17 January 2013
German Gold TEMPEST Emanations
News that Germany will remove 300 tons of gold from the Federal Reserve Bank
of New York gold vault repeats the oft-made claim the vault is "80 feet below
ground." Not quite. Standing at the corner of Nassau Street and Maiden Lane,
shown in the photo below, you will be within 8 feet of the three-level vault,
a steel and concrete wall separating you from the the golden hoard. The lowest
level is 80 feet below ground, not the top level of the three stacked vaults.
(Original construction drawings
No other bullion depository is so lightly fortressed and most publicized
-- with regular public tours.
One means to track gold bars is by capturing their emission of unique emanations
to verify purity and identity (not that that is widely known, and not to
be tested from the FRBNY sidewalk -- best from a nearby building or van):
Germany recently counted and tested all of the thousands of gold bars it
keeps in foreign banks. (Note emission tester in two lower photos. Legacy
stamps, weight and size measurements divert from emissions.)
Some reports of the German gold move suggest there were security concerns
behind the move, but the German government denies that is the reason. Its
embedment with the largest and least protected gold hoard on earth could
be the nightmare.
Not that removal of the German gold will diminsh the pile greatly: