

Across the region, substations and distribution networks have their own set of vulnerabilities. EMP events can induce destructive currents that compromise the integrity of transformers, breakers, and protective devices. Installing low- and medium-voltage filters in substations and distribution systems aids in reducing the impact of inducted current, preventing equipment damage, and maintaining the reliability and stability of the power grid. 

Data Centers & Telecommunication Networks 

In data centers, electromagnetic radiation can disrupt server operations, data storage systems, and networking infrastructure, leading to data loss and service disruptions. Low- and medium-voltage filters can be integrated strategically into the power supply systems of data centers to reduce the risk of inducted current and enhance the resilience of these facilities. 

EMP events can also damage equipment, including antennas, switches, and routers in long-range telecommunication networks. In emergency preparedness, these networks become mission critical.  

Low-voltage filters installed within telecommunication infrastructure help mitigate the impact of inducted currents on sensitive electronics. Many telecom networks have dedicated electrical substations and transformers to adjust voltage levels, where medium-voltage filters can add a layer of protection. 

The Pioneer of EMR Protection 

With 40 years’ experience of working on the problem of EMR and the pioneer of the medium-voltage HEMP filter, TSS USA Manufacturing delivers high-quality components and engineering expertise to organizations looking to protect their critical infrastructure.  

Although EMP events are an unpredictable eventuality, industries and institutions can build reliance into their operations by implementing robust electromagnetic shielding measures. As organizations work towards maintaining the integrity and reliability of critical infrastructure, they can ensure uninterrupted operations and protect against the most devastating consequences of EMP events. 

Find out what TSS USA Manufacturing can do for your infrastructure.