Talk:Edwards Air Force Base/Archive 1

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Does anyone know when the last shuttle to take off was and how many times a shuttle has landed there?

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Security Clearance and Contracting

Edwards AFB of the State of California near Palmdale (they mostly work from Palmdale) has a long history of contracting out its business. There are many factors including multiculturalism and activist multiculturalism, activist is hiring mostly minority on purpose, at Edwards AFB. The United States Air Force founded Edwards AFB, and the United States Marine Corps found a place there. Edwards AFB is a flight test center and has trained many astronauts and is an alternate for the United States Mission Control Center that often controls NASA air and space missions. Anyone who works there is expected to have a security clearance, and security clearances have been known to be revoked for simply working there: there are many political issues and years of military work do not mean anything to them (they might call it old). The money from the Congress of the United States is tight, so there is an annual fight over contracts. Do not expect a career there unless you have something like over 300 credit hours of University education (one guy had over 800 credit hours), or own something of the companies who contract out there. Finally, look toward game theory for survivability, since the attitude problem and requirements are not expected to be sane. By example of potential insanity, the Space Shuttle contract to replace the shuttle fleet of the 1980s and 1990s completely ignored getting rid of mass by removing part of the rocket system (boosters) in order to tell a fable about the entire shuttle can carry a mass without boosters (despite proven history, and physics works in all parts of the Universe despite opinion).

  • That is all crazy talk. I work on the base and actually know about rocket propulsion. Nearly everything you wrote is absurd. 21:27, 20 June 2007 (UTC)


God, what a dull entry. Edwards was home to many of the 20th century's most important and daring research flights and many of the world's bravest and most able pilots ever seen. And what do we get? 0.3% of the population (or whatever, it's too dull to read) happens to be hispanic. Zzzzzzz..... Please somebody, fix this!!! What about it's start as Muroc Army Air corps field? Pancho Barnes? Yeager?..... Graham 05:06, 8 Jan 2004 (UTC)

The fix - and expansion of this article - is coming. In the meantime, please see Plant 42 for an idea how this page will look in the future. Thanks for your patience! In the meantime, if anyone has any specific questions about Edwards AFB, please post them on my talk page. --avnative 19:21, Aug 31, 2004 (UTC)

Nice work

Nice work on the expansion. Apologies for my calling it "Edwards' Lake" yesterday. A check of the USGS map (via the wonderful NASA World Wind shows it's called Rogers Lake, so I've tweaked things accordingly, and left playa in as a link to the surface type. -- John Fader (talk | contribs) 22:20, 3 May 2005 (UTC)

Thanks, but don't be too hasty yet. I plan to add a whole bunch more, and I'd like to eventually make this my first Featured Article Candidate. Before that'll happen I'm bound to make zillions of typos and errors that will need correcting. -Lommer | talk 07:57, 7 May 2005 (UTC)
Great plan, I would love see this become a featured article and you are definitely on the way to it. I'll help out where I can and keep up the good work. Triddle 20:30, 8 May 2005 (UTC)

Notes from USGS map

I spent some time poring over the USGS map of the place, and some thoughts occurred to me:

  • We should say why it was called Muroc. I can't see any geographical features called Muroc.
    • The "Early History" section describes that it came from a reversal of the name Corum, who were some of the early pioneers. The AFB website states that their initial application for a post office was rejected because "Corum, CA" looked too similar to "Coram, CA" in handwriting, and might lead to error. Therefore the Corum brothers tried Muroc, and all their ventures afterwards (general store, etc) bore the name Muroc. -Lommer | talk 23:57, 4 May 2005 (UTC)
  • It might be a quibble, but the USGS chart calls the railroad running to the north side of the base Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway not Southern Pacific Railroad. Given the complex relationship between the two, I'm not necessarily advocating changing the article.
    • I have no idea of the history here, I just got that factoid from the AFB website. -Lommer | talk 23:57, 4 May 2005 (UTC)
  • The USGS chart shows two government owned railroad tracks running to the base from the ATSFR, which I think are worthy of a mention. One runs south, west of the lake into the main base. Another runs SW ward from Boron. After a mile it forks: one fork appears to run part way across the lake (it appears that it formerly ran all the way to the main base). The second fork runs SE from the junction, runs on the eastern side of Leuhman Ridge, and ends up at an extensive facility described as "Rocket Test Facility"
    • Interesting, I'll look into this. -Lommer | talk 23:57, 4 May 2005 (UTC)
  • There's a NS line on the playa at Rogers described as "low altitude speed course". I'd thought this was a land-speed lane, but I doubt that now. there are no roads connecting either end, and the middle is cut by a raised piece of (non-playa) land. So I think it's for low-flying aircraft. The line has marks on it (every half-mile, I think) which must be for calibrating speed tests.
    • Hrm, I think it's highly likely that this is indeed a speed course. Edwards hosted low altitude speed trial for many Air Force and experimental aircraft, and they must have had a standart location for testing them. The fact that there's no roads doesn't mean anything, as vehicles could very easily just drive straight out over the playa. -Lommer | talk 23:57, 4 May 2005 (UTC)
      • Hah, I think I may have misread your first post and that you did actually understand what this line was for. Anyways, is the line centered at this sat photo (Google) [1] the one you mean? I'm not quite sure but it looks like its almost magnetic N-S. If so, it actually runs off the playa, and there's this station which is set about a half-mile back from the line about halfway through (where the sat photo is centered). It looks to me like that would be a timing station of some sort. -Lommer | talk 00:53, 5 May 2005 (UTC)
        • That wasn't the one I meant (the one you describe there is denoted "tower fly-by line". The one I mean is [2]. It even has mile numbers written (to the north) on the playa. -- John Fader (talk | contribs) 01:05, 5 May 2005 (UTC)
          • Ah that's really cool actually. Only at a base like Edwards would they have a line dedicated for tower flybys :-). Is that "timing station" I picked out actually the tower then? If not, where is it? The one problem I do have with sattelite imagery is that it's impossible to tell the height of buildings... -Lommer | talk 05:22, 5 May 2005 (UTC)
  • I believe the rocket-sled track is south of the lake. Trivia: it's in LA County.

That's it. -- John Fader (talk | contribs) 21:31, 4 May 2005 (UTC)

On looking further at the rocket base, I see;
  • It's quite extensive, and looks well-maintained (i.e. it's not a V2/von Braun leftover)
  • In addition to lots of hangar/factory type buildings, there are some barrack(like) buildings, a helipad, and some radar and radio buildings.
  • About two miles to its SE are two sets of launch-pads (6 large in one set, 10 smaller in the second), all hooked up with decent roads.
  • Another half mile away are some large water tanks, which is consistent with a rocket launching facility.
  • One cute piece of trivia: most of the roads around EAFB have humdrum names (Lakeshore, Forbes, Lilly, etc.), but the two connecting the rocket place are called Mars Bvd and Mercury Bvd. -- John Fader (talk | contribs) 00:46, 5 May 2005 (UTC)
The rocket base is at the NW corner of this image, with the two sets of pads in the SE corner. -- John Fader (talk | contribs) 01:07, 5 May 2005 (UTC)
  • Man, it's really too bad that the sattelite resoltion gets so bad over the rocket base (tinfoil hat: maybe its intentional?). Any history on what that rocket test facility was used for? -Lommer | talk 05:22, 5 May 2005 (UTC)
    • Check this out [3]. Apparently the rocket test site was used in the apollo program but has recently been upgraded. On another note, the track at the south end of the lake you mentioned isn't stapp's famous track, it's the supersonic track that was built after it but only operated for five years. [4]. As soon as I polish off the history section I'm going to start a facilities section under which we can cover all this interesting stuff (dryden, the AFB proper (runways, etc), the two rocket-sled tracks, who knows what other cool stuff is there?). -Lommer | talk 05:36, 5 May 2005 (UTC)
      • There's no great conspiracy in Google not having SPIN-2 imagery of lots of places: it takes a lot of manual work for the Keyhole people to register all the images (and they do a darn good job when they do). NASA World Wind (which I can heartily recommend you try out, if you have a fairly decent windows PC) shows 1m USGS imagery, and you can get the same from Terraserver:

Moved rocket sled section

I moved the rocket sled section to history, it really did not seem to fit in the facilities section very well. I'm not sure it fits where it is now well either; feel free to move it. Triddle 03:57, 7 May 2005 (UTC)

Yea, I didn't really know where to put that — it seems too detailed to put in the history section but at the same time it's no longer there so its hard to justify keeping it in the facilities section. Blech, the only solution I can see is the flesh out the rest of the history section enough that it blends in. Sigh. -Lommer | talk 07:34, 7 May 2005 (UTC)


Hrm, I'm just looking at these maps [5] and wondering if the Air Force Research Laboratories (including the rocket test facility) are actually on Edwards AFB land or if they have their own land that just happens to be adjacent. Anyone have further info? -Lommer | talk 07:54, 7 May 2005 (UTC)

I'm now confident they're on Edwards land. -Lommer | talk 01:10, 15 May 2005 (UTC)

TODO list for FAC

I've spent the past while mostly working on article associated with Edwards, not the main article itself. As I mentioned above, I'd like to eventually nominate this article for FAC. I've answered every question I've seen on this page, but I don't think it's quite there yet. I'm almost starting to run out of ideas for what still needs to be done on it. I've started a TODO list below (roughly in order of importance and feasability), please add anything you'd like expanded on or added to this article. I'll work on anything posted in this list, then submit it to Wikipedia:Peer review, and we'll see whether it can make the grade. -Lommer | talk 01:10, 15 May 2005 (UTC)

TODO Before FAC Nomination:

  • Exapand the "current projects" section
  • Talk a bit about the joint China Lake - Edwards testing airspace, and link to an article (yet to be created)
  • get some print references, not just online ones
  • put inline citations for important facts in the article
  • Do some research to ensure that we haven't missed any important facilities
  • comb through it carefully for typos, maybe readjust the layout + pictures a bit?
  • At least some mention of Pancho Barnes - surely this legendary character is a key part of the "heyday" of EAFB? Graham
    • Yea, I briefly linked to her in the "early history" section, but she porbably deserves more of a mention. Feel free to put it in. -Lommer | talk 18:27, 27 May 2005 (UTC)
  • A section on civilian/off-duty life at the base

Multiple links to the same article

I reduced some multiple links to the same article down to one. They were then put back. Is multiple linking essential? Bobblewik  (talk) 15:26, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Hi, I was the one who re-added the links. The reason I did so was navigation - if i'm reading the section on nearby bases and I want to find out about plant 42, I don't want to go hunting through the article to find the link, I just want to click it. I understand the case for links that semi-useless (like years) or are close together, but I like to keep duplicate links if they're far apart. The MOS says that duplicate links are ok if they're more than 40 lines apart, which is the case here. All the same, if other people feel strongly about duplicate links I'm willing to see them go. -Lommer | talk 00:40, 2 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for the response. The purpose of my edit was units of measurement. Whilst I was editing, I noticed multiple links and thought that it was excessive. So I simply removed repeats. I did not think about the issue of them being separated. Ironically, it may have been me that wrote what you saw in the MOS. I still think that the article has more links than I would prefer, including two adjacent lines with a link to airbase and two low added value links to 1950. The issue of multiple links is something I think about but of secondary importance to me. I was merely curious. Thanks for explaining. I will defer to your choice. Bobblewik  (talk) 08:14, 2 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Egad. Thanks for noticing that airbase link - it was really bad. -Lommer | talk 22:13, 2 Jun 2005 (UTC)

stupid little note

Random fact: the base plays a semi-important role in the first half of the Frank Zappa song "Billy The Mountain". I didn't know where this would fit on the main article page.

Is anyone still looking at this?

I can offer some help with this article, especially in regards to the AFRL at Edwards. I'm traveling to the base in a few days and am going to take a picture of one of the entry signs, much like the picture at the top of the Plant 42 article.

Does anyone else have a ideas? GregCovey 17:38, 16 July 2006 (UTC)

North base

Editor's note - Recommend deleting the text ", sometimes called Operable Unit 10,". This terminology is only used in describing the North Base area in reference to the overall Edwards AFB environmental clean-up program. This program is very similar to general industrial cleanup operations under the national "Superfund" process. The whole base is divided into many "Operable Units" for management and budgeting purposes under the cleanup program. The term is not used by the base in any other context, and to use it in this description of the operational functionality of North Base is out of context. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Edwards, California

An editor has now twice removed "Edwards, CA" as the closest town from the table, and I've reverted it both times. On the most recent incident, his edit summary asked "Is there scheduled service?" An airport doesn't have to have scheduled service to "serve" a town. While EDW doesn't have commercial service, it certainly hosts military transport flights. The point is, though, that "Edwards, California" is the closest town which is what the box asks for. If you're doubting whether there is such a town, see this link [6] and this one [7]. Akradecki 05:39, 8 December 2006 (UTC)


I've put the Pancho film link back in, because she was such an important historical figure. I realize that this link boarders on linkspam, but since it's a non-profit documentary, and the site provides some legitimate historical information, I believe that it should stand. Akradecki 19:41, 2 January 2007 (UTC)

Lakebed runways

There are multiple runways on the lakebed. Are they officially part of KEDW? If they are, they should be added to the runway list. Or, if they are not, they should be placed elsewhere, they are significant structures anyway. (Being a lakebed runway is by no means a reason for being "unofficial" runway...) Mstuomel 08:13, 28 May 2007 (UTC)