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  #1  
Old 10-10-2008, 07:05 AM
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Default Vehicles and EMPs?

Ok, while jocking about ethanol, I realized that I forgot to ask something. I have little knowledge in mechanics and don't know if you can take out the electronic of a vehicle and make it work again.

I assume that EMP would have had devastating effects on most vehicles (as per cannon). Is there a way to make them start again without electronics and does any of you know about this? I assume that this is the case for, lets say, the HMMWV.

Side question, what about fly by wire aircrafts?
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Old 10-10-2008, 10:01 AM
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A old fashioned vehicle that uses a mechanical fuel pump and a carbereuator sure.

For computer controlled fuel injected models with electrical fuel pumps, survos and relays more problematic.

As for fly by wire, forget it! They would have to have been hardened from construction, or maybe grounded or put in a shelter to protect them.

Could a civilian aircraft like a Cesna I think so, at least an older model, just forget about radios or any fancy avionics.

Oh, and electric starters as the solenoid would probably be fried. So, I am thinking you would have to pop start the vehicles, which means a standard or manual transmission instead of an automatic.
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Old 10-10-2008, 02:12 PM
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I would be quite suprised if military vehicles, especially tactical aircraft, were not EMP hardened. For example, a fly-by-wire F-16, would reasonably be expected to be EMP hardened, given its tactical nuclear delivery role. The opposite, that it wouldn't be EMP-hardened, makes no sense.
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Old 10-10-2008, 05:42 PM
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It seems to me that the effect of EMP in the Twilight world is somehow excessive in comparison with the dimension of the nuclear exchange described in the rulebook. I think that the damage described in the book is quite optimistic compared with the possible reality, with people still living near impact points (like in Warsaw), with rural communities able to produce food, etc... But the EMP's seems to have an excessive efficiency to fry everything able to process a single bit.
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Old 10-10-2008, 11:17 PM
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From what I know from my buddies in the Marines, the Marine fighter jocks had to practice "dead stick" runs in case they lost their avionics and electric assisted controls. Now, since they were practicing for such instances, I think the military craft might be shielded a bit, but I don't think it's quite the "all impressive prevents any problems" sort of shielding. I think it might help on the outer fringes of the EMP burst or something, but anything caught well within the EMP burst is probably going to have some serious problems working.

For civilian stuff, you'd definitely have to be dealing with older vehicles and aircraft. Anything newer...new cars with their little "brain boxes" and chips, and new aircraft (as was mentioned with electric fuel injection) would have some serious problems. Unless a crafty mechanic can figure out how to bypass that stuff, the vehicles would be pretty much useless. Modern cars won't let themselves be started without their chips working.
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Old 10-10-2008, 11:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marc
It seems to me that the effect of EMP in the Twilight world is somehow excessive in comparison with the dimension of the nuclear exchange described in the rulebook. I think that the damage described in the book is quite optimistic compared with the possible reality, with people still living near impact points (like in Warsaw), with rural communities able to produce food, etc... But the EMP's seems to have an excessive efficiency to fry everything able to process a single bit.
Yes and no I think. We brought up an issue back in RPG host where we had been speaking of Chernobyl nowadays. It appears that despite contamination the area is far from being a barren desert (Human alone is away but why risking your life when there is no need for it). here are some articles about it.

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/n...chernobyl.html
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/4923342.stm
http://news.mongabay.com/2005/0810-Chernobyl.html

Of course, if you read it carefully things are far from ideal and the point is contested. I'm convinced that some are way too positive but i wouldn't be surprised if other were way too negative. I put you a counter article here.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/6946210.stm

I would expect these to remain an issue for some times and I bet that the truth lies somewhere in a middleground. Nevertheless, in the case of T2K where people are desperate, with little mean to leave, having people living quite near a burst area might not be that silly. That has been a large issue about T2K but, in fact, their view might not be that bad (in my opinion).

about EMPs nobody really knows I think and, in term of game play, their point is a good one. For my part, setting the game at a slightly later period, I have less powerful nuclear burst as MIRV are about 550kt in average (except for a handfull of 20Mt burst over the US by SS-18 Satan) and everything wasn't fried (90% was) as many elements were out of line when the attack occurs. For exemple, if you take the case of France, a number of nuclear power plants are off line (as far as I know) and held in reserve, in case of emergency. The months long exchange and most people being ignorant about EMPs would have strong effects, nevertheless.

For my part, I wouldn't start my car for some times and the second vehicle of the familly is old enough so it has no electronics (from a rough estimation, at least 20% of the vehicles in the village would still be running, by the way. Many people have older ones in storage). I would lose 80% of my computers but one will remain in working order (actually 2 as they are older models in storage) and we will retain a working fridge (older model also). Getting electricity will be more of a problem but water will be fine as we have a well in our cave . Hopefully my cousin is now living 100 miles away and the guy is a specialist in individual electric power plant with a 20 years experience in African and third world countries. Moreover, as I have plenty of wind and a full load of electricians, engineers (including one who was making nuclear power plant)... readily available in the familly, I would plan for a wind power plant. Another advantage of my area is that they are plenty of horses around woods everywhere, lots of water and good farm lands. Marauders and general unrest will be much more of a problem. The only weapons that I have are matchets, swords and crossbow but expect my mother to hide some submachinegun somewhere (+ at least 2 or 3 handguns with full load of ammunitions). As I live in a countryside, you can also bet that several people still hold some stocks from WWII (I have heard of huge ones but these remain rumors to these days). Strangely, when the government issued a law (10 years ago) asking people to bring what firearms they had, only 12 gauge hunting rifle showed up. Where are the Mausers, Sten, MP-40 and MG-42 all gone?

Last edited by Mohoender; 10-10-2008 at 11:25 PM.
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Old 10-11-2008, 03:31 PM
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Default EMP's. The quick way to the 19th century

Bona nit Mohoender!

Ok! You have convinced me. I will cross the Pirinees at the first sign of EMP.
I have been reading a little about the EMP's since your post and I think you have reason. The Twilight devastating EMP effect over all the electronic parts seems completely justified. Rumors says that Russians have an specific unit dedicated to it. Ssssssshhhhtttt.... But I see a weak point in the last half of your post. The EMP generates an inductive current in all electrical and electronic circuits. This current induced in the conductor materials implies fatal consequences for the electronic parts, which are specifically designed to work with very low voltages and currents. But this current is induced no matter if the component is online or offline. Basically, the conductors would be working as an antenna, their electrons in phase with the wave of the electronic pulse, which is, basically, an electromagnetic wave of great power and short duration. So, your old computers in storage will be fried anyway, I think.
And it seems that shielding a component against an EMP is not an easy matter. You must close the the component in a metallic enclosure with an outstanding ground wire (not sure about this concept in English). Because the generated wave can cause a differential of voltage of thousands of volts per meter, generating currents accordingly.
And don't lost it! A lone, high altitude, nuclear detonation of 1 Megaton, 500Km over the center of USA, Europe or Russia could destroy great part of the electronics... So, welcome to the 19th century (with people of the 21th)...

Ah! The links seems interesting. I will take them a look today.

Arreveure!
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Old 10-11-2008, 04:20 PM
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I have heard you can build a cage as EMP sheilding and have it grounded. So it doesn't have to be a solider metal box. I am wondering if one could do so with say, chainlink fencing on the inside of say, your garage or an out building, and then have that grounded. And have foam matting on the floor of the structure.

Or, maybe a metal building like the metal storage sheds or even a quanset hut, again with a ruberized floor in addition to the building being grounded and of course not having any of your eletrical components you want to save touching or even close to the walls or ceiling.

Just something I wondered about, as when it comes to electronics if it doesn't work past the "on" button then I am lost
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Old 10-11-2008, 04:53 PM
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Mmmm... I suppose that some of this methods may be effective. Basically you must create a Faraday box (not sure if this is the correct English term) and be sure that all the potential is discharged on ground... I know that a conventional Faraday box can be created with a web of conductors instead of solid metallic walls. But with an EMP... who knows?!
And this make me think that the use of a high altitude nuclear explosion to produce an EMP must be in the plans of the US and Russia since the its discovering... Ok, I suppose it was evident , but until I always have viewed the EMP's as a side effect. Nor as a tactic.
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Old 10-11-2008, 05:47 PM
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Well, I know alot of military equipment was what was called "hardened" which means it was in theory built to withstand the EMP. As for the use of EMP as a tactic, I am sure it was figured into the use of such weapons and probably had something to do with determining the size of the nuclear weapon.
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Old 10-11-2008, 06:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marc
Bona nit Mohoender!

