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It has been suggested that this article be merged with List of nuclear
weapon test locations. (Discuss) Proposed since July 2016.
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Nuclear combat, test, launch and PNE sitesTesting countrySite nameSite LocationApprox. coordinatesNotesUnited StatesThe first nuclear power.Vela/Verification SitesA set of tests designed to allow scientists to get calibrated seismic and
other data from known shots for the purposes of nuclear testing detection
and verification. Later, the verification was to determine that tests could
be detected by the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization
protocols, and in calibrating their equipment.
Salmon Site, Lumberton, Mississippi31°08′32″N 89°34′12″W / 31.14229°N 89.57001°W / 31.14229; -89.57001
(Salmon Site, Lumberton, Mississippi)An underground salt dome site which was used for two separate Vela Uniform
project tests.
Rainier Mesa37°12′07″N 116°12′35″W / 37.20193°N 116.20986°W / 37.20193; -116.20986
(Rainier Mesa)One of the tunnels in the Rainier Mesa complex was used to fire a
verification test.
Fallon, Nevada39°12′00″N 118°22′52″W / 39.20012°N 118.38124°W / 39.20012; -118.38124
(Fallon, Nevada)A Vela shot, named Shoal, was fired in a bore hole near Fallon, Nevada.
Balapan49°56′29″N 78°47′08″E / 49.94152°N 78.78562°E / 49.94152; 78.78562
(Balapan)The US mission to Kazakhstan set off a series of explosions in unused bore
holes for Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty calibration.
Degelen (Omega)49°46′58″N 77°58′01″E / 49.78291°N 77.96691°E / 49.78291; 77.96691
(Degelen (Omega))The US mission to Kazakhstan set off a series of explosions in an unused
tunnel for Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty calibration, and as test
precursors for the eventual destruction of all tunnels in Degelen, known as
the Omega series.
Los Alamos, New Mexico35°49′22″N 106°18′08″W / 35.82289°N 106.30216°W / 35.82289; -106.30216
(Los Alamos, New Mexico)The US's first national laboratory, Los Alamos was created secretly during
World War II to build the first nuclear weapon. During the 1958 moratorium
on nuclear testing, a number of sub-critical tests were performed
underground to learn more about the dynamics of explosions and the
metallurgy of plutonium.
Tech Area 4935°49′22″N 106°18′08″W / 35.82289°N 106.30216°W / 35.82289; -106.30216
(Tech Area 49)The US's first nuclear weapons lab, founded in the Manhattan Project in
high secrecy. Tech Area 49 is an open area south of the lab, where
zero-yield tests were executed in shallow bore holes during the 1958
moratorium.
Soviet UnionThe second nuclear power.Semipalatinsk Test Site, Kazakhstan49°58′12″N 78°05′10″E / 49.97°N 78.086°E / 49.97; 78.086 (Semipalatinsk
Test Site, Kazakhstan)The first Soviet nuclear test ground, used for all kinds of atmospheric and
underground testing, as well as sub-critical tests.
Ground Zero50°26′17″N 77°48′51″E / 50.43794°N 77.81409°E / 50.43794; 77.81409
(Ground Zero)The first area of the Semipalatinsk Test Site to be used. Tower, ground and
air dropped weapons were tested there.
Sary Uzen/Murzhik49°57′N 77°42′E / 49.95°N 77.7°E / 49.95; 77.7 (Sary Uzen/Murzhik)An area used to test a score or so bore-hole emplaced weapons. Some
zero-yield testing was done there as well.
Degelen49°48′12″N 78°03′46″E / 49.80325°N 78.06276°E / 49.80325; 78.06276
(Degelen)A mountain massif in the Kazakh plains, Degelen was bored with a hundred or
so test tunnels. It was the site for the majority of the zero-yield testing
at Semipalatinsk. After being returned to Kazakhstan, the tunnels were
closed, then more permanently closed to discourage metal thievery.
Balapan49°55′46″N 78°51′41″E / 49.92944°N 78.8614°E / 49.92944; 78.8614
(Balapan)Balapan was the site of most the Soviet bore-hole tests. It was also the
site of the Chagan massive cratering test, which created Lake Chagan.
Novaya Zemlya, Arkhangelsk, Russia73°12′N 54°42′E / 73.2°N 54.7°E / 73.2; 54.7 (Novaya Zemlya,
Arkhangelsk, Russia)The second Soviet nuclear test site, specializing in the very large air
dropped tests, including the largest ever, Tsar Bomba.
A: Chyornaya Guba (Black Bay)70°59′N 53°42′E / 70.99°N 53.7°E / 70.99; 53.7 (A: Chyornaya Guba
(Black Bay))The southern end of Novaya Zemlya has been the location for a number of
underwater, tower and rocket drop tests of nuclear weapons. Rogachevo Air
Base is also located in the area, the launch area for a couple of
nuclear-tipped missiles targeted north on [Sukhoy Nos nuclear testing
site|Sukhoy Nos].
B: Matochin Shar (Matochin Strait)73°19′52″N 54°45′25″E / 73.331°N 54.757°E / 73.331; 54.757 (B: Matochin
Shar (Matochin Strait))A mountainous area (on the south side of the north end of the strait which
names the test area) is used for horizontal tunnel testing and zero-yield
testing. It is still in use for the latter today.
C: Sukhoy Nos (Sukhoy Nose)73°45′N 54°18′E / 73.75°N 54.3°E / 73.75; 54.3 (C: Sukhoy Nos (Sukhoy
Nose))The area on the north side of Matochin Strait, used for air and rocket
tests of massive blasts. The Tsar Bomba was tested here. The name refers to
the land that forms the peninsula on the north side of the west end of the
strait.
Kapustin Yar48°34′10″N 45°54′12″E / 48.56956°N 45.90346°E / 48.56956; 45.90346
(Kapustin Yar)The first Soviet missile launch and test area. From the original V-2 rocket
launch area almost a dozen nuclear tipped missiles were launched to explode
over Sary Sagan, Central and West Kazakhstan and the Volgograd Oblast
(region in Russia).
Kola Launch Area70°30′N 39°30′E / 70.5°N 39.5°E / 70.5; 39.5 (Kola Launch Area)A launch area in the Barents Sea between the Kola peninsula and Novaya
Zemlya.
Orenburg, Russia52°38′39″N 52°48′20″E / 52.64418°N 52.80547°E / 52.64418; 52.80547
(Orenburg, Russia)The site of a Soviet Army exercise which included a live nuclear blast.
Karagandy, Kazakhstan46°43′47″N 71°33′47″E / 46.72983°N 71.56304°E / 46.72983; 71.56304
(Karagandy, Kazakhstan)Karagandy had four of the Project K nuclear rockets explode in space above
its soil.
Kyzylorda, Kazakhstan47°59′02″N 62°00′40″E / 47.984°N 62.011°E / 47.984; 62.011 (Kyzylorda,
Kazakhstan)Kyzylorda was the location over which the 5th Project K rocket propelled
bomb exploded. It also hosts the Baikonur Cosmodrome, uninvolved in nuclear
testing.
West Kazakhstan49°30′N 48°00′E / 49.5°N 48°E / 49.5; 48 (West Kazakhstan)West Kazakhstan hosted at least three high altitude detonations, USSR #s 82
and 83, and ZUR-215, all on rockets from Kapustin Yar.
Komi, Russia67°27′52″N 64°18′10″E / 67.46441°N 64.30266°E / 67.46441; 64.30266
(Komi, Russia)This area contains the Vorkuta Sovietski Airbase, from which the two Rosa
nuclear rockets were launched toward Sukhoy Nos.
Volgograd, Russia48°27′N 44°18′E / 48.45°N 44.3°E / 48.45; 44.3 (Volgograd, Russia)The military Grom (Thunder) and Groza (Storm) atomic tests, on rockets from
Kapustin Yar, occurred above this area.
PNE SitesThe Soviets had an extensive program of peaceful nuclear explosions.Arkhangelsk, Russia65°59′38″N 41°02′17″E / 65.994°N 41.038°E / 65.994; 41.038
(Arkhangelsk, Russia)This region contains Novaya Zemlya, but besides that it hosts three seismic
probe PNEs, Kvartz 1 (Quartz), Rubin 1 (Ruby), and Globus 2 (Globe).
Astrakhan, Russia46°57′N 48°06′E / 46.95°N 48.1°E / 46.95; 48.1 (Astrakhan, Russia)This region has the Kapustin Yar space center, from which many nuclear
tipped missiles were tested. 15 tests to create natural gas reservoirs,
called the Vega series are in Astrakhan.
Bashkortostan, Russia53°39′N 55°24′E / 53.65°N 55.4°E / 53.65; 55.4 (Bashkortostan, Russia)This autonomous republic contains six PNEs, five named Butan (Butane) and
concerned with oil/gas recovery intensification, and two Kama for creating
chemical waste storage areas.
Irkutsk, Russia57°15′04″N 106°33′04″E / 57.251°N 106.551°E / 57.251; 106.551 (Irkutsk,
Russia)Hosts the seismic probe PNEs Meteorit 4 (Meteorite) and Rift 3.
Ivanovo, Russia57°30′29″N 42°38′35″E / 57.508°N 42.643°E / 57.508; 42.643 (Ivanovo,
Russia)Hosts the Globus 1 seismic probe PNE.
Kemerovo, Russia55°50′02″N 87°31′34″E / 55.834°N 87.526°E / 55.834; 87.526 (Kemerovo,
Russia)Kemorovo contains a single seismic probe PNE: Kvartz 4 (Quartz).
Khanty-Mansi, Russia61°44′46″N 66°46′35″E / 61.74616°N 66.77651°E / 61.74616; 66.77651
(Khanty-Mansi, Russia)This district hosts five different PNEs: Kraton 1 (Craton), Kvarts 3
(Quartz) and Kimberlit 1 (Kimberlite), seismic probes; and Angara and
Benzol (Benzine), oil intensifications.
Komi, Russia64°10′00″N 55°15′38″E / 64.16663°N 55.26057°E / 64.16663; 55.26057
(Komi, Russia)This region contains PNEs Globus 3 and 4 (Globe), Kvarts 2 (Quartz),
Gorizont (Horizon), all seismic probes.
Krasnoyarsk, Russia69°34′30″N 90°22′30″E / 69.575°N 90.375°E / 69.575; 90.375
(Krasnoyarsk, Russia)The area has seven seismic probe PNEs: Meteorit 2 and 3 (Meteorite),
Kimberlit 3 (Kimberlite), Batholit 1 (Batholith), Kraton 2 (Craton),
'Gorizont 3 (Horizon) and Rift 4, and an oil intensification PNE: Schpat 2
(Spar).
Kalmykia, Russia46°51′11″N 44°56′17″E / 46.853°N 44.938°E / 46.853; 44.938 (Kalmykia,
Russia)The Republic of Kalmykia hosts the Region 4 seismic probe PNE.
Murmansk, Russia67°47′28″N 33°36′30″E / 67.79105°N 33.60823°E / 67.79105; 33.60823
(Murmansk, Russia)Murmansk holds two apatite recovery PNEs: Dnepr 1 and 2.
Nenetsky, Russia67°57′10″N 53°58′03″E / 67.95265°N 53.96737°E / 67.95265; 53.96737
(Nenetsky, Russia)Holds one seismic probe PNE: Pirit 1 (Pyrite), a failed attempt to close a
burning gas well.
Orenburg, Russia51°36′N 54°27′E / 51.6°N 54.45°E / 51.6; 54.45 (Orenburg, Russia)Besides the infamous Totskoye nuclear exercise, Orenburg hosts three
seismic probe PNEs: Magistral (Highway) and Region 1 and 2, and an oil
intensification PNE: Sapfir 1 and 2 (Sapphire).
Perm, Russia60°18′N 57°06′E / 60.3°N 57.1°E / 60.3; 57.1 (Perm, Russia)Perm hosts three channel digging PNEs: Tiaga 1,2 and 3, and seven oil
intensification PNEs: Geligy 1-5 (Helium) and Grifon 1-2 (Griffin).
Sakha, Russia65°55′30″N 112°20′17″E / 65.925°N 112.338°E / 65.925; 112.338 (Sakha,
Russia)Hosts seismic probe PNEs Kimberlit 4 (Kimberlite), Kraton 3-4 (Craton), an
excavation PNE Krystal (Crystal),and oil intensification shots of the Neva
series of 5.
Stavropol, Russia45°53′24″N 42°28′19″E / 45.89°N 42.472°E / 45.89; 42.472 (Stavropol,
Russia)Stavropol contains a single PNE named Stavropol, for gas intensification.
Tyumen, Russia57°41′N 65°16′E / 57.69°N 65.27°E / 57.69; 65.27 (Tyumen, Russia)Tyumen contains a single PNE Tavda, designed for underground gas storage.Yamalo-Nenets, Russia68°54′11″N 75°49′23″E / 68.903°N 75.823°E / 68.903; 75.823
(Yamalo-Nenets, Russia)Contains the three seismic probe PNEs: Gorizont 2 (Horizon), Rift 1 and
Rubin 1 (Ruby).
Zabaykalsky, Russia51°54′48″N 113°07′50″E / 51.91335°N 113.13053°E / 51.91335; 113.13053
(Zabaykalsky, Russia)The long range atomic missile test Tyulpan (Tulip) originated from this
district, then known as Chita.
Aktobe, Kazakhstan47°36′N 56°12′E / 47.6°N 56.2°E / 47.6; 56.2 (Aktobe, Kazakhstan)The site of a single seismic sounding PNE named Basolit 2 (Batholith).Atyrau, Kazakhstan47°54′32″N 47°54′43″E / 47.909°N 47.912°E / 47.909; 47.912 (Atyrau,
Kazakhstan)The location for a series of PNEs exploring the use of salt domes for
storage of natural gas, name Galit (Halite or rock salt).
Karagandy, Kazakhstan50°31′39″N 68°19′17″E / 50.52747°N 68.3214°E / 50.52747; 68.3214
(Karagandy, Kazakhstan)Containing part of Semipalatinsk and all of Sary Shagan, Karagandy has a
single PNE named Meridian 1, but also had four of the Project K nuclear
rockets explode in space above its soil.
