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US Grid Security - Climate Institute

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US Grid Security - Climate Institute

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This is the fourth and last presentation from the series where I explain concepts related to the North American SuperGrid.
There are several possible incidents that can disturb the correct functioning of the network. The main ones are the following: Electromagnetic Pulse Attacks, Naturally Occurring Threats, Threats to Structural Integrity, Threats originating from weaknesses in Cyber Defense. I explain each one of them, describing its consequences and giving examples.

http://northamericansupergrid.org/
http://climate.org/
http://www.solencasa.es/Grid-Security.html

This is the fourth and last presentation from the series where I explain concepts related to the North American SuperGrid.
There are several possible incidents that can disturb the correct functioning of the network. The main ones are the following: Electromagnetic Pulse Attacks, Naturally Occurring Threats, Threats to Structural Integrity, Threats originating from weaknesses in Cyber Defense. I explain each one of them, describing its consequences and giving examples.

http://northamericansupergrid.org/
http://climate.org/
http://www.solencasa.es/Grid-Security.html

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US Grid Security - Climate Institute

  1. 1. Manuel S. Preckler Alonso
  2. 2.  Introduction  Current State of the US Power Grid  Causes of disturbances in the Grid  Electromagnetic Pulse Attacks  Naturally Occurring Threats  Threats to Structural Integrity  Threats originating from weaknesses in Cyber Defense Index
  3. 3. Introduction  Definitions:  Electrical Grid: The electrical grid is the electrical power system network comprised of the generating plant, the transmission lines, the substation, transformers, the distribution lines and the consumer. [1]
  4. 4. Current State of the US Power Grid  Drawbacks:  Aging equipment  Capacity bottlenecks and increased demand  Vulnerable to climate impacts and terrorist attacks  Consequences:  Americans will likely experience longer and more frequent power interruptions!!
  5. 5. [2]
  6. 6. [2]
  7. 7. Current State of the US Power Grid  Drawbacks:  Aging equipment  Capacity bottlenecks and increased demand  Vulnerable to climate impacts and terrorist attacks  Consequences:  Americans will likely experience longer and more frequent power interruptions!!
  8. 8. Causes of disturbances in the Grid  Possible incidents:  Electromagnetic Pulse Attacks  Naturally Occurring Threats  Threats to Structural Integrity  Threats originating from weaknesses in Cyber Defense
  9. 9. Manmade Electromagnetic Threats  ElectroMagnetic Pulse (EMP)  A high-altitude nuclear weapon-generated electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack have direct and indirect consequences.  Direct: Electromagnetic “shocking” of electronics and stressing of electrical systems.  Indirect: the damage that “shocked” the electronics controls, then inflict on the systems in which they are embedded. [3]
  10. 10. Manmade Electromagnetic Threats  ElectroMagnetic Pulse (EMP) [3]
  11. 11. Manmade Electromagnetic Threats  ElectroMagnetic Pulse (EMP)  EMP has 3 major components:  A near-instantaneous, powerful pulse known as E1,  Subsequent high-amplitude pulse known as E2,  And, a slower and lower-amplitude (but still damaging) waveform known as E3. [3]
  12. 12. Manmade Electromagnetic Threats  E1:  E1 is produced when gamma radiation from the nuclear detonation knocks electrons out of the atoms in the upper atmosphere. The Earth's magnetic field acts on these electrons to change the direction of electron flow to a right angle to the geomagnetic field. This produces a very large, but very brief, electromagnetic pulse over the affected area.  E1 pulse is ended at one microsecond (10-6 seconds=1000 nanoseconds) after it begins and rises to its peak value in about 5 nanoseconds. This process occurs simultaneously with about 1025 other electrons.  E1 pulse peaks at about 50,000 volts per meter, which means a power density of 6.6 megawatts per square meter. [4]
  13. 13. Manmade Electromagnetic Threats  E2:  This E2 component is an "intermediate time" pulse that lasts from about one microsecond to one second after the beginning of the electromagnetic pulse.  The E2 component of the pulse has many similarities to the electromagnetic pulses produced by lightning and with the widespread use of lightning protection technology, the E2 pulse is generally considered to be the easiest to protect against.  The main potential problem with the E2 component is the fact that it immediately follows the E1 component, which may have damaged the devices that would normally protect against E2. [4]
  14. 14. Manmade Electromagnetic Threats  E3:  The E3 component is a very slow pulse, lasting tens to hundreds of seconds, that is caused by the nuclear detonation heaving the Earth's magnetic field out of the way, followed by the restoration of the magnetic field to its natural place.  E3 can produce geomagnetically induced currents in long electrical conductors, which can then damage or destroy components such as power line transformers.  These currents are often called quasi-DC currents because they resemble the direct current from a battery more than what most people think of as a pulse. [4]
  15. 15. Manmade Electromagnetic Threats [4]
  16. 16. Manmade Electromagnetic Threats  Non-Nuclear ElectroMagnetic Pulse (NNEMP)  Can cause Intentional ElectroMagnetic Interferences (IEMI)  Normally are very limited to small areas  Examples:  Explosively Pumped Flux Compression Generator (EPFCG)  Electromagnetic Pinch Device  Marx generator  High Energy Radio Frequency weapon (HERF gun)
  17. 17. Naturally Occurring Threats  GeoMagnetic Disturbance (GMD)  A GMD is a major event in Earth’s magnetosphere. It’s caused by a very efficient transfer of energy from solar wind into the space environment surrounding Earth. Solar wind shockwaves result from a solar flare that is followed by Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs) of charged and magnetized particles into space.  Solar disturbance causes fluctuating currents in the ionosphere and magnetosphere. These currents produce geomagnetic variations and induce a geoelectric field which drives Geomagnetically Induced Current (GIC) into the ground technological systems. Problems arise as results of the variations of the magnetic field induce currents in the power transmission lines. [6] [5]
