Air Force

March 11, 2014

Goldwater Range big part of Luke mission

Tags:
56th Range Management Office

An HH-60G Pave Hawk rescue helicopter with the Alaska Air National Guard lands at the Barry M. Goldwater Range April 19, 2010, in the Sonoran Desert.

The Barry M. Goldwater complex in southwestern Arizona is the Air Force’s premier training range. Established in 1941 to train military pilots in air-to-air and air-to-ground operations and tactics, BMGR remains vital and active.

More than 60,000 sorties are flown annually to develop and maintain combat readiness for U.S. Air Force, Marine Corps, Navy, Army, and allied nation pilots. The BMGR is ideally situated within the unrefueled flight radius of 12 military installations and U.S. Pacific Fleet carriers.

Among all Defense Department installations and ranges, the BMGR is the third largest with 1.7 million acres. The range’s vast size facilitates simultaneous training activities at nine air-to-ground and two air-to-air ranges. Combining 2.8 million acres of restricted entry airspace and adjacent 2.7 million acres of the Sells Military Operations Area, the range complex totals nearly 98,000 cubic miles of unencumbered space where aviators practice realistic offensive and defensive combat maneuvers and engage simulated battlefield targets on the ground.

The BMGR is managed jointly by Luke Air Force Base for the eastern complex and Marine Corps Air Station Yuma for the western portion. At BMGR East, military users drop full-scale live ordnance on five pin-point targets, and employ inert training munitions at 60 other target arrays. Historically, 98 percent of all weapons dropped are inert practice bombs. Most of the land is used as a safety buffer for low-flying fighter aircraft and weapons safety zones.

Humans have inhabited the land now within BMGR for nearly 10,000 years. More than 70 years of dedication to military training has insulated the land from development that is incompatible with the military mission. Only about 10 percent of the land is impacted by training, targets, munitions clearance, roads and other support areas. The remaining 90 percent is relatively undisturbed Sonoran Desert. The buffer areas provide refuge-like conditions for plants and animals including endangered species such as Sonoran pronghorn, lesser long-nosed bat, and flat-tailed horned lizard.

The BMGR complex, Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge, Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, Sonoran Desert National Monument, and Mexico’s Pinacate Biosphere Reserve comprise one of the largest protected landscapes in North America. Natural and cultural resource protection helps sustain BMGR East’s military readiness capacity. Air Force biologists, archaeologists, and environmental planners trained in the ecology and culture of southwestern Arizona develop and implement comprehensive resource management programs that achieve a balance between the military mission and resource protection. For example, before munitions are dropped, trained biologists determine if pronghorn are present within 1 or 1.5 kilometers (for training or high explosive weapons, respectively) of intended targets. If pronghorn are present, pilots engage alternate targets.

Although Air Force directives restrict public access to target and buffer areas, specific portions of the BMGR complex may be visited after obtaining a visitor permit. Visitors to the BMGR must comply with regulations such that they maintain their personal safety, do not conflict with military training and protect fragile resources.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Airman 1st Class James Hensley

Luke cuts ribbon on F-35 Academic Training Center

Airman 1st Class James Hensley Gen. Robin Rand, Air Education and Training Command commander, cuts the ceremonial ribbon Oct. 9 marking the completion of the academic training center building at Luke Air Force Base. The buildin...
 
 
Forino_J

U.S., Singapore partnership standout

Lt. Col. John Forino Aug. 9 marked the 49th anniversary of Singapore’s independence. The 425th Fighter Squadron is an operational squadron comprised of elite U.S. Air Force and Republic of Singapore air force personnel design...
 
 
shirts-graphicbw

‘Guts’ required to enforce standards

A few years ago, a fellow senior NCO requested I talk to her subordinate about her appearance, specifically pertaining to her hair. Naturally, I asked about what the issue was and why she couldn’t have a discussion with her o...
 

 
141008-F-HT977-008

Airmen get new ‘Community Commons’

Renovations on Bldg. 700, which houses the Health and Wellness Center, will take place April 2015 through spring 2016 at Luke Air Force Base. Subway and the barbershop will remain open during construction. Other amenities, such...
 
 

News Briefs October 17, 2014

Keep good mental health Calling all Airmen! Sleep disturbances such as insomnia and nightmares can affect people personally and professionally. Reaching out to a medical provider is a step in the right direction to good health. Courtesy of the 56th Medical Group Haunted house The 56th Mission Support Group is featuring Operation: Haunted Block House...
 
 

THUNDERBOLT OF THE WEEK

Jessica Behrens 56th Medical Support Squadron Pharmacist Hometown: Seneca, Missouri Years in service: Three Family: Husband, Chris; daughter, Katelyn, 2; son, Levi, 5 months Education: Bachelor’s degree from University of Arkansas and doctor of pharmacy from Creighton University, Omaha, Nebraska Previous assignments: Pensacola Naval Air Station, Florida; Vance Air Force Base, Oklahoma; Spring...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin