We’ve all watched the popular ghost hunting shows on TV. People running around in the dark with camcorders that film in total darkness, their faces glowing green and looking kind of scary in their own right. They have little black boxes that speak in creepy metallic voices. Paranormal investigators seem to use all manner of gadgets that blink and beep and flash different colored lights that supposedly increase in the proximity of ghosts. Can this equipment really tell us when a spirit is in the room with us? But what are these gadgets, and do you need them to be a credible paranormal investigator? During the 1800’s, when the Spiritualism Movement was all the rage, people conducted seances in their homes and many would hold elaborate parties with hired mediums to facilitate contacting the departed. While feeling cold spots and witnessing mediums speak in tongues and table tipping was all well and good, folks yearned for something more substantial validation of the paranormal. Our minds learn by visual representation. We need to see it or hear it for ourselves to know it’s real. That’s where paranormal tools enter the picture. A piece of equipment has no fear. It knows no religion. It is completely unbiased. It does what it is built to do and leaves the interpretation up to us. Equipment balances out our emotional reaction to the paranormal. So what exactly are the tools used during a paranormal investigation? Are they all custom made by mad scientists in Frankenstein type laboratories? The endeavor to connect with the Afterlife is to work on the assumption that the soul never dies. The laws of physics dictate energy can neither be created nor destroyed, but only change state. We are working with the belief that when we die, our souls return to their purest form. Our souls being pure energy. Working on the premise that spirits are a form of energy, paranormal investigators turned to equipment that detects and measures energy. What do I mean by “energy”? I’m talking about electromagnetic energy or electromagnetic fields. Electromagnetic fields (EMF) are present all around us but are invisible to the naked eye. The earth’s magnetic field affects animal navigation and compass readings. It’s most notable at the poles where the gorgeous Northern Lights can be seen. Electric fields are produced by the buildup of electric charges in the atmosphere. That’s one reason ghost hunters get all excited for an investigation when a storm is approaching . It is believed the increase of electricity in the atmosphere gives spirits added energy. Plus, it adds to the ultra spooky factor. Besides natural sources of EMF there are also fields generated by man-made sources. High tension wires, X-rays, high frequency radio waves and every electrical appliance in your home whether turned on or off is emitting electrical waves into the atmosphere. So with all this electricity in the atmosphere, how do we find anything anomalous, anything ..paranormal? Electric fields are always present. They are static and do not vary in their strength at a fixed distance. Magnetic fields are created when the electric current flows or is disrupted. It appears when there is a FLUCTUATION.. If a paranormal investigator removes variables such as electrical sources in the room and has controlled natural EMF sources and the magnetic fields are fluctuating in strength and location in a closed area…Well that’s when we get excited!! Off the Shelf Tools Much of the equipment paranormal investigators use is geared towards contractors or electricians. These trades rely on detecting wiring flaws, electrical strength and they need to know where electricity is flowing to ensure their safety. Let’s take a look at some of these tools and how they work. K-II Meter A K-II, or K2 meter detects magnetic fields through a coil built into the surface of a circuit board on a spiral coil design. When a magnetic field passes an electrically conductive coil, the magnetic energy is translated into an electrical signal. This signal is deciphered by a microchip and triggers one or more of it’s LED lights to light up. As the current increases or decreases it causes a corresponding change in the number of lights on the K2to light. Some models can measure static electric fields but most are simple models that give a vague reading of electric field strength. A K2 is not going to give you a precise measurement in EMF. They are a simple tool and for this reason many investigators find that spirits can easily manipulate the circuitry and use it to establish a simple form of communication. I’ve had good luck with it in this respect. I’ve been able to have hour long conversations with spirits asking “yes”or “no” questions and have them blink once for “yes” and twice for “no”. I think it’s simplicity makes it for lack of a better word..approachable to spirits. I’ve found through experience it works well in locations where spirits may have passed decades or centuries ago. They seem quickly comfortable with the idea of making it’s lights blink. Tri Field meter of EMF detector is a much more sensitive instrument. If you buy one. get one of the models labeled Natural EM meter. These models will not measure man-made sources ( microwave, wiring, your other ghost hunting equipment hanging around your neck ). Tri field meters are designed to detect changes in extremely weak static or flowing (EMF ) fields. These meters usually will have tone signal and measures strength on a needle type gauge. These are good for measuring a “base” reading in an area. EM meters can measure areas or items that are magnetized. Some models can also measure radio microwave fields. This is why the gauge gives readings in frequency (HZ) and milligauss. These are measurements of the wavelength and frequency of the fields. Picture tying a rope to a door handle and holding the end of the rope. Now wave your arm up and down and notice the change in how fast and how big the waves are on the rope. These tools measure these energetic wavelengths. Tri field meters can pinpoint a fluctuation in a very specific area so they are handy when locating a “hotspot’. Documenting a magnetic fluctuation with a Tri field meter on camera is a great way to validate what you’re feeling in an active area. If you’re not there and what you’re experiencing can’t be seen, this is where equipment helps validate and document the paranormal activity.