HAMPTON, Va. Could a major electromagnetic pulse or EMP be a global perfect storm for our electrical distribution system, communications, and the new technology society?

On Wednesday, Feb. 10, at NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, William Forstchen, author of the New York Times best seller “One Second After” will discuss the thesis of his book in his lecture “EMP, and the Potential for a Nationwide or Global ‘Katrina,’ of our Electronic Infrastructure.”

Forstchen’s talk was originally scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 2.

Media who wish to interview Forstchen at a news briefing at NASA Langley at 1:15 p.m., Wednesday should contact Chris Rink at 864-6786 or by e-mail at christopher.p.rink@nasa.gov by noon on the day of the talk for credentials and entry to the center.

On Tuesday evening, Feb. 9, Forstchen will present a similar talk for the general public at 7:30 p.m. at the Virginia Air & Space Center in downtown Hampton. The evening presentation is free and no reservations are required.

Forstchen will examine how an EMP event could result in a civilian casualty rate of upwards of 90 percent within a year due to the breakdown of water, sanitation, medical, and food distribution systems, along with the breakdown of social order, law enforcement, and command and control. An analysis will be included 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.

Forstchen is a professor of history and Faculty Fellow at Montreat College, Montreat, N.C. He has a doctorate from Purdue University where he specialized in the American Civil War, military history and the history of technology. He is the author of more than 40 books in the fields of history, historical fiction, military related issues, and science fiction. He has coauthored six best sellers with former Speaker Newt Gingrich.

For more information about NASA Langley’s Colloquium and Sigma Series Lectures: http://shemesh.larc.nasa.gov/Lectures/