If you’ve ever watched a ghost hunting show, or perhaps even gone on a haunted tour there’s a good chance you’ve heard of an EMF reader in association with connecting to the otherside. Let’s start with the basics: EMF stands for electromagnetic field and an EMF reader, in the non-paranormal world, is usually used to find wiring issues and other electrical anomalies. So, how did they wind up in the ghost hunter’s toolbox?
The basic understanding is that ghosts (or energy from the otherside) are supposed to cause unusual, unexplained spikes which can be captured by EMF readers. This is simply a theory and has not been proven beyond a shadow of a doubt. Much of the theory is actually based on the law of thermodynamics - energy cannot be created or destroyed, only change in form. Thus, when people die their energy must change in form…and perhaps that form can be noticed by electromagnetic spikes.
i09 reports, “Professor Johnjoe McFadden from the School of Biomedical and Life Sciences at the University of Surrey proposes that the conscious mind consists of an electromagnetic field, a field that does not disintegrate when we die. The firing of electrical impulses along nerves in the brain is sort of like an alternating current system as well, but with a lot more directions and cascade effects.”
Now, EM waves constantly bombard us in the world and in our homes so it is not the existence of EM waves that are notable, but rather their fluctuation. An EMF meter measures this by working off an inductor. This inductor than senses a changing magnetic field and induces a small voltage. The EMF reader than amplifies this voltage and gives an output measurement to the user.
To correctly use an EMF reader (or, as correctly as possible) it is suggested you calibrate your EMF. To calibrate, place two identical EMF readers next to each other, turn them on, and make sure there is no reading, then place the second one about a foot away...make sure they read the same and you’re good to go! After you calibrate, you should also take some baseline readings and note the lowest and highest EMF readings in the area you’re ghost hunting. Doing this will help you better understand when you’re seeing a spike. As a note, a spike of 1.5 points or more is considered strange, so be sure to investigate. Finally, be sure to be critical of the EMF readings you gather - why are there spikes? Have you eliminated the obvious? What could be manmade?
Once you have found the most interesting reading in the room, you can move onto the next item on your toolbelt and record an EVP or, for something a little different, try out the Estes Method...which I wrote about in a different post.
The above image does include and EMF reader but is of Harry Price's ghost-hunting kit, which amongst other things contained both reflex & cinematograph cameras, tools for sealing doors & windows, apparatus for secret electrical controls, steel tape, drawing instruments, torch, bottle of mercury and powdered graphite for developing finger-prints. It is liscensed under the Public Domain.