I see a weak point in the last half of your post. The EMP generates an inductive current in all electrical and electronic circuits. This current induced in the conductor materials implies fatal consequences for the electronic parts, which are specifically designed to work with very low voltages and currents. But this current is induced no matter if the component is online or offline. Basically, the conductors would be working as an antenna, their electrons in phase with the wave of the electronic pulse, which is, basically, an electromagnetic wave of great power and short duration. So, your old computers in storage will be fried anyway, I think.

Arreveure!
Agree with your point and that will certainly be the case for my newest car. Might not be the case with the computers (especially with the labtop) as battery is dead and out. Still it is possible but I don't know enough to be entirely sure. In T2K the worst I can imagine is that EMP will be on for sometime as it is not a one day exchange, what wasn't fried one day might be the next day.
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Old 10-11-2008, 07:09 PM
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Regarding military vehicles and EMP: there's an EMP simulator at Kirtland AFB in New Mexico that I remember seeing pictures of planes parked under it for tests, to see how well shielded they were from EMP. Every U.S. military plane (and presumably those from NATO allies) was tested there in the 1980s, I do believe. They also tested Army and Marine equipment, and the Navy has (or had) a barge with a similar piece of equipment for testing ships' electronics as part of their acceptance trials. Any military vehicle (air, land, or sea) in the 1970s and '80s had to be designed for a nuclear environment, and EMP testing was part of the test phase. Presumably that test facility is still going today.
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Old 10-11-2008, 07:25 PM
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The EMP testing facility is the largest wood structure in the world constructed totally without metal fasteners.



Map of the testing facility.

http://maps.google.com/maps?q=35.025...=16&iwloc=addr
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Old 10-11-2008, 11:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marc
Mmmm... I suppose that some of this methods may be effective. Basically you must create a Faraday box (not sure if this is the correct English term) and be sure that all the potential is discharged on ground...
Faraday cage in English, but what you say about EMP is correct.
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Old 10-12-2008, 04:35 PM
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If I remember the .v1 history correctly I don’t think there was ever a mention of either side using high altitude nuclear airburst’s for large scale EMP effects.

If that is indeed the case, then the only EMP effects should be from the nukes that were airburst directly over there targets (a few thousand feet high.) this would cause the EMP effects to be quite localized I believe.

Which could mean large rural areas with functioning electronics – still worthless of course without power or fuel.

I know a guy who flew in B-52’s in the ‘80’s and ‘90’s, and he did tell me once on this subject that most NATO aircraft were EMP hardened to some degree…but he said that you would be surprised to find that very few base facilities (including spare parts rooms/warehouse’s) had any EMP shielding at all. Some of the comm. was protected, but the power grid was not…or even vital electronics in the airbase towers and CIC’s.
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Old 10-12-2008, 05:04 PM
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I have always thought that the game's EMP effects were overstated for a couple of reasons.

EMP is line of site. Barriers do block it. Mountains, Packed earth, Concrete and Steel building materials will all reduce its effects.

There were months to prepare. Between the first launches in Poland and the Thanksgiving attack people would have had been instructed on how to shield equipment. Many would ignore the instructions but many others would not.

I have also seen evidence supporting this quote

Quote:
Another "myth" that seems to have grown up with information on EMP is that nearly all cars and trucks would be "knocked out" by EMP. This seems logical, but is one of those cases where "real world" experiments contradict theoretical answers and I'm afraid this is the case with cars and EMP. According to sources working at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, cars have proven to be resistant to EMP in actual tests using nuclear weapons as well as during more recent tests (with newer cars) with the US Military's EMP simulators.

One reason for the ability of a car to resist EMP lies in the fact that its metal body is "insulated" by its rubber tires from the ground. This creates a Faraday cage of sorts. (Drawing on the analogy of EMP being similar to lightning, it is interesting to note that cases of lightning striking and damaging cars is almost non-existent; this apparently carries over to EMP effects on vehicles as well.)
http://www.aussurvivalist.com/nuclear/empprotection.htm

Overall like most things in my T2k world I say electronics have around a 10% chance of surviving.
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Old 10-12-2008, 05:16 PM
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Bona nit!!

