White Sands Missile Range Army Base in Otero, NM


Location: 32.943, -106.419
Phone: (505) 678-2121
DSN: 258-2121

White Sands Missile Range is simply the widest and largest military base in the United States of America. It covers almost 8300 square km and spreads over five different counties. It is located in the southern part of New Mexico. The close proximity to Fort Bliss and its 2400 square km range form a huge area exclusively used for military tests. The base is operated by the United States Army. Its primary mission implies testing all the weapons the Army can benefit from. NASA also used this place for a landing site during the Space Shuttle operation. Some of the most popular operations that take place there include satellite tests before launching, flight tests and missile testing. The primary mission of the site is to support the Army regardless of the actions it is involved in.

History

White Sands Missile Range has a rich history, mostly because of its size. It has enough room to support any types of tests or training sessions. It was established in 1941, but on a way smaller area. It was initially designated as an airfield for the Army. Its primary mission was to empower the United States of America before joining World War II. Soon after the Pearl Harbor attacks, the government leased more land to set up a massive bombing range. By 1944, before World War II was actually over, the War Department was looking for an appropriate site to test some missiles. Due to the lack of human communities around it, White Sands Missile Range was an excellent spot. The base was expanded again to host these operations as well.

Before 1945, the place was an amalgam of testing ranches. In 1945, they were all renamed to what the site is known today as. They all became part of the same base. In the summer of the same year, the authorities decided to invest a little in the modernization of this base. Besides, the troops deserved better living conditions as well. Later that summer, after the upgrade was complete, the Army successfully tested the first atomic bomb. Among the troops that assisted at some rocket tests, the Americans brought in a few German scientists as well. They had a prisoner-of-war status.

Ever since that moment, White Sands Missile Range was constantly updated and part of the most important American conflicts, such as the Korean War, the Vietnam War or the Cold War. Most weapons and equipments were first tested here before being sent on the battlefield.

Units

The units hosted at White Sands Missile Range are deployed there for short periods of time. There is no such thing as a permanent host unit. Most of them get there for short training or testing sessions, then they are departed. However, the people who run the base are mostly part of the US Army and the US Navy.

Housing

When deployed to White Sands Missile Range, you are automatically given a home on site. The huge size of the place makes enough room for everyone, plus the deployment is usually temporary, unless you are sent there to maintain and operate on site.

Photos of White Sands Missile Range Army Base in Otero, NM

White Sands Missile Range White Sands Missile Range

Nearby Hotels

Nearby Car Rental Agencies

Nearby Restaurants

New Mexico Military Bases

Los Alamos Demolition Army Base in North Central, NM

North Central, New Mexico Military Bases

Comments

Base Contact Information Los Alamos Demolition Range and Laboratory General Assistance: (505) 667-5061 Operations: (505) 667-6622 Museum Information: (505) 667-4444 Geography and Area Information The Los Alamos Demolition Range is a 54,000 acre (84.38 square mile) facility in north central New Mexico approximately 102 miles north of Albuquerque at 35-53’00” N 106-19’28” W. ...
Kirtland Air Force Base in Bernalillo, NM

Bernalillo, New Mexico Military Bases

Comments

Located in the southern part of Albuquerque, Kirtland AFB is adjacent to the international sunport in the area. It is run by the Air Force and located somehow in the central part of New Mexico. It spreads over 209 square km, meaning it is the largest military installation in the Materiel Command. It hosts over 23000 citizens, including active military troops, family members, employed civilians, re...
Holloman Air Force Base in Otero, NM

Otero, New Mexico Military Bases

Comments

Located in Otero, New Mexico, Holloman AFB is a United States Air Force installation and tucked between the Sacramento and San Andres mountain ranges. Lying approximately six miles from Alamogordo, the base is named for missile research expert George V. Holloman. The facility is well known amongst speed enthusiasts for having the longest and fastest test track in the world, stretching over six mil...