16 January 2008

The Salton Sea Test Base

Salton Sea Naval Auxiliary Air Station / Salton Sea Test Base
- www.airfields-freeman.com

"The paved access road leading to the Southern part of facility is washed out about 1.5 miles in by sand drifts, so we saw nothing but desert & dunes, plus a modern sign warning that the grounds of the former Salton Sea Test Base could have unexploded ordnance."

"A circa 2000-2005 aerial photo looking northwest showing what appears to be a relatively recent marking (unidentified) on the southeast end of the runway."

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"The Salton Sea proved a useful water target for practice bomb drops during World War II. After the war, efforts to continue refining atomic weapon designs required the use of an adequate field-test range and it was recommended that the Los Alamos Laboratory continue using Salton Sea. Responsible for ordnance design and field testing, Z Division was placed in charge of technical activities at the Sea. Although Salton Sea continued to be a useful water target, the need for a land target became increasingly obvious through the 1950s and a new site was selected near Tonopah, Nevada. A gradual transition was made out of Salton Sea and Sandia gave up responsibility for the Sea in 1961."

+ Instrument Lab
+ filming test-drops

"The Z-Division, is an elite group within the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, that jointly operates with the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (and other agencies) and specializes in analyzing and duplicating weapons systems of potential adversaries of the United States." - Wikipedia

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