Kostanay, Kazakhstan51°50′29″N 64°12′48″E / 51.84143°N 64.21328°E / 51.84143; 64.21328
(Kostanay, Kazakhstan)Kostanay Province hosted a single PNE called Region 5, one of the seismic
probing series.
Mangystau, Kazakhstan43°51′04″N 54°46′26″E / 43.851°N 54.774°E / 43.851; 54.774 (Mangystau,
Kazakhstan)Mangystau hosted three shallow PNEs known as Say Utes. Their purpose may
have been exploration for a high energy weapons test site.
South Kazakhstan42°46′30″N 67°24′29″E / 42.775°N 67.408°E / 42.775; 67.408 (South
Kazakhstan)South Kazakhstan hosted a single PNE named Meridian 3, one of the seismic
probe shots.
West Kazakhstan51°21′46″N 53°18′20″E / 51.36273°N 53.30564°E / 51.36273; 53.30564
(West Kazakhstan)West Kazakhstan hosted three underground cavity experiments named Lira',
and Region 2, a seismic probe. There were also military high altitude tests.
Bukhara, Uzbekistan39°13′06″N 64°34′01″E / 39.2182°N 64.56684°E / 39.2182; 64.56684
(Bukhara, Uzbekistan)Near Turkmenistan, another gas well fire was extinguished with a nuke named
Urta-Bulak.
Kashkadarya, Uzbekistan38°49′58″N 65°05′14″E / 38.83291°N 65.0871°E / 38.83291; 65.0871
(Kashkadarya, Uzbekistan)Kashkadarya hosted a single PNE call Pamuk, to successfully extinguish a
gas well fire.
Donetsk, Ukraine48°12′48″N 38°16′54″E / 48.21336°N 38.28162°E / 48.21336; 38.28162
(Donetsk, Ukraine)The Donetsk region of Ukraine hosted a single PNE name Klivazh (Cleavage),
a shot designed to releieve gas pressure in a coal deposit.
Kharkiv, Ukraine49°28′47″N 35°29′41″E / 49.47973°N 35.49465°E / 49.47973; 35.49465
(Kharkiv, Ukraine)Kharkiv hosted a single PNE named Fakel (Torch), a successful effort to
extinguish a burniing gas well.
United KingdomThe third nuclear power.Montebello IslandsWestern Australia, Australia20°24′11″S 115°34′08″E / 20.40293°S 115.5689°E / -20.40293; 115.5689
(Montebello Islands)An archipelago of islands on Australia's northwest coast, the area was
chosen for three British tests. The first, Hurricane, was in a ship in a
waterway; the other two were tower shots on a couple of the islands.
Emu FieldSouth Australia, Australia28°42′44″S 132°22′38″E / 28.7122°S 132.3773°E / -28.7122; 132.3773 (Emu
Field)The site of a pair of British tower tests named Totem.
MaralingaSouth Australia, Australia29°53′41″S 131°35′30″E / 29.8948°S 131.5916°E / -29.8948; 131.5916
(Maralinga)The site of a pair of British test series named Buffalo and Antler, as well
as a long series of "small" tests: safety tests, zero yield tests and so on.
Kiritimati, Kiribati1°40′10″N 157°13′39″W / 1.66932°N 157.22742°W / 1.66932; -157.22742
(Kiritimati, Kiribati)Formerly known as Christmas Island (the Pacific one, not the one in the
Indian Ocean) Kiritimati was used as an air base for bombers dropping
nuclear tests mostly south of the island It hosted most of the Operation
Dominic drops as well as most of Britain's Operation Grapple.
Malden Island, Kiribati1°40′10″N 157°13′39″W / 1.66932°N 157.22742°W / 1.66932; -157.22742
(Malden Island, Kiribati)Three of the UK's Operation Grapple series were exploded above this island.
Nevada Test Site37°14′54″N 116°25′23″W / 37.24838°N 116.42311°W / 37.24838; -116.42311
(Nevada Test Site)In 1958 the US and the UK concluded the 1958 US–UK Mutual Defence
Agreement. Among other things, it gave the UK the right to use the US
testing facilities to test their weapon designs. The UK tested 24 weapons
underground in the US starting in 1962, ending when the Comprehensive
Nuclear Test Ban Treaty closed all testing in 1991.
FranceThe fourth nuclear power.Reggane (CEMO)26°18′42″N 0°03′26″W / 26.3117°N 0.0572°W / 26.3117; -0.0572 (Reggane
(CEMO))A French experimental facility, Centre Saharien d'Expérimentations
Militaires (CEMO), was chosen for France's initial bomb tests. The fourth
bomb Gerboise Verte had to be scuttled so it would not be confiscated by
the Algerian regime in revolt.[1]
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