Faraday Cage Effect

Here at Survive-a-Storm Shelters, we use steel to build our world-class storm shelters.  There are many reasons to use steel in manufacturing, but the main reason is simple:  strength. Our steel tornado shelters are stronger than their fiberglass and concrete counterparts.  One of the problems customers encounter with fiberglass and concrete is cracking.  Structural integrity is paramount during a storm, and a shelter with a crack is not the storm shelter that you want your family in during one.

faraday cage
An example of one way in which the Faraday Cage Effect is important when owning a steel tornado safe room from Survive-a-Storm Shelters.

Concrete also “sweats” or releases moisture, and nobody wants a sweaty storm shelter, right?  That being said, we always have questions about the safety of being in a steel structure during an electrical storm.  Some people are concerned that lightning can actually penetrate a steel shelter.  But this concern is unwarranted as it applies to a Survive-a-Storm Shelters steel storm shelter.Here’s why…The safety of a steel structure during an electrical storm can be explained with a little trip back to science class.

It’s called the Faraday Effect.

This effect is named for the English scientist Michael Faraday who invented the so-called “Faraday Cage” back in 1836.  The steel cage (storm shelter) acts as a conductor by channeling through the steel providing constant voltage on all sides of the structure evenly.  Since the difference in voltage is the measure of electrical potential, no current flows through the inside of the shelter.  Yay for science!Another great example of how this effect can keep people safe is when electrical linemen are asked to wear Faraday suits when working on electrical lines.  These specially designed suits allow them to work on high voltage power lines without the risk of electrocution.  The suit prevents electrical current from flowing through the body.  So the bottom line is you can escape a dangerous storm in your Survive-a-Storm steel storm shelter and not have to worry that you will be electrocuted in the process!For those of you who would like a little visual reference, here is a link to a great video about the Faraday Cage.  Enjoy!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t23iXhEiQUc&feature=related&pos=2 If you would like to know more about how you can purchase one of our above ground or even underground storm shelters, give us a call at 888-360-1492.  Don’t delay!

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