I think that you have reason about the fact that the normal (low altitude) nuclear explosions described in Twilight will produce an EMP which will affect only a small area.
About the shielding of vehicles, I suppose that is much easier due to the simple reason that any vehicle with a metallic enclosure (or fuselage) will work (with variable success) as a simple Faraday cage. That's the explanation that justifies that planes and cars are not affected by lightnings.
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Old 10-13-2008, 02:30 AM
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I think you are all right and EMPs wouldn't be that bad. What dogger said about low altitude burst is right. O f course there were enough of them to do substantial damages. Thanks also about what you said on bases; that is interesting.

What Marc said about cars being faraday cages is perfectly right. Thanks for reminding me that one. Tires isolate it from the ground. that's not the case with tracked vehicles and as a result, VAB, LAV and BTR might survive better than tanks and IFVs

Indeed the game doesn't describe any high altitude burst, I would expect it to be the case. EMPs have been knowns since the 1920's and their effects have been experienced since 1950's.

Kato, you might be right about early warning but I would expect most people not to have listen to them. I would expect most to react on someting like: "It will not happen, they are exagerating, not us..." Therefore, your 10% base seems fair to me.
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Old 10-13-2008, 02:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mohoender
Indeed the game doesn't describe any high altitude burst, I would expect it to be the case. EMPs have been knowns since the 1920's and their effects have been experienced since 1950's.
I have the same impression after a little reading about EMP's. Although the enemy could be ready (but I really doubt about it), it only costs you one single nuke. And the benefits of any delay in the response action could probe invaluable.
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Old 10-13-2008, 10:44 AM
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I think EMP is largely overrated, it can't destroy everything. It also depends if you have the power cords and antenna hooked up, if you don't, then you will have a chance that the equipment could be OK. I think it would be possible that if you had a radio hooked up and a longwire antenna, it could get fried where the radio on the shelf in your basement or in "Bob's Electronic Shop" stand a good chance of being OK. Still it is a good idea to provide some shielding for just in case.

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Old 12-02-2008, 04:14 PM
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Thought about replying to the other thread about EMP but my views are already stated in this thread which might be a good read for newer users. So I am bumping.
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Old 12-03-2008, 09:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Wiser
Regarding military vehicles and EMP: there's an EMP simulator at Kirtland AFB in New Mexico that I remember seeing pictures of planes parked under it for tests, to see how well shielded they were from EMP. Every U.S. military plane (and presumably those from NATO allies) was tested there in the 1980s, I do believe. They also tested Army and Marine equipment, and the Navy has (or had) a barge with a similar piece of equipment for testing ships' electronics as part of their acceptance trials. Any military vehicle (air, land, or sea) in the 1970s and '80s had to be designed for a nuclear environment, and EMP testing was part of the test phase. Presumably that test facility is still going today.
IIRC History has a show where they covered this.
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Old 12-03-2008, 10:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Wiser
Regarding military vehicles and EMP: there's an EMP simulator at Kirtland AFB in New Mexico ...
I don't know. This is one of those situations where I feel the effects of an EMP are often overstated in popular media (T2K included) as a means of popular wish fulfillment, while the degree to which the military/industrial assets are secured is another sort of fiction.

I keep reading vague information about EMP shielding and military testing but it's often hedged by the caveat that these are just 'test conditions' etc. I'm sure there's some pretty good hard information out there, and lot's I'd probably not have access to (as a civilian), but I often wonder to what degree our electronic security claims are a safety blanket, even for our troops.
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Old 12-03-2008, 03:21 PM
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Somebody school me on this. If you remove the battery from your vehicle does this make the EMP effect have a lesser chance of damaging the critical componets such as stators, solenoid, ECUs, ect.?
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Old 12-03-2008, 03:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Twilight2000v3MM
Somebody school me on this. If you remove the battery from your vehicle does this make the EMP effect have a lesser chance of damaging the critical componets such as stators, solenoid, ECUs, ect.?
Don't really know if it would help on a civilian vehicle, but SOP for a possible nuclear attack warning is to remove the antennas of the radios, remove the radios from their mounts, remove anything else electronic from their mounts, and un-ass the area.
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Old 12-03-2008, 03:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kato13
The EMP testing facility is the largest wood structure in the world constructed totally without metal fasteners.
I was re-watching "Dogfights of the Future" (the Military Channel show) on my DVR, and they had an interesting device projected for a strike mission in 2024. Some of the F-35 Lightnings had devices that could burn out the electronics of enemy computers, radios, and radars at a distance -- sort of a directed EMP pulse generator. The show said they were now under development, but most information was classified about them.
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Old 12-03-2008, 09:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Twilight2000v3MM
Somebody school me on this. If you remove the battery from your vehicle does this make the EMP effect have a lesser chance of damaging the critical componets such as stators, solenoid, ECUs, ect.?
Removing the battery will have little, if any effect, because the EMP induces current directly in the metal and doesn't depend on any live current.

