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EMP activated on the Nebuchadnezzar

Disables any electrical system in the blast radius. It's the only weapon we have against the machines.

― Trinity[src]

Electromagnetic pulse (EMP) is a burst of electromagnetic energy that creates an electromagnetic field around itself, which disrupts electronic devices, causing them to shut down within range. All of Zion's hovercraft carry devices capable of producing EMPs.

The blast from an EMP is sufficient to disable any electrically-powered device within its blast radius. In the real world, it is one of the most effective means of defense against the machines by the Resistance, though due to its indiscriminate effects, it comes with severe limitations, as humans are nearly as reliant upon electrical equipment as their adversaries. Nearly all system must be on EMP safe mode and no one jacked in when the device is activated. Anyone jacked in on the EMP radius will be killed by either electrocution or by forced "plug off" from the system.


The switch within hovercraft that activates their EMP

EMP weapons in use during the dark phase of the Machine War

In the initial years of the Machine War, stationary EMP cannons alongside EMP cannon-equipped human tanks were capable of mass destruction and deactivation against the Machines, but the latter's numerical advantage would mostly nullify this threat. EMPs were also used against the Machines by the hovercraft crews of Zion as their last resort weapon. 

When Smith entered the real world disguised as Bane, he uses an EMP to take out most of the hovercraft, leaving only the Nebuchadnezzar, the Mjolnir, the Logos, and the Vigilant operative. During the Battle of Zion, the Mjolnir, under heavy attack from Sentinels manages to burst into the Dock and activate its EMP, crippling the Machines army of Sentinels and its digger machines. The victory is short-lived, however, as Zion's defenses are also rendered inoperative and a new swarm of Sentinels arrives for the final assault.