Colloquium: February 10, 2010

EMP, and the Potential for a Nationwide or Global “Katrina,” of our Electronic Infrastructure

Dr. William R. Forstchen

WEDNESDAY: February 10, 2010 2:00 P.M. in the H.J.E. Reid Auditorium


Dr. William R. Forstchen, author of the New York Times best seller One Second After, will discuss the thesis of his book, that a major electromagnetic pulse (EMP) event would result in a catastrophic collapse of our electrical distribution system, communications, and societal infrastructure. Such an event could result in a civilian casualty rate of upwards of 90% within a year due to the breakdown of water, sanitation, medical, and food distribution systems, along with the concurrent breakdown of social order, law enforcement, and command and control. An analysis of what exactly is an EMP event and how it can be created either by military means (nuclear weapon detonations in space) or a major solar flare such as the “Carrington Event” of 1859 will be evaluated as well.


William R. ForstchenDr. William R. Forstchen is a professor of history and Faculty Fellow at Montreat College. He earned his Ph.D. at Purdue University where he specialized in the American Civil War, Military History and the History of Technology. He is the author of more than forty books in the fields of history, historical fiction, military related issues, and science fiction. He has coauthored six best sellers with former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich. Forstchen is a pilot and co owns an original 1943 Aeronca L-3 “recon bird.” He resides with his daughter Meghan, in Black Mountain North Carolina.