DTRA Weapons Effects Testing: A Thirty Year Perspective   [open pdf - 1021KB]

"During the mid 1980s Dr. Don Linger, the Defense Nuclear Agency's Director of Testing, decided to consolidate the agency's high explosive weapon effects testing at White Sands Missile Range (WSMR). His concept was to conduct large-scale nuclear simulation tests every few years in support of National Command and NATO requirements, supplemented by smaller HE [High Explosive] tests using a full range of both active and passive measurements to improve understanding of weapon effects and to benchmark state-of the-art calculations. Three test sites were developed in the dry desert alluvium of northern WSMR near the Trinity Site: the Large Scale Testbed (well-known to the MABS [Military Applications of Blast Simulation] community who participated on several 4 kT High Explosive tests); the Intermediate Testbed (for calibration tests with yields up to 20 T) and the Precision Testbed (for small-scale special experiments). A fourth testbed was located several miles down range at Queen-15 where a high water table exists. At that time, primary interest was directed toward nuclear simulations of airblast, ground shock, cratering and thermal effects against a wide range of above-ground and buried structures. Early in the 1990s the agency's mission shifted away from nuclear simulation testing to Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD). [...] This paper summarizes the first 30 years of Defense Threat Reduction Agency [DTRA] testing at WSMR and other locations."

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Retrieved From:
Defense Threat Reduction University: http://www.dtra.mil/dtru/index.html
Media Type:
DTRU Journal (October 2010), v.1 no.2
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