  18. 18. Naturally Occurring Threats  GeoMagnetic Disturbance (GMD)  5 different categories of geomagnetic solar storms:  G1 (Minor)  G2 (Moderate)  G3 (Strong)  G4 (Severe)  G5 (Extreme)  3 Types of geomagnetic solar storms:  Auroral Electrojets  Coronal Hole  Sudden Storm commencement (SCC)
  19. 19. Naturally Occurring Threats © 2014. University of Waikat
  20. 20. Naturally Occurring Threats  Auroral Electrojets  The term 'auroral electrojet' is the name given to the large horizontal currents that flow in the D and E regions of the auroral ionosphere.  The Auroral Electrojet Index, AE, is designed to provide a global, quantitative measure of auroral zone magnetic activity produced by enhanced Ionospheric currents flowing below and within the auroral oval.
  21. 21. Naturally Occurring Threats  Auroral Electrojets
  22. 22. Naturally Occurring Threats  Coronal Hole
  23. 23. Coronal Holes SIC | Solar Imagery Center
  24. 24. Naturally Occurring Threats  Coronal Hole  Coronal Holes represents open, magnetic field line structure that allow the solar wind to escape more readily into space, resulting in streams of relatively fast solar wind and is often referred to as a high speed stream in the context of analysis of structures in interplanetary space - Coronal Hole High Speed Stream (CH HSS).  As the CH HSS begins to arrive at Earth, solar wind speed and temperature increase, while particle density begins to decrease. Fast CH HSS can impact Earth’s magnetosphere enough to cause periods of geomagnetic storming to the G1-G2 levels. [7]
  25. 25. Naturally Occurring Threats  Sudden Storm Commencement (SSC)  Sudden changes in the solar wind dynamic pressure, caused by interplanetary shocks and discontinuities, can give rise to the phenomenon known as the Sudden Storm Commencement (SSC). The consequence is a sharp change un the vertical component of the Sun’s Magnetic Field.  Every part of the globe is susceptible to SSCs, rather than affect a single portion of the Earth.
  26. 26. Naturally Occurring Threats  Example:  During mid March 1989, the most notable being a geomagnetic storm that struck Earth on March 13. This geomagnetic storm caused a 9 hour outage of Hydro-Québec's electricity transmission system; and, destroyed a transformer at a nuclear power plant in New Jersey [8]
  27. 27. Threats to Structural Integrity  Physical Vulnerability  Most of the wires are above ground and they cover very long distances.  They are susceptible to damage from:  Threat actors  Extreme weather conditions  Animals INIGO SKIES PHOTOGRAPHY/FLICKR (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
  28. 28. Threats to Structural Integrity  Examples:  Metcalf sniper attack  April 16th 2013 - An assault was carried out on Pacific Gas and Electric Company's Metcalf Transmission Substation in Coyote, California.  17 electrical transformers were damaged by sniper gunshots.  +$15 million worth of equipment damaged.  Buckskin attack  Sept. 25th 2016 – An attack at Garkane Energy Cooperative Inc.’s Buckskin substation between Kanab (Utah) and Page (Arizona).  1 electrical transformer was damaged (+$1 million)  cutting off electricity to 13,000 customers for a day and forcing the utility to wait at least six months until the station's disabled transformer is repaired or replaced. [10] [9]
  29. 29. Cybersecurity  Modern power systems rely heavily on automation, centralized control of equipment, and high-speed communications.  The most critical systems are the supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems that gather real-time measurements from substations and send out control signals to equipment [11]
  30. 30. Cybersecurity  There are 3 main security concerns that are associated with SCADA systems:  Policy and procedure vulnerabilities  Platform configuration vulnerabilities  Platform Software vulnerabilities  Network configuration vulnerabilities  Network perimeter vulnerabilities  Network communication vulnerabilities
  31. 31. Cybersecurity  Cyber-Attacks forms:  Length overflow and DFC (Device Fence Control) Flag attacks  Reset and Unavailable  Outstation Data Resets  Advanced Persistent Threat (APT)
  32. 32. Cyber-Attacks examples  2015 Ukraine power grid cyberattack  23 December 2015  From 1 to 6 hours  225,000 costumers  “Spear phishing“ attack  Explanation:  Hackers installed malware on computer systems at power generation (distribution utilities) firms in Ukraine. This gave the attackers remote access to these computers and allowed them to flip circuit breakers turning off power. While the power was cut, the attackers also bombarded customer service phone lines with fake calls to stop customers reporting the cut. [12]
  33. 33. Cyber-Attacks examples  2016 Ukraine power grid cyberattack  17 December 2016  From 0 to 1 hours  1/5 of Kiev  Transmission facility [12]
  34. 34. References  [1] StudentEnergy.org Electrical Grid Definition  https://www.studentenergy.org/topics/electrical-grid  [2] Hurricane Michael's Staggering Power Loss Documented by NASA  https://weather.com/news/news/2018-10-17-hurricane-michael-power-outages-nasa  [3] Report of the Commission to Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) Attack  http://www.empcommission.org/docs/empc_exec_rpt.pdf  [4] E1, E2 and E3 by Jerry Emanuelson, B.S.E.E.  http://www.futurescience.com/emp/E1-E2-E3.html
  35. 35. References  [5] What is a geomagnetic disturbance and how can it affect the power grid?  https://www.swpc.noaa.gov/phenomena/coronal-holes  [6] E.O. Falayi, O. Ogunmodimu, O.S. Bolaji, J.D. Ayanda, O.S. Ojoniyi, Investigation of geomagnetic induced current at high latitude during the storm- time variation; NRIAG Journal of Astronomy and Geophysics; Volume 6, Issue 1; 2017; Pages 131-140; ISSN 2090-9977.  http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2090997716300736  [7] Coronal Holes -Space Weather Prediction Center  https://www.swpc.noaa.gov/phenomena/coronal-holes  [8] University Of Delaware Bartol Research Institute Neutron Monitor Program  http://neutronm.bartol.udel.edu/catch/p10.html
  36. 36. References  [9] Sophisticated but low-tech power grid attack baffles authorities  https://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-grid-attack-20140211-story.html  [10] Substation attack is new evidence of grid vulnerability  https://www.eenews.net/stories/1060043920/print  [11] Electric Control Center of REE in Madrid.  https://www.diariodesevilla.es/economia/Red-Electrica-eleva-beneficio- millones_0_1329767179.html  [12] Hackers behind Ukraine power cuts, says US report  https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-35667989
  37. 37. Contact Information  Web:  SolEnCasa.es  Climate.org  LinkedIn:  linkedin.com/in/manu-preckler/  Mail:  mpreckler@solencasa.es