The main reason integrated circuits are vulnerable, even if not plugged in or attached to an antenna is it doesn't take much voltage to fry a chip, like a CPU designed for core voltages around 1V. Given that, for the usual hypothetical attack 400 km above N. Dakota, the electric field at ground level will be in the hundreds of volts per meter across the continental US and peaking in tens of kilovolts per meter even a relatively inefficient coupling with the leads on your average circuit board will likely damage some components.
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Old 12-04-2008, 10:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pmulcahy11b
I was re-watching "Dogfights of the Future" (the Military Channel show) on my DVR, and they had an interesting device projected for a strike mission in 2024. Some of the F-35 Lightnings had devices that could burn out the electronics of enemy computers, radios, and radars at a distance -- sort of a directed EMP pulse generator. The show said they were now under development, but most information was classified about them.
A German drama, even has a portable such device that was supposidly developped conjointly by Germany and the US. I don't know if there is any truth to this but that was a fun idea.

By the way, from everything I'm reading, the answer to my first question seem to be: do as you please and try your best, nobody really knows.

Thanks everyone. I'll lower theier effect as I wish to have a few Leclerc, Black Eagle, Abrams M1A2... around.
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Old 12-05-2008, 08:10 AM
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A suggestion to gaming that you all probably have already thought of, considered or used is to set a "did it survive?" level. Say civilian vehicles that fall into the electronic age have 2% chance of survivng the EMP for what ever reason, then roll your percentage, for military it might be 95%. Heck I don't think anythingis 100% vunerable or protected. There's just too many variables and true unknowns.

Grae
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Old 12-05-2008, 12:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graebarde
A suggestion to gaming that you all probably have already thought of, considered or used is to set a "did it survive?" level. Say civilian vehicles that fall into the electronic age have 2% chance of survivng the EMP for what ever reason, then roll your percentage, for military it might be 95%. Heck I don't think anythingis 100% vunerable or protected. There's just too many variables and true unknowns.

Grae
I like your suggestion. However, I apply a no-chance to survive to the most recent civilian vehicles, including hybrids. From what I know of them, there is always minimal electronic working one way or another. For many of them, leave them on parking lot with the battery plugged in, don't touch them for three or four weeks, and you'll have a good chance to buy a new battery when trying to take it back. Anyway, in T2K, nobody will have the means to fix them. About the 100% you are right and I think that cannon even says that everything, even shielded stuffs were damaged one way or another.

Might be interesting with fly-by-wire aircrafts. Flying an F-117 damaged by EMP might be a challenging game in itself (providing it still can fly). The world may be gone with a all bunch of aircrafts from F-16 to Su-27 and then to F-22 (actually, you might still have F-16 are there are way enough around to fix a small number of them).

Ok! I know, these are shielded but who knows really. I can easily imagine, even today, the USAF doing its best to refit whatever A-7 and F-4 they still have around (as I know US has 3 to 6 J-35F Draken in flying order, fun!!). Look at the Vermont international airport (near Burlington, east of Winoosky and south of St.Michael's College) on Google map, there is a nice F-4 Phantom II somewhere on the field and may be a few T-33: already enough to make a fine airforce in T2K (from memory they might be in flying order or at least well cared off).

Marines corps might be better off so as I don't think the Harrier is entirely fly-by-wire. For the Russians, they might still have Mig-29s reinforced by Mig-23s (there are 500 reported to be in storage). Wish to be Chinese or Albanian with their old and nice rust buckets: Mig like stuffs? Jee, Albania will have the most powerful airforce in the Balkan, with limited domestic oil to fuel them.

Also from what I recall, most helicopters have a better chance to survive and the Texans, with their WW2 aircrafts are definitely the smart ones.
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