EMP-resistant concrete developed by engineers | Inquirer Technology

EMP-resistant concrete developed by engineers

/ 01:43 AM November 18, 2016

EMP-proof concrete

Structures made of or covered by this new type of concrete will have its electronics continue to function even after a powerful EMP pulse. Image University of Nebraska-Lincoln

EMP (electromagnetic pulse) is the bane of the modern way of life. A powerful enough burst can shut down anything powered by electricity. Thankfully a couple of engineers have developed a concrete mix that has ample anti-EMP shield.

The special concrete mix is cost-effective and is designed to shield against “intense pulses of electromagnetic energy,” thereby protecting any electronic device within its confines, reports Engadget.


Its discovery was accidental as University of Nebraska engineers Christopher Tuan and Lum Nguyen were looking for a way to build safer bridges and roads. It was then that they realized their new concrete mix had electromagnetic energy-blocking properties.


The property comes from the magnetite that they included in the concrete mix. Magnetite is a type of iron ore with magnetic properties that allow it to soak up radiation. The concrete mix also has more carbon and metal elements than traditional concrete mixes for greater absorption.

Traditionally, a faraday cage or expensive metal enclosures are erected to protect agains EMP. Compared with these, the new concrete is easier and cheaper to deploy. The university even developed a spray-on “shotcrete” version as part of a licensing agreement with the American Business Continuity Group. This shotcrete version can be used on existing structures to retrofit them for EMP insulation.  Alfred Bayle

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TOPICS: concrete
TAGS: concrete

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