– Weapon testing at WSMR provides an opportunity for seismic sensors to detect a wide range of weapon impacts blasts and correlate TSPI data for sensor evaluation.
– Large unit personnel testing and training exercises, combined with an extensive road network, provide opportunities for seismic detection of personnel and road vehicles under varying conditions.
– A wide variety of terrain, such as mountains and caves, and geology ranging from gypsum dunes to granite is available.
– The large size of WSMR provides the opportunity to isolate a test area from seismic inputs. Seismically stable areas provide a predictable test environment.
– Advanced Inertial Test Laboratory (AITL). The AITL is located at Holloman AFB and operated by the 746th Test Squadron. The AITL is a one-of-a-kind, seismically quiet test facility for testing ultra sensitive inertial navigation instruments and optical systems and is one of the most seismically quiet test facility in the world. Other sensors and systems requiring seismic isolation may also be tested or calibrated in the AITL. The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) uses AITL to calibrate their optical and gravity instruments. NASA required that all the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Rate Gyros rate gyros be low-noise characterized in the AITL facility as part of flight qualification before being installed in the Hubble Space Telescope. Each test cell inside the building contains a seismic isolation pier and a temperature controlled environment. The facility contains four of these isolated test cells each with an azimuth reference device to align test table primary axes to within 1.0 arcsec. The quiescent seismic activity recorded on these isolated test piers are typically between 10 and 100 nano g2/Hz. One test cell has an absolute gravity survey mark for calibrating gravimeters. Each seismic pier is 10 ft wide by 20 ft long by 2 ft deep.