What kind of equipment is used in a haunting investigation?
It's important to remember that we don't really have ANY equipment that truly detects ghosts. All we have are environmental sensors that may pick up anomalies, which are only SOMETIMES ghosts. In some ways, your most important piece of equipment is yourself, and your own observational skills. That said, basic equipment you want to bring with you on an investigation includes:
- A notebook
- Polaroid, 35 mm film, and digital cameras
- A trifield meter
- A natural electromagnetic field meter.
- A thermometer or infrared thermal scanner
- Digital and audiotape voice recorders (both for interviews and EVPs)
The trifield meter is easy to find. They can be used to measure leakage from a microwave oven, or locate bad electrical wiring. We use them because ghosts seem to leave behind an electromagnetic (EM) footprint. What we look for are moving EM fields, especially if they correlate with what a psychic is seeing. However, be aware that there are many artifacts you can get from bad wiring, fuse boxes, radio alarm clocks, etc. It picks up ANY electromagnetic field, not just those of ghosts.
The natural EM meter measures a more limited range of EM activity. It is not supposed to pick up humans or typical equipment. Unfortunately, it has two drawbacks. One is that it is affected by movement, so you have to put it somewhere and leave it. The other is that if I'm in an area where there's a lot of psychic activity, I can set it off from as much as 12 feet away, which means I can't get close enough to it to read the dial without changing the reading. As I said, people aren't supposed to do set it off. I'm not sure why I'm the exception to the rule, unless the ghosts (if present) just like me and hang close by. Nonetheless, I don't personally use that one.
Other equipment you can use includes:
- A Geiger counter or radiation detector - it's a somewhat disturbing fact that ghosts can sometimes set these off.
- Thermal video monitors - these measure small changes in temperature and can put them on video, but you are talking of something that is very expensive.
- Geomagnetometers - fluctuations in geomagnetic field can sometime be associated with paranormal phenomena (not just ghosts). However this equipment is expensive, and the human body can affect its readings, which means you need to record the findings from standing 12 feet away (preferably on a laptop).
- Audio amplifiers - some people feel you can hear EVPs with these, but given that a lot of ghost hunting goes on in urban areas, it's difficult to say what you're really hearing. I don't recommend these.
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