Hinweis der Redaktion

  • Hurricane Michael October 2018
    What Happens if the Power Grid Fails (For days)?
    1. No refrigerator and freezer to keep food fresh
    2. Communications can be compromised (Traffic lights, Radio, Telephone, etc.)
    3. No heating/cooling systems in the house
    4. …
  • Hurricane Michael October 2018
    What Happens if the Power Grid Fails (For days)?
    1. No refrigerator and freezer to keep food fresh
    2. Communications can be compromised (Traffic lights, Radio, Telephone, etc.)
    3. No heating/cooling systems in the house
    4. …
  • https://www.infrastructurereportcard.org/cat-item/energy/
  • MHD - MagnetoHydroDynamic EMP
    The late-time, low level, part of HEMP (E3), produced by the deformation of the Earth's magnetic field (blast wave, E3A), and the rise of the hot burst debris in the Earth's magnetic field (heave, E3B).
  • http://www.futurescience.com/emp/ferc_Meta-R-320.pdf
  • https://science.howstuffworks.com/e-bomb3.htm
    EPFCG are used to create ultrahigh magnetic fields in physics and materials science research and extremely intense pulses of electric current for pulsed power applications.
  • https://www.northernlighthouse.ca/geomagnetic-storms/
  • The name “ionosphere” 1920s “the part of the earth’s upper atmosphere where ions and electrons are present in quantities sufficient to affect the propagation of radio waves.”
    The magnetosphere is strongly influenced by the configuration of Earth’s magnetic field. Close to the planet’s surface, the magnetic field has a structure similar to that of an ideal dipole. 
  • More variable enhancement of the diurnal magnetic variations is known to occur in the auroral zones during magnetically disturbed periods, are known as the Ds variations.
    The ionospheric currents which are thought to cause the large Ds variations in the auroral zone are said to form the auroral electrojets.
    https://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/19630007608.pdf
  • They appear dark because they are cooler, less dense regions than the surrounding plasma and are regions of open, unipolar magnetic fields. 
    https://www.swpc.noaa.gov/phenomena/coronal-holes

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