EMF detectors, the lore, and the uses in Supernatural and the real world


Photo Credit: Supernatural/The CW by Sergei Bachlakov Acquired from CW PR

EMF detectors have been used in Supernatural from the beginning, but what’s the lore behind the object.

Watch any early episode of Supernatural and you will usually see an EMF detector. In “Phantom Traveller” the device was first introduced, with Dean proudly showing off his homemade device. The show isn’t the only place where you’ll find EMF detectors. There’s a long history of them being used for supernatural activity.

EMF uses in Supernatural

Throughout the show, the Winchesters have used EMF to determine if they’re dealing with a spirit or other creature. There are certain types of creatures that will give off signals, including vengeful or violent spirits, demons, and other mythical beings. “Phantom Traveller” introduced Dean’s walkman-EMF detector and that was used for much of the first season. However, the show has updated its devices since then.

More from Supernatural

The most recent use of the detector has been in “Tombstone,” when Jack used it through the cemetery. He was getting readings everywhere, which Sam certainly wasn’t surprised about.

EMF detectors haven’t always been reliable. There have been cases where they would pick up the signals from transmitters nearby. After all, they run of electrical currents.

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Real uses of EMF detectors

Ghost hunters in the real world use EMF detectors when looking for spirits and mythical beings. They are also used in science. They help to diagnose and fix electrical problems.

EMF stands for electromagnetic field. All the detectors do is pick up this field and can pick up the strength of the signal. The stronger the signal, the stronger the detector will sound.

Ghosts, demons and other creatures supposedly disrupt the electrical field and this disruption sticks around afterwards. Spikes in the current can indicate that a ghost is there or has been around recently.

You can buy your own EMF meter online. They cost as little as a buck in some places, making the need to create your own obsolete. Of course, you could always get an old walkman and make your own if you want to be like Dean. Hopefully there isn’t a Sammy nearby to knock the personal creation.

Next: What's the real lore behind Supernatural dreamwalkers?

Did you know the realities of the EMF detector? Did you know why they’re used in Supernatural? Share in the comments below.

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