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DARPA To Harness Power Of Lightning

DARPA To Harness Power Of Lightning

DARPA plans underground network using bolts of lightning to transmit data…

Hoping to go a stage further in harnessing the power of electricity than Nikolas Tesla, DARPA envisions a future where underground intelligence centers send and receive data on the strikes of lightning bolts.

The project known as Sferics-Based Underground Geolocation or S-BUG, involves harnessing low-frequency radio signals or
pulses created naturally by lightning strikes, then using them to transmit data.

Underground Data Network To Use Lightning Strikes

Underground Data Network To Use Lightning Strikes

Because such signals can penetrate deep underground, the proposed technology could give military or intelligence operatives the ability of underground sight to navigate and infiltrate locations beneath the earth.

As farfetched as it might sounds, the science behind the project seems viable, but developing the technology is another matter. The register reports:

“DARPA researchers have noted that one of the few kinds of wireless signal which can penetrate underground is low-frequency radio. Unfortunately such signals are quite hard to generate at the required power levels. A network of lo-freq RF nav stations widespread enough to offer decent accuracy would probably be impossible to deploy…

But the right kind of signals are generated naturally by lightning strikes, which cause the emission of “atmospheric” (“sferic” or “spheric”) radio pulses. An underground receiver could perhaps be built capable of detecting sferics from lightning bolts hitting the surface hundreds of miles away. It could be informed of the positions of the strikes over LF comms by a single specialised surface base station, similarly far off, and thus calculate its own position from sferic data coming in from several directions.”

Our current GPS has changed the way we communicate and the technology has been embraced not only by the military but by civilians all over the world.

The vast network of US military spy satellites do an excellent job at surveying the earth and providing the platform to transmit
data between remote locations across the globe, but when it comes to going underground, that’s a place satellites just can’t penetrate.

The increasing amount of spy’s in the sky have driven many people, projects and facilities underground, so it’s no surprise that DARPA would like to find new way of subterranean communication. And in light of the ne S-BUG project, perhaps it’s also no surprise that DARPA has started a separate initiative aimed at controlling lightning.

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